Reviews - Updated on April 10, 2022

When we talk about the fashion for the revival of the classics, we first of all mean remakes, sequels and “spiritual heirs” of some old hits. But it turns out that now they are reviving, let’s say, a little less well-known classics – even Russian Flash games. Zombotron is a vivid (and perhaps the only) example of this.

Zombology

Most of you, of course, do not know anything about this and have never heard of it, but about eight years ago, the Zombotron game from Anton Karlov and Armor Games Studios was very popular among connoisseurs. It was an “old-school” 2D action game with platforming elements, where we, as a lone biorobot, relishedly shot zombies on an abandoned planet.

The game bribed with destructible environments and the ability to kill enemies even without shooting – they were allowed to crush them with elevators, falling barrels and boxes. Plus secrets and truly explosive dynamics: grenades and flammable containers detonated and blew everything alive to hell.

Zombotron was so popular that not only did Karlov and Armor Games Studios release parts 2 and 3, but tons of clones with the same name started popping up. Yes, you yourself can appreciate it – and now both originals and crafts based on motives are available on the Web.

Not for jokes

And now, many years later, a new Zombotron comes out on Steam – in fact, a restart of the entire series (and especially its second part). With all the consequences – a much nicer modern picture, “achievements” and some innovations in the gameplay. But first, let’s talk about the plot. Zombotron game review

“Bosses” are constantly blocking something, evading, and even calling some kind of muck to help themselves!

In the role of the fearless space mercenary Blaze Rush, we land on the titular planet Zombotron, from where the distress signal was received, and set off in search of its source. Naturally, no matter how easy Blaise hoped, this walk will not be – especially after unknown people stole a jet engine from his ship.

In the process of searching for the kidnappers, we not only constantly fire at everyone around, but also communicate with the natives, trade with them, fulfill the request to destroy the huge spider. And we even meet some familiar characters. In general, Anton Karlov came up with a whole “universe of the planet Zombotron” – and those who are in the subject will indeed find in the new game references to previous releases, events and characters described there.

And we also periodically communicate with an assistant drone controlled by intelligent AI. As usual in such cases, he not only gives important information about the plot (“Oh my God, captain, unknown life forms are approaching us!”), But also tries to joke. Maybe, for example, in response to Blaise’s curses about the lack of a key to a locked door, ask: “Have you tried looking under the rug?” “Remind me to replace the module responsible for your sense of humor later,” the captain retorts. Not much, of course, funny, but for an action movie focused exclusively on action, and this is not bad – it dilutes the gunfights.

Secret and weapon of success

And with gunfights, everything is the same – fun, a lot, interactive and explosive. Even the control scheme has not changed. We run left and right and jump to WASD (“arrows” no longer work), and while shooting and jumping, do not forget to keep a close eye on the mouse pointer. The sight and the captain’s hands, squeezing the weapon, are tightly tied to it and therefore spin and rotate 360 ​​degrees even when jumping. At first, it’s not quite familiar, and the jump itself is implemented specifically (by pressing the W key), but you quickly get used to the control features and start dashingly demolishing enemies. Zombotron game review

The search for numerous secrets is one of the main incentives for passing.

In addition to the actual shooting in Zombotron, it is very important and interesting to explore the levels and look for hiding places where you can profit from coins or new equipment. In addition, there are vending machines where we buy weapons, helmets, armor, boots, as well as first aid kits, cartridges, even stimulants. There aren’t that many options. Of the guns, we have a pistol, an assault rifle, a shotgun, a submachine gun, a rifle, a laser, rocket launchers, grenades – in general, a standard program. What adds variety is that equipment can be rare or epic, which gives different bonuses to damage, defense, or character characteristics.

Yes, yes, a role-playing system has been added to the proven mechanics in the restart. Although the word “system” in this case, of course, sounds loud. We just accumulate experience, get levels and invest the received points in strength, dexterity (increases the chance of critical damage and the chance of evasion) and endurance. But in combination with rare or epic equipment, this can significantly help in battles with large and really difficult “bosses”. The latter are able to turn a pleasant passage of Zombotron into a tantrum at once, no worse than when you tried to defeat some huge monster in Dark Souls.

And then a box killed him…

As before, you can kill in Zombotron without blowing your enemies head off with a shotgun. There is very interactive physics here, which allows not only breaking through walls in search of secrets and knocking down helmets from enemy heads, but also crushing the poor fellows with descent platforms, bringing down stones and so on. Zombotron game review

We save at checkpoints, but you can respawn there only a few times – then you have to start the whole level again.

At some point, they will give you a ride on an armored “zombie car” that crushes everyone in its path. At the same time, in almost every location there is some kind of gas cylinder, which, if you shoot at it, takes off, and then effectively detonates, destroying everything around. Or an enemy with such a balloon on his back. Naturally, grenades work great in such a situation.

Opponents are so stupid that periodically they themselves hit the balloon with their claws, on any object that is in sight, and even on each other. And you can also set them off on purpose: destroy, for example, by bursting an obstacle separating some alien cuttlefish and a humanoid enemy, and they will rush at each other. But in no case should you scold the authors for the fact that, they say, there is stupid AI or dishonest physics that allows you to kill a big villain with a small box – this, on the contrary, is a Zombotron “trick”, which increases the degree of madness and fun reigning at every level.

But for the fact that there are bugs in the game, when, for example, our hero or “zombie car” gets stuck in textures or the “boss” suddenly freezes in place, you need to scold. And also because the armored car has too little health – coupled with the fact that it constantly gets stuck somewhere and tries to roll over, levels with it can make you have an acute desire to kill someone.

Notice I did practically nothing!

***

However, the very fact that you still, swearing and pulling out your hair, will continue to try to finally kill this “boss”, drive a zombie car and generally reach the end, already says one thing: Zombotron is a surprisingly addictive thing. So the restart was successful. Personally, my dismissive attitude (“Restarting an old Flash game? Well, everything is clear”) disappeared without a trace after a couple of minutes after the start.

Pros: addictive gameplay; funny physics model that allows you to kill enemies in different ways; many secrets with valuable rewards; the game looks very high quality; with sound and music everything is also good.

Cons: short duration; there are bugs.

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