Zombie Apocalypse: Never Die Alone

7 Overall Score
Gameplay: 7/10
Graphics : 6/10
Sound: 7/10

Variety of abilites & character specializations | Element of co-op & teamwork

Lack of checkpoints | Chaotic gameplay | Short story

Zombie Apocalypse: Never Die Alone brings forth the story of a band of four stranded survivors, teaming up together to fight their way through a zombie horde off an island. Does that sound like another generic zombie game?! I sure think so as Backbone Entertainment brings us this downloadable top down, twin stick zombie title to the XBLA & PSN marketplace.

As things get started, the game offers you the ability to play as very peculiar characters, the first and most obnoxious being Jeremy (the character from Pure Pwnage), a god fearing priest named Bill, a badass engineer Alma and finally the British rapper Def Money. The characters play out very well during in game commentary and is sure to pull out a laugh or two but it doesn’t get any better than that. The characters however are unique in their own ways and each has their own personality. Jeremy wields an SMG while Father Bill sides with a shotgun. Alma is more of a sniper while Def Money dual wields pistols. While each character has their own default weapons, they also each have a special move called “PWNAGE” that can be unlocked and used by killing a certain amount of zombies. Your character turns invulnerable for a limited time and it lasts as long as the PWNAGE meter takes to drain completely. Another point to note is that although you can side with a certain character you prefer, you can always switch between your squad mates at the push of a bumper, so that even if your character is downed, you can still stay in the game and fight it out.

As you may have guessed from the previous game in the franchise, Never Die Alone implements the use of several levels which you must play through to progress through the story. However, Backbone Ent. has added a nice few tweaks in there such as picking up cash that is sometimes dropped by dead enemies. This cash can be used to level up each of the character’s stats as you please ranging all the way from their weapon skills to agility. Another cool feature is the newly added objectives for each level. Completing these gives you an added cash bonus which is always welcome! You can unlock these by doing separate playthroughs however so there is no need to fret. I still love the zombie bait feature which has stayed over from the original Zombie Apocalypse title but it now has its own tweaks. Jeremy throws out the generic C4 filled teddy bear that lures in the zombies while Def Money chucks out a boom box that makes them dance! There is a little something for every type of gamer out there and it is nice to be able to experiment with each character as you learn their unique abilities.

As far as gameplay goes, the new additions mentioned above fit nicely although the gameplay itself has not changed much. You still need to mow down zombies and trust me, there are a LOT as you can now move through levels and explore them unlike the old one which had a static area that you had to sit inside. The mindless mowing down may be a good little stress reliever at times but it does get quite repetitive quickly. This combined with incredibly crammed areas at times where the game spawns a ton load of enemies makes for some really laggy and frustrating levels. And another little thing I found annoying was that although the AI squad mates sometimes weren’t all that “intelligent”, the fact that you cannot move outside of a certain range after they have been downed means that you are stuck inside a cluster of enemies and it is almost impossible to revive them so you can move on, let alone to even try to fight off the horde. Little annoyances such as these seem to add up and a lot seems to go wrong at the most intense moments with boss fights and the perhaps the most inexcusable point I believe is the lack of checkpoints. The levels are more in depth and take much more time to complete and yet due to no fault of yours, an AI dies and you must restart the whole level, all over again. It is a pretty vicious cycle and it also happens on co-op.

Moving onto the aesthetics and design, just as in the original, the new levels have built in carnage zones such as swinging donuts and other amusing little tid bits that can be used as a destructive means of zombie bait. The art style has remained the same overall albeit with some nice new upgrades. Zombie Apocalypse: Never Die Alone builds upon its old mistakes and brings much more fun to the table, although rather short lasting. Co-op gameplay actually means something now considering that every character has their own unique abilities and you truly need to team up to survive. You can also Blackout & Survival modes which lengthen the gameplay combined with the objectives. Apart from those, you can find that you might have to grind some levels to have to upgrade character attributes and the Story mode is not very long itself.

Overall, Zombie Apocalypse: Never Die Alone is a great game for gamers looking for a couple hours of zombie killing chaos and priced at $10, it is a good time killer but for folks looking for some serious long lasting gameplay out of it, I would suggest you pass…


Author: DntMessWitRohan View all posts by
I love all sorts of gaming but I truly admire the XBLA & XBLIG Marketplace. I'm a student at the moment but working towards bigger & better things!! Follow me on Twitter: @DntMessWitRohan :D