If you read our hands-on preview of Pro Zombie Soccer back in January, you might have thought that it was a fairly straightforward, simple action game where you held off waves of zombies using a soccer ball. That holds true for the first few levels, but it doesn’t take long for this great game to reveal some fantastic surprises.
Pro Zombie Soccer, in a departure from many other games on the App Store, contains an actual story. Told through comic-book cutscenes, you’ll meet soccer star reject Jax as he’s digging through the garbage on the eve of the zombie apocalypse. After he’s bit by a zombified soccer player, Jax decides to go down kicking. These cutscenes not only look incredible, but the story they tell will surprise you with humor and a few plot twists.
I call the big one Bitey.
You control Jax’s soccer shots with a slider on the left side of the screen. You can aim just about anywhere on the screen by moving the slider up and down, and sometimes you’ll be required to bounce shots off walls to get around zombies with heavy shields. After a certain number of kills, you can activate special moves that will slow down time, let your ball pass through multiple zombies, or even trigger a giant space satellite to target zombies with a huge laser beam.
We didn’t expect Pro Zombie Soccer to make many departures from this formula, though. To our surprise, we encountered levels set in the dark where you have to control a flashlight with your finger, and levels where Jax is running and doesn’t have time to charge up his stronger kick attack. There are even levels that pay homage to Street Fighter 2 and Space Invaders.
Time for a congressional hearing on steroid abuse in zombie soccer.
Once you’ve beaten the game, which can take about an hour or so, you can replay the game on a harder difficulty or master the two-minute survival mode. We’re disappointed there’s not an endless survival mode, because we think that would be a better use for the included Crystal leaderboards. More updates are promised in the game’s end credits.
Pro Zombie Soccer is a strong debut from Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team, and this new developer lives up to their super awesome name. Even if you’re sick of zombies or soccer games on the App Store, Pro Zombie Soccer will continually surprise you with its exceptional style and creativity.