Posts Tagged ‘Zombies’

I think I can say that I’m a little obsessed when it comes to the original Plants vs Zombies game. I became so addicted to the garden defense gameplay to the point that I had to own the game on every platform in my possession including my iPhone, iPad, and Xbox 360. I almost purchased it on PlayStation 3, but I was able to calm my gardening urges. With that said it looked like my obsession would finally calm down, but all of that would soon change when a certain sequel would arrive on my iPad and iPhone. Plants vs Zombies 2. The Crazy Dave in me has once again resurfaced as my obsession to defend my lawn against the endless zombie horde is back. Why? Because I’m crazy!

Plants vs Zombies 2, from PopCap Games, is a free-to-play game available exclusively on iOS devices. Wait a minute! A game published by EA is free? Did I just step in to the Twilight Zone? EA and free are two words that never go together. There’s got to be a catch. Well believe it or not there is no catch, no pop-up screens demanding money, or lite version of the game. Plants vs Zombies 2 is considered a “freemium” title where I can play the entire zombie defense game without spending a dime, but there are options available in the store for me to spend my hard earned money for some new plants or upgrades if I choose to, however it’s not required.

Just like the original game, Plants vs Zombies 2 still had me eliminating the zombie horde by using my army of plants and endless sunshine against them. Basically, it’s the same addicting game that I’ve been playing for the past couple of years. Just like the old saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. While the original game had me defending my home, the sequel had me going back in time to destroy the zombies in places including Ancient Egypt and The Old West. Each of these new stages looks colorful and fun, and I also like the Super Mario Bros. style overworld map for stage selection.

With a new game comes new plants to choose from. I did have some favorites to mix things up on my battlefield with my peashooters and sunflowers. I had a blast with the Bloomerang allowing me to hit zombies with boomerangs, the Bonkchoy which threw punches, and the Coconut Cannon shot coconuts for some big damage. While those plants were fun to use, the one I enjoyed the most was the Snapdragon. Any plant that can shoot fire across three rows is awesome in my book. Also added to the game was plant food which is obtained from killing the glowing zombies. Using plant food on one of my plants granted them momentary beefed up abilities to help take down a large wave of zombies.

While the gameplay is addicting and fun, there was one thing I didn’t like and that had to do with the store. One of things I noticed in the store was some plants that can be used in the game for a fee. These old favorites in including the Snow Pea, Jalapeño, and Squash would be really useful but they’re costly. I guess losing some helpful plants is the trade off between having a free game, and one that would cost a bit of money. Then again I do like some of the new plants so I probably won’t miss them that much. I can always play the original game.

Plants vs Zombies 2 is more of the same, but this same is still addicting and fun with tons of replay value. It’s a game where it doesn’t matter what skill level you are, because it’s casual enough for anyone to pick up and play, and have a good time. I didn’t care about the story, but I still love Crazy Dave and his antics. The zombies are also humorous and at times can put up quite a challenge. The best part about the game is that it’s free, so there’s no reason for anybody to not download this game.

—————

Developer: PopCap Games
Platform: iPad, iPhone
Players: 1
Price: Free

GAME STATUS: Clementine is safe…for now?
TROPHIES EARNED: All 49 of them! Platinum Baby!

For my original review of The Walking Dead click HERE

From a prisoner in the back of a police car to his horrific end in Savannah, only Clementine is the ultimate survivor in Lee Everett’s epic tale. Actually, Omid and Christa are still out there, and it looked like Clem may have seen them walking on the horizon. Will Clem catch up with them? Are they walkers as well? Are these people other survivors of the zombie apocalypse? I can’t wait for Season 2!

The Walking Dead had me running on all emotions from the highs of safety to the sad lows of watching key characters psychologically breakdown or fall to their death. I felt Lee’s pain as every tough decision I made had it’s unfortunate consequences. I had to figure out who to trust and who to ignore. I even had to tread the relatively thin line that separates life and death. Most importantly was how I had to explain my actions to Clementine, and see how she responds. Surprisingly, in my playthrough she actually took it quite well.

Other than Lee, the one character I really enjoyed was Kenny. Throughout my journey I always sided with the redneck probably because I know so many people in my real world travels that are like him. Kenny always cut to the chase in key moments and was even a bit cutthroat at times as well when it came to Lily and Ben. Speaking of Ben, I hated that guy. I tried to help him, but whiny ass Ben always caused problems. When shit started getting bad…it was Ben’s fault. In key moments he even froze up in fear. My group had no need for fear, or his bullshit, so I had no problem showing my cold side and letting him die at the school. He deserved it even though he went out as sort of a hero buying time for my group’s escape from the walkers.

