Review – Zombicide
A Zombie miniatures game.
Year Published: 2012
Designer: Raphaël Guiton, Jean-Baptiste Lullien, Nicolas Raoult
Publisher: Cool Mini or Not
Game Time: 60+ Mins
Set-up Time: >10 Mins
Mechanic: Dice Rolling, Action Points
How to win: Varies depending on scenario.
Zombicide is a collaborative game in which players take the role of a survivor – each with unique abilities – and harness both their skills and the power of teamwork against the hordes of unthinking undead! Zombies are predictable, stupid but deadly, controlled by simple rules and a deck of cards. Unfortunately for you, there are a LOT more zombies than you have bullets.
This review will incorporate Zombicide, Prison Outbreak and Toxic City Mall all rolled up together.
Set up time depends not just on which scenario you are playing and how complex it is, but how well you pack away the game. I have all my tiles in order and tokens/cards in different bags. All the different Zombies are in different bags too so set up time for me is minimal.
Set up just involves copying a set up from a scenario out the book and piling everything else off the board.
Each player takes a Survivor board and matching Survivor/Zombivor figure.
I’m not going to go into detail as I usually do in my reviews due to the HUGE amount of stuff you need to know.
The basics are this…
You have an objective to complete. To do this you need to move around the board and kill Zombies to survive. Turns are over 3 phases.
In turn order, players assign 3 actions to their Survivor. These are usually moving, attacking, searching or activating. When all players have activated all their Survivors, this phase ends.
Each Zombie activates attacking a Survivor if they are in the same square or moving towards the nearest survivor if they’re not.
Then after all Zombies have activated, a Zombie Spawn card is revealed for each spawn area on the board and new Zombies are added.
The board is cleaned up and the first player token passes left. A new turn begins.
Like I said there is so much more to this game and I will discuss some of these points in my round up but if you want to know more Rodney Smith of the excellent Watch It Played series will show you how to play better than I ever could here. If you want to know how to play in detail, check out this video.
When the win or lose condition of the scenario is met, the game ends.
It’s an epic game that doesn’t take itself too seriously. You’re playing actors in a Zombie Apocalypse film so it’s not a serious heavy theme, it’s fun.
There are a few things I like…
The different zombie types really help this game. Not only do you have the Runners that move quicker, and the Fatty Zombies that take more damage, but you have the Berserker and Toxic Zombies that make you think more tactically about the game.
The Berserker Zombies are immune to bullets so you need to get near them and melee.
The Toxic Zombies explode when killed with a melee attack and deal damage to the characters in its zone so you need to stay back and shoot!
The targeting priority is good too. When there is a mix of Zombies in a zone you are shooting in to, you can’t just pick any of them to kill, there is a predetermined order.
The Walker Zombies will be at the front of the horde and you must kill them first before taking down the larger Fatty and even larger Abomination zombies with the speedy and hard to hit Runners just in front of the Zombie Dogz in the priority list.
This again, gives you a lot to think about on top of ‘move and roll dice’.
One thing a lot of people do not like is the first in the priority list of stuff to kill is… a Survivor. Yep, in a group of Zombies, the first target to kill is a players character. But for me this just adds to the tension and forces you to make sure you’re staying away from Zombie hordes.
There are a lot of different scenarios included in each box, even more online and they have recently released a compendium of scenarios for season 1.
I enjoy this game and I’m looking forward to seeing what CMON do with it in the future.
I give it 7/10