Review by WonderCaliban
"Not bad, but no classic."
Zombies in Vietnam. Well that is a concept I've not come across before and one which could be quite promising. The undead lurching out of the dark thick forest could be quite terrifying and make a very good game.
Unfortunatly this isn't it. When compared to other FPS games on the 360 this comes up badly. The graphics aren't great, the sound isn't great and the overall gameplay isn't that great. It looks and feels much like an original XBOX game rather than a 360 game.
However, that being said I did have fun playing it. If you approach this game as a survival horror rather than considering it an FPS then it comes off quite well. Survival Horror games recently have taken the road of giving you lots of powerful weapons with plenty of ammo and pitting you against alot of easy to dispatch enemies (Dead Space for one) and the end result is not really that terrifying. However in this game once the zombies arrive the weapons aren't that powerful (headshots are the only way to kill a zombie quickly) and ammo is constantly is short supply. If you don't take out the zombies quick enough then you are quickly overwhelmed and killed meaning that some sections of the game are quite tense and even a solitary zombie can pose a threat if not dealt with efficiently.
The level design is quite linear and the overall length of the campaign is quite short. Hard mode takes between 5-6 hours if its your first playthrough and a replay on easy can be completed without difficulty in 2 hours.
The plot is okay, but nothing extraordinary, your sent to Vietnam, your brother is a Spec Op.s soldier sent into the jungle looking for 'Whiteknight' and returns completely insane. Your sent by the army to try and get information out of him, he escapes, you have to find him, however he is a vector for a zombie contagion. There is very little that is original or unexpected, but it does do a serviceable job of giving a plausible explanation of progress from A to B.
Overall this game is okay. I do not recommend buying it, but if you rent it then its a fairly decent playthough for 5-6 hours. However as long as you don't expect it to be on the same quality of graphics and design of the more high budget titles.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 02/17/09
Game Release: ShellShock 2: Blood Trails (EU, 02/13/09)
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