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Combat Arms: Zombies Review
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Combat Arms: Zombies, a first-person zombie survival shooter from Nexon Mobile, is now available from the app store. A port of a popular online offering, Combat Arms on iOS fails to live up to our expectations. Is anyone else as frustrated with trailers that appear to show one gaming style while providing a completely different type of game?

Combat Arms: Zombies Pros:

  • Gritty and dark graphic style
  • Good variety of weapons and zombies
  • Multiple control setups
  • Multiple difficulty settings alter number of waves and access points for frantic, prolonged play

Combat Arms: Zombies Cons:

  • In-game text is miniscule and unreadable
  • Lot of grinding needed to earn enough money to buy good weapons
  • Default controls are awful
  • Gameplay lacks real excitement or enjoyment

Combat Arms: Zombies contains a Campaign mode that takes you through environments such as Dark Sewer and Cabin Fever, with 5 difficulty levels ranging from Easy to Infinite. These modes refer to the number of waves that you must survive. A variety of zombie types will track you down after spawning from a few different points in the map, which are also influenced by your difficulty selection. Camping may work for a while, but you’ll likely want to stay on the move once things get a bit more hectic and various access points open up. The online version boasted more than 300 unique weapons real-world weapons to use, though the iOS had to scale this back considerably, instead choosing to offer a hand-picked selection that still offers a good range of firearms and plenty of mix-and-match ability to find a satisfactory loadout. You are allowed a primary weapon with limited ammo, a secondary infinite ammo piece, and a support item. A Shop provides a place to spend money earned in the game on better and more powerful gear, as well as a backpack that allows room to hold additional weapons. The gameplay itself isn’t as exciting as we’d expected, and early stages often see zombies spawning one after another in the exact same location, which only requires you to train your weapon at one spot and fire from a distance to dispatch the entire wave. As you progress, zombies will spawn in multiple locations, but again you simply aim back and forth from those spots and destroy the shufflers with relative ease. The only difficulty results from running out of ammo with your primary and having to rely on your secondary until the next wave begins, which will recover any lost health and give you a full ammo reload.

The graphics are good, with detailed environments that give a gritty and dark tone to the game. Animations are somewhat stiff and repetitive, though. One of the most annoying problems was the size of the in-game text, which was so miniscule that we couldn’t even read what we assumed were tips and other important bits of info. The audio is clear, though there really isn’t a soundtrack to speak of during gameplay other than some atmospheric noises. The gun sound effects and zombie noises provide the bulk of the soundscape. Combat Arms offers 5 control schemes, with various combinations of using the left side of the screen for movements and the right side for aiming and shooting. The default setup was one of the worst options, negatively coloring our initial feelings. We did find a couple that worked, making things more tolerable. When using a button to shoot, we struggled to find it consistently, resulting in having to tap multiple times just to fire our gun. This cost us valuable time and opportunities.

Replay value is decent if you find a satisfactory control setup or you want to earn the full complement of weaponry. Otherwise, we grew tired with putting up with its quirks after a short while. Additionally, we are still experiencing some crash issues, even on a 4th-gen iPod Touch running iOS 5.0.1. With so many zombie shooters to choose from, you are bound to find some really exciting and engaging options, as well as a few others. Combat Arms: Zombies is, unfortunately, one of the others. A universal app on launch sale for $4.99, Combat Arms: Zombies is an overpriced and disappointing 3-Dimple offering.

Combat Arms: Zombies Review, reviewed by Kevin on 2012-01-08T01:15:41+00:00 rating 3.0 out of 5

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