Title: The Walking Dead Onslaught
Release Date: September 29, 2020
Reviewed On: PSVR
The Walking Dead is no stranger to video game adaptations. It’s also received a recent release in VR with The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners. However, many fans of the series have long-awaited The Walking Dead Onslaught for its ties with the AMC show, complete with voices of the supporting cast. Developer Survios accomplishes this in many ways, with only a few lose boards to nail up.
The Walking Dead Onslaught gives us an original story centered around Daryl Dixon and what he finds while on a supply run. During the campaign missions, you’ll play through a few flashbacks as he narrates his actions. This delivery is a great way to get the most out of the voice actor as it gives you the feeling that your actions affect the story. For the most part, this adventure can be linear, but there are times where you can do certain things that he’ll comment on, even though you could have easily passed it up.
The campaign is relatively short, but the levels are long with different mission types. The moments I loved the most are when you are clearly overrun by Walkers and have to decide if you’re going to try to fight them off or make a run for it. The game loves to put you in these positions, and it never seemed to get old. Other times you’ll need to hold a position or collect a specific item, which makes everything less repetitive.
The campaign is not all there is to The Walking Dead Onslaught though, as missions are locked behind the development of Alexandria. Yes, in a turn of events, there is kind of two campaigns going on here. If players wish to get to the next chapter of Daryl’s story, they’ll need to complete scavaging missions to find new survivors.
Much of the game’s progress is tied to scavaging as players set out to collect as many materials and items as possible. These missions are more or less timed, whether it be a horde of enemies approaching or just too many to take on alone. You’re expected to take on these missions several times because everything you’d probably want to do can’t be done in a single run.
Scavaging levels take place across a variety of locations at different times of the day. There are branching paths, and each time you visit, the items are shuffled. Moving fast is rewarded by allowing you time to investigate out-of-the-way areas, which typically have new weapons and supply crates. Planning out these missions is crucial because there are also key items that complete side missions for more survivors.
When you’re back in Alexandria, you can use materials and survivors to build new structures, upgrade them, upgrade weapons, and interact with characters. This system provides a direct impact on the progression of the narrative, which helps a lot with pacing. The game definitely benefits from being based on the show because many of the nuances and characters don’t require exposition. However, Rick’s voice actor does make a few interactions feel soulless because it comes across like someone is just trying to do a Rick meme impersonation.
Outside of collecting materials, much your time playing will be killing zombies, and I feel like The Walking Dead Onslaught does a great job at this. There are dozens of weapons to discover and customize throughout the campaign, but honestly, I felt like nothing was better than a trusty knife. For the most part, stabbing and shooting zombies was comfortable. However, shooting takes some effort as you’re required to reload and aim manually.
There were some moments of the PSVR unit not tracking correctly or times where I would blast across the screen into a pack of zombies. It didn’t have too often, but it wasn’t fun when it did, and I suffered a few deaths because of it. Other annoyances revolve around zombies not falling after a death or limited AI, but it didn’t really hurt the overall experience.
Visually, I felt The Walking Dead Onslaught is a gorgeous game, especially when you typically have to accept that the PSVR is less powerful than other VR devices available. Here, I thought the level design was more than decent, and the variety of walker enemies was massive. It just helped with the immersion of this experience as you shot the limbs off of walkers in a nervous escape or had to stab under a riot helmet to get to the head.
The music of the game sets the mood entirely as it resembles the show. There were low points in the score only to ramp up when the walkers got close. The voice acting was great from those actors who reprised their role, but those who didn’t make things a little awkward during conversations.
The Walking Dead Onslaught is an awesome VR experience that centers around these characters that mean so much to fans of the show. The developer did a great job adapting the narrative of the show with an original story that feels like it could be its own episode. Killing Walkers has never been more fun, and I would happily go on another supply run again, even if it means encountering some random glitches.
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