Day 109: “ZP2KX: Zombies & Pterodactyls!”

Posted: 2011/02/26 in Indie Games

I’m purchasing an Xbox Live Indie Game every day, seeking out the quality titles that got lost in the shuffle and no longer appear in the top 50 downloads. Today is day #109, and today’s game is “ZP2KX: Zombies & Pterodactyls!”.

“ZP2K9” was a manic, sometimes gravity-defying, 2D platformer/shooter hybrid that has come to virtually define counter-culture on Xbox Live Indie Games. It’s also one of the few Indie Games with online play that has managed to maintain a solid player base for random matchmaking. ZP2KX is its anticipated sequel, and adds a host of features that make it a must buy.

ZP2KX’s list of features is impressive, including:

-11 multiplayer maps (including one added through a free post-launch update, something you would pay through the nose for for if this were a Call of Duty game)

– 23 primary weapons, plus 10 grenade types, which come in a bewildering array of imaginative shapes, sizes, and ability (everything from a normal sub-machine gun, to a Katana sword, to a gun that shoots cats)

– taking a page from modern first-person shooters, this side-scrolling shooter has added slots where you can select ability upgrades from an impressive list, allowing you to have a unique customised character (everything from fairly normal things such as increased run speed, to fanciful elements like hurting enemies replenishes your own health, to the gravity defying such as the ability to stick to walls and ceilings)

– 5 game types doesn’t seem like much, until you realise there are 16 modifiers you can apply to them to create a bewildering array; here again, it goes from normal (capture the flag) to the truly obtuse (modifiers that make the gameplay super-fast, or that introduce time grenades to allow you… or your opponents… to slow down gameplay at will).

How can you not love a game where you blast around in jetpacks, shoot zany weapons, and get air-dropped into combat by pterodactyls. The 2D side-scrolling element makes this shooter very unique. Finally, they added a zombie mode that seems less gratuitous here than it does in Call of Duty given that Ska Studios, who developed this game, also developed “I MAED A GAM3 W1TH Z0MB1ES!!!1”, the game that did more than anything else I can think of to start the XBLIG zombie craze (and that wasn’t even their first zombie game on the XBL Indie Games channel, though it was their biggest hit by far).

When you stand back and look at the tight controls, the strong pedigree, the humour, the free after-release content updates, and the sheer amount of content for a game that costs 80 Microsoft Points, I simply don’t know where a shooter fan could better spend $1.

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  1. Loved this one! Amazing weapons selection.

  2. Shaydeeadi says:

    Great game with tight controls and really well made maps, been feeling the urge to play a little most days, there is always people online too.

    Come and join the fun, watch out for the nukes!

  3. I will pick this one up. Looks very promising. Thanks!

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