We are clearly on a zombie kick this week. Yesterday, we talked about a pillow to help Zombie parents sleep – but today we talk about something even better – killing zombies! Yes, I understand this is an issue that has stumped the great philosophers of our time – can you kill a zombie, who by definition is already dead? In real life, I am not sure – but in Dead Block for the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade you most definitely can kill zombies and it crazy fun!
Warning: Send the Kids Off to Watch Barney, We Are Talking Big Time Zombie Killing
In case the top graphic didn’t already tip you off, this is a post best read only by adults. So, plop the kids in front of a Barney video and let’s talk about Dead Block – a new game from Digital Reality and developer Candygun Games. New to our video game reviews? Read our article on how we do video game reviews for parents.
Dead Block drops you into the 1950’s when the rock ‘n roll craze was first sweeping the nation – and of course, creating an undead apocalypse as the deceased begin to rise and crave human flesh! Who exactly are you? That is the cool part, you can be one of three survivors – construction worker Jack Foster (who clearly is my identical twin), Boy Scout Mike Bacon, and take no bull meter maid Foxy Jones (what an awesome name). Can’t decide? No problem, you can switch between characters and work together to trap and kill the Zombies!
Why Talk About Killing Zombies, Let’s Show It
Here is a quick video that will give you a nice taste for human flesh the Dead Block game…
Is Dead Block A Good Game for Busy Parents?
Yes! We tested the PlayStation Network version of Dead Block and it was the perfect way to blow off some steam. As we state in our video game review criteria, we are looking for fun games, that are not overly complicated or complex, that busy parents can get into and play in the short blocks of time they have. Dead Block is a clear winner based on this criteria.
The general premise is to kill the Zombies, which you can of course do by beating them to death with a stick – but really where’s the game in that? The more fun thing to do is set various traps for the Zombies. I found discovering new traps one of the funnier elements of the game, so I will not spoil that for you, but the whole trap idea adds an additional level of fun to Dead Block.
Can You Enjoy Dead Block if You Don’t Have Mad Video Game Skills?
First I am not sure what “made video game skills” means, but I know I don’t have them and I enjoyed Dead Block. I am a Dad and I think by definition that means when I hold a controller with more than one button I start yelling “What is L1? Is this button a square or rectangle? When I was a kid…” Thankfully for us Moms and Dads, Dead Block offers plenty of on screen help. Forget what button searches? They show it right on the screen. They also provide lots of little hints to help you move along.
The other nice feature of Dead Block for Moms and Dads is that it takes some effort to die (on an easy level at least). It is not like a few little bites from a Zombie is going to bring you down. You can make a number of mistakes and run around a room full of Zombies and still survive. This is a key element for me, because a game that is too hard to play does not bring me the 15 minutes of enjoyment and release that I crave.
Is There a Multiplayer Mode in Dead Block?
Yep, there sure is! You can do up to 4 players split-screen and there are 8 additional co-op levels where you can play side by side with friends or family. Co-op is a blast, you can bring your friends and family back to life and help each other out with various traps. Really, is there any better family bonding time then the precious time you spend together killing Zombies?
Zombies and Their True Love-Hate Relationship with Rock and Roll?
As Dead Block explains it was the pure evil of Rock N’ Roll in 1950s that created the Zombies – so on this level Zombies just loved the Rock ‘N Roll. However, it is this same evil music that you use to defeat the Zombies. On each level you are trying to find musical instruments that you then use to play some Rock N’ Roll, which in turns shreds the Zombies back to death. This would be the hate part of their relationship with Rock ‘N Roll.
Is Dead Block Appropriate For Kids?
No. The game is rated T for Teen, but I am not sure I would even want young teens playing it. It is not overly graphic when you kill Zombies – but still, you are going around killing Zombies and your shirt does get covered in Zombie blood. If you have teens, watch some of the videos and make your own call.
Conclusion: Dead Block – Who Knew Killing Zombies Could Be Such Cheap Fun?
For Moms and Dads who have had a long day and need to blow off some steam, Dead Block is a great game. The graphics are top notch, the audio is awesome and the game play is fun without being overly complex. The addition of the traps to the game adds a strategy element which keeps the game from getting boring. Of course, the whole humorous storyline to the game is a fantastic addition which will make you laugh…as you slaughter Zombies.
As a Dad who has spent $60 on video games that no one played for more than a few hours, I also greatly appreciate the price of Dead Block – $9.99 (or 800 Xbox Points). $10 to let me be a Boy Scout who murders Zombies with a stick as they eat a hamburger I threw at them? You had me at Boy Scout.
Best For What Age Range? Rated T for Teen. We think ages 16 and up
Best For What Audience? Parents and older kids looking to blow off some steam by smashing things and killing Zombies
Requires Advanced Video Game Skills? Not so much – on the easy level. On screen help tells you what buttons to push.
Visit the Dead Block Website for videos, screen shots and more information. Available for Playstation Network and Xbox Live. Price: About $9.99 on PSN or 800 Xbox Live Points
Learn About The Dad Does Video Game Review Philosophy
FULL DISCLOSURE: We received Dead Block to review. We received no money for doing this review and receive nothing if you do decide to buy Dead Block. If a Zombie jumps out of your TV and tries to attack you, just hit him with a 2 by 4. Works every time. This is a real review, by a real Dad!
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