ZombiU Review

WanderingFool

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Rednog said:
A bit curious as to why you guys are calling it a return to survival horror, when what defines old school survival horror is tank controls/puzzles/narrative of a particular character. If anything you could call it a new breed of survival horror, but I would not call it a return.
Its because of thinking like that that Survival Horror has gone the way it has...

And you should be ashamed...

OT: While I like the look of it, Im not keen on the controls.
 

Baresark

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Dec 19, 2010
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I wanted to check this out. It was one of the primary games I was interested in for the Wii U. But meh, I don't have one anway, so it's cool. This is will be one of my 6 necessary exclusive titles to warrant buying the system.
 

DugMachine

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If only I had the cash. I've been itching for a new console. Great review, I assumed this would be crap zombie shooter up but this is a pleasant surprise.
 

kburns10

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Sep 10, 2012
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This was starting to sound like Dark Souls but with zombies. I'd pick it up if I had a Wii U.
 

Mr.Mattress

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Jul 17, 2009
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Aaron Sylvester said:
I have no idea how switching your eyes between two screens at different distances is "immersive" and not completely and utterly flow-breaking. Guess it's one of those things I have to play to understand?
Actually, I can easily explain to you how it's immersive: Look at your Computer Screen for a long period of time, now look at your hands as they type for a while... Did that break your immersion? I hope not.
 

Revnak_v1legacy

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Mar 28, 2010
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Mr.Mattress said:
Aaron Sylvester said:
I have no idea how switching your eyes between two screens at different distances is "immersive" and not completely and utterly flow-breaking. Guess it's one of those things I have to play to understand?
Actually, I can easily explain to you how it's immersive: Look at your Computer Screen for a long period of time, now look at your hands as they type for a while... Did that break your immersion? I hope not.
Nah man, don't you know? Nintendo used special mystic portals for the screens on the controllers that randomly change depth with the consequence being that your depth perception is completely fucked with while looking at it and that once the day of reckoning occurs you will be blessed by being among the first to be consumed by the old ones.
 

Aaron Sylvester

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Mr.Mattress said:
Aaron Sylvester said:
I have no idea how switching your eyes between two screens at different distances is "immersive" and not completely and utterly flow-breaking. Guess it's one of those things I have to play to understand?
Actually, I can easily explain to you how it's immersive: Look at your Computer Screen for a long period of time, now look at your hands as they type for a while... Did that break your immersion? I hope not.
Gratz on using a terrible example, both my keyboard and monitor are almost the same distance from my eyes.

I'll give you a much better example: Look at a something with text from ~3 meters away (say, news on the TV) and then quickly look down something in your hands that has small text (say, a phone or newspaper). Now keep switching focus between the two and see how quickly your eyes can read the text from both sources. I guarantee you will take nearly half a second to focus everytime you return your eyes to the TV, unless you're Superman.

It is physically impossible to focus on two screens at the same time if there is such a huge difference in distance, the delay in focus (not to mention HEADACHE after ~10 minutes of it) = no thank you.
 

Revnak_v1legacy

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Aaron Sylvester said:
Mr.Mattress said:
Aaron Sylvester said:
I have no idea how switching your eyes between two screens at different distances is "immersive" and not completely and utterly flow-breaking. Guess it's one of those things I have to play to understand?
Actually, I can easily explain to you how it's immersive: Look at your Computer Screen for a long period of time, now look at your hands as they type for a while... Did that break your immersion? I hope not.
Gratz on using a terrible example, both my keyboard and monitor are almost the same distance from my eyes.

I'll give you a much better example: Look at a something with text from ~3 meters away (say, news on the TV) and then quickly look down something in your hands that has small text (say, a phone or newspaper). Now keep switching focus between the two and see how quickly your eyes can read the text from both sources. I guarantee you will take nearly half a second to focus everytime you return your eyes to the TV, unless you're Superman.

It is physically impossible to focus on two screens at the same time if there is such a huge difference in distance, the delay in focus (not to mention HEADACHE after ~10 minutes of it) = no thank you.
Strange, I do that for the majority of the day. Maybe you are exaggerating things.
 

