There are very few iPhone games that leave your jaw on the floor. This is one of those games. Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies is one of the best-looking pieces of app to ever hit a mobile device. And while it’s not new (released late last year), there is a hot-off-the-press new map – Verrückt (insane asylum) – which adds an objective-driven campaign-style element to the game.
Developed by Activision, Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies is an iPhone adaptation of the zombie survival mode in the console version of the hugely popular Call of Duty: World at War. As in the original, Zombies pits you against a never ending onslaught of undead Nazi invaders on the familiar “Nacht der Untoten” map. As you run around furiously trying to rebuild barricades and reload your ammo the zombie hordes get harder to kill and quickly multiply in number. While the first few minutes start off rather slow, it’s easy to quickly find yourself overrun.
The basic premise of Verrückt, a $4.99 in-app purchase, is the same as for Nacht der Untoten – defend yourself from the unrelenting zombie hordes, but there are some new specific goals that allow you to unlock power-ups and new defensive items. The new features also give the game more depth – it’s no longer just about running around madly shooting zombies until you die. Verrückt also brings the player 9 new weapons, 13 new achievements to unlock as well as the introduction of “perks” like increased health and faster reloading that can be purchased from “Perks-a-Cola” machines in the game.
The control options are the same as what’s offered in the original – dual-stick (console style), tilt and swipe look. Dual-stick is the easiest to use if you’ve played any FPS on PS3/XBOX, and also offers the highest sensitivity. The graphics are incredible, but when I first tried this out on a 2G iPhone there was so much control lag in the later rounds of the game that your death was pretty much inevitable. The game has obviously been optimized for owners of the newer iPhone models - I’ve seen this run on a 3GS and it looks amazing.
Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies supports up to four players via Wi-Fi/internet and two players via Bluetooth, so you can get online (that’s right) – and team up with your buddies across the street or across the world and dish out some Nazi justice in co-op mode. There is a big list of achievements to unlock in both maps and a worldwide leaderboard accessible within the device for international bragging rights.
My only criticism here is the price – $4.99 for the new map on top of the original $9.99 purchase price makes it one of the most expensive games on the App Store. Given the success of the franchise, this is unlikely to deter many fans and with Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies clocking up a 4.5 star average on iTunes from over 5000 ratings – the people have spoken as to the quality of this game.
Call of Duty: World at War: Zombies requires iPhone OS 2.2.1 or later and is compatible with iPhone and iPod Touch.