Like it often happens with tie-in games, if the first movie doesn’t have a branded videogame out in time, the sequel will. Though it took quite some time to see a follow up to Zombieland, enough time for tie-in videogames released as retail, proper videogames to feel almost fresh again, opposed to a very cheap freemium game for smarthphones or as promotional events into gacha garbage.
While it’s named after the sequel, Zombieland – Double Tap, and its main characters, the game has its own story set in between the two films, and it captures the spirit and humour of the series pretty well, even if it’s clearly a budget tie-in job, not only from in terms of looks, but as the cast from the movie didn’t provide their voices for the game, leaving other voice actors to do impressions… bad impressions, but i’m not angry as the Harrelson/Tallahassee’s and Eisenberg/Columbus impressions are so bad i find them hilarious and kinda charming, especially the Harrelson one. XD
It’s exactly what you might expect from a Zombieland videogame, as in a typical twin-stick shooter where you shoot zombies, deliberately retro, so much that it requires you to find keys to open doors, it employs the use of spawners like ambulance or porta-potty, and has local multiplayer up to 4 players. I’m not siure if it lacks online co-op for budget or fidelity to the old school experience.
It’s a pretty basilar experience: you can move, use a gun and throwing weapons, or use each character special move when charged. You can carry one weapon of each type at the time (and when out of ammo for the gun you revert to a basic pistol with infinite ammo) and switch with the ones you can find in crates, including fire axes, as you don’t have a melee attack, nor can you sprint or use a dodge move. A bit odd to see “ammo” usage when wielding a melee weapon, but whatever.
It’s not a bad game, the enemy and weapon variety is decent, but it’s a bit more basilar than most people would want from a modern twin stick shooter, and it’s not that great at that, it’s satisfying but just functional, there are plenty of games like these that are simply way better and with more depth in any regard, even on the arcade mentality with score multipliers and the like.
Also, it’s pretty short, you can beat in an afternoon. It’s not overly long and the levels have some attemps at variety to them, but it’s a short game, 10 shorts levels, with 5 extra levels taking place in the same locations and a decent horde mode. And there’s not much depth to it, even the progression system for powering up character is as basic as they come, and the characters are pretty much identical aside from the special ability.
Actually its hilarious how this game has an achievement/trophy for beating the game in less than 5 hours…when you can easily finish it in 2 hours, 3 tops. But once you’ve done that you kinda feel done, and i don’t think the game would have been better if it keep going for 3 more hours of cannibalizing its own content. I still remember the utter, desperate, ghoulish shit the Ghostbusters game on PS4 did to that extent. No, not the remaster, the sequel to the 2016 mediocre film reboot.
While it’s better than Contra Rogue Corps… the original version of Dead Nation was already a noticeably better made game, it had more replay value and it wasn’t released with a MSRP of 40 bucks even as a downloadable title. I’m not saying this to shit on High Voltage Software’s work, it’s just i can’t honestly recommend this over anything Housemarque worked on.
If you haven’t yet, play Dead Nation, Nex Machina, MUCH better twin stick shooters.
Concluding, Zombieland Double Tap – Roadtrip may be worth to pick it up a retail copy for 20 bucks on sale (it’s also on Switch and you can always get it digital, it’s also on Steam), but only for fans of both twin stick shooter and the Zombieland movies. If you’re not both, there’s not much to enjoy here, especially at full price. For licensed tie-in games, you can do both far worse and far better.
Maybe don’t charge 40 bucks for a 3 hours long twin stick shooter game in this day and age. Actually, no “maybe”, just don’t.