We groan at the thought of playing yet another zombie game. Add virtual controls and you’ve got my gaming nightmare. So, even before I began playing, Apocalypse Max had two strikes against it.
After mere moments it became clear that that this isn’t your grammas’ iOS side scrolling shooter…it is intense with creative zombies and intuitive control scheme (yeah I was wrong). In the environments you’ll take control of a knife touting badass who needs to run ‘n gun his way through forests, swamps, cemetery (you saw that one coming), until he makes it to the facility where all of this zombification started.
Between these environments new enemies are introduced with each one ramping up the challenge. At first you’ve got your running straight at you zombies and as soon as you enter the swamps you’ll need to fend off pesky zombie-piranhas. Fast forward a few environments and now you’ve got projectile-vomiting zombies and riffle shootin’ zombie soldiers (er…zoldiers?).The fast pacing (4 levels for each environment) and wham-bam approach to new zombies is exhilarating.
Normally I hate…no make that loath, virtual controls but Apocalypse Max approaches the controls in a new way which makes controlling Max feel natural (something that’s rarely accomplished with virtual controls). The buttons on the right side (action buttons) are large enough to allow accurate button pressing while not taking up much real estate space while the left side of the screen moves Max from side to side. You remember that I very briefly mentioned that you’re a knife touting badass, well all that slicing is done by swiping your finger on the screen. Swipe to the right and Max’ll slash to the right, slash to the left and he’ll slash to the left. The slashing is so well implemented that there’s a good chance you’ll hardly need to shoot your gun and instead you’ll be able to run in every which direction and dice up zombies with ease.This control scheme is so highly addictive that I shot and slashed through the entire game in one sitting.
That’s the only downside to Apocalypse Max…it feels short. There are only 5 environments and only one Boss Battle (which is great by the way) and as previously stated can be beaten in one sitting. Hold on though cause I’m not done. To counter the shortness, Apocalypse Max includes a few difficulty settings and a gun upgrade system that will have you playing it over again. Literally, after I beat it I jumped back in and started playing it again! Something that I don’t think I’ve ever done with an iOS game. I think that it is a positive testament to Apocalypse Maxs’ awesomeness that it feels short because it whomps one great experience that leaves you feeling satisfied while still wanting more.
The Bottom Line: 9.5/10 (Super!)
Apocalypse Max is an action packed side scroller shooter thats easily one of the best that we’ve seen.