• Publisher: Ubisoft
  • Release Date: Nov 18, 2012
User Score
7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 587 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 99 out of 587

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  1. Nov 30, 2012
    4
    The graphics are bad, the animations are bad, the combat is dull and repetitive, and the game is incredibly buggy. I have run into two separate game breaking bugs. Other than that there was general buggyness, things like context sensitive actions sometimes not showing up. I cannot even complete the final mission because a mission critical item disappeared from my inventory. This game had so much promise, and even though i prepared myself for disappointment I cannot believe how badly this game was made. Expand
  2. Dec 2, 2012
    0
    Worst game ever, belongs in 1999. Lost my save for some unknown reason. Way to ruin my holidays. Played an hour or 2, saved and turned off. Went to play next day save file says empty. No way am I doing that boring start again, I'd already started over due to the bad tutorial. Taking the game back first thing tomorrow, may even take back the Wii U. Bad Ubisoft, bad
  3. Jan 24, 2013
    4
    Okay, the amount of 10s here is kinda baffling. The game starts out good, but quickly goes downhill. The combat system is clunky and dull, which I thought was fine at first, because I wasn't playing a highly skilled character (except for the policemen, majors, generals, etc, who were just as useless with a gun as the musicians and clerks), but the kind (and amount) of enemies they throw at you after a while makes killing them a chore. You have zombies in riot gear, which is understandable, at least some people would have been wearing riot gear when the infection spread, but there are tons of them. And they take like 20 slow slow slow hits to kill (also, they're bullet proof). Then you have zombies that spit acid.. and zombies that self detonate. Which makes absolutely zero sense if they're normal zombies. Maybe someone is controlling them? I won't find out, since I quit playing after 10 hours, which, normally, I NEVER do... but there are so many missed opportunities and bad decisions in this game. You'd think having a map/pad thingie with motion sensors would offer the player some sort of strategic advantage, and would allow for creative solutions to maps, but it only serves to warn you about the zombie's presence (except for when zombies are just waiting for you to approach them before they start moving, which .. doesn't make sense T_T).. you'll have to take the same route regardless. Throughout the game they use cheap tricks to scare you, like loud aggressive music, sounds that get triggered (every time) you walk past certain areas, flashlight going out in some areas. Which wouldn't have been necessary if they got the basics right. Sorry about the messy review, it's not often I'm so mad at a game that I quit playing it halfway through, so I won't waste too much time on this review. OH, and one time when I jumped off a six feet pier into two feet deep water, I died from the fall damage. I was at full health. GG Ubisoft, GG. Collapse
  4. Jan 1, 2013
    1
    I love this game and this game has game breaking glitches that can completely destroy your progress and force you to restart from scratch several times over. So to be very clear: I love the slow horror-filled progress of the game, the clunky process of killing zombies with a cricket bat, the search for ammunition, all of that. The death of your character and the process of going to kill your old zombified self to get a backpack full of stuff is great.

    The problem is when you go back to kill yourself but can't retrieve from your old self things that are absolutely required in order for the game to continue. Essentially you can take 50 hours worth of game progress and throw it right out the window. This is because ZombiU does not retain any intermediate saves that you could go back to if something goes wrong, and because players have discovered and reported that many game-breaking glitches just crop up that destroy the game. Each time that happens you have to go back to the very very beginning. When you hit a problem like this, contact Ubisoft for support and this is what I got back:
    "Unfortunately, you are most likely going to need to create a new save profile. We are not able to recover lost or damaged saved files from either the cloud or other methods. We have reported this issue to the devs. Contact us again if you have additional questions." [there was no "lost of damaged" save file. My character died and there was no way to obtain a particular item that he was carrying that was necessary for plot progress"]

    Take a look at the ZombiU forums (http://forums.ubi.com/forumdisplay.php/383-ZombiU)
    :
    "Game breaking bug - ladder disappears!!"
    "Another ZombiU Game Breaking Glitch"

    And this nice statement, in a 2-page series of posts by frustrated gamers:

    "Ubisoft, as far I can see, you received your first notifications of game breaking bugs over a month ago on this forum.
    Since then, this forum has been flooded with further reports which have mostly fallen upon deaf ears.
    While admittedly the Forum Manager Ubi-Mush has been acknowledging these reports on occasion and reportedly forwarding the issues described, there has been absolutely no indication that the developers have been acknowledged any of these issues."

