Last month, New Gamer Nation started a series on zombie games: it’s a last ditch effort to appease the Mayan Gods and save humanity. Rather than sacrificing a virgin (I did ask, but was told no), we have decided to pursue a less violent (but no less potent) method, and review a zombie game every month instead. We hope the gods accept our review and let us continue to live our lives past December 21, 2012. This month, we will tackle Zombie Highway, which can be played on iOS devices.
Zombie Highway, developed by Auxbrain Inc., is a single player game with one goal: survive as long as possible on the highway from hell. The object is stay on the road while hoards of zombies are clinging to the side of your car. They want to run you off the road in order to harvest your brains, as zombies seem fond of doing. The longer you can keep your car on the road and your brains in your head, the higher your score will be. If the zombies successfully flip the car over, the game will end. Fortunately, the player is provided with weapons to help shoot off the zombies and keep your car rolling down the Zombie Highway.
Currently, there are eight different levels of gameplay and four different modes of transportation. Each level provides players with a unique challenge. The Classic level is just an endless joy ride of survival. Your objective is to last as long as possible without getting flipped over. Next is a weapons-free challenge, where players will have to rely on driving close to abandoned cars on the highway to deal with the zombie threat. There is also a level with low, dense clouds that impede your vision, or a level with ice covered roads that require expert driving ability. As players progress through the game, they can earn achievements and unlock additional vehicles. Each vehicle has its own strengths and weaknesses. Picking the right car for your style of driving and the terrain type will help keep you alive. There is a lot of fun in seeing what combination works the best in the right situation.
The controls for the game are great. This game utilizes your iOS device’s accelerometer to control the movement of the truck. Tilting your device to the left or the right will steer the car, making it seem as if one were driving a real truck. It is important to learn the right amount of tilt to put on each turn, because it’s necessary to take zombies out by side-swiping debris in the road. Firing your weapon is just as simple as driving. There are four circles on the screen, and each circle represents a window on the car. Simply tap the circle for the window you want to fire out of, and a hail of bullets rain from the car.
The graphics in this game are clean and crisp, even extending to the menus themselves. The menus and sub-menus are easy to navigate and well organized, making it very unlikely that a player will get lost or become confused. Games are easy to quickly start, despite the fact that there are a lot of options to choose from when setting up a game; as noted before, players can choose from four different vehicles on eight different levels. Furthermore, players have the option to choose from sixteen different weapons. There are lots of different combinations to choose from, giving players a wide variety of gameplay options. In addition to the menus, the in-game graphics look great. There were no instances of lag, even when the zombie battling got intense. Everything ran smoothly and the environments and zombies were nicely rendered. Overall, the game looks great, and though it may not keep up with other top tier mobile games, it can certainly hold its own.
Zombie Highway manages to change up the gameplay even further with the introduction of zombies of varying size, shape, color, and strength. In addition to the zombie types, all the different variations on the vehicles, levels, and weapons keep interest in the game strong, no matter how much they play.
Finally, the sound effects are excellent. Screeching tires, the roar of the engine, and bullets being fired can all be heard clearly, and are a good representation of what they would sound like in a Hollywood film. Perhaps the most gruesome, but certainly the most fun, of the sound effects include the sound of a zombie being run over by your truck or having it’s head blown off by your weapon of choice. As far as sound goes, it is everything you would expect from a game like this, and gamers will appreciate the effort put into this area of the game.
Auxbrain Inc. has an excellent game on their hands. Despite this being their only zombie game, they did a great job, and I am sure all the mobile gamers out there would agree that they nailed it. The game play is endless fun, varied, and challenging. Gamers looking to fill their zombie game void will find this game does exactly that. It will certainly exceed your expectations, as it did mine, so I highly recommend this game: you won’t be disappointed.
I give Zombie Highway a full 10 out of 10 mangled zombies on the side of the highway.
[xrr rating=10/10, max_stars=10]
This review is based on a retail copy of the iOS version of Zombie Highway by Auxbrain, Inc.