iPhone Review: Age of Zombies

Barry Steakfries is starting to make something of a name for himself. After appearing in games on the PSP, and earlier on the iPhone in Monster Dash, the hard man with the endless one-liners has now made his latest appearance in Age of Zombies, released today on the iPhone and iPad. So is he getting too smart for his own good or is he back kicking ass with the best of them?

Age of Zombies has you travelling through time to rid the world of zombies that have been set loose, and offers a wide range of weaponry and explosives to help you along the way. Pistols, machine guns and shotguns start the party, and as you blast away others become available to help you fight your way to the next level. Accurate shooting and quick thinking will up your score multiplier, pushing your points up and giving you a true challenge to hit the higher scores. The game uses a virtual 2-stick control method, with one controlling Barry and the other deciding which direction to shoot in. I’ve often struggled with these dual-stick-but-not-dual-stick types of game, but Age of Zombies does a good job by planting the control sticks wherever you plonk your fingers, so you don’t need to be precise when taking the reigns. Nice and easy.

As you travel through the five time periods you’ll encounter a range of zombies as well as some fairly hefty bosses including, amongst others, a huge T-Rex (is there another size?) and a Japanese warrior. Each time period features its own style of zombie, with music, sounds and snippets of speech also reflecting the time you’re in. It’s a great touch, as is the regular witty comments that Barry himself comes out with before, during and after each level.

In addition to the main game mode is a survival mode where you can pick a stage to play in and blast away until you succumb to the ever increasing swarm of zombies heading your way, pitching your score against your friends’ using Game Centre or OpenFeint, whichever you prefer. This is a welcome addition, considering the game’s only main drawback: it’s a bit too short.

The levels are great fun and have plenty of variety, but when you reach the end you can’t help but be surprised that there’s no more. Halfbrick have said more game content is on the way, which is something to look forward to, but it’s a slight shame that more wasn’t here to start with.

But this is me picking a hole in a very fun gaming experience, one that not only deserves to sit proudly on your iDevice, but also should command a nice high spot in the App Store charts too. It looks and sounds great, is totally enjoyable and has a good helping of Game Centre achievements to aim for as well. Do yourself a favour and take the heads off a few zombies. You won’t regret it.

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