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Zombie Slayer Diox Review

What is the concept? Last January, UFO Interactive unleashed its inaugural eShop title, Samurai Sword Destiny, which pitted a lone protagonist against throngs of encroaching enemies. Like the developer’s debut effort, follow-up title Zombie Slayer Diox tasks a solitary, stalwart hero with slicing through a procession of foes- this time seizing inspiration from the music/rhythm genre. Yet, where Destiny provided players with a helpful selection of power-ups to offset monotony- Diox makes the mistake of lingering on the same note far too long.

On the easiest challenge level, Zombie Slayer Diox requires gamers to duplicate the gesture shown atop each invading undead enemy. Obviously designed to mimic the plucking of guitar strings, an accurately timed swipe of the touchscreen launches at attack from the game’s eponymous character. On higher difficulty settings, zombies become color-coded, demanding players to press a direction on the D-pad in coordination with their simulated strumming. At first, doing both actions simultaneously feels completely awkward. By the game’s final thirty-sixth level, Diox is slightly less cumbersome, but never quite as instinctive as playing a plastic guitar. For southpaws, the game allows participants to alternatively use the 3DS’s face buttons to select colors.What are the game’s strengths? Although each slash of Diox’s sword produces a fleeting shower of cartoonish crimson, the game visuals are more good-natured than gruesome. From the lead character’s determined stride, satirical backdrops, to the way scores leap from dispatched opponents to the score counter, the game’s visuals are consistently competent. Without the money or memory space for licensed music, Zombie Slayer’s soundtrack offers faux-rocking midi tunes right out of SNES classic Rock N’ Roll Racing. While some might not appreciate the campy chiptunes, gamers familiar with the 16-bit era will reveal in each synthesized power chord.

The title’s three difficulty levels are protracted learning curve allow Zombie Slayer Diox to be played by gamers to wide-ranging experience levels. Initially, the game’s songs will issue forth clusters of corresponding creeps, allowing players to concentrate on timing. Subsequent selections offer an ever-increasing amount of gestures, maintaining a continuous level of challenge.

What are the game’s weaknesses? Whereas most rhythmic games offers a subordinate mechanic- from Guitar Hero’s Star Power to the five discrete phases which add nuance to the Guitaroo Man games, Diox’s gameplay is unwavering. Coupled with the three minute-long songs, Zombie Slayer Diox stages’ sink into tedium, as players repeat the basic zombie-killing actions. Ideally, the game would have offered a way to rip through large bands of dissimilarly-coded foes or a second play element which would have complemented the rhythm-ripping sections.

Successful music-based titles establish a strong relationship between the tempo of the music and the action required from gamers. While there is a cadence to Zombie Slayer Diox’s action, the link doesn’t always feel as inherent as it should. As such, levels seldom cultivate a palpable vibe, with a suitable crescendo and climax. Instead, the zombie hordes feel like they approach at a methodical pace.

Is it worth the money? As a six-dollar purpose, Zombie Slayer Diox isn’t intolerably expensive- but the title isn’t particularly engaging either. While it’s evident that UFO Interactive can extract some attractive visuals out of the 3DS, it would be gratifying if future efforts could offer enough gameplay to match the graphical goodness.

About Robert Allen

With over 35 years of gaming experience, Robert 'DesertEagle' Allen is Tech-Gaming's resident worrier/warrior who spends his days teaching at three colleges and his nights devoted to JRPGs.

26 comments

  1. Deeox or Dio?

  2. What Ronnie James Dio(x) sang, he didn’t play guitar.

    • But he did kill zombies. It’s true because I read it on the Wikipedia once.

      I think when it comes to the 3DS eShop it’s first-party games and third-party crap.

  3. Sorry, but no real music? That kind of kills the point of a music game.

  4. I really wish the eShop had demos for every game available. I really don’t see why that can’t be fixed.

  5. I was hoping for a Kid Icarus review. I guess this will have to do. 😉

  6. Thanks for the review. Deagle.

  7. Thank you. If not for this site I’d miss some of the smaller games out there.

  8. So not as good as Ridge Racer?

    (I’m kidding) Good review.

  9. Seems like a 99 cent iphone app. No way would I pay $6 for this.

  10. Sorry to be a hater, but the graphics look more DS than 3DS. Watched two videos and this looks pretty repetitive.

  11. Damn, Deagle you’ve been given out a lot of “C”‘s lately.

  12. Thanks for the review. I’m hoping you review Kid Icarus Uprising as well. I heard the controls are bad but I saw your tweet saying that you loved it.

  13. I bought the game last week. Here’s my problem with it: you can pass the level with all of your health, but still fail.

    There’s a score level that has to be achieved. Don’t ask me why, if you miss too many zombies, you fall over and die. At first it’s not bad, but later it gets frustrating to just miss the score.

  14. you know what this game needed? BT 😀

  15. UFO was nice enough to make the Zombie Slayer Diox soundtrack free. Here are the links to the three volume OST:

    http://ufointeractivegames.com/2012/03/zombie-slayer-diox-soundtrack/