Zombie Army 4: Dead War is the sequel to the Sniper Elite series spin-off Zombie Army Trilogy. Whereas Zombie Army began as a set of expansions for Sniper Elite V2, Zombie Army 4: Dead War is its own standalone game. Developed and published by Rebellion Developments, does Zombie Army 4: Dead War have what it takes to stand on its own?
Let’s find out and on the way kick some Nazi zombie butt!
Zombie Army 4: Dead War Details
Platform(s): PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Stadia
Reviewed on: Xbox One X
Developer: Rebellion Developments
Publisher(s): Rebellion Developments
Genre: Tactical shooters, survival horror
Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
ESRB Rating: M (Mature 17+)
The dead have risen once again
If Zombie Army 4: Dead War is your first entry in the series, there is no need to worry. The story takes in 1946, just one year after Hitler was defeated in World War II and banished to hell. However, just days before Hitler was sent to the underworld, he raised the dead to help fight in the war.
Now, a year later after his demise, demonic portals have begun to appear all over the world. New hordes of zombies are appearing and raging war against the Allied army. As a member of the Resistance you must destroy this new threat and in the process save humanity from destruction.
Much like its predecessors, the story is cut and dry. Don’t expect any long winded cutscenes or cinematics. Nor, any major character developments or twists in the plot. The man focus of Zombie Army 4 is kicking zombie butt and taking names while doing it.
Zombie Army 4 spans across nine locations that are split up into a handful of chapters in each, which are all unique and varied. Your mission is to make it to each of the location’s safe houses while completing side objectives along the way. Of course, this will be no easy task as you face thousands of zombies with a surprising amount of new enemy types and upgrades that keep gameplay fresh.
Your weapons—a rifle, a secondary weapon, and a pistol—are upgradeable via upgrade kits. Much like the Sniper Elite series, the iron lung ability is used for accurate shots when firing rifles. And, the fan favourite x-ray camera is back and is a visceral as ever. Cinematic shots of the bullet leaving your rifle’s muzzle and penetrating your target’s full cardiovascular, muscular, and skeletal systems is satisfyingly gruesome.
Secondary weapons include pistols, machine guns and shotguns. While each deal out damage in their own right, none feel as satisfying as taking out Nazi zombies with your rifle. A close second to your file are melee weapons. Although they have cooldown periods between uses, they provide an almost equally satisfying feel as your rifle when zombies are obliterated.
What I love about this game is that it never really takes itself seriously. It has an arcade element to gameplay that is extremely addicting. Each zombie you take out builds a combo and starts a timer. If you take out another enemy before the timer ends your combo increases. The more combos you get, the more items and skills you unlock. And, at 10 kills, you earn a takedown, which not only refills your ammo and health but also earns you an instant-kill on zombies.
A charming yet delightfully grotesque looking game
Zombie Army 4 uses Rebellion’s own Asura engine and looks pretty darn good. With tons of explosions, body parts flying and hordes of zombies, things can get pretty hectic. Environments are appropriately expansive and range from hot spots in Italy to the gates of hell. It all has an 80s horror B-movie feel to it that is ridiculously charming.
Adding to the game’s charm is cheesy character voice acting and comedic banter between characters. I have to admit, it put a smile on my face more than a handful of times and all ties in with the game’s appeal.
Addicting multiplayer action
Zombie Army 4 can be played solo but I found it way more fun to play online with friends. The 4-player co-op experience allows you to play the campaign from start to finish with friends and depending on how many players will adjust the amount of zombie enemies you face.
Teamwork is the key to success and you are rewarded for how well your team works together at the end of each chapter. You are awarded either a bronze, silver, or gold medal and depending on how well you did each are given a valuable weapon upgrade kit.
Additionally, there is a 4-player online co-op Horde mode that contains four distinct maps taken from segments of the campaign. It’s pretty much what you would expect, you and your team face wave after wave of increasingly challenging zombies. While this mode doesn’t offer much new, it’s fun and challenging to play with others.
Zombie Army 4: Dead War is addicting mindless fun
Zombie Army 4: Dead War is plain old-fashioned fun that is best experienced with friends. The game never really takes itself seriously, and as a result is easy for just about anyone to pick up and play. There are plenty of collectables and power-ups to keep you busy and coming back for more.
While Horde mode doesn’t really contain anything new, it’s fun to play and challenging all at the same time. If you are looking for a game with “no strings attached” Zombie Army 4: Dead War is a great addition to your library that you and your friends will have fun with.
+ High replay value
+ Fun online multiplayer and co-op offerings
+ X-ray camera makes zombie kills all that much more satisfying
+ No prior knowledge of previous games is need
– No local multiplayer options
– Boss battles can be frustrating on your own
OVERALL ASSESSMENT OF ZOMBIE ARMY 4: DEAD WAR
Lasting Appeal/Replayability: 4/5