Publisher: Ignition Entertainment
Developer: Inlight Entertainment
Available only on Nintendo DS
INTRO: Here we go with a cute, comic-book like adventure featuring Zombies! This little DS exclusive puts you in control of an undead trio, each with unique abilities that allow them to try to destroy the Alien Brain Thingys that have taken over earth. Of course our heroes aren't simply in it for the glory- they love to eat brains and just can't wait to face the ultimate brain!
I love zombies. I love everything about them, and flock to their movies, even when they are bad. I hope to become a member of the undead army someday. Okay, well maybe not but that's beside the point. Zombie games (especially portable ones) aren't easy to come by, so I jumped all over this. This game isn't scary at all, not even a little.
In fact, the game feels like a pilot for a Nickelodeon show that never aired. You assume the controls of three brain munching zombies- Basketball star “Lefty” Lopez, Skateboarder Zack “Half-Pipe” Boyd, and the rotund muscle fellow Finnegan “Fins” Magee. Each one of them has their own special ability, and you can (and must) switch between each character on the fly. Zack is a speedster who can get into tight spaces via his board, Lefty has the high jump advantage, and Fins is slow but powerful and also has the ability to scale walls using his tentacles on his back.
Throughout the game you essentially go through platforming motions, and it isn't very hard to figure out where you're going or what you're doing. If you are in doubt, switch your character and you'll likely find your true path. The enemies are a breeze, and actually get annoying because they're such a non factor. One touch I liked was the fact that the developers added various minigames and puzzles to keep things fresh as you go along collecting items. They don't always work so well in practice (the zombie assembling comes to mind), but I like the thought.
The controls are easy to pick up and play, and the game isn't very difficult. My main problem here is that the game is sort of boring. Although it is well designed and presented with panache, the gameplay becomes a bit trite after a short amount of play time. This one just seems to get a bit repetitive, and I also found the pace to be a bit plodding.
I really liked the visuals here; the game feels like you're playing a comic book/cartoon hybrid. The characters are well designed and detailed enough. The enemies look pretty good too, although sometimes the environments leave a bit to be desired. Still though, a very good effort for the DS.
I also dug the music here, with a good B-Movie sort of score to go along with the proceedings. The sound effects are okay, and the voice acting is solid too.
Although I didn't love this one, Teenage Zombies is a quality effort that shows real promise. My recommendation is to pick this one up but just play it in short bursts, a half hour at a time. If you dig zombies like I do, you'll find something to like with this pubescent trio!
Final Score: 7/10