Match-3 Zombie Fighting
Who knew a match-3 game would work so well with the addition of zombies? From My.com B.V. and IT Territory, Zombie Blast Squad puts you in a zombie-infested post-apocalyptic world with colorful heroes. Plan accordingly; some zombies are bigger and tougher than others.
Match To Kill
Zombie Blast Squad starts like most match-3 games do, showing you how to make matches. Though the tutorial gameplay is rather unnecessary, it does show you something important. The match stones come in five different colors: red, yellow, green, purple, and blue. This is the same for your heroes and (technically) the zombies. Match like colors to charge your heroes and activate their Special Skill while also attacking zombies of the same color. Special Skills range from healing your whole squad to attacking multiple enemies at once. Heroes can be charged faster when you make match combos (i.e. multiple matches in a row). You also attack zombies quicker. All zombies have a color circle around their feet, indicating which stones will hurt them the most. Though they can be harmed by other colored stones, they die faster when struck by the same color.
Upgrade And Improve
When not fighting zombies, you’re improving your base of operations. Build farms and factories to collect food and materials for upgrading purposes. If you run out of storage space for either, build food storages and warehouses, which are also upgradeable. Food helps your heroes while materials improves your outpost. The more you improve your outpost, the more storage there is for Flux. A pink liquid in a metal canister, Flux is a resource also needed to upgrade your heroes in addition to food. It’s won after each successful zombie fight and is also earned after completing quests. If you don’t have enough food or Flux, you can’t upgrade your squad. The higher lever your heroes are, the more food and Flux they cost, so keep your reserves stocked.
Also at your outpost is a workshop, where you make consumables. Materials for consumables are won after completing levels, in addition to Flux. Some examples of materials are Medicinal Mushrooms and a Small Set of Reagents. Consumables range from a Small Medkit to a Grenade. Use them during zombie fights if you need extra help. Another building at your outpost is the Sponsor Chest building. There you watch five ads to unlock the chest and win items like a Super Medkit and a Resuscitator. You’re rewarded after watching the ads with Flux and gold (the typical ‘pay-real-money-to-get-more’ currency common in most games). Be patient because those ads become available every three hours.
G.I. Joe Meets Resident Evil Meets Marvel Meets Fortnite
Character design and names in Zombie Blast Squad are a unique mixture. There are five types of heroes: Rebels, Engineers, Mercs, Lawmen and Adventurers. They are all color-coded by their different outfits and Special Skills. Both humans and zombies are physically diverse, and humans are also racially diverse. For example, there are zombies of average height and look like office and fast-food workers, while others are massive behemoths. Humans from all ethnic backgrounds are present, which was a great choice by the character designers. Though some lean a bit on stereotypes, like Joxanna (black woman with an afro and music-based attack), the range is much appreciated. The way the characters have been drawn and animated made me feel like they’d be right at home in Fortnite. They already have crazy costumes and unique weapons, so why not?
Quite a few of the characters reminded me of already existing ones. First, there are characters named Thorwald and Tornado, riffing on Marvel’s Thor and Storm, respectively. Second, characters that reminded me of G.I. Joe are Hammer, a war vet, and Blaze, a special forces operative. Personally, I think they are reminiscent of Duke and Scarlett. And third, some of the zombies could fit in the Resident Evil franchise. There’s zombie dogs, for starters. Plus, the more massive zombies could easily give Nemesis and Tyrant a run for their money, whether they’re just large or cyborgs. The character designers for Zombie Blast Squad really gave themselves a lot to work with, and the result is awesome.
Extra Rewards & Minor Grievances
As previously stated, Zombie Blast Squad offers quests in addition to the main gameplay. The quests can be found at your outpost and there’s usually two. Quests also reward you with Flux and other items but take time to recharge. This amounts to six hours and a whole day, respectively. You also don’t just stick with the heroes you get initially. There’s a hero summon where you have the chance to get someone new once a day. But that’s not all–you can also summon weapons and even epic heroes! Granted, the weapons and epic heroes aren’t free. When playing the game, you’ll occasionally earn summon tokens, allowing you to get new heroes and weapons. And if you summon a hero you already have, they just convert into rewards.
As fun as the game is, I did run into some minor issues. Unfortunately, you can only build/upgrade buildings at your outpost one at a time. If you want another builder you must pay real money. Though not a huge problem, it would be more convenient to have more than one builder. Additionally, there is an option to get a premium package that lasts 30 days for $4.99. You get a second builder and 50 gold every day, among other things. This sounds like a good deal, but to me feels like a cash grab. Plus, there’s nothing to indicate what happens after 30 days. Do you have to pay for it again? Will it be the same price? Premium comes off as the developers saying, ‘you want convenience, pay for it.’
Colorful Zombie Apocalypse
Zombie Blast Squad is a fun match-3 puzzle adventure guaranteed to make you come back for more. With a diverse group of heroes and zombies, you’ll never want to put this game down. Though it has some inconveniences, earning multiple rewards more than makes up for it.
Is it Hardcore?
Colorful characters and multiple fun things to do make this game worthwhile. Keep your wallet tightly closed, you don’t need it.