Call of Puny: Miniature Zombie Invasion
What do you get when you combine fast-paced third person shooter action with hordes of miniaturized flesh eating zombies? A quirky and highly entertaining spinoff of one of the most popular video game franchises in the world – for those who were living under a rock for the past decade, we are talking about the Call of Duty series.
Call of Mini: Zombies is a third-person shooter game that puts you in the role of someone who is trying to survive an outbreak of vertically challenged zombies. Players will need to shoot, hack and blow up countless undead creatures as they strive to survive. Purchase numerous types of weapons and equipments to aid you in clearing out each of the seven zombie-populated areas in the game. Can you last the day and survive the outbreak?
Small but Not Terrible
From the title alone, players will not be surprised to see that the proportions of the enemies in the game are a bit – how can we say this politely? lacking. Despite the visual “shortcomings”, Call of Mini: Zombies is still a nice looking game. The designs for the characters and enemies in the game are varied and while some of them are not entirely original, all of them fit the game’s setting quite well – they are somewhat reminiscent of the Boxhead style games.
Pretty much all of the enemies you will face in the game are zombified versions of regular people and creatures that you see every day. From policemen, to nurses, to even tuxedo wearing businessmen, almost everyone gets a zombie version in this game – which is fine by us since it gives us the feeling that the outbreak really struck our local neighborhood.
We really liked the environments in Call of Mini: Zombies since they represented different locations from a regular town, not some make believe place that we can never relate to. While most of the maps in the game are nicely designed, a lot of them are really small and offer little to no player interaction. This made playing through a lot of the stages a bit boring later on, since we have already seen everything the map had to offer during the first few times we played them.
Tiny Sounds of Hunger
We can not really complain about Call of Mini: Zombies’ audio presentation. The zombies in the game have those distinct moan and groan sounds that we are all too familiar with by now – thanks to the recent zombie-mania brought about by the Walking Dead TV series. There are some unique sounding zombies in the game, particularly the more dangerous ones, like the huge and lumbering ogre-like zombie that appears later in the game. Their unique roar actually serves as a warning that a formidable foe is coming and that we need to prepare to fight or run for our lives.
Call of Mini: Zombies’ music is a bit of a let down. We enjoyed it in the first few hours of play, but after a while, it became really stale since it is the same music over and over again. Sure, the music has a nice upbeat tempo going on but it is the same tune throughout all seven maps. The only time you will hear a different background music in the game is when you are buying stuff in the shop or in the main stage-selection screen.
The Hunger for Gameplay
In Call of Mini: Zombies you basically try to survive each day by clearing out zombies from different areas on the map. Your primary goal is to kill a certain number of undead creatures in each stage in order to progress to the next day. You are awarded with money and sometimes new weapons every time you are able to finish a stage. There is not much of a plot going on in the game, it is a straightforward run-and-gun game, which is not entirely bad since it is easy to just pick-up and play.
Call of Mini: Zombies uses the tried and tested twin-stick control system that most iOS and Android based games use these days. And while the control system fits the game quite nicely, there are certain problems with it. Such as the sometimes sluggish response from the controls and that annoying problem while aiming your gun – your gun aims downwards if you do not touch the left-stick icon on the screen properly.
The game does not have a quick-turn move, which means you have to manually turn your character around if you want to see or shoot the zombies behind you. This can be really annoying since your character turns like a turtle – we died numerous times because we could not turn fast enough to shoot the group of zombies munching on our backs. The only way we were able to get past this annoying hurdle, was when we purchased the character that has increased movement speed. We basically outran our enemies first, then once we were at a safe distance, we would turn our character to face and shoot the zombies behind us.
Players get to collect money by clearing the stages in the game that are currently infested by zombies – you can tell which stage needs clearing by the zombie icon on the map itself. You can also get extra cash by grabbing those golden dollar sign icons that appear when you kill an enemy or when you destroy a crate. Use your well earned savings by purchasing new firearms, equipments and characters. Players can upgrade their guns by increasing its attack power, firing rate and accuracy. The armors you wear can also be improved by increasing its defensive attributes.
One of the things we really liked about Call of Mini: Zombies is the option to unlock characters. While unlocking characters in a game is not entirely new, the characters that you purchase in Call of Mini: Zombies are not just skins or costumes for your default character to wear but are unique individuals that have their own set of skills and attributes. We really liked playing as the B.E.A.F aka Bio-Enhanced Advanced Fighter. Not only is he super fast – which totally eliminated the problem with slow turning, he also has high offensive and defensive capabilities. The B.E.A.F looks really cool thanks to his futuristic look, the only downside is that he costs a whooping $750,000. Apparently, all the strong unlockable characters in the game – those that have multiple or strong abilities, have a hefty price tag on them.
Online Multiplayer is of course available in Call of Mini: Zombies, and they come in two great tasting flavors, Versus and Cooperative. Players get to team up and go against other teams online in Versus mode, where they get to battle it out to find out which team is better when it comes to killing things. Cooperative mode is a great way to fully enjoy Call of Mini: Zombies, not only does playing with a friend make the game more enjoyable – not to mention easier since you now have someone to watch your back, it also gives you the chance to get achievements in the game. Sadly, the game’s Versus and Cooperative modes are only playable online, there is currently no option to play locally via Wi-Fi.
One great thing that sets Call of Mini: Zombies apart from other iOS and Android shooter games is the Achievements. While pretty much all games today have Achievements or Trophies to unlock, hardly any of them rewards the player for his or her accomplishments. Most of them are just titles for online leader boards that do nothing to benefit the player. Call of Mini: Zombies’ achievement system is different. Not only do you need to do them with a friend since most of them require cooperative play, they also give you tons of money as a reward for accomplishing them – now that is what we call an incentive. If you are running low on cash or you just want to buy that special character immediately, try unlocking the game’s achievement for a quick payout.
The End Game…
Call of Mini: Zombies is a good example of a game that took elements from other games and combined it to make something fun. While the game will not win any awards for originality, it is still very enjoyable and highly recommendable to fans of shooting games and zombies. With tons of unlockable weapons, items and characters, Call of Mini: Zombies will definitely keep us busy for quite a while, add the online Versus and Cooperative modes, and we have a game worth playing for the weeks to come.