In our current necrophilic climate, it's impossible to browse any games marketplace or online platform for longer that three seconds without stumbling across a zombie shooter.
Case in point: Deadzones, the latest deadite-packed blaster to lumber onto Java. It bears both of the trademark characteristics of a mainstream mobile release: its has zombies, and it has guns.
The problem with a saturated genre, however, is that anyone looking to stake a claim in those over-occupied grounds better construct something that stands out from its peers.
Shades of grey
Deadzones is the most recent game to fail to set itself from apart from this maddening crowd. It takes the form of a gallery shooter, set amid the wreckage of an abandoned hospital.
Well, some of the zombies are wearing white coats, so we assume they have a background in basic medicine.
Anyhow, your job is to move a reticule around the screen, drawing a bead on zombies, spiders, and any other icky creature which happens to pop into your field of view.
The odd thing is, these creatures don't move – not towards you, anyway. When the first zombie appears, you frantically fumble for the 'fire' button, expecting it to shamble hungrily towards your justifiably delicious brains.
But it doesn't. It just kind of walks on the spot, like it's warming up for a race it has no intention of running. It's weird, and removes any sense of threat you might have felt had your foe found a forward gear.
While your enemies will attack you eventually, you are only alerted to this by a timer on your HUD. As a result, Deadzones is extremely static. The visuals are perfectly decent - they just don't do an awful lot.
Some creatures, like the spiders, have the good taste to enter from off-screen. But the zombies, who have medical training but no bedside manners whatsoever, simply appear out of nowhere.
This lack of attention to detail (the guns don't even go 'bang'), coupled with Deadzone's low difficultly, repeating backgrounds, and lack of urgency, make the game difficult to recommend.
However, I would like to see an episode of House with Doctor Zombie on call. I hear he's a maverick.