Apple’s iPhone has been making great strides to prove itself as a legitimate gaming platform. While many of the games for it are casual in nature, others such as Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars have shown the hardcore audience has a place on the platform as well. Activision, seeing this, has capitalized by introducing the Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies series to the iPhone.
Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies II is a first person shooter using the touch screen of the iPhone. There is a dual “analog” setup with movement on the left and aim on the right. Players can zoom in by tapping the gun icon for more accurate aiming. Shooting is accomplished by tapping the screen on the aiming “analog” and grenades are tossed by tapping an icon on screen.
The controls work as well as one would expect for an iPhone. They are responsive but nowhere near as accurate as a mouse and keyboard or a control pad with actual analog sticks. Having your aiming analog act as the fire button as well prevents certain FPS standards like turning while strafing around enemies which ends up becoming more of an inaccurate zigzag attempt.
The gameplay starts out slow to let players get accustomed to the controls as a few zombies begin bashing their way past wooden barriers around the doors. Eventually, the number of zombies ramp up as well as the addition of Hellhounds. The first time I was hit with a sneak attack from two rabid Hellhounds that teleported into the room it was almost instant death.
The game has optional maps that can be purchased as well for more variety to the gameplay and players can pair up with up to three others to help survive even longer after wave upon wave of undead. Local Wi-Fi co-op is definitely the easiest way to enjoy multiplayer. Without a chat option for obvious reasons, communication is nil unless being in the same room as other players. The online community in the game has also not grown enough yet so finding a random Quick Match can take enough time to obliterate your battery life.
Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies II is based off the Zombie mode from the console version of Call of Duty: World at War. As historically documented, Hilter had a huge interest in the occult and poured money into research for ways it could be used against the Allied forces during World War 2. According to the game, he has been successful and has unleashed a horde of undead zombie Nazis against the player.
One of the most impressive features of Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies II is its visuals. Without the aid of graphics chips and not being a dedicated gaming platform, the graphics in the game look amazing. While the character models are limited, the environment looks awesome. The iPhone looks almost as impressive as a PSP in this regard, with the only exception being the ease of control. The sound design comes across as a little cliche’ with random screaming and moaning but that is kind of what is expected from any zombie franchise at this point.
Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies II is a very satisfying, harder edged iPhone gaming experience. The game does a great job of pushing the limits of the still developing platform away from the stereotypical casual games but still provides a quick and challenging play through. The game is definitely worth a purchase for anyone looking for something more than a puzzle game that resembles a console feel instead. Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies II is the kind of game that will help push the platform to new limits.