Boxhead – The Zombie Wars Review

Boxhead: The Zombie Wars is a port of the classic PC flash game of the same name. In Zombie Wars, players fend off giant waves of zombies with an array of weaponry, barricades, and defensive turrets. On its own, Zombie Wars (iPhone) is a good game with a lot going for it, but once you consider that you can get a much better version of this game for free on the PC, this Zombie becomes much less of a no-brainer.

The PC version flash version also includes a ton of content that isn’t included in the iPhone version, including multiplayer support, and much better controls. And to top it off, the iPhone version also includes several bugs and some choppy frame rates that you wont experience on the PC.

Rambo vs. zombies.

If this is your first time with a Boxhead game, then the PC version is the way to go, without a doubt. The iPhone adaptation is still a good product, but is really only a good value if you’re a fan of the Boxhead series and are looking for a 2D shooter in that vein to help you waste a few minutes on the go every now and again.

For those who aren’t familiar with these games, it’s essentially a top-down 2D shooter with similar gameplay to Robotron or Smash TV. As hoards of zombies swarm in from the sides of the map, the player moves around trying to survive while killing as many as possible. To do this, the player slowly earns weapons and defensive countermeasures, as well as upgrades. Among these are the obvious choices like the pistol and shotgun (a must-have for any zombie game) but they’ll also include self-operating machine gun turrets, defensive barricades, and even a giant mini-gun that easily slices through the throng of undead.

We established long ago that killing mass armies of zombies is fun. So it wont be news to anyone that the core gameplay elements in Zombie Wars (slaughtering undead) are engaging and fun. Beyond that, this game has a good level of difficulty. It’s accessible at first, but once the action picks up, this becomes a game about skill and strategy.

Evening of the dead.

It does have a few issues, though. Most notably, the frame rate has a tendency to get extremely choppy once a few dozen zombies make it onto the screen. Normally we’d be OK with this, but it can severely affect gameplay. There were times that we were blasting through a huge mob of enemies and then ran out of shotgun ammo. When pulling up the gun select screen, the frame rate went crazy and instead of giving us the pistol that we asked for, gave us an explosive barrel instead (which can’t be chalked up to a missed button press since the two options are across the screen from one another.) You can imagine our disappointment when instead of mowing down a few dozen zombies, we were instead promptly blown to smithereens.

This is just one way in which the frame rate affects gameplay. It of course, goes without saying that there were times the frame rate would hide the fact we were being eaten alive for precious seconds because the visuals hadn’t caught up with the gameplay.

The problems are few though, and as a stand-alone product, this is a pretty good title. The question that potential buyers need to ask themselves is whether or not the portability of the iPhone version is worth the cost of entry when you could be getting a better, more complete product for free.

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