Clearly, the Xbox One must have braaiiinnnsss, because it currently seems to be the number one stop for the undead – and fans of the undead, too. Sure, the PS4 has Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare, (first on the Xbox One), and it has the upcoming title H1Z1 (which looks like any zombie fan’s wet dream), but when it comes to variety – the Xbox One can’t be beat. In fact, one of the Xbox One’s launch titles was a zombie game… and a good one at that! Dead Rising 3 was a brilliant game to launch the latest generation of Mirosoft’s gaming machine, and since then the zombie based video-games have been coming thick and fast.
In the spirit of making lists and quenching an unwavering thirst for human flesh, I’m going to make a list of the current (and a few future) zombie based games on the Xbox One. Good news, though. One or two of these might be cross-platform and, when they are, I’ll be sure to mark them up so that you can put them on your ‘to-get’ list.
Dead Rising 3
I’ve already mentioned this one, but it’s probably my favourite zombie based game on the Xbox One. It’s open world, you’re able to customise your character (in certain ways) and you’re able to smash zombies to smithereens with various weapons. Not only that, but there’s plenty of DLC add-ons to work through, and a massive game-world to explore. Plus, you can customise and enhance your weapons and vehicles to make the zombie slaying oh-so-much sweeter.
Dying Light (Multi-Plat)
This game is almost out… I can pretty much smell the rotting flesh. Dying Light is a little different to the sort of zombie games we’ve seen so far. Much like the Dead Island series (mainly because they’re from the same people), the game will be set in a sandbox world where you can smash, slash, maim and kill the undead with a variety of weapons, all of which can be updated and crafted with certain materials. The difference comes in how you traverse the map. This game has a ‘free-running’ edge to it!
Dead Island 2 (Multi-Plat)
I was lucky enough to play this (and Dying Light) at EGX last year, and both of them were pretty decent games. Dead Island has always been a little tongue in cheek, but the humour of the title seems to be shining through in this next-gen sequel. It has the usual cocktail of undead carnage and weapon creation/customisation that us zombie fans have grown to love from the series – the main difference being that this game is bigger, better and more gory. For me, I think I’ll be more inclined to play this over Dying Light. I think that the Dead Island series has gotten over its rocky start, and Dead Island 2 should be a pretty well-rounded experience. Dying Light, however, is a little new and might be plagued by the bugs and glitches that hindered the original Dead Island – I guess we’ll wait and see.
Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare (Now Multi-Plat)
This series is now available on most platforms, but it began its life as a computer game and slowly made its way to the 360. Garden Warfare was a big hit on the Xbox One, and is now available on the PS4. It’s a different take on a zombie game, I’ll admit. It’s less about survival, community, and man vs the undead, and more about plants fighting zombies in a Call of Duty style game.
How to Survive
This was a hit arcade game back in 2013, but it has now been spruced up and made available on the next-generation of consoles. How to survive is played from a top-down perspective and, surprisingly enough, is based on the concept of survival in a zombie apocalypse. It can be played co-operatively, which was one of the key selling points for the game on the last-generation, and (considering its price) is a solid little title for any zombie-lover.
This game first came out on PC, and was then re-released as a HD version for the PS3 and Xbox 360. It’s now available as an Xbox One title under the name ‘Zombie Driver: Ultimate Edition’. Like Plants vs Zombies, this isn’t your classic zombie game. Unlike Plants vs Zombies, there aren’t that many plants. The main crux of the game is to save other survivors, fight back the zombie plague and run zombies down with your car. The whole game is spent in the seat of a vehicle and, if you like carnage filled driving games, you’ll love this one with its zombie twist.
State of Decay
I’ve definitely saved the best ’till last. State of Decay was one of my favourite games on the Xbox 360, and it was one of those titles that really surprised. It kind of came out of nowhere, from a relatively unknown team of developers, Undead Labs. The game was greeted with acclaim and became an overnight success. Its popularity has been shown by the fact that Microsoft have commissioned an Xbox One remake, which should be with us sometime in late April. State of Decay was, very almost, my perfect zombie game. Much like The Walking Dead, it allowed you to control a group of survivors, find bases to hold off and make home and expand your group – all whilst scavenging for supplies, weapons and bigger and better places to hold off. The only thing that let it down? It wasn’t multiplayer and you couldn’t create characters. Still, I quickly fell in love with my rag-tag group of survivors, and I can’t wait to do it all over again later this year.
Even better news for Xbox One gamers, and zombie fans, is that Undead Labs have signed a massive deal with Microsoft which will see them developing bigger and better games on their platforms. There has been a lot of rumour about their current project ‘Class 4’, which could well be an MMO zombie based survival game – fingers crossed!
Of course, this gap is going to be closing pretty quickly when H1Z1 reaches the PS4. When that happens, I can see the zombie domination slipping somewhat – as H1Z1 looks like any zombie fan’s wet dream. Still, until then at least, the Xbox One is where it’s at for us zombie fans.