Well I never once thought I’d be reviewing a title that has been sat on my shelf for 3 years.
Well, rather a rendition of it. Ubisoft have released Zombi for Sony and Microsoft platforms, which Wii-U owners will recognise from its highly acclaimed exclusive ZombiU. It was renowned for taking full advantage of the Wii-U’s Gamepad for communications and being a utility super hub. It worked. It was a fantastic idea. Porting the game over to other platforms was a no brainer but how could Ubisoft translate the Gamepad functions over to PS4 and Xbox One?
Zombi sees a zombie apocalypse in our very own London as foretold by John Dees “The Black Prophecy” and it’s up to you as a survivor to help The Prepper who is an ex member of a secret society called the “Ravens of Dee” by following his instructions to the letter. You do this using his Prepper Pad. Through it, you can scan the area, follow his commands and keep tabs on your inventory and your surroundings however in Zombi, you do so through the game itself rather than the absent Gamepad. This makes Zombi less unique than its counterpart. It becomes just another zombie game and this is no remaster, it’s a straight port which is seemingly untouched. I didn’t say it was a bad game, it’s actually good, really good.
This is a survival horror game through and through. You scavenge for supplies and weapons, hack CCTV cameras to help you get around, use manholes to shortcut between areas and of course use a cricket bat as your primary weapon. You can’t help but feel alone and vulnerable. The darkness of London mixed with the limited battery power of your torch creates some tense moments that at times, made me poo my pants and shout “Hurry up! Hurry up!” as I bash the controller to take down a barricade with a horde just feet away and closing fast. It’s fantastic. If they do get you, you don’t die, technically, rather you come back as another survivor as your previous character roams as a member of the brains club, a stronger member at that. Kill yourself (technically) and you can loot all your stuff back, it’s a cool feature.
It’s not all sunshine and roses unfortunately. The clunky close quarters combat is just a one move smack topped off with a finishing move and if the brainless wonders get close, you can give them a little push to create a foot of space so don’t expect to be some kung fu master ready to open a can of whoopideedoo ass, it isn’t going to happen here. Firearms are the way to go. The handgun is found early on and a headshot or two brings them down hard.
As mentioned before, Zombi is a straight port. The graphics and visuals have not been touched, or certainly doesn’t seem so which is not great as the Wii-U was a last generation console. Textures are not very detailed at all and the zombies are by no means scary but up-close they are just copied and pasted. London is undoubtedly a scary place to be during a zombie outbreak and its captured brilliantly here, just don’t inspect things up-close.
Survival horror at its core.
Unique death system.
Zombie hordes create some tense moments.
Brutally satisfying finishing moves.
Set in our very own London!
Its soooo last gen (visually).
Lack of Wii-U Gamepad makes Zombi “Just another zombie game”.
Zombi is a great zombie apocalypse simulator set in a familiar location but the last generation graphics and the clunky combat tug at its ankles. If you haven’t got a Wii-U or ever played ZombiU then this is definitely worth buying otherwise stick to the more unique experience brought on by its Wii-U counterpart.