Publisher: Armor Games Studios
Genre: Action, Adventure, Platformer
Platform: PC (Steam)
Audience: 10 and over.
Release Date: 22/04/2019
Price: £11.39 – Rapid Reviews UK were very kindly provided with a review code for this title.
What the Developers say
A brand new entry to the Zombotron series!
Blaze Rush is a mercenary desperate for a job. In search of an easy payday he follows a distress beacon to the surface of a dangerous planet and the remains of an ancient crash site. There he finds a mystery that will test his strength, his resolve, and every gun in his arsenal. Zombotron features an arsenal of weapons and armor, enemies that hate each other as much as they hate you, and really nice explosions for an experience that’s out of this world.
Why go for headshots when you can drop a zombie down an elevator shaft? Or crush them beneath a pile of rubble. Or set of an elaborate daisy-chain of dynamite around them. Or run them over in an ATV. Or… you get the idea.
• Crush foes with elevators, send them flying with explosives, run them down in vehicles, and much, much more.
• Lock and load with a variety of weapons to become a consummate badass.
• Discover the secrets of the planet Zombotron in an engaging, camp-tastic storyline.
• Customize Blaze’s armor to be the space-faring badass you’ve always wanted to be.
There’s been a bit of an upswing in zombie games, recently. World War Z and Days Gone dropped with 2 weeks of one another, and everyone’s chewing their way through hordes of 3D zombies, one way or another. Hot on their heel’s, though, is the 2D contra-like from Ant.Karlov: Zombotron. Originally a free browser game, the Steam version now comes at a premium.
The story is a somewhat drab affair – Blaze Rush, the mercenary protagonist, lands on a hostile planet brimming with zombies. His ship is scuttled soon after, leaving you with the job of repairing it and exfiltrating.
Audio & Visual
Zombotron’s sound effects and music are all solid enough, but nothing jumps out as particularly worthy of praise. They’re what you’d expect from your typical 2D platformer. The visuals are one of Zombotron’s strongest assets, though, with clean, bold graphics and detailed backgrounds. Not all animations don’t fit their indicators, however, and I died a few times from explosions that I should have been safe from.
Gameplay & Replayability
When you first boot Zombotron up, the gameplay will feel quite rewarding. Headshots give you a satisfying splatter of crimson, and the early enemies will go down easily with the right aim. There’s more than one way to kill a zombie, however, and Zombotron prides itself on providing you with a wide variety of options. You can crush them with crates, disembody them with explosives, or just turn them on each other.
There are a number of questionable design choices that quickly detract from any initial enjoyment, however. Death either results in a Game Over screen that lasts far too long or unequips your items and respawns you at a checkpoint. Either way, you’re out of the action for longer than you’d like. The aiming is a little wonky too, with shots often straying more from your cursor more than you’d expect. You also can’t interrupt your weapon’s reload animation, which is deadly if your first magazine didn’t kill the zombie that’s up in your grill.
There’s a variety of weapons to find and purchase along your journey, but you’ll run dry on ammo quite often. You’ll also progressively improve your armor, though this never feels particularly impactful. The leveling system is largely superfluous, only serving to boost your damage, health, or protection slightly. You often find, too, that the experience drops from enemies fall down gaps or off cliffs. Even though they aren’t worth much, it’s still a disappointment to see them go to waste.
Zombotron will probably last you somewhere between 5-8 hours and cost you just over a tenner. That’s not a brilliant amount of value, but it doesn’t exactly break the bank, either, so fans of 2D run-and-guns might get their money’s worth.
Zombotron is, unfortunately, no greater than the sum of its parts. The gameplay is robust but frustrating, while the audio and story won’t win any awards. The impressive graphics do their best to buoy the overall package, but this ultimately feels like little more than an elongated Flash game. There are just better games to play, sadly, and Zombotron is unlikely to keep your interest through to its conclusion.
Rapid Reviews UK Rating
You can purchase Zombotron for PC on the Steam Store via the following link.