Mad Dog Games, LLC
: 2-8 (Online Multiplayer)
Zombie Survival Shooter
16th April 2019
£34.99 or $39.99
Zombie shooters. I don’t think any reviewer in the world is going to get through a review of Mad Dog Games’ World War Z without comparing it to the grand-daddy of all zombie survival shooters, Left 4 Dead 2. It doesn’t come as a surprise, seeing as it really takes so much from Valve’s cult classic and tries to refine it. The thing is though, as much as it does a good job of sticking to a tried and tested formula, it doesn’t really do enough to justify a huge wealth of time to offer it either. Plus, there’s one other game that does stuff like this a whole lot better and it always gets overlooked on this console.
It isn’t to say that the gameplay on World War Z isn’t solid though. I mean, you have a whole army of zombies coming towards you, almost on par with the Sony release, Days Gone. As with the Left 4 Dead series, you get the occasional big zombie that comes in, like the lurker, who is a lot harder to kill than the minions you have to deal with normally, but these are few and far between.
The action is spread through 11 missions, each with a bit of context to them, but not enough to really warrant a story that is credible. They are consisting of moments of easy rules to follow, so they aren’t really going to tax the brain enough. Things like “go to this point” or “defend from zombies”, you know the type.
There's also an element of forward planning, with sections that you can booby trap and set up offensive positions to help eradicate the undead menace. Again though, it all boils down to repetition, and World War Z’s biggest problem is that with all the decent FEEL that comes from playing it, as it is a solid build, it doesn’t give enough variety to make you want to come back time and time again, which I think is a bigger shame. It isn’t without some good ideas though, as it does give you a load of different locations, which is nice, but everything else is another version of been there and done that.
For once in a game, you may feel slightly overwhelmed by the sheer zombie presence
Graphics - 7/10
I will say this about World War Z though, it looks a lot better than Left 4 Dead, as well as the fact that the frame rate is a damn sight more consistent. That was always a bug-bear for me with what came before and it actually took away from what you were playing and any enjoyment you would try and get from it. Thankfully, Mad Dog Games have given us something that doesn’t feel like it will break under pressure.
There is something to be said for blowing up a whole load of zombies with a rocket launcher and when you’re properly getting in amongst it, it does look amazing, but again these are just the odd flashes of genius, rather than a sustained thing.
Sound - 7/10
If there’s something World War Z does pretty well it is adding atmosphere through the sound usage. The music creeps the tension up, but using the grunts and screams of the undead to good use helps to add even more ambience, although it is a bit weird using fancy words like that when you’re trying to blow a dead corpse’s head off.
Difficulty - 5/10
You can make it more difficult if you decide to try doing this with AI, as they do the usual house-brick movements and silly actions to hack you off big style. If you play it with friends though, it can be hectic in some places, but a whole lot easier if you tag it with three friends online. You really need to play it with a group of mates to try and get the most out of it. If you don’t then you’ll just get bored of it really quickly, so irrespective of how difficult it COULD be, you’ll not reach it due to being fed up.
Achievements – 6/10
Well, how average can you get here? It’s all just standard fare. Level completes, zombie kills and certain combos and difficulty hits make up what is a traditional achievement fest. Your 1000 gamerscore is out there. It’s just a matter of whether or not you want to or not.
This may make the earth shudder ever so slightly
It has become a bit obvious through this review as to what the major problem is with World War Z. For all the things it manages to do right, it just cannot keep the fun factor around for long enough. It does manage to bring some more fun to the table than other games of this type, but the fun never truly lasts long enough to get much out of it, even with a group of human players.
The game I relate to more (as well as the one I think you should plump for instead) is Gears of War 4. It has a rich co-op story, which is way better than splintered missions, as well as the amazing Horde mode, which is so much more honed to multiplayer survival than most others, not to mention at a price that could make full price titles cry, means this is a better option than World War Z.
It isn’t to say that this is a bad game, as it does manage to do some zombie killing rather well, but you’ve seen it all before and the novelty will wear off after a few hours and then you’re just left with something you may go back to on a random night when you have people throwing themselves onto Xbox Live for a night.
Trust me when I say Gears of War 4 is a far better choice, or even any of the other ones on backwards compatibility. The action is more packed and thoughtful, as well as some of the best multiplayer action this side of Xbox. World War Z – Much like the film, really. Some really cool moments, but largely forgettable after a few hours.
Final Score 6/10