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Dead Trigger Review
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Dead Trigger, the latest zombie shooter from the visual wizards at Madfinger Games, is now available from the app store. As expected, Dead Trigger ups the graphics bar and provides a nice variety of weaponry and perks, though many will require a little extra monetary investment to use.

Dead Trigger Pros:

  • Gorgeous 3D graphics and atmospheric presentation enhanced by lighting/shading effects
  • Soundtrack is decent; sound effects convey sense of power through weapons
  • Controls are well-implemented and able to be repositioned to suit anyone’s needs
  • Nice variety of weapons, perks, upgrades to beef up your character and take on the undead
  • Tons of side quests to give the game good replay value even after main quests are complete

Dead Trigger Cons:

  • Multiple in-game currency system is controversial and awkward
  • Takes an awful long time to earn money through gameplay
  • Cannot replay completed missions
  • Story isn’t the greatest, nor is it conveyed in a compelling way

Dead Trigger is a slick first-person shooter, placing you in the role of one of the remaining few survivors of a viral outbreak that has turned the general population into shambling brain munchers. You start off with a punch-packing M4, allowing you to mow down zombies as you clear areas and guard the entrance to a safe haven occupied by some new comrades-in-arms. Soon, however, you’ll lose your weapon and be forced to spend some in-game currency to replace it with a much weaker pistol. This is where things get a little dicey. While your ability to complete missions has not been completely extinguished, the fun factor involved with blasting through the undead is severely diminished by your new hardware. Cash can be earned for headshots and dismembering the opposition, as well as random drops and completing missions. Unfortunately, it can take a while to work up to the amounts necessary to purchase new guns or upgrade current ones. Additionally, a number of weapons and perks are only available by swapping gold fingers, which are few and far between in the game. If you want to get any, you’ll need to watch some videos, download some free/paid games through TapJoy, befriend the devs on Facebook/Twitter, engage in some undesirable promotions (signing up for a Discover card, etc.) or plunk down some cold hard cash for IAP bundles of the shiny currency. While the game’s low, low price tag helps to mitigate this inconvenience, many gamers will find this method to be less desirable than simply shelling out a premium price up front and earning all weaponry throughout the game.

Aside from this minor and blown-out-of-proportion controversy, the gameplay itself is pretty solid and enjoyable. There are more than enough weapons available without resorting to plunking down any additional funds, which makes the game a relative steal and tremendous value. There are a bunch of main quests and a seemingly infinite number of side quests, giving the game a great deal of replay value. While there are only a few zombie types and some pattern repetition regarding spawning and movements, they still come fast and furious, requiring you to keep moving and gunning if you want to survive. A mini-radar in the upper left corner alerts you to nearby baddies, as well as the location of packages and drop points for the supply retrieval missions. There are also missions where you must defend a certain area for a specified amount of time or kill a certain number of zombies before advancing.

While the story isn’t all that deep, if you enjoy simply blowing off some steam by blasting walkers, Dead Trigger is certainly one of the most visually pleasing ways to do so. The enhancements really shine on the newest hardware, with great blood splattering and fluid water movement as examples, though it still looks pretty impressive on an iPod Touch and runs smoothly, too. The lighting/shading add a ton of atmosphere, and Madfinger does a hell of a job squeezing every last bit of goodness from the Unity engine. The audio is quite good, too. Weapons sound powerful and authentic, and our hero spouts a few cliché tough-guy phrases to boot. The controls utilize the familiar FPS set up, giving us a serviceable method with which to control the game. The placement of the fire button isn’t ideal, as we found ourselves hitting it accidentally when trying to swipe the screen to change our viewpoint. We also found ourselves missing it and taking damage at the worst possible time. It is possible to reposition buttons from the options menu within a level, so you may be able to find a spot that works best for you.

Replay value is good, as the side missions continue to provide things to do even when you’ve completed the main quests. Earning enough money to obtain all perks, weapons, and upgrades should take a good amount of time, unless you are willing to fork over some greenbacks. GameCenter support is not currently present, but should be included in an upcoming update, as well as a few fixes, harder missions, and even iron sights. A universal app for $0.99, Dead Trigger is a solid 4-Dimple option.

Dead Trigger Review, reviewed by Kevin on 2012-07-04T00:48:43+00:00 rating 4.0 out of 5

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