As for the episodes, I really enjoyed the second episode “Starved For Help.” Sure those St. John’s sounded nice and peaceful, but who knew that they had a Hannibal Lecter streak in them as they feasted on human meat. What a plot twist! I sure didn’t see that shit coming. There’s also that moment at the end of the episode when I took the supplies from the what I thought was an abandoned station wagon. I had no clue that this key decision would eventually lead up to the first season’s amazing conclusion as the vehicle’s owner and Lee would come face to face with Clementine’s fate hanging in the balance. You want to talk about psycho. That guy takes the cake.

Finally, there’s the gripping ending. I really wanted to see Lee take on the fatherly role, and take care of young Clementine through the dangers of the zombie apocalypse, but we all know that The Walking Dead is no place for happy endings. It was a sad moment when Clementine took up the gun and had to pull the trigger so Lee wouldn’t turn into a walker himself. If there’s one thing Lee did well it would be that he helped make Clementine strong enough to cope with the challenges that lie ahead of her.

AM I WILLING TO FACE THE HORRORS OF THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE AGAIN?

Season 2 may be quite awhile away, but I do see another playthough in the near future. I’d like to see how Lee would react if I changed certain situations like not listening to Kenny or siding with Lily. However, Ben still has to die because he’s a whiny ass bastard. In the end it’s all about Clementine.

Overall, I really enjoyed playing The Walking Dead. What else can I say about a game that is already considered as one of the greatest of all time? Amazing story, well thought out characters, amazing story, walkers, oh and an amazing story. I think you get the point. Congratulations to the team at Telltale Games. This was an amazing experience.

For Clementine.

Developer: Telltale Games
Platform: Playstation 3
Players: 1
Price: $4.99 per episode (6 episodes)

It’s December 22, 2012 and your still alive. The Mayan Calendar has started a brand new long count. We’ve heard all the scenarios from plausible to absolutely ridiculous from solar flares, asteroids, comets, mega earthquakes, giant tidal waves, pole shifts, nuclear war, and a zombie apocalypse. Even Planet X aka Nibiru was supposed to show up, but it didn’t…again. The scenarios even went as far as someone saying that Nostradamus predicted that the world would end due to Psy reaching one billion hits on YouTube for his “Gangnam Style” song. That’s actually pretty funny, but honestly speaking, this song needs to die…like now.

Obviously the world didn’t end. December 21, 2012 was just another day. A Friday. One more day closer to Christmas. Did you buy all your Christmas presents, or did you waste it on 2012 survival gear, canned food, useless trinkets, or an underground bunker hoping that all hell would break loose? If you did the latter then my friend the joke was on you. How stupid do you feel right now after getting all worked up over nothing?

Just like Y2K, the dreaded Mayan Apocalypse was nothing but a hoax. A bunch of hype orchestrated by the History Channel, Discovery Channel, Coast to Coast AM, false prophets, doomsayers on YouTube, and a bunch of whacko “scientists” that supposedly talked to aliens. In other worlds, a bunch of weirdos with no life, a possible death wish, and a brilliant marketing strategy all to get your money. These people all seriously claimed, with scientific evidence, that the Earth as we know it was coming to a cataclysmic end. They also wanted to cash in on the feeble minded by scaring you, and making you believe in a bunch of bullshit that just wasn’t there.

Now as some of you emerge from your underground shelters expecting hellfire and brimstone, planes falling from the sky, nuclear fallout, alien invasion, or hordes of zombies here’s a news flash. All that shit didn’t happen. Instead all your going to find is a bunch of people packing into their local Wal-Marts buying those last minute Christmas gifts just so that they can save face in front of their families, because they thought the world was going to end. Yes, all you weirdos will find yourself in good company as you look for some cheap gifts to wrap up along with all that unneeded survival gear. Yeah I’d love to see the look on little Johnny’s face on Christmas morning where instead of a brand new toy he unwraps a gift containing a 2012 survival guide and a can of Spam.

And where are the doomsayers you ask. Well they’re in hiding right now. I’m sure they’ll emerge from their basements in the next few days with a brand new date based on some new quantum mathematic equation and some bullshit theory to back it up. Some will even say their calculations were slightly off. All we’re going to say is “seriously man, the whole Mayan apocalypse thing was bullshit so kiss my ass.” Only the good Lord upstairs knows when the world will end and he’s not going to tell anyone when it will happen so don’t believe what you see on TV or on the internet.

