Age of Zombies

Dawn of the Minis

With Age of Zombies Halfbrick once again proves that, yes, minis can indeed be of substance.
Author: Parjanya C. Holtz
Published: March 17, 2010
When Sony announced that they would encourage developers to create a new breed of games designed specifically for the casual market, I was genuinely excited.  In typical Sony fashion the service launched and turned out to be a disappointment. EA copied a free MS DOS version of Tetris onto the PSN servers and expected consumers to pay 10 bucks for it. From that day on the word “minis” left a bad taste in my mouth.

Fortunately, ever since the good people at Halfbrick decided to get into the minis making biz, things have changed for the better. Age of Zombies, which is available for $4.99 on the US store, only validates our high opinion of the Australian developer.
When I started writing these lines, I had this voice in the back of my head reminding me of all those other top-down zombie shooters that are out there and how sick of playing another zombie themed game you must be by now. But, honestly? I don't care if you've had enough of zombies! I sure as hell have not, and most likely never will have. Zombies are part of today's pop culture. Zombies are art. It's as simple as that. But what makes zombietainment so great, is that zombies aren't full of themselves. And neither is Age of Zombies. The story is hilariously self-mocking and telling you anything about it would absolutely ruin the fun it all is.
It all looks and plays like it's running on a SNES (shooting and running is a matter of 8 directions). The characters are cuddly as hell, which makes the game's great but crude sense of humor all the more entertaining. All of your stats are constantly being tracked (how often you died, the number of zombies you grilled with your flamethrower, etc.) also making it a blast to play through the campaign multiple times just for the sake of getting that ultimate high score. There's also a survival mode that lets you go back to the campaign's stage of your liking, without making you play through the entire story again.
What else can I tell you? If you are at all thinking about getting into minis, Age of Zombies is a great place to start. It's short, it's offensive and most importantly it all is a lot of fun!

Our very own Ryan Green was so excited about the game that he almost teared up when he found out he wasn't going to write the review. Purely of humanitarian reasons we let him add his sauce to the soup. So, here it is: Second Opinion by Ryan Green

Age of Zombies is exactly what I want out of a Mini: easy to pick up, built well, and sold at a solid price. It is rare to see such quality in a small game, especially from a Mini. The very fact that this game looks sweet on my TV says a lot about the character design.

Of course, I'd love it if the game were longer and there was more to do, but then this wouldn't be a Mini... it would be a normal PSP game. My question to you and the developers is... why did you stop there? Halfbrick clearly has the talent to make great games, but they always stop short and make a Mini. The limited amount of file space doesn't seem to phase these guys, and I'm sure with a little more room, they could make a really small yet still excellent PSP game.

Regardless, Age of Zombies is one of the best games this year, and I am putting that next to Heavy Rain and God of War III. Yes, I am crazy, but this game is also that good.
The Verdict

Minis are supposed to be tiny, easily digestible snacks, and trust me when I tell you, Age of Zombies is one hell of a tasty snack!


It's like a fantastic looking SNES game has come to life on your PSP.


The stage theme specific comments by Steakfries are hilarious. The rest sounds as it's supposed to. Nothing to drive you crazy here. Promise.


Eight directions to move in. Eight directions to fire at. One fire button. One secondary fire button. Do you really think they could've screwed this up?


Simple but effective. You'll get through the campaign in an hour or so, but that doesn't mean you'll be done with it all.