According to Matt Karch, the CEO of Saber Interactive, World War Z is a third-person cooperative shooter that combines the 2013 film, starring Brad Pitt, and Max Brooks’ apocalyptic horror novel.
As far as replicating the movie goes, I would say the developer did a very good job as the A.I perfectly replicates the hordes of rampaging zombies from the movie; from the way they look and move and even how they swarm in the hundreds to climb on top of each other to get to higher ground.
This new take on the zombie apocalypse isn’t groundbreaking in any way, but all the mechanics work well and, more importantly, it’s genuinely a fun experience.
During the roughly 5 hours it takes to complete the main campaign, players follow a group of survivors from the zombie apocalypse. The campaign can be played in single player mode with three A.I bots by your side or with three friends. Of course, as is the case with almost everything in life, playing with friends is a lot more fun than killing zombies on your own.
The four campaign locations in the game are Moscow, New York, Jerusalem and Tokyo. From gunfights in the streets of Tokyo all the way to trying to survive the Subways of New York, these locations are all very unique from one another with each level being well designed. While the difficulty can be changed depending on your skills, the game does task you with trying to be strategic, as running and gunning mostly ends with your team being overrun by hordes of the brain chewing dead.
Instead, a defensive strategy is key to keeping a checkpoint (points you are tasked with protecting during most missions). Knowing where to set up traps, machineguns and working together is the only way to survive.
While playing with friends is fun, it can be frustrating playing with A.I bots as they tend to have the same brain power as the game’s titular zombies. You end up spending much of your time saving the A.I as they drag their feet and get caught by the monsters that you are trying to escape from.
Players can choose from six different classes that all have their pros and cons depending on your play style. These classes include Gunslinger, who obviously slings guns, Hellraiser, who specialises in using explosives, Fixer, who actually doesn’t fix anything but instead is all about assisting the team with explosive rounds, Medic, who heals players, Slasher, who uses a melee weapon, and Exterminator, who specialises in crowd control.
Upgrading player classes and progress is fun as you can specialise in certain things, such as gun damage or healing ability if your class is the Medic. However, this process can become a bit of a grind after already playing through the campaign.
Healing items, weapons and ammunition are scattered around all levels. This is where exploration definitely pays off. The higher difficulty means less ammo, healing items and weapons that can be found in each level.
World War Z also features five competitive multiplayer modes. The Player vs Player vs Zombie mode pits two teams of players against each other while the zombie hordes attack both teams. Other modes include Swarm Deathmatch, Swarm Domination, and King of the Hill.
The most interesting thing about the multiplayer mode is the hoards of zombies thrown in mid-combat that you also have to be aware of, or flee from, during a firefight with other online players.
The short and sweet campaign is fun while it lasts and could bring back some players but, for most of us, going back even with increased difficulty and new abilities seems a tedious task.
World War Z is a game that accomplishes what it sets out to do and that is being a fun mindless zombie-filled romp with friends. The gameplay mechanics are not amazing, but they work very well and shooting or hitting zombies feels really fun.
It also looks very good considering that you could have 1000 zombies on your screen at the same time. Whilst exterminating all those zombies, I rarely experienced frame drops or glitches of any kind which is always a plus.
The only issues I had were server issues, which saw me randomly being kicked out of a party. Of course, this only happened a few times over a week and never hindered my experience as a whole.
After my many hours of play time and doing some research, I had found many people comparing World War Z to Left for Dead but that gamers, including myself, felt that it did enough to stand on its own. Tons of fun can be found playing through World War Z, especially with friends and a good set of headphones. The short campaign and lacklustre multiplayer modes do hurt the game a bit but, overall, it serves as an enjoyable way of mowing down hordes of the undead.
World War Z
While World War Z does have its fair share of issues, it still ensures a fun time with friends shooting zombies. And what more could you ask for?
- Satisfying combat
- Different classes
- Loads and loads of zombies
- Not the brightest A.I
- Visuals aren't always the best
- Storyline 0%
- Gameplay 0%
- Graphics 0%
- Replay Value 0%
- Sound and Music 0%