This one’s a no brainer.
By Katelyn Boulanger, Multimedia Editor
You were told that salvation lays within this city, that somehow there is a helicopter that is taking survivors from here to a new haven, free of the zombie infestation. You also know that this is the most dangerous part of your journey yet. Cities are where the outbreaks began, en mass. They are deathtraps. Luckily for you, the police station is on the main road into town. You use your last three bullets to lay the undead officers to rest and then search for supplies. You find four bullets and a medical kit. The zombie horde is moving down the street towards you when you get outside. You have just enough time to duck into the florist’s shop down the street before they see you. A little old woman walks around the till when you enter. She’s dressed in a floral apron that is clearly stained with potting soil from years of work. She looks up at you; dirt smudged on her cheek, death in her eyes. She’s too close you can’t get your gun out in time. You start to back towards the door but the horde is now right outside the shop. Floral apron lunges at you, and you sidestep to the left knocking into some orchids in desperate need of watering. Sorry orchids, you think to yourself as you grab one off the shelf and break the pot over floral apron’s head. She’d been gone a long time and her decomposing skull mashes inwards, brains squishing out of the hole like a toothpaste tube that had been squeezed too hard. Get to the helipad, it is the only way to survive.
Zombies is a build-as-you-go board game. You and the other players start at the town square and move through the city until you find the helipad. As each player moves out of the known areas of the city a new tile is added from the pile of possible tiles. Not only does this create very interesting city plan but it also makes the game different every time it is played. Every player starts off with three bullets which are exchanged along with a dice roll to attempt to kill a zombie—the dice roll tells you if you actually hit your target. The players also get three heart counters which indicate your health points, if you run out of hearts; you die and have to start again from the town square. Finally, each player gets three event cards that either hinder your opponents or help you win.
The objective of the game is to get to the helipad once it is revealed. The helipad is covered in zombies and once it is clear, the helicopter can land and you and whoever else is on the helipad win the game. Alternatively, you can win the game by becoming the ultimate zombie killer and destroying 25 zombies.
Both strategies require that you enter buildings in search of medical supplies and for bullets allowing you to deal with the horde as it attempts to kill you. The buildings, however, can also be death traps sealing you in with the zombies that were locked inside.
This game can be made as competitive as the players at the table want. You can strike up alliances and win cooperatively or you can go on your own. Alliances, however, can become fragile especially with a board game like this and once the cooperation is broken, all the zombies break loose.
I would give this game four zombies with fire axes in their heads out of five humans cowering in the corner. I would also suggest you go to the Gameshelf and try playing the demo game they have if you have some free time between your final essays and impending exams. Just make sure that your fellow players all have their heads on straight before starting.