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Game Review: Dead Nation



As you may have known, the PSN was hacked mid 2011. It was down for a month or so, but when it came back up, PSN users got 2 free games as part of a "Welcome Back" package. I took the games Wipeout HD and Dead Nation. I didn't like Wipeout HD. It just wasn't my style. Dead Nation was a game I had a bit more luck with.

Gameplay: This is a pretty generic top-down zombie shooter. There is a shop at every checkpoint where you can buy new guns, ammo, and equipment such as land mines and flares. You can upgrade weapons you have purchased, and you can equip gear you have found on your journey. The game mechanics are nothing we haven't seen before, but they are used well. There are many different kinds of zombies besides the generic type. Skinless die in 1 hit but don't give you money for the kill. They appear in groups. Bombies are morbidly obese zombies that run toward you and explode. Cutters have blades for hands, and can kill you in one hit on the harder difficulties. There are many other types of zombies as well. You have to be quick on your feet and be a good strategist to survive.

Art Style: Terrible. The screen is littered with "realistic" colors. In case you like your games realistic, there is the issue that it is a very dark game, even with max brightness. This makes some of the zombies incredibly difficult to see. This doesn't make the game harder, it only makes it more frustrating.

Story: You (and perhaps a partner of the opposite gender if playing co-op) are a survivor to the zombie outbreak 1 year ago. You are immune to the plague. You are running out of supplies and need to get to the gas station. After stocking up, you hear a message on the truck radio, but it's not clear. You make your way to the highest building and finally hear the message. I won't spoil anything, but I'll tell you it's rather cliche.

Lasting Appeal: This is a PSN game, so it will obviously not last as long as a retail game, and for a PSN game, this actually has a lot of stuff. There are 5 difficulty levels, 10 half hour long stages, 15 different armor pieces, and a leaderboards system.

Gameplay: 7/10 Fun, but nothing we haven't seen before. You get a lot of freedom in how you choose to fight.

Art Style: 2/10 It tries to be realistic and ends up being boring. The darkness levels cause some frustration, and not in a good way.

Story: 4/10 The story is cliched, bland, and the ending is terrible. At least it's easy to follow and gives you a clear goal. Zombie games like this tend to have zany stories, but this one tries to be serious and falls flat.

Lasting Appeal: 9/10 As a PSN game, this has lots of content to keep you playing. If you get bored, there is a DLC pack that adds a survival mode. I don't have it, but it sounds fun.

Overall: 6/10

I'm glad I got this game for free, because I did get some fun out of it. However, it's generic and can be frustrating. Although it's okay for a PSN game, you're better off spending your money on another downloadable zombie shooter. That is, if you're not sick of the zombie craze yet.


Recommended Comments

I remember that I got Infamous and Wipeout HD (which I never played except to show off my HD TV to guests) from that whole fiasco.

My friend that downloaded Dead Nation had a similar take as you - fun but "eh".

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Wipeout HD (which I never played except to show off my HD TV to guests) from that whole fiasco..

That is kind of hilarious. "Check out this hyper definition, bitches".

Another solid review, squishy. With you doing reviews and David doing behind the scenes lulz, I think I need some kind of nick with my blog.

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Honestly you should do the lists like what you've posted in a few threads. Things like that have a lot of article/google potential and could double as things we promote to the main content area.

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I remember that I got Infamous and Wipeout HD (which I never played except to show off my HD TV to guests) from that whole fiasco.

My next review will probably be inFamous. I only review games I have platinumed, so I know I've spent enough time with them. For that reason, I'll probably never review Wipeout HD, which is commonly agreed to be the hardest platinum ever.

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