    In essence, excellent gameplay is ruined by the complete and total loss of your campaign if you fall prey to any number of serious programming bugs. Ubisoft has not acknowledged the problems, has not issued a patch, and has not offered even a hint as to whether they will patch the game at all. For some who play this, it turns out great and they don't get nailed by the many programming bugs. I have had to repeat 40 hours of campaign twice and after the third game-ending crash, I have to give up.
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  5. Jan 27, 2013
    1
    The game started off great. But then zombies that explode on contact simply because they're wearing a tank on their backs even if you don't actually hit said tank, and a plethora of game breaking bugs just made this a pointless purchase really. With no official word on a patch to fix the various issues with the game, I'd say skip this. Don't even ask for it as a gift.
  6. Feb 24, 2013
    4
    Disappointing Anyone who has had any substantial experience playing video games will immediately notice the many horrible game designs used in this subpar game. Allow me to elaborate, in detail, why this game is horrible and you should save your money for a more enjoyable game: 1. Controls (5/10) Aiming with a thumbstick is a horrible and outdated way of aiming in 3D games on a next generation console. It’s ineffective, slow and frustrating. The technology the WiiU has makes it possible to make aiming a much more pleasant and enjoyable experience than fumbling around with a thumbstick. One only needs to look at the Zelda Archery minigame in Nintendoland to see that aiming projectile weapons in games on the WiiU can be both easy, fun and accurate rather than backwards, clunky and inaccurate.
    The rest of the controls such as map, inventory management, “pinging” for nearby zombies, scanning a room are all executed on the WiiU gamepad. Many of these features are used very often making looking down at the gamepad a common occurrence that detracts from the immersion in the game and makes it more difficult than necessary to accomplish simple and always repetitive tasks.
    It seems that Ubisoft went to great pain to make sure their game used EVERY SINGLE NEW FEATURE of the new WiiU regardless of if it actually even added any value to the title. Just because your game can utilize a feature of the WiiU console/gamepad doesn’t necessarily mean it has to. The scanning feature is cool the first two or three times you use it, but pulling out your scanner and waving your arms around every single time you enter a new room gets repetitive, boring and slows the gameplay and action to a crawl. Over 50% of the time you play this game you will be spent either scanning each and every new room you enter or collecting the items you find during said scans. This makes the core of ZombieU feel mostly like a easter egg hunt game rather than a zombie survival game.
    For a title that makes it’s main selling point the game controls, ZombieU leaves a lot to be desired on the controls front.

    2. Graphics (5/10)
    The game actually looks pretty nice when you can actually see it.
    ZombieU has this persistent dirty screen effect that puts random circles on the screen that look akin to viewing the entire game through a dirty piece of glass. This I feel detracts from the game or was put in to obscure the overall average polygon counts in ZombieU.
    ZombieU also has a habit of making light sources look like someone installed nuclear powered light bulbs in every socket. Being blinded by overly bright lights is just another graphics gimmick that makes actually seeing the environment difficult.
    The game is also notoriously dark making the viewing area in such areas just as wide and as far as your non nuclear powered flashlight can shine. Flashlights in games are cool but only if they are used sparingly here and there such as in games like Metro 2033. ZombieU has a heavy reliance on flashlights making it even more difficult to view your environment.

    3. Combat (3/10)
    I hope you like that pretty cricket bat you get at the start of the game because 90% of all combat in this game will be you bashing zombies over and over and over with the damn thing. Between scanning rooms and bashing zombies over and over with your cricket bat, 80% of the time you spend in this game will be doing one of these two repetitive actions.
    Aiming is difficult and the firearms in the game are weak. A headshot to a zombie (if you can even manage to hit a moving zombie in the head with a crappy thumbstick aiming device) doesn’t kill a zombie, it takes upwards of three headshots to kill a zombie. With ammo being scarce as it is already coupled with crappy and ineffective alternatives you are pretty much stuck with that crappy bat.
    Speaking of that crappy bat, your character really really sucks at using it effectively. The animation (not animations) to swing it are slow, boring and repetitive making combat a thing of timing seeing as it can take a whole 4-6 seconds from the time you push the swing attack until the time you can swing again. Timing combos, varying bat animations and effects and not to mention just different melee weapons (knives, swords, hammers) could have made the melee combat more enjoyable.

    4. Gameplay (4/10)
    I hope you like a linear roller coaster gaming experience. This game is not open in the least, it does not give you choices to make you simply hop in the ZombieU roller coaster and tackle each and every problem it throws your way in the proper order it wants you to. There isn’t even any dialog choice to make, the only voice characters in the game simply talk at you rather than talk with you.

