Although Ubisoft wants to claim that ZombiU’s focus on close-quarters combat mixed with dark environments and slow-moving enemies is completely unique, they’re overselling themselves. ZombiU isn’t that different—but that’s not a bad thing.
By “not that different,” I mean that the upcoming Nintendo Wii U game actually reminds me of quite a few good survival horror titles, especially the Condemned series, for instance.
For everyone who feels burned by survival-horror games being too action-oriented (think Dead Space 2 or Resident Evil 5), ZombiU is actually a nice change of pace thanks to Ubisoft having to seemingly crowbar in the GamePad, although senior producer Guillaume Bruner sees the influence of the touch-screen controller a bit differently:
“In the team, we kind of miss these old-school survival games where fear is at the center of the experience,” said Guillaume Bruner, the game’s senior producer. “We saw with the Wii U GamePad an opportunity to return the slow paced, scary moments into the survival horror genre. It’s a bit hardcore, but really that’s the experience we want to give to the player.”
It works on many levels, especially in the sense that you’ll be fumbling over the controller, panicking when you’re to die. Adding that barrier being you and the ability to sling out hundreds of bullets is actually refreshing, because that’s very likely how you might react in real-life—seasoned zombie expert or not.
Check out the video below to get another glimpse at what the ZombiU experience is like, and see whether Bruner is over- or underselling the experience here. Either way, it’ll (presumably) be out in the open next month or so.