Alien Zombie Megadeath review

The first time I ever really heard metal music was on the WCW Mayhem CD. It was an album comprised of entrance music from the various juiced “athletes” who worked […]

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"This'll learn ya to not touch my goddamn gym bag!"

The first time I ever really heard metal music was on the WCW Mayhem CD. It was an album comprised of entrance music from the various juiced “athletes” who worked for the now defunct sports entertainment company. The younger version of myself was a huge Goldberg fan, and the promise of getting not one but TWO Goldberg entrance songs left me little choice but to throw down my hard earned allowance money. Of the two Goldberg songs, the second and far superior was easily the song by a band called Megadeth. A killer name for a metal band if you ask me.

Looking back on it, my wrestling phase was completely dumb. My purchase was even dumber, as Megadeth is actually a really shitty band and two tracks before it was an Insane Clown Posse song. Enough said.

I should probably feel incredibly embarassed about copping to not only liking professional wrestling and Megadeth, but also paying real American dollars for a CD of wrestling music on an internet article with my actual name attached to it. But I don’t. 332 million plus people have seen this video…

There are a lot more stupid things occuring than 11 year-old me buying WCW CDs.

But with that long winded intro completed, I’d be lying if I said that the title of Alien Zombie Megadeath didn’t play a huge role in me buying the game on Steam (yeah, I actually buy these). Frankly, I assumed the game HAD to be some sort of tie-in with a Megadeth album. Like I said, Megadeth sucks, but the idea of piloting a little spaceman, tasked with freeing up some room on his space platforms by shooting the hell out of alien zombies covered in a neon-vomit sheen to Megadeth music sounded like a blast.

It was, and is still, a blast. No Megadeth though.

After I cranked up my own metal, what I was treated to was is a completist’s worst nightmare: 70-plus levels of arcade action, each with four medals to collect for meeting various level goals. It’s a nightmare because after about 20 levels the game spits in your mouth and touches your girlfriend’s boobs, or just gets really hard, depending on how hot your girlfriend is.

"My 5 bucks wasn't enough for you!?"

The difficulty leap is unfortunate as it comes at about the same time that most players will likely begin to get used to the games absolutely mind-numbingly awful control scheme. One would be safe in assuming that they will play the game in one of two ways: 1) by using a twin-stick shooter set up, in which the keyboard would move the player around with the mouse handling aiming duties or 2) the keyboard for movement and a fire button with bullets shooting whichever way the player is looking. Instead, players get two seprate fire buttons, one to fire left and one to fire right. Note that I never said there was a button to fire up or down. I didn’t say there were buttons for those, because their aren’t any. It’s horizontal shooting only for this spaceman. Yet lots of enemies move diagonally or up and down.

Doesn’t take a calculator to do the frustration math there.

All of this is only compounded by the fact that a good portion of the game’s medals cannot even be unlocked until after the game hits its bi-polar difficulty shift. First the game is a breeze and then it gets silly hard, then after a while on silly hard players unlock the UFO tool that allows UFO medals to be unlocked. Yet the game somehow forgot to tell me this (or I missed it, due to metal fatigue). And really, unless players are already going to push on through the game due to a masochistic high-score lust, they’ll probably give up on the game before that even happens.

But that was never really the kind of player the game was going for in the first place, so that really is less of a knock on the game and more just a disclaimer. Players already attracted to punishing high score games ala Trials 2 or N+ should find similar addiction fodder in Alien Zombie Megadeath. Those not so interested in self-flagellation may want to look elsewhere as the sharp difficulty curve and questionable control scheme decisions make it pretty damn hard to get to the fun arcade game underneath. But if the game’s seemingly endless levels and countless medals to collect hits a nerve, that’s a lot of hours to lose for $5 bucks (ed’s note -$2.49 if you bought it on the Holiday Sale).

Pictures of the game, holy crap!

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