A couple weeks ago, Richard – that mad master of international intrigue and puns, our resident pioneer of spiderfear – stumbled across a teaser video for a mystery project from Sniper Elite creator Rebellion/2000AD. It was all spooky-like and featured running, which is the kind of thing that prompts one of three responses from a person: 1) Zombies? 2) Zombies! or 3) [Drawn-out sigh] …Zombies. And yep, sure enough, here’s Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army. You can probably guess what it’s about, but just in case, a trailer stirs beneath the break’s loamy soils, courtesy of Digital Spy.
As opposed to a full-blown spin-off, Rebellion’s billing this one as a standalone expansion with a focus on – you guessed it – co-op:
“Featuring a co-op campaign for 1 to 4 players, Nazi Zombie Army is a horrifying new stand-alone expansion of the award-winning Sniper Elite series. In the dying flames of World War II, a despairing Hitler unleashes one final, unholy gamble – a legion of undead super soldiers that threatens to overwhelm the whole of Europe. You are Karl Fairburne – the sniper who shaped world history. You are one of the last living souls in Germany. You must team up or die. American, German, Russian – previous military allegiances no longer matter. Now it’s just the living versus the dead. Only a Sniper Elite with nerves of steel and a steady aim stands a chance against Hitler’s Nazi Zombie Army!”
But what if my aim is made of steel and my nerves are a bit too steady? WHAT THEN.
Anyway. The most (or least, depending on your perspective) promising bit here is that Rebellion’s taking full advantage of NZA’s outlandish twist, replacing Sniper Elite’s old cast of WWII standbys with “occult commanders, roof-jumping snipers, undead suicide infantry, and worse.” Meanwhile, staples like the X-ray kill cam are making a return, as is a focus on wind, gravity, stability, velocity, and the like. That said, it also sounds like a number of the more standard shooter elements Adam and Jim weren’t so fond of in Sniper Elite V2 are coming along for the harrowing sprint, so sniping might be the bread-and-butter, but it’s not the entire meal.
NZA will be out on February 28th. It’s certainly not the most original idea for a shooter series off-shoot, but who knows? It could be amusing. I’d like to see games try some other alternate history idea already, though. One that’s not dinosaurs. Or aliens. Or robots. I know, I know, I just eliminated three whole things, but I think – by the grace of god – an entire creative industry can figure something out.