Zombies. Second only to Nazis, and Zombie Nazis as the gamers cannon fodder of choice. If (when) the inevitable zombie apocalypse happens, it wont be the Bruce Willis’es, the Arnold Schawrzeneggers’es, or even the nerdy dude with the glasses in ‘The hills have eyes’ remake who killed all those mutants and proved hes not a compelte pussy who saves us. Who will save us then? The gamers. Gamers have killed more Zombies than every hollywood movie combined, faced every apocalyptic zombie scenario known to man, and fired off enough witty one liners to put Bruce Campbell to shame. So here’s some of the best videogame zombies to ever grace the end of our 9mm Beretta/Water pistol/baseball bat/lawnmower…
Zombies ate my neighbors – SNES/Mega drive (1993)
Remember when Lucasarts DIDN’T suck? A hard time to recall, i know, when most of their output these days can can variously be described as ‘turgid’, ‘shit’, ‘turgid shit’ and ‘turgid fucking shitfest’. But believe me there was a time when seeing the lucasarts logon on a box was a cast iron guarantee that the game was going to, quite literally, rock you like a hurricane. This game was one of those moments. Taking control of either a teen boy or girl, you were tasked with saving the neighbours from all manner of nasties including but not limited to:
- 40ft high baby
- giant ants
- body snatchers
But the undoubted star of this retro classic was old Zack himself, shambling comically toward you, tongue waggling like a rather cheerful dog, only to meet death one more time at the unflinching accuracy of your water pistol.
DOOM – Every fucking system imaginable (1993 – present)
DOOM is in a way, the ultimate FUCK YOU game. The premise? SATAN AND HIS MANYFOLD MINIONS CAN BE KILLED WITH A FUCKING SHOTGUN. FUCK THE SUPERNATURAL, SUPERIOR FIREPOWER IS ALL YOU NEED.
If it were that easy dont you think the pope would’ve tried it by now? However, doom’s zombies have always provided excellent cannon fodder. Be it the horribly pixellated yet supremely EVIL zombie sergeants from the original doom, to the exploding jawless/faceless/fat/on fire zombies of Doom 3, bless you DOOM, for showing us that all we need to triumph over beelzebub, that onerous spinner of lies, root of all evil in this world, is a shotgun and a handful of bullets. The father of lies has nothing on that shit.
Resident Evil series – Various consoles (1996 – present)
For most people, the Resident Evil games are their introduction to the Zombie apocalypse. The game that popularised busting caps in undead asses while Asian voice actors chewed over engrish dialogue like a particularly tough undead steak. Giant (possibly zombified) spiders, dogs, and snakes all made an appearance. But it was the blocky, pixellated shambling masses that stole the show, and our hearts, and jugulars, and other easily bitten areas. Resident Evil invented the genre of survival horror, and with it ushered in a new era of zombie killing bliss, thanks to the groaning, shambling inhabitants of Raccoon city.
The latest Resident Evil has eschewed the idea of actually having terrifying shambling cannon fodder and replaced them with zombies who ride motorbikes (RE5). Which is so stunningly retarded its quite literally unbelievable. Zombies dont ride motorbikes. Zombies either shamble, run, or eat your face off. Vampires don’t snowboard, werewolves don’t bungee jump, the elephant man doesn’t get crunked up on pimp juice, and ZOMBIES SHOULDN’T BE RIDING FUCKING MOTORBIKES.
Return to Castle Wolfenstein – PC – (2001)
As previously stated, the only thing to get gamers wetter and harder than a good old fashioned Nazi shoot em up, is a good ols fashioned Zombie-Nazi shoot em up. In a marketing pitch that mustv’e gone down in history as the best combination of ideas since porno met the internet, the genuises at ID software decided to meld the 2 greatest punching bags in videogame history to give rise to the ZOMBIE NAZI. Not content with the pant tighteningly exciting prospect of shooting Nazis who had been FUCKING ZOMBIFIED, ID went one step further with the introduction of the leather catsuit clad Female Nazi Elite guards, and FPS gamers across the globe collectively orgasmed.
Left 4 Dead – (PC/X360) 2008
In every food chain, there is a top predator. In nature, its probably the Rhino, or maybe a gorilla. In real life, its Zombies should they ever come to exist. In zombie themed video games, its LEFT 4 MTOHERFUCKING DEAD.
The ultimate evolution of shotgun-meets-undead, Left 4 dead places 4 survivors (Francis, Zoey, Bill and the black dude who always dies first, Louis)right in the centre of the all too inevitable zombie apocalypse. Kill everything that moves, kill some things that dont move, just fucking KILL EVERYTHING. Its a zombie survivalists wet dream come so shockingly to life that youd swear you just woke up in a puddle.
Its got shambling zombies. Its got fast zombies. Its got indestructible tank zombies that throw fucking cars at you. Its got drama, its got a love story between Zoey & Francis for the ladies possibly. Its got thousands and thousands of zombies all merrily streaming towards the business end of your bullet stick. Its got fat zombies who explode and cover you in zombie attracting vomit, zombies who ensnare you with tongues like frogs, its got explosions, catastrophes its got knives nukes sharp sticks!! All hail to Left 4 Dead, the undisputed king of the zombie shooter.
Dead Rising – (X360) 2006
Lawnmowers. Chainsaws. Sledgehammers. Axes. Water pistols. Nerf guns. Mannequins. 2×4’s. Baseball bats. Knives. Bowling balls. Guitars. Pies. Plates. Shelving units. Swords. Teddy Bears. All these household items and mroe are at your disposal in Dead Rising, a game that literally tasks you with wiping out the entire zombified population of a small mountain town. No zombie game list would be complete without mentioning Capcoms 2006 zombie killing masterpiece, Dead Rising. You can kill zombies, maim zombies, you can set fire to zombies, and in a moment on divine inspiration, much like GrandMaster Flash mustv’e felt when he first rhymed ‘hands in the air’ with ‘just dont care’, you can use your camera to take erotic photos of female zombies. No im not making this shit up.
So there we have it. The definitive list possibly of zombies in video games. Where can the obsession go from here? Zombies in blimps? A streetwise cop with 3 days left ’til retirement gets a new partner in the form of a zombie and hilarity ensues? All believeable premises, which gamers are no doubt looking forward to. I will leave you with the immortal lines of John Stalvern, from the doom 3 fanfiction, “Doom 3: Repercussions of evil”:
“No! I must kill the demons” he shouted The radio said “No, John. You are the demons” And then John was a zombie.
How very true.