TyrunnAlberyn

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As completely disinterested as I have become in Nintendo products in general, this title (at least, when I go by this review) actually makes the WiiU seem somewhat interesting.

That said, I don't understand why/how this is lauded as a "return" to Survival Horror. Sure, Silent Hill, Resident Evil and Dead Space are not what they used to be, but don't excellent PC indie titles like Amnesia also qualify as survival horror? Then again, that may be my limited knowledge of the genre, I generally stick to RPGs and Turn-based/Grand Strategy.
 

Shjade

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Feb 2, 2010
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TyrunnAlberyn said:
That said, I don't understand why/how this is lauded as a "return" to Survival Horror. Sure, Silent Hill, Resident Evil and Dead Space are not what they used to be, but don't excellent PC indie titles like Amnesia also qualify as survival horror?
They do. Key word there, though, is "indie," which ZombiU is decidedly not.

Indie games have always done their own thing. This is an example of a big name making a survival horror game, which hasn't happened in a while.
 

Baron_BJ

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Nov 13, 2009
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Revnak said:
Aaron Sylvester said:
Mr.Mattress said:
Aaron Sylvester said:
I have no idea how switching your eyes between two screens at different distances is "immersive" and not completely and utterly flow-breaking. Guess it's one of those things I have to play to understand?
Actually, I can easily explain to you how it's immersive: Look at your Computer Screen for a long period of time, now look at your hands as they type for a while... Did that break your immersion? I hope not.
Gratz on using a terrible example, both my keyboard and monitor are almost the same distance from my eyes.

I'll give you a much better example: Look at a something with text from ~3 meters away (say, news on the TV) and then quickly look down something in your hands that has small text (say, a phone or newspaper). Now keep switching focus between the two and see how quickly your eyes can read the text from both sources. I guarantee you will take nearly half a second to focus everytime you return your eyes to the TV, unless you're Superman.

It is physically impossible to focus on two screens at the same time if there is such a huge difference in distance, the delay in focus (not to mention HEADACHE after ~10 minutes of it) = no thank you.
Strange, I do that for the majority of the day. Maybe you are exaggerating things.
It's going to be different for different people but depending on the distance between objects his statement is very true. It's all to do with how the human eye focuses on things in short and long range. This is made even worse if you are a person with eye conditions, even very common ones like long/short sightedness (most people who wear glasses have one or the other, though there are exceptions of course), which could be extremely irritating for a person, especially if they were unfortunate enough to have a prescription that would require them to completely remove their glasses to look down at the tablet and then begin wearing them again so that they can go back to looking at their screen. Not a great deal of people would be as unfortunate as my last example but it is a real problem that would be specific to this device.

If you wish to check what this feels like grab a DS/3DS (mainly for screen size purposes but your phone or something works as well), now go out to your television/living room (I assume you have a couch or something a comfortable distance away from the TV), now, line both the TV and your DS up in front of your eyes, watching what's on TV whilst glancing back and forth between the two, waiting for each to become clear. The human eye (even one that has perfect vision) must focus on the two objects from differing distances.

Having said this keep in mind that I have not played with a WiiU yet, though I plan to test one out beforehand as I am interested in buying one eventually. I have basic eye problems and the aforementioned issues are of concern to me (though my eyes are not as bad as my example).

Greg Tito, What are your thoughts with regards to the issue of being able to comfortably focus your eyes and deal with the alternation of the Television and touch screen? Also how far were you from your television (it's hard to get a good grasp in the footage you recorded, though it does show exactly what you intended; how the interface related to the game, so one can't fault you for that) and, if you're comfortable disclosing the information, do require glasses or anything of the sort (just wondering whether you're able to give input on being a person with eye problems or as a person with good vision). I ask because although some people have used them in test booths at conventions for 10 to 20 minutes you have played one in the comfort of your own home for prolonged periods of time which would be the real test in this situation.
 

MegaManOfNumbers

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Aaron Sylvester said:
It's 2012 and it mystifies me why we're still using analogue sticks to aim in first person shooters, and "innovating" touchscreens for inventory management...when a simple mouse (invented in 1970's mind you) could easily trump ALL those gimmicks. These days a console is nothing more than a simplified computer, a proprietary box you must own to play exclusives.