    Overall, this game doesn’t feel so much like a fun well designed game but rather a gimmick to show off all the new features of the WiiU that will drive you utterly insane with frustration at it’s backwards game design.
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  7. Dec 28, 2012
    3
    This game is good and uses the game pad well however there are a few problems for example, the lack of online co-op multi-player, the graphics seem to be lacking, the game is also to linear for my liking. Overall the game is good however i still think it could do with a few more features and updates.
  8. Aug 9, 2013
    2
    good idea, poorly executed. 10's people...really?! this game belongs in the 90's. I guess they thought that people would get caught up in the current zombie-craze, and not realize that this game sucks. Its graphics are terrible(think PS2 in HD), its extremely clear that they used an old engine with no attempt to supply anything that looked good. the zombies are repetitive and all look the same, aside from different genders and a couple of outfits. If you knock a zombies head off, it literally looks like a broken pencil. i saw better textures on N64. The environment is the only thing that i can't complain much about, except i really dislike when developers try to make the game scary by making it hard to see(i.e. always dark), rather than making the actual gameplay scary or intense. Overall this was a flop, and a terrible choice to bundle with the console. Expand
  9. Feb 28, 2014
    1
    By the way, you can piss off wth stupid, futile, invisible assistant. He's not only a ball buster but a morale destroyer as well. He doesn't help. When does he help? Exactly. Other than scanning doors and **** constantly about cameras and good riddance if a survivor dies because the makers of this program basically sat around a conference table and decided "what if we made a zombie first person shooter that could become uh......"the most unbeatable" in the WORLD." We'll be rich by Xmas next year for gods sake people will clamber for it just to prove they can do it!, the American market is ours! Sound familiar? I think so.
    And no. Give a challenge, but you gotta play fair. Otherwise, it's not a real game. It's a joke.
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  10. Jan 1, 2013
    3
    My adventure was finished around 6 hours by a game killer bug at brick-lane market door-code. That tower of London helicopter just keeps hovering there although I have already completed that area.
  11. Gar
    Jan 1, 2013
    4
    Looking at gameplay videos/reviews I could tell that ZombiU is not a good game, but still got it since I was desperate for christmas present ideas. I was right about the game being rather poorly made. Now those crazy people that compare ZombiU with the "master piece" that Dark Souls is, should be quite embarrased. A car broken in half and an F1 car are both difficult to handle, BUT only one is hard because its good.

    Dark Souls had great varied combat with some actual tactics and enemies that were fair if you knew what you were up againts. ZombiU on the otherhand relies on zombies spawning from nowhere (monster closets are considered out of nowhere), poor unresposive controls and a ridiculously narrow field of view. A game with good mechanics like Dark Souls can be challenging even if you are going 1 vs 1 againts an enemy. ZombiU on the other hand relies on "surprising" you with enemy encounters which shoudlnt happen and at least in the beginning, making those encounters "hard" by explaining the controls too late. The scanner funcionality is also pretty atrocious. Why on earth would I want to almost turn around in my seat to scan my enviroment? Looting corpses and dragging stuff on the touchscreen isnt thad bad, except when you just want to close the menu on an empty corpse and wind up having to move your hand instead of just pressing a button. More of an annoyance really.

    If you want a good zombie game/expirience, get Dead Island instead.
    If you want good combat mechanics in a hard game, get Dark Souls instead.

    The game is also very buggy. I've had my menu item to open my backpack disapper completely for half an hour, now I'm expiriencing a game breaking but that is preventing me from completing the game. After 6 hours of gameplay, my game is giving me 2 objectives (the one I completed last time) and a new one. However I cannot complete my next objective since the my scanner refuses to scan a code for a keypad I have to get open. Before purchasing the game, I recommend visiting the official forum to see if "game breaking bug" is still a the most common name for thread...
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  12. Feb 26, 2014
    1
    Use of the gamepad was intuitive, music and sound effects are well designed. I've heard multiplayer is good, but I don't play well with others so I wouldn't know.

    Use of the gamepad was counter intuitive during fight sequences in that you need it to switch weapons, and for a game that punishes you for dying, it's spiteful to put you in a powerless position for even just a moment, all
    while trying to cover yourself on the fly with no ammunition.

    In general the controls are just terrible. Let's face it, the gamepad is basically a tablet computer in your hands, and with the controls it brings your arms far enough apart that you have to get used to playing with it as if it were a standard controller and there is a comfort level you have to find in this configuration. That being said, L3 for running was truly a bad idea as L and LZ are just below it, and were constantly disrupting my progress. I had to mentally remember to keep my left index finger snuggly under L so I didn't accidentally trigger it or LZ while running, especially during the circus time trials, which are forced on you when you just think you're getting a hang of the game. The option to invert look on the game pad was a glaring omission, as I'm an old school gamer and have always used flight-sim style controls on my FPS's. Mentally switching between the two view formats was such a headache that I literally re-programmed myself to play with standard controls. It's been an adjustment that has literally re-defined how I play games now.

    Graphics are substandard, with poor textures and a garish "looking through a dirty car window" aspect to them. Because of this I truly wasn't scared, feeling as if I was watching some animated Zombie movie where poorly rendered dead things were being thrust at me.

