Zombies on a plane is a first and third person shooter that throws the player into the zombie apocalypse by having them survive both inside and outside the plane. The indie survival zombie shooter has tons of action. It was both developed and published by Shangri-La Game Studios Ltd. The concept of Zombies on a plane is unique in which it pits the player vs zombies on a moving plane. Shangri nailed this by allowing the player to fight both inside and outside the plane which in itself is enjoyable. There are various in-game unlocks to achieve by progressing throughout the waves such as weapons, characters and a third plane cosmetic look.
Within the game players have a variety of game modes to choose from. Players can choose from either flying the plane and shaking zombies off, or those who enjoy traditional shooters like DAY-Z can enjoy the first or third person experience of shooting zombies from the plane directly. While the game provides an enormous variety of game modes, none of these felt authentic or fleshed out because of the lack of difficulty or replayability. Zombies on a plane is riddled with a variety of problems that ultimately led to its mixed user review on steam currently at 45%.
Firstly, the game offers a variety of game modes that offer some variation of gameplay but relies on the same formula; Waves or survive. This means that while the game offers the choice of piloting a plane or being a survivor, the gameplay dissolves into whether you want to survive endlessly or survive ten waves. With only the high score to keep players engaged, the incentive to continue playing the game evaporates as the lack-lusting weapons, poor graphics and optimization where the game would consistently crash. The issue Zombies on a plane has as another zombie survival shooter is that it lacks innovation but clearly shows creativity as surviving on a plane was both fun and unique. However, there are rarely any unique variation of zombies that pose any threat to the player with the exception they absorb more bullets.
Furthermore, the plane simulation is basic and often frustrating as players are tasked with merely piloting a plane to get rid of zombies. However, despite barrel rolls and other maneuvers, zombies will continue to stick onto the plane. Players will find the plane difficult to control, slow and unrewarding as the plane quickly tumbled into various rolls as the camera struggles to keep up. What ruins the little enjoyment that can be seen in this plane mode is the awful camera, it is unable to keep up with the plane and often spiralled out of control to the point the plane almost falls off the screen completely.
Zombies on a plane suffers most with the lack of customization and difficulty progression. The game offers no options in-game to customize player experience or difficulty regarding the waves or survival. The waves begin slow and progressively zombies with more health will flood out onto the wing of the plane or into the narrow aisles of the plane indoor. Zombies in this game look neither frightening or particularly interesting with the exception of the glowing zombie that looked oddly reminiscent of Gears of War infected locusts.
Lastly in regards to gameplay. Weapons themselves have no authenticity or interest about them as the flame-thrower spew lack-lusting flame effects. Other issues with the weapons in this game is the slow weapon switch, coupled with some weapons like the shotgun where it would not switch to another weapon would mean restarting the game as the character would quickly die. Overall, the gameplay has some promise and creativity, however it lacks anything new or innovative to make it stand out from the tsunami of Zombie survival games released on steam. Zombies on a plane does give some choice to the player by providing three characters which provide various benefits, such as the female nurse who gives additional health or the Detroit cop who gives additional weapon damage. However, these felt ill-conceived because the special abilities (as they were deemed in-game) had little or no impact. In comparison to contemporary zombie survival games this one lacks any graphics or sound-track to help it stand out from the crowd.
In conclusion, Zombies on a plane offers nothing new or innovative for the zombie survival genre. With mediocre gameplay riddled with a variety of bugs and game crashes; Players will be left struggling to justify the steep buying price for a game that feels broken and offers no replayability beyond the first hour or two.
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