Apparently console designers still haven't figured out that allowing people to attach a mouse+keyboard to their consoles would solve 99.9% of all interface/control issues and challenges. On top of that, it would open up entire GENRES to be fully playable on consoles which are borderline impossible to play today purely due to lacking the the controls to pull it off - RTS games, MMORPG's, dungeon crawlers like Diablo 3, etc. It also make FPS games a fuckload more intuitive to play....so the only question which remains is "WHY?!".

Callate said:
I wonder how long we'll have to wait before WiiU games start coming out wherein "not as annoying as it could have been" is high praise for the player's relationship with controller-interface issues?
I think the Wii set the bar so fucking low that Wii U looks almost godly compared to it, it seems more or less what has happened in this particular review...personally I can't wait to hear what Yahtzee has to say about this.

I have no idea how switching your eyes between two screens at different distances is "immersive" and not completely and utterly flow-breaking. Guess it's one of those things I have to play to understand?
You are by far the most offensive and entertaining PC elitist I've ever met.
 

Aaron Sylvester

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WaitWHAT said:
WAAAAA!! WAAAAAAAAA!!! Why can't people all like the same control system as me? Different is wrong! WROOOONG, I TELL YOU!!! CAN'T YOU SEE THAT ALL GAMES WOULD BE PERFECT IF YOU JUST DID WHAT I WANTED?!?!
Dude are you alright? I recommend taking a breath and calming down, maybe think a bit before hitting the caps lock?

I guess you're one of those people would be perfectly content using a joystick to play an MMORPG, or driving a car with their elbows. Screw efficiency of controls, anything works right?

Anyone with half a brain will tell you that mouse is the most effective method of control for a game which involves accurate targeting (FPS, RTS, MMO, you name it), so the most braindead-obvious thing to do would be to allow the user to plug a mouse into a USB port on the console. Now that Wii U has you holding something the size of a large book, it would've been incredibly easy to throw in a USB port or two and allow mouse/keyboard connectivity. If you enjoy using analog sticks to aim, wiggle away to your heart's content. But if you hate that shit, plug in a mouse and be good to go.
I can plug a console controller into a PC and be good to go, so why the hell can't I do it the other way around? Is it considered BLASPHEMY for consoles to accommodate a variety of controllers? Do fanboys really get that defensive over their exclusive controllers? Because that's what you sound like.
Maybe it's a law or something "thou shalt not plug a keyboard/mouse into a console, thou shalt not have the option to use the best controls for the job".

MegaManOfNumbers said:
You are by far the most offensive and entertaining PC elitist I've ever met.
 

RandV80

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jollybarracuda said:
Glad to see a positive review of this game. A lot of sites do seem to be mentioning one big thing though, which is that zombies might just take too many hits to take down with the cricket bat. Though if they lower the amount of hits, it then becomes like Dead Islands zombie massacre, where slashing through zombies becomes much less stressful. So i guess there isnt much middle ground when it comes to bashing zombies, but in a day and age where zombies are considered fodder more than threats, its nice to see a game try and bring them back to being a right pain in the ass to kill, even if it does come with the caveat of making it a bit tedious with long play sessions.

If i do pick up a WiiU sometime though, even if its a year or two down the line, i will definitely be picking this game up.
I'm not going to get a WiiU for a year or two so will probably never play the game, but one thing I've been wondering that I haven't seen specified is was the game designed with the intent that you actually kill all the zombies, or was it more you slip past them and only use your scarce ammo when absolutely necessary? To me this is a necessary distinction to determine if the game is actually flawed or if people are playing it with the wrong mindset.
 

RandV80

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Aaron Sylvester said:
It's 2012 and it mystifies me why we're still using analogue sticks to aim in first person shooters, and "innovating" touchscreens for inventory management...when a simple mouse (invented in 1970's mind you) could easily trump ALL those gimmicks. These days a console is nothing more than a simplified computer, a proprietary box you must own to play exclusives.

