Skip to main content

iPhone review of the day: Dead Rising Mobile

Game: Dead Rising Mobile
Price: $4.99 / £3.99
Size: 169 MB
Get it now on the iTunes store:US/UK*

*As happens more and more frequently, this game requires a newer model iPhone or iPod to run. Please check the tech requirements (listed in the app store’s description) before downloading!

The thing with zombie games is that, sometimes, even when they’re bad, you can still have lots of fun. And that’s the case with Dead Rising Mobile. Bad controls, bad camera, and bad graphics make this a game you probably shouldn’t like. But it’s hard not to smile when you’re smashing undead skulls with a bowling ball.

The iPhone version loosely follows the premise of the original Dead Rising. You play as Frank West, a photojournalist trapped in a shopping mall crammed with hordes of flesh eating zombies. And that’s about it. There’s no real story to follow; instead you’ll spend all your time killing zombies and performing boring tasks. You select quests from a menu, and they usually boil down to either going to an area and disposing of a certain number of undead or running errands for random survivors: checking on cars, finding lost earrings, etc. Given the circumstances, it doesn’t make much sense.

It’s still fun, though. There are fewer zombies when compared to the console version, but they’re still pretty plentiful and some are super powered – they look the same as regular zombies, but they’re tougher and more aggressive. It keeps things interesting. You’ll also have to look after Frank’s hunger by eating regularly: if he starves, he dies.

Sadly, Dead Rising Mobile is a pretty ugly game. The zombies are blocky, the mall is drab and uninteresting, and when too much is happening on screen the game slows to a crawl. And don’t get us started on the annoying soundtrack and the lack of camera control, which can put you into some bad situations.

So why is this our iPhone review of the day? Because in spite of those faults, there’s still plenty of fun to be had with Dead Rising Mobile, and it all revolves around using anything and everything you find to grind zombies into paste. While the guns are the most efficient toys, there’s a wide assortment of other items to experiment with as well. You can slice zombies with a katana, or literally mow them down with a lawnmower. Or you can just chuck a shopping cart or bench at them. Think of it as training for the inevitable zombie uprising. And maybe consider moving closer to the mall.

Dec 14, 2010