A suprise hit that's cut quite a reputation in the shooter market lately !
This game is up there with the most played shooters / games on Xbox Live at the moment just ranking under Call of Duty 5 ,Gears of War 2, Halo 3 and Call of Duty 4, in number of players online daily.
This shooter focuses heavily on teamwork and you'll need it if you want to survive , you just can't go rambo solo on this game and expect to be a one man army, because it ain't going to happen without your friends to bail you out.
You could play single player with computer AIs as your allies but it just isn't as fun.
This game has to be played online to be truly appreciated . None of the shooters mentioned above, come close to the appreciation of looking out for team mates as this game emphasises.
Online it's a 4 vs 4 team battle , although that description in itself doesn't clearly describe it.
Basically it's humans/ survivors vs Zombies / Infected.
It's guns and caution vs stealth and cunning really.
Humans have weapons ( including firearms and explosives ) , health kits , lots of health and can revive/heal each other ( If given the chance and the right equipment.
Zombies have low health , respawning , special abilities which incapacitate a human victim ( Which then he/she NEEDS the help of a team mate to escape from them ) and an army of support zombies which deal light damage to the humans , although can't truly be controlled.
The humans goal is to travel from point A to point B. ( Represented by Zombie Proof Safe Rooms )
The zombies goal is to kill all of them before they reach the target destination.
The main play style of the humans is to cover each others backs especially at crucial moments like when you ally has been caught by a zombie special move that makes them unable to fight back or when they want to heal themselves.
Looking out for each other is key to your survival .... being selfish and a glory hog will get you killed. The zombie players will most likely single out the one who tries to lone wolf and who is far away from the rest of the team. So humans stick together if you want to make it.
As for the undead, your game plan is more about stealth, cunning and mounting co-ordinated strikes to disable multiple targets to maximise your damage inflicted towards the human party.
The zombie team on the whole has very fragile health ( But has unlimited respawning to compensate ). If you do not make an effort to sneak up on an opponent or hide until the time is right, you won't last a second in the sights of human gunfire.
You can not take on the humans in a frontal assault and as zombies most have no long range methods of inflicting damage ... so patience and timing is key.
There are 4 kinds of zombie you can play as.
The 3 main ones are the hunter whose specialty is a long range pouncing attack that can incapacitate and damage a target human heavily , the smoker whose long range tongue attack can disable and drag a human in for the kill and the Boomer whose mid range vomit attack attracts hordes of computer controlled ally zombies to attack the unfortunate drenched victim.
Both teams are fun to play. As a human you will feel heroic pride when you save an ally from certain death or bask in evil glee when your stalker tactics have paid off with a successful kill as a zombie.
But for both sides team work is vital ! And this unbreakable element is what makes this game great and stand out among the rest of the 360 shooters !
This game has tons of replay value also !
One thing that makes this game really special is the random spawning of enemies. So no two playthroughs of a campaign are the same. There are can be like a hundred zombies on the screen with no slowdown. The Computer intelligence for enemies can be quite cunning / catch you by surprise too if you're playing on your own.
The controls of the game are fast, simple and responsive. A pitfall many games developers just make mistakes in nowadays still.
Technically this game has no real story besides the opening cinematic and character dialogue. But there are no FMVs, cinematics or cut scenes that make you stop the gameplay for a minute. This game is all gameplay just like the good old days.
At first I was very disappointed that there was no story sequences , but now I see it was a very good decision because now I'm just having zombie blasting fun instead.
The guns in this game could have been more varied but don't really need to be , since most weapons will kill the majority of enemies in an instant. There is more difference in the variety of explosives and flammables than there is the guns to be honest.
So in summary if you like a good single campaign with an immersive story this probably isn't the game for you. ( There are 4 short campaigns separated into 5 chapters each. Each Campaign will probably take you around an hour to get through )
If you'd like to play a decent multi player team battle with a difference you might want to give this a try. But playing as humans vs Zombies means it's not the same rules for both sides. So you'll have to learn to keep an open mind in order to enjoy what it has to offer.
If you like online co-op ..... get this game ! This is one one of the best co-op games in a long time.
All in all this is full on zombie blasting fun with excellent online co-op, which is probably the freshest multi player in a shooter in a long time. No story, full gameplay.
If shooters are your thing , you should give this one a try. It can hold it's own with the best of them and you'll be pleasantly surprised.