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Subject: Review of Zpocalypse - Breakout rss

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Bo Ejdesgaard
Denmark
Odense NV
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Hi all

Been following Zpocalypse for awhile and I'm very excited about the game. Looking through the pages I stumbled upon this P&P teaser of the game. So yesterday I managed to print it out at work (what else is work for? ) and tried it out a couple of times at home. Here is what I feel about the game and its mechanics.

Note: I judge each factor with 1 to 5 stars, 5 starts being the highest rating.

Playing pieces
This is just a P&P game so obviously the playing pieces are not as good as in the final print. That said, I really like the board. That is also one of the factors that has drawn me to Zpocalypse. It looks nicely detailed and really gives the feel of an apocalyptic world. The same goes for the equipment, survivors, and item cards. They too have that apocalyptic feel to them. The zombies I won't comment - but the real sculpts look nice.

Rules
First, I find the rulebook to look inviting. I like the art and the use of icons to reduce text load. However, IMO the rulebook like the Zpocalypse rulebook needs a major overhaul to make the rules stand out more sharp and less confusing. I literally needed to read the rules several times to try and figure it out only to grasp that they are quite simple at the end. This should definitely be improved.

Gameplay
I tried the scenario four times, lost every one of them only getting a bit close to complete it once. I found it very hard to combat the zombies with the stick and shield. Hit on 5+ with 1 die and hit on 6+ with the other are hard odds! and 5 kills then seems very far away. I often found myself overwhelmed quite early.
I then tried to constantly run from the zombies, but that didn't last for long. It was more like peeing one's pants to keep warm - the feeling doesn't last.
Finally I tried to go to a corner and try to reach 5 kills as quickly as possible to upgrade the weapons. That was a moderate success, but 1 round of miserable die rolls and that strategy failed.
The only option I now have left to try to find a hallway with only two adjacent squares and try to build up weapon strength. Otherwise I really have to rely on lucky dice. After I played I realised I'd forgot to use the two guys special abilities. But since I suppose I only can use them once, I don't know how much that'll help.
Besides of my difficulties, I found that the atmosphere of the game was great. I really felt like being trapped in a prison and trying to escape from zombies. That was great. However, I missed some more actions before it was the zombies turn! Two actions are quickly gone if one of them is spent on moving. Otherwise I find the game mechanics to be good.
All and all I don't mind that a game is hard to beat - that I like. However I missed some more opportunities with my two guys - I would especially have liked to be able to kill zombies when they attacked me. Otherwise I quickly felt bogged down.

Final verdict

Things I liked: The post apocalyptic feel, the playing pieces, overall good game mechanic.

Things I didn't like: The rulebook is confusing, too few actions when it's your turn.

All in all I really look forward to Zpocalypse. There's a lot of good ideas and art work in the game, so the result could be very good. However, I really hope they tighten up the rules before it is released.

Keep up the good work, and looking forward to the next scenario! laugh
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Bill Hartman
United States
Roseville
California
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This just sounds way too much like Last Night On Earth, honestly. I too liked the look of the game pieces and the sculpts, and originally backed it. Then I got LNoE and cancelled my pledge after playing LNoE and Growing Hunger expansion. Now I kind of wish I had backed Zombicide, since it is really a different type of game (more tactical, action, co-op).

I'll be interested to see the full game reviews and comparisons to LNoE when Zpocalypse releases.
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Greg
United States
Lowell
Indiana
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I played the game at GenCon this year and it was pretty fun. I don't remember all the details as far as to review it, but our group enjoyed it. The designer of the game and his wife were teaching us the game and taking us through it, so that helped in not having to deal with learning the first game from the rulebook, so I couldn't say how the rules are.

Interesting in the different characters you get and items you can have and make the best of them. Traps and barricades can be built. I haven't played LNOE, so can't compare it to that.
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Bo Ejdesgaard
Denmark
Odense NV
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Haven't played LNOE, but Zpocalypse appealed to me especially because of the coop play that can evolve to competition play. I also like the idea that your squad can evolve. I would be nice if they worked towards making linked scenarios so that you could play small campaigns and such.

Note: I finally managed to beat the scenario yesterday! I used my above mentioned tactic to find a corridor and hold the line until reaching 10 kills. I succeeded with some lucky die rolls and using both squaddie's special abilities. Killing on 4+ with both dice really helped, but I still nearly died a couple of times. I had to go through all three search locations and the last one caused me a lot of trouble. I had to search it three times until I found that damned key (must have been buried inside the poor wardens stomach or so) and actually had to flee once. But I succeeded and managed to escape the prison. But what did I escape to?
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