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Final Zombie XII

It’s increasingly hard to tell whether or not the zombie joke’s gone too far. On the one hand, the living dead are irritatingly ubiquitous throughout both gaming and web culture; on the other – zombies!

A random poke at Armor Games’ oft-bounteous site today turned up Sonny, a Flash-based Final Fantasy clone starring a well-spoken and terribly English zom. It isn’t doing anything especially out of the ordinary, but you do get to dress a zombie in Samurai armour. Surely that’s enough?

It’s a little lost between taking itself terribly seriously and very lightweight humour, which means it lives or dies on its fighting and the looting. Fortunately, there’s plenty of that, and it’s strategic and compulsive enough to make the, erm, enthusiastic voice acting worth enduring.

What stands out is the degree of choice over your character build – it’s very much in the Diablo/Titan Quest mould of ability point attribution, but there’s clearly been a lot of love and a lot of planning put into the expanse of powers and buffs available to pick from. There’s even a re-spec function, for heaven’s sakes. Where it might stumble on presentation values it more than compensates with the under-the-hood planning. Less so the balance – it does get bastard-hard very quickly.

I’m not entirely convinced it feels especially zombiey, but I suspect that’s an inevitable by-product of its hero hurling electro-bolts and carrying mechanised swords. Not traditional zombie behaviour, but hell, I’ll take it.

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Alec Meer

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Co-founder of RPS. Dungeon Keeper & X-COM 4 Life.

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