Apparently console designers still haven't figured out that allowing people to attach a mouse+keyboard to their consoles would solve 99.9% of all interface/control issues and challenges. On top of that, it would open up entire GENRES to be fully playable on consoles which are borderline impossible to play today purely due to lacking the the controls to pull it off - RTS games, MMORPG's, dungeon crawlers like Diablo 3, etc. It also make FPS games a fuckload more intuitive to play....so the only question which remains is "WHY?!".
Let me try and one up you here. If the mouse is the optimal control input for your right hand, but a console controller analogue stick beats out WASD controls... why hasn't anyone tried combining the two? Basically something like a Wii's nunchuk for your left hand, and a mouse for your right. Or if it would be possible having a useable analogue stick on the keyboard.

Seriously why hasn't anyone tried this?
 

Aaron Sylvester

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RandV80 said:
Let me try and one up you here. If the mouse is the optimal control input for your right hand, but a console controller analogue stick beats out WASD controls... why hasn't anyone tried combining the two? Basically something like a Wii's nunchuk for your left hand, and a mouse for your right. Or if it would be possible having a useable analogue stick on the keyboard.

Seriously why hasn't anyone tried this?
As sad as I am to admit it, the mouse only has 1 limitation - it needs a flat, solid surface to function on. You can't exactly jump around with it like you do while holding a controller.

Analogue stick vs WASD is arguable - in a first person shooter the analogue stick's advantage of being able to "turn by a fraction" means little because you'll be using your mouse to turn AND aim, the movement will only be for going forward, backwards or strafing sideways.
Also with an analogue stick you have to use your thumb to control 4 directions, you can only switch between right/left/up/down so fast. With WASD all 4 of your fingers are already ready to push right/left/up/down, along with your thumb being ready on the spacebar (typically "jump") and your pinkie being ready on Shift (typically "sprint"). With WASD your fingers don't even move from where the are.

But this is all getting a bit nit-picky, analogue movement is still solid (and a LOT of people have become used to it) so we only need to be able to do what you described - analogue stick in one hand, mouse in the other.

On that note, being a heavy Crysis 2 player we often get people making threads in our forums, you know people just asking for tips and how to improve. What breaks my heart is when I see "So I came over from Xbox, built an awesome new PC and decided to give it a go. But I die really really quickly, this is WAY harder than Xbox multiplayer. I always seem to get killed before I can kill them. What is going on? I had no issues killing people on my XBox, so I should be just as good on PC since I use a 360 controller to play on PC."
And trying to keep my face straight, the first thing I have to tell the poor guy is "you didn't get worse, it's just that there is no aim-assist on PC. Also everyone else is using a MOUSE, which automatically means they have 5x better aim and drastically faster camera-look speed than you. Use your mouse buddy."
And then he replies "but I'm so used to a controller". Sad times :(
 

Shadow-Phoenix

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Mar 22, 2010
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Saying everyone should use a M+K is incredibly subjective as not everyone is great using a M+K or controller setup.

Protip: Try to keep the PC elitism out of this thread because if the console ain't for you then you're just wasting your precious little time here ranting about a dream world.

OT: The game still looks as appealing to me as it was months back but since I'm currently strapped for cash i'm going to have to wait until maybe Jan till I can grab the deluxe model with a copy of the game but I do look forward to playing it and giving it a shot.
 

TyrunnAlberyn

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Shjade said:
They do. Key word there, though, is "indie," which ZombiU is decidedly not.

Indie games have always done their own thing. This is an example of a big name making a survival horror game, which hasn't happened in a while.
Ah, I see. Yes, I suppose the AAA-market for the genre has been rather lean the last few years. It's certainly surprising to see Nintendo be the one to come out with an actual survival horror game as a launch title too.

Like I said in my first post, I'll probably not get one myself, but I hope this game does well nevertheless.
 

Idocreating

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jollybarracuda said:
Glad to see a positive review of this game. A lot of sites do seem to be mentioning one big thing though, which is that zombies might just take too many hits to take down with the cricket bat.
And those reviewers are morons. This is clearly a survival horror game. The main focus is to survive above all else. By making even the weakness mook enemy a legitmate threat, you keep the player in a constant state of tension and awareness.

From what I've heard, taking on 1 zombie is fine. 2 at once requires some serious backpedalling (Potentially running into more zombies) and anything more than that requires a response similar to seeing a killer rabbit while adventuring with Arthur, King of the Britons.