Dead Rising Mobile Review

Yawn of the Dead

Dead Rising should ring a bell with anyone even remotely interested in gaming. An over-the-top actioner set amid a zombie apocalypse, the game was a huge hit on Xbox and has a legion of fans. Unfortunately the iPhone version of Dead Rising (out now, $4.99) is likely to be greeted with an altogether less enthusiastic response.

For a mobile game with a high-profile name behind it, it’s usually the custom to emulate the best aspects of previous titles in the franchise. And while Dead Rising Mobile does have the same core idea as its console predecessors, sadly, it’s delivered in a much clunkier, uglier way. For what it is, it’s not the worst game ever released – not even by Capcom – and if Dead Rising Mobile were a stand-alone title and no Dead Rising franchise had ever existed previously, the idea would be undoubtedly be praised, but the same issues would likely still be raised.

The opening cut-scene looks great. But once that’s over, problems instantly become apparent. For starters, the graphics – the back of the protagonists head looks blocky and thin, while the character models are unclean and blocky. They seem fuzzy, and move unrealistically. Even the zombies. Zombies flock together, I mean really close together, and can seem to stack and hide within each other at times. Furthermore, they can pop out of corners rather quickly; now, this wouldn’t be a huge issue if weren’t for the game’s clunky controls.

The set-up here is almost identical to that of Resident Evil 4 Mobile, in that there’s no way to look up or down, and you can only move from left to right and back and forth. However, the aim function from Resident Evil 4 is not present. Simply turning around requires walking forward and making wide turns. Irritatingly, this makes using some weapons effectively, like the shopping cart, nearly impossible. Guns auto aim on the closest target, which takes away from the experience of shooting zombies, but with the rest of the controls being as sloppy as they are, I didn’t really expect any aim feature to perform well. The other weapons, which are plentiful, are still pretty fun to use. In particular, making use of the abundant melee weapons is a blast.

If you have never played a Dead Rising game, the idea is that you are in a large mall filled with zombies and unconventional weapons. Most items you come across can be used as weapons, for example bowling balls, benches, knives, swords, chainsaws and more.

In this particular game, you go to “The box” to receive tasks, most of which concern killing zombies in some form or fashion. You will either be asked to kill a certain amount in a particular area or to go kill all the zombies around somebody’s car or something of the like. None of these missions hold any real depth and the only fun in the game is killing the zombies, which gets rather old once you’ve sampled the majority of weapons on offer. Your main task is killing the mad zombies, of which there are fifteen. These zombies have much more HP and are difficult to kill. As you play, not much is mentioned about the overall plot, and instead the focus is on individual missions and a social feature which seems to hold little meaning to the game.

All in all, Dead Rising Mobile isn’t very challenging and nearly every zombie encounter is fairly easy to overcome. The mall is fairly large and looks alright, with plenty of different stores to explore and weapons scattered everywhere. Regrettably a laundry list of problems – annoying physics, clunky controls and poor graphics – means it pales in comparison to its console counterparts.

Video Source: Touch Arcade

iFanzine Verdict: Dead Rising Mobile is by no means the worst game to be found on the App Store. It’s simply an example of a good idea being poorly executed. If you have played Dead Rising on Xbox, you will likely be disappointed. Overall the experience feels simplistic and not very fulfilling. The graphics leave much to be desired, while the controls feel unwieldy and clunky.

[xrr rating=2.5/5]