Zombies with 10% More Hashtags
By Brett Wolfe
Reviewed on Xbox One
Released on August 10, 2016 for Xbox One ( Also on PC and PS4)
Developer: BeatShapers Publisher: Digerati Distribution
Do you like guns? Have an enormous hatred for the undead? Then I present you with #KillAllZombies, this season’s hot new show where the community is in charge. Have a favorite contestant? Then help them out to survive the unending hordes of zombies. Find one of the contestants a bit full of themselves? Then hinder them by taking away their favorite weapons. Change the pace to the way you want from the comfort of your own couch. Season One started on August 10 and you decide how long it will last.
#KillAllZombies is a shoot‘em up by BeatShapers and was released on August 10 for Xbox One. This game is in the same vein as games such as Smash TV, as you are placed into an arena with waves upon waves of various enemy types coming from fixed points. Although being in waves, the game’s advancement is primarily due to the time mechanic. The waves advance after certain time intervals, regardless if you eliminate all of the enemies or not. Due to this, the earlier waves are usually ended with time to restock and collect health. In turn, the later levels have the waves pile on top of each other as the hordes get bigger, and after a certain time limit has been reached a boss will spawn. One unique feature that this title provides is the ability for the use of chat commands whenever you stream this game via Twitch. There is a large list of commands that can be entered, from decreasing the player’s health to giving the player a permanent spread gun. This feature, without a doubt, has to be one of the coolest features for this style of games that I have seen. Unfortunately, from the tests that I have done, this feature rarely works when those viewers in chat input the commands. Whether I set it up wrong, which I went through all the steps in game, or something else went wrong I could hardly get anything to go from the chat to in game.
The gameplay of #KillAllZombies is your normal shmup (shoot-em-up) set-up with the Twin Sticks style. The game has a large variety of perks and guns to use in the game. A majority of the guns that you can use in the title will be acquired through the perks and are timed weapons. Unlocking new weapons comes with time, so the more time you spend in a single game means more unlocked weapons. Some of the weapons, like the shotgun and pistols, are unlocked really early on, however, the other weapons have time requirements that are really high. When it comes to perks, this game did it right in so many ways. There are so many perks that you can get and some are super helpful, while some can hurt you. Some of the perks are only limited weapon uses, while there is one that gives you 500,000 experience, but kills you instantly. What is even the point? That is easily the worst, but as a whole they are a positive. The best perk in my opinion is: When you die, you explode, taking out zombies, then respawn with a better weapon than the one you had when you perished. The perks are the best thing in this game as they are so creative and help change the play of the game from one round to the next. Perks are activated every time that you level up and you can choose between one of four different perks that are randomly selected. On the other hand, the level design is far from excellent. To start there is only three game modes: Survival, Vault Defense, and Co-op Survival. None of these provide any sort of story which I find as a slight draw back as there is no explanation on what is going on or why. In addition, Vault Defense is identical to Survival except that there is a flag in the middle and you can place turrets. The turrets can be upgraded by one perk that upgrades all of them permanently and also with temporary perks. Besides that, you can change your current weapon with the turret, but that is the most that can be done with them.
This game’s visuals are around average as this game has the appeal of an 80s title with new graphics. The nostalgic style gives it a little bit of an upper hand; however, it is not 8-bit so the gameplay really is the only aspect that has the retro feel. One thing that puts a nail in the coffin of the visuals for this game is the fact that there is only one map. Every time you play a game it is the same map and there is no way to change it. While there are obstacles that fall onto the map to change it a little bit, it doesn’t help that the map doesn’t vary any other way. The soundtrack of this game is a whole other story. It is absolutely abysmal. Besides the sounds that the zombies make, this game has one song. You read that correctly, the soundtrack consists of one song that plays over and over again on the title screen. Even if you like the song, it gets deadly repetitive. Its catchy, but so is every other pop song on the radio until you have heard it so many times.
All in all, with everything presented in mind, I believe this game is worth the price. #KillAllZombies is priced at $12 USD and I feel that is fair. Some mindless fun is provided in this game, but I do not believe there is much replayability unless you are a leaderboard fanatic. With the lack of features and the basic level of gameplay that is in the title, I think at most a 30-minute session is the best that you can get out of this game. Then the game is best to put down for a while as it does not have much to hold players attention long enough for an extended play through. While having a few silver linings in the game, it does not take away from the fact that it is very limited when it comes to actual gameplay and I feel that the games lifespan will not stay in the spotlight as long as it would have if there would have been just a couple more elements of gameplay. So, grab your favorite weapon and pray the community has your side if you wish to survive #KillAllZombies!
*Note: A copy of this game was provided for the purpose of this review.
Final Score: 5.5/10
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