Trapped Dead Review
So, what is Trapped Dead? It’s a top down, third person, tactical zombie shooter, with RPG elements. Yeah!
You play the protagonist, Mike, a college kid, who is out for a relaxing drive with his lover, buddy, Gerald. Terrifyingly, they “are thrown into into the middle of a terrifying horror scenario. Having pulled over to a gas station near Hedge Hill during what was meant to be an enjoyable road trip, they are unaware of the virus which has already reached the gas station and its staff…”
“The story takes place in the early 80s in a small town names Hedge Hill near Kansas City, Missouri. The sowing of a new genetically modified type of corn caused the existence of a new virus which mutated through the natural food chain.”
– Is how the game explains itself.
On starting the game I was greeted by a groovy, grindhouse style comic book type intro.
The art is cool and well done, while the soundtrack is cinematic and sets the horror movie tone perfectly. The voice acting won’t be winning any Oscars but it does the job.
The main menu advises, well insists on completing the first 2 single player missions before unlocking the ‘host multiplayer’ function….a clever ploy to stop ‘noobs’ hosting games, I suppose. Challenge accepted.
The game begins with Mike and Gerald parked outside the gas station and it’s bad news already; Gerald has gone and gotten himself bitten by a flesh eating zombie. The fool.
So, he’s bleeding all over the car and Mike needs to go to the nearby hospital and find some help. The hospital is surrounded by hungry zombies though. Luckily, there’s a discarded baseball bat laying around to smash the undead’s ghastly head’s in with.
The graphics are very good. I like the style and implementation. The controls are WASD for camera panning and mouse clicks for actions and movement, so quite familiar. Except for a certain method of right mouse clicking and dragging to select characters and enemies, which I found strangely awkward, but that could just be me being crap.
The soundtrack continues it’s spooky horror movie feel and the general sound design throughout is excellent.
I began playing with a carefree, ‘Run n Gun’ type attitude that got me eaten alive pretty quickly. This game is all about tactics. There is a pause function bound to the space bar, which is used before setting up character actions, a bit like ‘Mass Effect’ etc.
So, after dying a few times, I became a lot more careful and began sneaking around ninja style, and only attacking lone or coupled zombs (can I call them zombs?). This was a much more successful technique. After a little while there’s a much needed save point; there is no manual save function, so these babies are like gold dust.
Mike eventually enters the hospital and must find a doctor amongst the many zombies roaming the multiple rooms and corridors to save Gerald (remember him?).
What ensues is a challenging and original couple of missions, involving searching the hospital whilst killing or avoiding the endless streams of zombies, finding items such as a pistol, ammo and health kits and eventually a doctor. I discovered the hard way that it’s best to meet the doc as soon as possible, because Mike can’t actually heal himself, his lame attempts at healing are basically putting a sticking plaster on a severed artery.
The doc has skills though and can restore full health.
The zombie romp then continues with Mike and the Doc paring up to then fight their way out the hospital and get back to Gerald, who really should be dead by now.
The characters can swap items easily, which is necessary for negotiating healing and arming effectively.
It took me 2 hours to finish the first 2 single player missions, during which I died and restarted over 9000 times. Worth mentioning that I played bug free too, which is impressive for such a new release.
There are a lot more missions / maps that can be played either single player or multiplayer and 6 playable characters in total.
I tried to find a multiplayer game to join, but at the time there were none being hosted, so maybe try to play with a friend rather than hope for random team mates.
I enjoyed playing Trapped Dead, it’s a well made game with a serious tactical element, which makes it quite unique in the top down, third person category, and the price is very reasonable too.
Trapped Dead is developed by Headup Games/ Crenetic and published by Meridian4
AMD 4200+ X2 2233 MHz CPU
ATI HD4670 512mb GPU
Windows XP SP3