I've had an odd interest in the undead for as long as I can remember, and I could make a hipster-esque statement and say that I thought zombies were badass long before anyone else did, but I won't go that far. I've been planning for some sort of zombie apocalypse for quite a while now, so if anything starts to go down, you'll probably be safe with me. Needless to say, I'm also in love with any sort of zombie game and when one comes my direction, it goes up against hard criticism. That being said, Dead on Arrival by N3V Games scores some pretty high marks overall.
First Things First
I just had to include the above trailer simply because its so awesome. You can tell how much work and talent went into making this game just by watching the trailer. I'd also like to mention first that while this game is free, you do have the option to remove ads or get more ZBucks (more on these later) through in-app purchases. I know that these in-app purchases annoy quite a few people, but in regards to this game, they are very well-thought out. They aren't entirely pushy, you can still have a ton of fun without buying anything, and once you see how awesome the game is, you'll probably want to help the developer out anyway.
Alright, so any game like this needs to have a solid story to back it up, and Dead on Arrival has a phenomenal one. Yeah, it does have the typical zombie apocalypse storyline, but the game really brings it to life and it adds quite a bit to the gameplay. Between the incredible graphics and sounds of the free-roam levels and the comic book style load screens, everything ties together nicely and pulls the player into a zombie infested world.
One thing you'll notice immediately is that this game mimics the zombie mode in Call of Duty. While that does irk me a little bit, I can look past it because that style really works for these type of games. In Dead on Arrival you're trying to survive in a hospital crawling with zombies. Every kill you make earns you money, and you use that money to open doors and buy weapons. Much like in COD, the zombies come in waves, there is a mystery box that gives you a random weapon for a fee, and you can even repair the doors that allow the undead to flow in.
Unlike Call of Duty, this game implements another form of currency called ZBucks. These are used to unlock more powerful weapons from the main menu permanently or in-game temporarily. In addition, they can be used to turn on power, set traps, activate the mystery box, or buy yourself some body armor. You can also convert ZBucks to cash via the in-game ATM if you're really in need of ammo. There are two different ways to get your hands on some of this currency: after every wave you'll earn one ZBuck, or you can purchase them from the main menu. As I said before, buying them is not essential to the game and won't slow the pace down a bit if you choose not to. However, if you want to permanently unlock the big guns rather than buying them temporarily after you've saved up, you will need to make a purchase.
Now, lets move on to controls. I don't feel the control system needs a whole section to itself, but it is worth talking about. As with most games like this, you'll have two thumb buttons to control movement and fire. Overall, these buttons are extremely responsive and I haven't really experienced any issues with them. I did notice, however, that there is no option to mix up the controls. I would have liked to see some different settings, but I guess I can't really complain because the controls work well the way they are.
Dead on Arrival gets my vote for best mobile zombie shooter to date. I can't think of any other that plays as well or looks as good as this one. This game has some really talented people behind it, and I tip my hat to N3V Games for making such an awesome title. Even if you're not a huge fan of the undead, you'll still have a good time with this one.
If you want to check it out, hit the link below. Its free, and you'll still be able to have quite a bit of fun without having to make any in-app purchases.