Zombie Infection Hands-On Preview

In addition to new Splinter Cell screens, we just received the latest Zombie Infection screens as well. Sure, it looks just like Resident Evil 5, but that doesn’t mean we’re not eager to play it more.

Gameloft has just posted a brand-new trailer of Zombie Infection, showing off parts of the cinematic intro, cut scenes, and a few hair-raising incidents of zombie carnage. This may be the best Gameloft trailer to date– it certainly got us excited for the May 10 release date. We’ve also got some new screenshots, from Gameloft’s Facebook page.

If you’re a gamer, it won’t take long to recognize the inspiration behind Gameloft’s latest third-person shooter. Sun-soaked South African shanty town? Over-the-shoulder, laser-sighted zombie shooting? Gameloft’s come for Resident Evil 5′s brains with Zombie Infection.

As we say whenever we see a high-quality clone: “If you’re going to steal, steal from the best.” Zombie Infection is based on a traditional mobile game that looks and plays nothing at all like this stunning 3D iPhone version. We played the original Zombie Infection, and while it’s not bad, this RE5 lookalike is much more exciting.

Over 10 levels, you’ll control two different characters who don’t exactly have a strong background in armed combat. One is a cameraman looking for his lost brother, and the other is a lithe female journalist. They’ll have to quickly learn to get around with weapons that include a pistol, shotgun, machine gun, and grenade launcher.

You start off the game with a helicopter ride into an African shanty town, where shambling locals are behaving very strangely. One of them is even devouring raw meat hanging off a hook. Soon they start to attack, and you’ll shift into an over-the-shoulder aiming mode. Laser targeting lets you aim at specific body parts, and in a shower of gore, you can blast off limbs or heads.

Controlling just like the recent Gameloft first-person shooters NOVA and Brothers in Arms 2, or the slightly older third-person shooter Terminator Salvation, you move with a virtual analog stick and adjust the camera by swiping the screen. Context-sensitive buttons to stomp fallen enemies, break crates, open doors, or climb ladders will all appear only when necessary.

Zombie Infection looks far more impressive than Resident Evil 4 did on the iPhone, and some of the different environments we visited reflected this. The shanty town was bright and sunny, a beautiful day for the Zombiepocalypse, and the abandoned mines were gloomy and dank. There’s even a unique-looking zoo level, where you can fight against zombified animals like lions and alligators.

Maybe there’s an overload of zombie shooters on the iPhone, but then again, what other enemy is so much fun to shoot at again and again? The wait won’t be long for Zombie Infection, because it’ll be hitting the App Store later this month.