    Zombi U is blessed with at least one horrible programming snafu, such as when I was locked in a safe room in Buckingham Palace and was unable to do anything but quit my game and lose all my progress. Load times are also questionable.

    Logic seems to be an option in this world, as you are left with nothing when you reincarnate and you start at level 1, but your weapons retain their upgrades and you always have a pistol and a bat. Additionally, zombies are typically lumbering unfocused creatures. Regardless of this fact, in Zombi U they keep up with you at an irritating rate, even when you run. They might as well be alive.

    Disappointing character development puts a damper on the emotional draw of the game. The Prepper seems to be in his own little world, eventually falling under the illusion I'm working against him. The doctor in Buckingham Palace has an interesting flare, but his character is so undeveloped that we don't really care when his predicament comes to a dead end. Finally there are these spoken messages throughout the game that are intended to engage the player in the evolution of the "Blight", but they seem more like sprigs of parsley on a dinner plate; sure you can eat them but they are hardly satisfying. All of these factors augment the feeling that you're not interacting with anything, just running around bashing Zombies.

    While I don't mind the next aspect so much, game play has been compared to Metroid where you backtrack for additional items and clues, and Zombi U is all about retracing your steps. But at least Metroid has tight controls that give you a fighting chance and doesn't compound the punishments if you don't play the game a specific way, such as this game where if you fail to survive during the final sequence, your shortcuts are removed.

    While you're free to travel almost anywhere in London, I would have suggested a better chronological flow to the game, where we experience the passage of day and night, such as in Skyrim. I think this urgency to get under cover when night falls would have added an amazing dimension to the game, but time seems to be a prisoner along with us, where it's always night or always day depending on where you're at.

    Some have said the game should be looked at as true survival horror but even the original "Resident Evil" gave you a save system to fall back on, Zombi U gives you a learning curve for wrapping your head around the idea that you are playing a body, not a character, even though they all have names. If they die, you can move onto the next one so having any feelings for these automatons is pointless. Yeah, it probably looked good on paper, but I think just like the lack of connection with the Prepper, all of these elements enhance ones indifference to the experience, and it totally works against the game.

    A challenge for many and I do respect that, Zombie U is definitely a game that will monopolize your mind and give you plenty of work to do to get through it, but it could easily have been put on a mobil device and called "Bash the Zombies" and would have been just as effective.

    FHP
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  13. Jan 24, 2013
    0
    Okay, the amount of 10s here is kinda baffling. The game starts out good, but quickly goes downhill. The combat system is clunky and dull, which I thought was fine at first, because I wasn't playing a highly skilled character (except for the policemen, majors, generals, etc, who were just as useless with a gun as the musicians and clerks), but the kind (and amount) of enemies they throw at you after a while makes killing them a chore. You have zombies in riot gear, which is understandable, at least some people would have been wearing riot gear when the infection spread, but there are tons of them. And they take like 20 slow slow slow hits to kill (also, they're bullet proof). Then you have zombies that spit acid.. and zombies that self detonate. Which makes absolutely zero sense if they're normal zombies. Maybe someone is controlling them? I won't find out, since I quit playing after 10 hours, which, normally, I NEVER do... but there are so many missed opportunities and bad decisions in this game. You'd think having a map/pad thingie with motion sensors would offer the player some sort of strategic advantage, and would allow for creative solutions to maps, but it only serves to warn you about the zombie's presence (except for when zombies are just waiting for you to approach them before they start moving, which .. doesn't make sense T_T).. you'll have to take the same route regardless. Throughout the game they use cheap tricks to scare you, like loud aggressive music, sounds that get triggered (every time) you walk past certain areas, flashlight going out in some areas. Which wouldn't have been necessary if they got the basics right. Sorry about the messy review, it's not often I'm so mad at a game that I quit playing it halfway through, so I won't waste too much time on this review. OH, and one time when I jumped off a six feet pier into two feet deep water, I died from the fall damage. I was at full health. GG Ubisoft, GG. Collapse
Metascore
77

Generally favorable reviews - based on 70 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 49 out of 70
  2. Negative: 1 out of 70
  1. Feb 1, 2013
    51
    It takes a couple of hours to fully realize that ZombiU – not an eerie game, but a rather eerily boring one – is a goner. I hope that Ubisoft will hack the head off this franchise before it turns into ZombiU 2 and starts biting people’s wallets.
  2. Jan 23, 2013
    86
    An intense experience. ZombiU delivers one of the most intense experiences in recent history. Moody, violent and suitably tough, it managed to keep me playing long into the night. [Jan 2013]
  3. Jan 16, 2013
    90
    For fans of the survival horror genre, ZombiU is filled to the brink with challenges and many hours of gameplay.