Published on August 31st, 2016 | by Justin Giza0
Zombasite, the name, is a little misleading. Thanks to a veritable glut of “zombie” titles on the market, the average gamer’s brain will immediately flock to your run-of-the-mill zombie horde shoot-em-up. Luckily, Zombasite is anything but a typical offering amidst today’s market.
At face value, Zombasite is an isometric hack and slash role-playing game. Yes, there are zombies to crush, but there are so many additional mechanics and features hidden in this delicious little pudding. Starting off is fairly standard – users can pick a character class, each of which specializes in different weapons and skillsets. Players will spawn in a uniquely generated world with unique quests and items, and can then commence exploration by clicking around the map to run and bludgeon or hack at things.
There’s clearly trouble brewing. The Zombasite, a parasitic epidemic, has spread throughout the land. You are here to survive the apocalypse, and that’s where the game gets interesting. The player gets four win conditions: a Military Win, a Diplomatic Win, a Logistics Win, or an Adventurer Win.
A Military Win occurs if you seek out and destroy the other clans trying to survive in the area. A Diplomatic Win is more or less the opposite of that – ally with everyone, and you’ll win. A Logistics Win occurs when you’ve got an incredible surplus of food, and can just ride out the apocalypse. An Adventurer Win is definitely for the completionists; Solve every quest facing the area, and you’ll achieve victory.
A loss occurs not if you die, but if all of your followers die. Thusly, it’s important not just to keep yourself alive, but also to micro-manage your NPCs and make sure that food and safety are prioritized. As time goes on and you accrue more followers, so will the cost of upkeep.
My caution to new players is that Zombasite carries a very steep learning curve. Despite a wellspring of helpful tutorials, new players will not easily be able to tell which items are best and which to discard, and the NPC management system most definitely takes some getting used to. Certain status effects are unclear, and those seeking an “optimal” build path for skills will take some time adjusting to certain play styles. You’re going to die, a lot, before you really start to get a handle on things. But, as anyone who plays “dated” games in the here and now like myself, once you get into the swing of things, it’ll feel more natural and you’ll make some progress.
The only gripe I really had beyond the rough UI was the sound. I’m completely okay with a game that looks and sounds like a late-90’s dungeon crawler, but some of the sound felt really out of place, or like the waveforms were distorted. It wasn’t a deal breaker, but it was certainly noticeable.
Zombasite is currently available on Windows, Mac and Linux through Steam. Best of luck to you, and good luck surviving your own personal zombie apocalypse.