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'Zombie Tycoon' Review (PSP)

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PSP Minis Game Screenshot - Zombie Tycoon

Zombie Tycoon Screen

Frima Studios

The Bottom Line

Zombie Tycoon puts a humorous twist in survival horror by putting you in charge of a horde of zombies, with which you need to defeat ten cities. Weapons and pick-ups are suitably ridiculous, and the zombie animations are dead-on. While it's a strategy game at heart--you have to figure out how to manage your three zombie squads in order to accomplish the objectives--it's a stripped-down version of strategy, so gamers who normally avoid strategy titles shouldn't be put off. Zombie Tycoon is good, pick-up-and-play fun.

Pros

  • Bright, cartoony graphics.
  • Quick load times.
  • Controls are simple, allowing immediate play.

Cons

  • Sudden jump in difficulty after tutorial levels.

Description

  • ESRB rated T - PEGI rated 12 - published by Frima - screenshot 01 - screenshot 02
  • Graphics: The intro cartoon is fantastic. In-game graphics a step down, but still pretty great for such a small game.
  • Sound: Not irritating, which is important. Sound effects give you valuable heads-ups. All-around decent.
  • Gameplay: Easy to pick up and play, but challenging to really master. A good balance of difficulty.
  • Multiplayer: Like all PSP Minis, there are no online or multiplayer features.
  • Replay Value: Moderate. You can play it over to see if you can do better, or get faster times, but the game doesn't change.
  • Recommendation: It's cheap, it's fun, it's easy to get the hang of. I say try it.

Guide Review - 'Zombie Tycoon' Review (PSP)

We've seen a lot of zombie games over the years, and we've seen a lot of games with "dark" graphics, to the point where it's easily to write off a new game with either of these as being just more of the same. But whether or not you like zombies or the dark look, Zombie Tycoon is pretty sure to please. I found it silly, but likable. More importantly, it's just fun.

Game Details

  • Publisher: Frima
  • ESRB Rating: T (Teen - Cartoon Violence, Mild Language)
  • Genre: Strategy
  • Release Date: October 29, 2009
  • Format: download only

Try To Take Over The World

The object of Zombie Tycoon is to use three color-coded squads of zombies to take over ten cities from their human inhabitants. Each city has several specific objectives, like preventing humans from escaping for a set period of time, or destroying all the buildings. If you fail, you have to start the level again (though there are also automatic checkpoints, which allow you to start over partway through).

Aside from your objectives, you can also rampage around the city, taking over buildings and making more zombies. There is a limit to how many zombies you can have in each of your three squads in each level, which adds a layer of complexity to the strategy. You have to figure out how to achieve your objectives and keep your zombie numbers high enough.

Destroying buildings and eating people will gain items and other pickups, all suitably silly (you might say "stupid" if you were feeling uncharitable, but in the right frame of mind they're worth a chuckle). Taking over hospitals will allow you to build your zombie squads up to their maximum number.

Try Not to Take Yourself Too Seriously

Zombie Tycoon is not a game that takes itself too seriously. While the developers obviously spent some serious time making a game that works well, they were also obviously having a lot of fun. Armor for your zombies comes in the form of hospital gowns, clown suits, bikinis and so on, while for weapons you might equip a bicycle wheel or a dead fish.

My only real criticism of the game is that the difficulty level seemed to jump suddenly after the tutorial levels. One minute you're being held by the hand to perform each task, and the next you're on your own knowing how to do things, but not how to think about the game. Once I had my brain in the right mode of thinking, though, I was off and making zombies and taking over the world.

With its stripped-down mechanics that still manage to pack in solid gameplay, and its relatively simple graphics that still look pretty darn good, and its true quick-to-get-the-hang-of, a little more challenging to master controls, Zombie Tycoon is a great example of what a PSP Minis game can be. It's basic, but not too basic, and it's a lot of fun for under ten bucks.

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