World War Z, the review

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Alejandra Rangel
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World War Z has some great moments, in particular those that testify to the ability of the Swarm Engine to move thousands of zombies on the screen, seemingly endless hordes that like a swarm crowd on walls and nets in order to climb over them and run in our direction, while from behind a fixed turret or with standard equipment we try to thin out the ranks. These are situations that follow the sequences of the film with Brad Pitt, underlining how clearly that was Saber Interactive's main inspiration; although from the point of view of the structure and mechanics the game is quite derivative, a son in some ways more sophisticated but less charismatic than the classic Left 4 Dead.

It is positive that the authors did not want to deceive users in any way, indeed the price sale of 39,99 euros confirms the good intentions of the development team and is basically adequate for an offer that includes four different environments (New York, Moscow, Jerusalem and Tokyo) for a total of eleven playable missions in a cooperative online for four participants or in single player, with the support of bots. To support the duration of the campaign, which itself can be completed in five or six hours, there are not only the inevitable levels of difficulty, but also and above all a rich progression system that allows you to unlock new skills for each of the available classes, buy more powerful weapons and even view narrative sequences that illustrate the background of each of the playable characters. That's not all: in support of the co-op we also find a set of modes multiplayer competitive for eight players, not unforgettable but fun to try, also equipped with an independent progression.


As written at the beginning, it is impossible to talk about World War Z without mentioning the many points that the Saber Interactive title has in common with the good old Left 4 Dead. We are dealing with a third person shooter instead of a first person shooter, it is true, but beyond this the solutions adopted for the cooperative campaign are tremendously similar: we move within scenery more or less large, more or less successful (the Japanese one is in fact very evocative thanks to its particular colors), the waves of undead are repelled and there are the traditional moments in which you have to activate a switch that will make many swoop in place zombies, asking us to hold out for a few minutes before we can escape to a safe place.

There is also no shortage of special enemies, those who imprison the player in a vise from which it is possible to be freed only thanks to the intervention of the comrades: big policemen in riot gear, very fast mutants who jump on us and summon the living dead until we eliminate them, and zombies who they hide a large amount of poisonous gas inside an anti-contamination suit. Sorry that the authors have not managed to go beyond these well-established elements, introducing new situations that could add some personality to a product that is enjoyable precisely because of its being so derivative, a technically updated version of the Valve shooter but spoiled by problems that undoubtedly have to do with the budget of the project and that revolve around the finishing: some glitch quite conspicuous, some uncertainty in the frame rate.


It shoots well in World War Z, although there was scope to further improve impact performance. The arsenal is very large and the fact of being able to grow it through the use of points earned in battle undoubtedly adds depth to a progression system that has very little to be forgiven. THE characters they are also managed here as simple skins, different according to the scenario for a total of sixteen survivors, each with a narrative background that can be viewed in the form of a cutscene after completing any scenario. To change are the classes, six, each featuring basic equipment and a unique skill tree: the Gunslinger is balanced and versatile, the Ravager knows how to have fun with explosives, the Medic is the traditional support unit, the Mechanic is a resource expert , the Butcher specializes in melee attacks and finally the Exterminator prefers heavy weapons.

Then there is the arsenal itself, which as mentioned can be improved by spending the experience points earned in the field: shotguns or sniper rifles, light machine guns, assault rifles, pistols and many other variants available in different versions, plus or less powerful and more or less precise. Unlocked a specific model, this is what we will then find in the scenarios with the possibility of collecting it and changing the setup, consisting of a main weapon and a secondary weapon by default to which grenades and a large machete are added, essential for exterminating the zombie that have come upon us or eliminate the first enemies of the stage in silence, without alerting the horde. However, even on the melee tools front there is a fair choice and it often happens to come across a large chainsaw with which to literally tear apart the waves of undead.

