Zombie Quest HD – Mastermind The Hexes! in Review – Good Idea, Not Enough Content
I have to confess that I did not know what type of game Zombie Quest HD was when I agreed to review it, but the allure of undead participants and a quirky board game were too much for me to refuse. I was a bit surprised to discover that it was simply an Othello variant, but then it turned out to be quite an amusing twist on the original. Then it was over, just as I was really getting into it. The changes from its inspiration are welcome additions, but for this game to rise above the rest it at least needs to either expand its level set or make multi-player more than just hot-seat, if not both.
Basically, Zombie Quest is one of those games were each time starts with a certain number of pieces on the board, and at the end of the game the person with the most pieces wins. To get extra pieces you can clone one of your pieces to an adjacent tile or move to a tile that is surrounded by your opponent’s pieces. The former will get you one extra piece, while the latter will convert all adjacent pieces that belong to your opponent over to your side. There are five worlds to conquer, each with four boards, and as you progress through the boards on each level they get bigger and theoretically more challenging. Truthfully, though, there were only 2 or 3 boards that really gave me any sort of grief.
To complicate matter, some tiles have grates on them, and every so many turns fire comes out of those grates, torching whoever is on that tile. If enough of those pieces belong to you, it could easily turn the tide of the game. You’ll also earn a power up for completing each world. These power ups can be used in place of your turn and range from a crane that will remove one piece from the board to a bomb that can destroy the pieces on a selected tile and all adjacent tiles. You can use more than one power up per game and you can even use the same power up more than once, but each power up has a cool down period so keep that in mind when planning your strategy.
To move a piece you tap to select and tap to move. To use a power up you tap the power up and then tap where you want to use it. The mechanics are simple as can be, but one simple addition I’d like to see is the possibility to unselect a piece by tapping it again. There are achievements to earn, but sadly beyond that there’s no reason to return to the main campaign once you’ve beaten it, which won’t take most players too terribly long. There’s also a multi-player mode, but sadly it is only hot seat at the moment. I’m not much for online games, but this is one I’d probably be willing to play over the internet if the option existed.
While the game is horror monster themed, the visuals are an interesting mix of cartoony and macabre. The character designs look good, but there are silly little things like the creatures on the chamber level periodically sticking their tongues out at you or the vampires having Mohawks. The sound effects are pretty cool and again occasionally have some “cute” stuff thrown in. One thing I really appreciate is there appears to be a unique theme for each world, and the music is well written.
Zombie Quest is a fun variant of the Othello style game, with things like flaming grates and power ups to set it apart from the pack. The horror monster theme is nifty as well. Unfortunately, the game is simply over way too quickly unless you have someone physically by you that wants to play. Additional levels would help, and maybe even the ability to tweak difficulty settings. Ultimately, though, I think the game needs internet connectivity for human competition in order to give it some longevity.
|Title:||Zombie Quest HD – Mastermind the hexes!||Developer:||Pavel Tarabrin|
|Reviewed Ver:||Min OS Req:||4.3|