In closing, keep in mind that the Mayans never predicted the end of the world. If they were able to predict Earth’s end then why couldn’t they predict when their civilization was conquered by the Spanish Conquistadors? Just something to think about.

So my experience with The Walking Dead has mainly been with the television series on AMC. I know that the series is based on the comic book series, but I really don’t read comics. As for zombies, well my experience with them dates back to when I was a young zombie slayer through my ever expanding imagination from reading books and watching movies. Yes, I had cool parents who let me watch Rated “R” movies. Currently, I get my zombie fix from the first two seasons of the television series on Blu-ray, but when I learned that The Walking Dead (based on the comic books) was coming to Xbox 360 I really got excited. Then there was the part where I found out that there were five episodes with one releasing each month. I thought that sucked, because I’m sure the anticipation to see what happens next drove everyone crazy. Well I decided to wait until all five episodes were available so I can just play them all without the agonizing wait in between. Well let me tell you that the long wait was worth every minute.

PROS:

Lee Everett
From a convicted felon to a near father figure for young Clementine, my experience playing as main protagonist Lee Everett was amazing. Probably the best character I’ve ever played due to the fact that all his actions and decisions were based on my choices. Like a choose your own adventure book, I helped shape what Lee would eventually become, and I’m quite satisfied with the results whether I wanted to be somewhat of a good man or a complete asshole and not give a shit. This is the zombie apocalypse by the way. Making friends, along with trusting others, can be a little tough especially considering that I’m taking care of a little girl who just wants to get back to her family.

For Clementine
Other than Lee, Clementine plays such a key role in the actions I chose to partake in. She may be a little girl that I’m protecting, but when you think about it she can also be quite impressionable. Killing the “Walkers” or even certain people can come at a price especially if Clementine is around when it happens. For example: I took a hammer and beat the former babysitter’s head in a few times and Clementine watched in horror as it happened. The screen said that she will remember it. This sort of had me second guessing about how I choose to kill, because I surely didn’t want to scar her for life. Then again it is the zombie apocalypse right? For me it was all about keeping Clementine alive, and I did just that through my adventure.

The Story And Overall Atmosphere
I really liked the point and click style of storytelling that Telltale Games uses. Coming from some of their previous games I played including Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Adventures and Sam and Max Save the World, The Walking Dead was more of a shock to me. I never thought I’d see Telltale make a game on a more “mature” angle, but they pulled it off perfectly. Sure the graphics may resemble something on the lines of a Saturday morning cartoon, but the game’s theme is far from it especially with moments where I blew a cop’s head off with a shotgun, and watching Walkers devour people piece by piece. The best part is that Telltale Games kept to the series’ dark-sided roots. I also liked how they incorporated new characters to the series like they were always there as well as seeing a few regulars along for the ride including Hershel Greene and Glenn.

Decisions, Decisions
What makes this game so unique is the tough decisions I had to make. Who do I choose to align myself with? This determines how characters reacted to me. The most important decision was the tough choice deciding on who lives and who dies? That decision alone shapes the overall course of the game. I always wondered whether I was making the right choices, because I could really feel the weight of the decision and the pain that Lee Everett suffers through. Later on, when an episode ends, I get to see a board with the overall community’s decisions just to see if other people agreed with me. Now I wonder what happens if I went in the other direction. I smell replay value.

CONS:

Easy Achievements
I’m really disappointed with the overall easiness of earning achievements in this game. Just completing each episode gave me all the available achievements. Sure the achievement whore in me is quite happy as I add another game to the completion list, but I what I really wanted was some sort of extra challenge on some of the achievements making that “Achievement Unlocked” tone more worthy of attaining. Hopefully Telltale Games works on that for Season 2.

The Long Wait For Season 2
I now understand the anticipation that gamers had when anxiously awaiting new episodes every month. I waited for five months just to get all the episodes, and now I have to wait even longer for the next season to come along just to see where the story goes next. I feel your pain everyone, because waiting sucks.

IN CONCLUSION

Sure it’s a point and click game, but The Walking Dead feels like it’s so much more. Left 4 Dead it is not. The Walking Dead is a game filled with amazing storytelling, character development, intense drama, and tough decision making. Basically what this boils down to is an amazing experience that should not be missed by anyone. I enjoyed my time with this game and I plan on revisiting the drama and horror again and again. The Walking Dead is a definite must buy for any fan of the series whether it’s the comic books or the television series. Maybe it’s time for me to read those comic books as well.