I controls they support the system in a not completely effective way, in the sense that there is a certain delay in the response to certain inputs (the change of weapon, for example) and it is not clear whether it may depend on the latency of the online sessions, which suffer from some hiccups too many but they always remain playable. The layout of the keys incorporates classic solutions (reload on Square, run by pressing the left stick on its base, change weapon on Triangle, aim and fire on the left and right triggers) and therefore you can play immediately with great tranquility, without the need for tutorials. or special introductions. When the traditional wave of zombies is about to start, a time limit is indicated within which to make all the necessary preparations, then reload the ammunition at the crates inside the map and possibly collect and arrange fixed machine guns, electrified traps, barbed wire and mortars with which to substantially thin out the horde. It is however unfortunate that these aspects in style tower defense have not been developed in a more meaningful way, leaving the player free to decide how and where to place the items.

Competitive multiplayer modes

In addition to the co-op campaign, World War Z includes five competitive multiplayer modes for eight players: Horde Domination, King of the Hill, Horde Deathmatch, Procurement and Vaccine Hunt. All see two teams made up of four users challenge each other within some maps of fair size, taken from the main scenarios, but with the variable constituted by the inevitable zombies, which can break into the scenario and complicate the life of users. Many of the modes are based on elements of control of the territory and are therefore a bit too similar, however it must be recognized that including five different options was not at all obvious and at the moment it is possible to find a good number of players online to be able to play games. The authors also introduced a separate progression system, with ten classes to choose from. At the end of the day, the competitive sector does not add who knows what to the value of the Saber Interactive stock, but it is nice that there is.

PlayStation 4 Trophies

World War Z includes a total of thirty-six Trophies, including Platinum. The basic achievements are unlocked simply by completing the various scenarios at any level of difficulty, then there are the actions related to the numbers (for example "kill 10.000 zombies") and those related to the progression system (for example "unlock the final version of a weapon ").

Technical realization

If the goal of World War Z was to recall the most spectacular scenes of the film of the same name, we can say that the developers have managed to hit it. Undoubtedly thanks to the Swarm Engine, which, as mentioned, manages to manage thousands of zombies at the same time on the screen and faithfully reproduce their behavior, see for example when the enemies "pile up" in a way as quickly as disturbing to climb the surfaces. On consoles, this show of decomposing limbs has to be satisfied with 30 frames per second that are not always stable, spoiled by some drops which, however, fortunately, do not affect the enjoyment of the gunplay. The characters on the team come with a discreet design and an animation set that have not been sacrificed on the altar of the netcode, while on the front of the scenarios one perceives the desire to get out of generic solutions and give a minimum of personality to settings: an effort that in some cases we can say has succeeded fairly well, in other cases not.

The system matchmaking is currently quite fast and effective, a sign that there are many online users available for a game: perhaps the budget price and the reference to the brand, but above all the absence of a valid and recent alternative to the pluricited Left 4 Dead have made inroads among the cooperative shooter fans. There are a few things about the interface that leave something to be desired (for example there is no shortcut to silence a noisy companion), but by and large everything works surprisingly well and any graphical glitches don't turn into a actual latency for the gameplay, which is the most important thing. Finally, as regards the sound sector, it unfortunately seemed essential and devoid of treble, unable to make the best of the apocalyptic scenes that characterize the game.


Tested version PlayStation 4 Price 39,99 €


Readers (32)


Your vote

World War Z is a zombie-based cooperative shooter that effectively captures the most spectacular scenes of the film and catapults us into four different scenarios, as survivors armed to the teeth and determined to escape the invasion of undead that it is ravaging the largest cities in the world. As with any co-op shooter, the fun is directly proportional to the presence of friends in the group with whom to share the experience, replaying the same scenarios at gradually higher degrees of difficulty and unlocking the many skills and the many weapons used. layout by a solid and interesting progression system. From this point of view, the competitive modes represent a welcome but not fundamental extra: the derivative but well-tested mechanics of Left 4 Dead and an accessible selling price, adequate to the contents of the game, take care of consolidating the offer.


  • Some very spectacular moments
  • Nice progression system
  • There is also a competitive sector ...
  • ... but the campaign is completed quickly
  • Derivative gameplay dir poco
  • Some technical uncertainty
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