Review: Pro Zombie Soccer for iPhone

Pro Zombie Soccer features a campaign length you’d expect in a $0.99 title (one hour, give or take), but also the refined mechanics and polish of a game that costs quite a lot more.

Kill them all, err, again (because they’re already dead, sort of)

PZS is actually a very simple game. Your character, Jax, stays on the left, and the horde of zombies swarms you from the right. You ‘ll kick through swathes of the undead with your soccer ball, and take aim by touching and holding on the space behind Jax. If I really had to take away all of the gore and special effects, this game is really just a horizontal version of brick breaker and Galaga (which is something the developers themselves acknowledge with a special ” albeit slightly long ” stage).

The whole title is split into nine levels — most of which feature  several stages — and you’ll be treated to a set of stylish cut scenes that have a habit of breaking the fourth wall (one scene mentions how games often feature jungle settings right before throwing you into, yep, a jungle setting). Most of the stages are simple affairs of killing all of the zombies on screen, but some stages do play with the mechanics. One stage features scientists (don’t kill) who are  running from the zombies (kill),  and some zombies can only be killed by kicking particular switches (flick) on the level. It isn’t rocket science, but it does shake things up a bit.

There are also a few boss fights, and I really have no complaints about any of them except for the last one, which requires far more precision and speed than the control scheme really supports. The game is definitely beatable, but the last boss can be a real pain in the ass.

That ‘s alright, though, because the other 99% of the game is bucket loads of fun and gore. Kicking the ball into enemy zombies always rewards you with some sort of disgusting animation, and aiming for headshots will net you extra gore and extra points. You ‘ll also be rewarded for particularly awesome kicking sprees in the form of special power-ups, which turn zombie killing into a true art form. Turning your soccer ball into a lightning, piercing, or military satellite-guiding ball, is so much fun that you ‘ll want to use your power-ups every single time they ‘re available.

No Fast App Switching

The only major negative aspect of PZS is the lack of iOS 4 fast app switching. This means that leaving the app to answer a text message will require you to play your current level all over again. I could say something like ‘on the bright side, that just means you ‘ll get to kill a few more zombies ‘, but that would simply be making excuses for the devs :)

Conclusion

The combination of the rewarding power boosts and the visceral soccer + undead killing action makes will make for a hell of an hour as you play through the campaign on Normal mode. There is a bit of replayability in the form of a Hardcore mode and a hidden ‘Zombie Odyssey ‘ level (just tap on the glowing soccer ball when you ‘ve finished Normal mode), but I consider the 60 minutes I wasted away while blasting zombies more than worth the $0.99 purchase price.

Pro Zombie Soccer is a game that ‘s ready to play and enjoy right now, and I think fans of arcade shooters will get a real kick out of it. I know I did.

Pro Zombie Soccer is available for $0.99 on the App Store.

The app was bought by JAiB for review on the site. For further information regarding our site’s review policies, please see the “About” page.

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