Developer: Telltale Games
Platform: Xbox Live Arcade
Players: 1
Price: 2000 Microsoft Points ($25.00)

After the disappointment that I suffered through in Modern Warfare 2, I said to myself that I was officially done with Call of Duty. Javelin glitches, speed skating glitches, negative XP glitches, idiots who rather not complete objectives and just boost for the damn tactical nuke. I think you get the point. At that point I started hating the game and the series as a whole. As a result I eventually caved in and bought the Hardened Edition of Black Ops that next year. I loved the campaign and the awesome zombie mode. The multiplayer was still “meh” to me even though I liked spamming the RC car. The following year Modern Warfare 3 was released. I stuck to my guns and skipped it, because of the disappointment of Modern Warfare 2. So here I am today deciding about Black Ops 2. Sure I’m sick of Call of Duty compared to other shooters on the market, and the E3 demo sucked, but I eventually decided to give it a chance. In the end I’m glad that I did.

PROS:

It’s Like Being In An Action Movie
I don’t know what it is with Infinity Ward and Treyarch, because every year when a Call of Duty game is released I feel like each developer is trying to out Michael Bay one another. Basically, Call of Duty plays out like a huge summer blockbuster with tons of carnage, cussing, guns, destruction, and plenty of explosions to keep me hooked in. No need for an epic story. Just give me “shock and awe” along with plenty of body bags for the virtual dead and everything will be just fine. Well Black Ops 2 provided all of that in it’s unique blend of Cold War and Future War eras and it was pretty cool. I just wish they had a better plot like the first Black Ops game had.

Improvements In Multiplayer?
Did I just say that? Well yes I did. Black Ops 2’s competitive multiplayer is a big step up over over the first Black Ops game. Score streaks now take the place of kill streaks making other players work a little harder to get that special attack they crave. There’s also a heavier emphasis in completing objectives in certain gametypes to help curb away the wannabe snipers who just sit around and camp out waiting for kills to come to them. Seriously guys, let me just rant by saying that being a sniper in a Call of Duty game is just plain stupid. Complete the objectives! We don’t need an eight man team with seven snipers and one person trying to win the game. In other words…Play Smart! Just keep in mind that I’m only here for the fun of the game, or until everyone starts cheating. If that happens I’ll go back on my hating spree.

Endless Customization
Black Ops 2 has tons of customization options that had me busy for hours deciding on what I want to do with each of my custom loadouts for multiplayer. What type of kickass guns do I want? How about perks? Do I want more or less. More perks come at the expense of less weapons, but I can be faster and more like a ninja as I knife randoms with ease. Of course I can go the other way and be more like Rambo. The best part is that using these customizable options allows me to tailor a multiplayer experience to my liking as well as having the tools to conquer each game mode.

Zombies!
The main reason I purchased this game. The zombie mode has been fleshed out a lot more to include some new game types along with the traditional Survival mode. Tranzit allows me to travel to each map via a bus. While traveling I had to beware of hitchhiking zombies coming along for the ride as well as trying to kill me. Grief is also pretty badass as two teams of four take on the zombie horde. Last team standing along with winning the round wins the game. Grief does add a lot of fun and strategy to the game. Sure you can’t hurt the other team, but you can always find ways to screw them over giving me the advantage. Zombies is where I’m spending most of my time playing, because it’s addicting and fun. With that said I once again raise the question to Treyarch. Why not make a stand alone zombie game?

CONS:

Strike Force Is A Bit Of A Letdown
So what is Call of Duty. A First-Person Shooter or a Real Time Strategy Game? The RTS missions called Strike Force sound like a good idea, but they come off as rather retarded. The idea was for me to control the actions of unmanned vehicles to complete various objectives. Sounds great and all In theory, but what it really boiled down to was me taking control and doing everything for myself since my unmanned attack grunts are not very helpful in the long run. Each vehicle and deployment look very kickass, but in reality they kind of suck. Going through these missions is more of a pain in the ass, because all I want to do is go back to the action.

