games / Columns

The 8 Ball: Top 8 More Zombie Games

November 15, 2016 | Posted by Marc Morrison

Welcome all to another edition of The 8 Ball. A few years ago I wrote about Top 8 Zombie Games here but since then a whole lot more zombies games have come out, so another refresher is in order. I tried to pick completely new games from 2013, or games I overlooked since then. One of the games on this list is in a franchise from my last column but didn’t exist in 2013, hence why it’s eligible for this list. If your favored game isn’t on here, check the prior column. With that said, let’s begin:

#8: Call of Duty: Zombies

I have no great love for the Zombies mode in the recent Call of Duty games and generally can’t fathom why they keep including them in there. Still, they have to be popular, given how much resources that are spent on them each year from Activision. Part of my problem stems from the fact it just feels like a low-rent version of Left 4 Dead (which I wasn’t fond of either), and the other part is he celebrity voice acting that is included with it, that always seems out of place. Still, if you have a good group of friends with you to play with, you can have some fun in this mode.

#7: Typing of the Dead

I love the insanity of “Let’s combine a typing game with House of the Dead!”. That is the Sega I used to love that is pretty much gone from today’s world. While there is the Overkill version of TOTD, the original House of the Dead 2 version is better, since it had the characters running around with Dreamcasts strapped to their backs. I’m not sure if typing skills are still a requirement for school, but if they are, kids should be learning to type on Typing of the Dead.

#6: Yakuza: Dead Souls

The Yakuza games have never had great combat and making it the focal point of a game was generally not a great idea. I still had fun with this game though, due to its overall looks (realism) and its mish-mash of various other Yakuza main heroes in the game. It’s slightly smaller scaled than a normal Yakuza game, but is still fully featured and has a nice layer of cheese to make the zombie stuff kind of goofy. Also, some of the boss battles are very tough, if you want a good challenge.

#5: State of Decay

I’ve tried to get into State of Decay at least 4 or 5 times and nothing about the combat has clicked with me. It’s a bummer too since I love the ideas surrounding the game and wish it just worked for me. Having to actually care for your survivors, their food, medical and sleep requirements is a great hook. Also, just giving you a big open area to scavenge for supplies, find new bases and acquire more survivors is very appealing to me. Here’s hoping State of Decay 2 has a better combat system, so I can get hooked on it.

#4: Dead Space 2

Like with Mass Effect and Army of Two, the second game in the trilogy is the best one, and that’s no different in Dead Space’s case. Dead Space 2 succeeds more than DS1 by having combat be a real primary focus and all the weapons be visceral (pardon the pun) to use. Also, the story was told better and the space station provided a lot more varied settings for the Necromorphs to pop out from. I actually probably would have enjoyed the game more, but I played it on PC where they give you all the weapons from the start, so it kind of broke the immersion factor for me some.

#3: Dead Rising 3

I mentioned Dead Rising in my other zombie column but none of the earlier Dead Rising games were actually “fun”. While you had a big sandbox area to play in, the brutal time constraints, bizarre save system, and closed in nature of the buildings made them frustrating diversions. Dead Rising 3 eschews most of the normal Dead Rising conventions for the better, letting you focus on the important things of killing zombies and making them do humiliating things. The combo weapons return from Dead Rising 2, but some of them have additional modes and levels to make them more lethal, both to the zombies and to the game’s framerate.

#2: Dying Light

Honestly, Dying Light is the game Dead Island should have been, and considering that Dead Island 2 is still MIA, that kind of speaks volumes, despite all the corporate shenanigans going on with that thing. The thing that Dying Light had that separated it from Dead Island was that the world felt more dynamic, like with the day/night system and how zombies would act differently depending on when it was. Also, the parkour stuff made actually getting around the city to be enjoyable, especially once you got the grappling hook, because you were no longer constrained to just being on the street and could get away if you really needed.

#1: The Last of Us

While not the traditional virus and/or magic zombies of most games, the fungal zombies of The Last of Us were a force not to be reckoned with. It was far safer and easier to sneak around them, or shiv them in the neck, instead of getting into a firefight with them because you would likely get slaughtered. The longer they have the fungus in them, the more armored and difficult they become, with the noted example of the tank one in the gym that could be a real bastard to try and take down. More than anything else, The Last of Us does reasonably present a world on the brink of collapse due to “zombies” and how there really isn’t any one big bad guy in the game, just a series of vignettes that show the worst of humanity in trying times.


For comments, list which zombie video games, or your favorite zombies, you enjoy.

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The 8 Ball (Games), Marc Morrison

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