ZombiU Review
ZombiU Box Art
System: Wii U
Dev: Ubisoft Montpellier
Pub: Ubisoft
Release: November 18, 2012
Players: 1-2
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Strong Language

And the thing I’ve always found the most fascinating about survival horror is what it does to me psychologically. With ZombiU, I find myself reverting back to survival strategies I learned from the early Resident Evil titles and, as odd as this may sound, Minecraft. In fact, I almost feel like I might end up on an episode of Hoarders.

While there’s no real online multiplayer here, you can still interact with the environment by spray painting on the walls. The things you paint will show up in other people’s games, and you can use this feature to guide other players to safety (I once found a shortcut to my safe house by following visual clues left by other players), to lead them to an untimely demise, or even decorate the walls with garbled gibberish. (Think Demon’s/Dark souls with zombies.)

ZombiU Screenshot

Additionally—and I’ve only ever seen this happen once—you will sometimes find other people’s zombies roaming around in your game. The one time I saw this happen ended up being particularly convenient, as this player had had a full backpack worth of supplies, and the zombie appeared just outside my safe house. Killing it off and adding the items to my personal stash ended up being quick and convenient.

Also on deck is the Wii U’s asynchronous multiplayer. Here, one player uses the GamePad to strategically place zombies around a map in an almost tower defense style, able to see a top-down version of the map on the GamePad’s toucshcreen. The other player, on the other hand, uses the GamePad Pro or a Wiimote/Nunchuck combination to play from a first-person perspective, which is seen on the TV screen. There are a few modes here, including an interesting take on capture the flag and a Horde/survival mode. It’s all fun and all, but the game’s true draw is the single-player campaign.

At the end of the day, ZombiU is exactly what it needs to be. It shows of a slew of the Wii U’s gimmicks without ever feeling too gimmicky. And the fact that it brings back a style of survival horror that’s been on the decline earns it extra points in my book. If you have a Wii U already, this is one of the titles you’ll want to check out right away.

Josh Wirtanen
Editor / Social Media
Date: November 19, 2012

Not groundbreaking, but this looks a huge step up from the Wii, and there are even some lighting effects that are pretty impressive at points.
The first-person perspective controls are your standard fare, and the touchscreen controls are responsive.
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
ZombiU sounds like an infected London should.
Play Value
The campaign isn’t too terribly long, but its innovative perma-death mechanics make that experience enjoyable throughout.
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Two Screens, Twice The Fear - Feel the tension mount as you try to keep an eye on your TV and controller screen.
  • Survival-Horror Action At Its Best - Resources are in short supply while your enemies are legion, and you never know when you will find more weapons, ammunition, first aid, and food.
  • Don't Leave Home Without Your BOB: The new WiiU controller becomes your Bug-Out Bag, the ultimate all-in-one survival kit for your tools, inventory, med kits, maps, and more.
  • Unique Death Mechanic - If you die, you wake up to play an entirely new character who is another survivor in the same terrifying position.
  • Horde At Your Door - Stock up on guns, ammo, and supplies, and lock down your Safe House!

  • Screenshots / Images
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