Prior to yesterday’s opening hours of New York Comic Con, I was a Wii U naysayer. I was convinced the mainstream market would not take to Nintendo’s new system as easily as it did with the smash hit console that preceeds it. Too many gimmicks, too little substance.
Then I played Ubisoft’s open-world zombie game,ZombiUand at least the “substance” question was laid to rest.
ZombiU is a first-person, survival horror-ish game where players try to live as long as they can through a zombie outbreak in London. The demo I played started right after the person before me died. I was quickly handed the GamePad and away I went, trudging through the sewers under the Tower of London.
The first thing I learned during my short time with the game was situational awareness is key. This game does not care that you have to move items around in your backpack. If you stop for a second, you better be conscious of what’s going on around you, as the game does not pause while you equip that sick new shotgun you found.
As I traversed through the level, zombies were somewhat sparse, thanks in part to the person that cleared the area before me. Opting to use mostly melee combat to conserve ammo, I used my trusty cricket bat (Shaun of the Dead fans rejoice) to cave the heads in of my undead foes.
The thing that struck me about the zombies is that they’re more of the 28 Days Later infected, rather than the slow, shambling hordes of George A. Romero fame. Timing is critical and if there’s one “eh” thing I could say about my time with the demo, it’s that the first-person shooting felt…odd. It might have been because I was not comfortable with the GamePad, but it’s something that threw me off for at least half of my time with it.
Which wasn’t very long, by the way. I grew too complacent, too careless and ended up surrounded by three hungry zombies in a dark, tight corridor. I knew I was boned and instead of being disappointed, I just laughed.
Death was swift and permanent. I passed the controller to the person behind me, nearly giving a look that said “good luck.” They were going to have to take on my undead self if they wanted all of the loot I’d collected.
And I guess that’s the beauty so far of ZombiU. It doesn’t matter where and when, but one thing you can be certain of is that death is a sure thing in the zombie apocalypse. All it takes is a little carelessness.