Missing That “Wow” Factor
Black Ops 2 is a pretty good game, but what the series has been missing lately has been that “Holy shit! I can’t believe that happened” type of moment. The main example that I can think of would be the nuke scene in Call of Duty 4. I thought that moment was crazy when the nuke went off and my main character during that mission died. The first words I had after that moment was “What the fuck just happened!” Since then the Call of Duty series hasn’t had anything that would even measure up to that moment. Sure Black Ops 2 has branching paths based in my decisions and tons of action, but I want something that I’ll remember for a long time. Since Call of Duty 4, I feel like the developers just mailed it in and said to Activision “Here’s the new Call of Duty game. Now let’s release it and collect our millions of dollars.”

IN CONCLUSION

So I actually liked Black Ops 2. Does this mean that I’m officially back with the Call of Duty franchise? Well…I would have to say “No.” The game does pack in plenty of fun and tons of replay value in the multiplayer department, but I still believe that the developers need to add that extra punch that made Call of Duty 4 the benchmark of the series to date. The Black Ops games so far have been a positive step in that direction. Maybe what Activision needs to do is stop milking the cash cow and watering down the series with yearly installments. This will make the games more fresh and entertaining as well as generate less hate from some of the internet trolls out there. Just making a suggestion for the better. Overall, Black Ops 2 is a good game making my purchase well worth the money.

Developer: Activision, Treyarch
Platform: Xbox 360
Players: 1-16 (online multiplayer)
Price: $59.99

Store up your canned goods and ammo. If Romney is elected he will bring forth the zombie apocalypse. Who better to know than Joss Whedon. Remember, you’ve been warned.

Celebrating it’s 20th anniversary, Bethesda and id Software once again bring back the game that made the first person shooter popular. Doom. A game I’ve been playing religiously since 1994 is back with a vengeance with a compilation package titled “BFG Edition.” Not only do I get the classic games they also packed in Doom 3 all in glorious HD. Considering the fact that I already had Doom 3 on my original Xbox I couldn’t resist purchasing this edition. Why? Because now it has achievements! Yes, this new package collection definitely appeases the achievement whore in me, but was it enough? Let’s find out.

PROS:

Everything Doom In One Amazing Package:
Doom 3 BFG Edition contains everything that is Doom. Doom, Doom II: Hell on Earth (with the bonus episode), Doom 3, and Resurrection of Evil. New to the series is the addition of The Lost Mission which brings more terror to the Doom 3 story. Basically what it boils down to is that I have hours upon hours of gory nostalgic entertainment. Doom 3 is still just as fun to play in the dark, and still has those moments that will send chills up your spine.

Doom 3 Looks Great In HD
While Doom and Doom 2 were left relatively unchanged, Doom 3 gets the full HD makeover and it looks great. Tight visuals, no jaggies, everything looks sharp on my 1080p HDTV. The terrifying moments when the lights go out and the flashlight only illuminating a small space still gives me that chilling moment that something bad is about to happen. That’s usually when the imps appear (sometimes right behind you) and attack. Along with the graphical upgrades, the sound is also up to par with the dark tone of the game.

“A Chainsaw! Find Some Meat!”
Probably the best item shipped by mistake. The chainsaw is great when out of ammo and does tons of damage and leaves plenty of gore on it’s place. Plus in the classic games you see your character with a big smile on his face. Beware Pinky…I’m coming for you! Doom along with the movies Scarface and The Army of Darkness made this weapon of choice popular. Just a thought. Where would games like Gears of War be today if there was no chainsaw?

CONS

Where’s My Flashlight?
One of Doom 3’s biggest and most significant change. The new Armor Mounted Flashlight replaces the old standby which was also a useful melee weapon against zombified enemies. This new lighting option uses the limited battery with a meter constantly running to empty. While this option is highly useful it unfortunately takes away from some of the game’s more terrifying moments especially when the lights go out. Personally, I miss the option of arming a gun or using my light. This will take some time getting over.

Where’s Final Doom?
With all the Doom games and new additions all on one disc there is one game missing. Final Doom. C’mon man. Who dropped the ball on that one? If your going to have a full collection of Doom games on one disc then make sure fans like me have all of them to choose from.

IN CONCLUSION

Doom 3 BFG Edition is clearly a game for fans like me. Even after 20 years shooting my guns and bringing pixelated death to any zombified soldier or demon that stands in my way of reaching my goal is still a lot of fun. I also like the fact that there’s no regenerating health like some of today’s shooter, and a dark theme that rivals Dead Space. No need for a “Final Cut” for this game because Doom 3 BFG Edition is a keeper.

Developer: id Software, Bethesda
Platform: Xbox 360
Players: 1-4
Price: $39.99