What could be simpler than killing a zombie. You dodge, you pull the trigger, and the whole thing passes in a flash of raw instinct and undead guts. Easy.
Anyone can win a zombie battle, but it takes smarts to win a zombie war. Zombie Blast Crew is packed with details to consider, judgements to make, and elements to prioritise. Here’s our guide to getting it right.
How the game works
Zombie Blast Crew is built on a familiar gameplay loop. You have to compete missions to earn loot and XP. You use this loot to level up your gear, weapons, and characters, while climbing the XP ladder unlocks new game features.
The missions themselves involve salvaging supplies, rescuing hostages, and simply killing zombies against the clock, among other things. In each level you’ve got a primary objective, which you have to fulfil, but also two secondary objectives. Fulfilling those earns you extra stars, which go towards unlocking a big chest full of goodies.
You can also acquire goodies in the shop, and you can earn them in huge quantities by playing competitive, leaderboard-driven event modes.
Meet the characters
Zombie Blast Crew currently contains five characters, with more promised in future updates. Each character has his or her own unique set of characteristics, made up of damage, speed, range, and health attributes. They each have their own weapon, too. Weapons and characteristics can all be upgraded.
Michael (unlocked from the start) is an all-rounder, with no major weaknesses or strengths. That makes him pretty useless in our experience (which is a weakness in itself?). Like the other characters, he has a unique special ability – his gear cools down more quickly when he kills zombies.
Bill (unlocks at level 6) is a biker with a shotgun. Everything else about him conforms to what we know about bikers: he’s powerful, slow, and killing zombies restores his strength.
Karen (unlocks at level 11) is a fast-moving, flamethrower-wielding, zombie killing machine. Her flamethrower doesn’t have great range, but it mercilessly incinerates anything that falls under its deadly gaze. Karen is quite flimsy, but to make up for it she gets a damage bonus when her health hits 50%.
Vanessa (unlocks at level 15) is another fast but weak character. Instead of a flamethrower she carries a rocket launcher, which causes lots of damage at a great distance. She’s even weaker than Karen, but her health recovers while she’s not being attacked.
Javier (unlocks at level 25) is average in some respects, with moderate pace and health, but his weapon is unfathomably lethal. It requires a short warm-up period, however – otherwise the zombies wouldn’t stand a chance.
In principle, certain characters are more suited to certain objectives and zombie types. In practice however the gameplay always involves a mix of close-quarters combat and shooting from a distance. Weapon power is the single most important attribute, followed by health.
Meet the zombies
Zombie society is much richer and more diverse than you’d expect, with at least ten distinct personality types occupying the battlefields of Zombie Blast Crew.
Plain: an unflatteringly labelled zombie variety that makes up for its unsophisticated behavior with sheer numbers.
Runner: a red-panted zombie variety that specializes in running and attacking.
Toxic: a toxic zombie that carries around a green cloud of lethal fumes. Best avoided (though this applies to all zombies).
Housewife: a kind of zombie that throws knives at you, in just the way a housewife might if she were also a top assassin.
Anarchist: a kind of zombie that throws bricks and seeks the dismantling of the state. Possibly.
Bomber: a zombie that has somehow got hold of some bombs.
Punk: see above, but for Molotovs.
Firefighter: less public-spirited than it sounds, this zombie spins around holding an axe.
Footballer: a zombie that runs in your direction hoping to injure you, like a footballer.
Obviously, different zombies call for different tactics. In particular, if there’s a projectile-hurling zombie standing on the sidelines and chipping away at your health, you need to take them out as a matter of some urgency.
Meet the gear
During stages you have three buttons to press other than your movement and fire buttons. These let you deploy your gear.
At first, you’ve only got three items of gear to choose from, but as you level-up you can modify your loadout to suit your inclinations. Here’s a rundown of the items on offer.
Medikit (unlocked from the start): a health pack that restores a percentage of your health.
Grenade (unlocked from the start): a little exploding pineapple-shaped object that inflicts massive splash damage. The grenade has a short cooldown time, and overall it’s one of the better items of gear.
Gun turret (unlocked from the start): A fairly underpowered automatic sentry with a long cooldown. Good for thinning out the swarm when you need to loiter on a particular spot.
Minefield (unlocks at level 3): a cluster of ten mines that you can throw down on a particular spot. Like the gun turret, these are handy for thinning out crowds when you can’t run away, but they’re not super-effective.
Airstrike (unlocks at level 8): now we’re talking. The airstrike is a powerful bombing run that kills or weakens several zombies at once. Great in a chase or when you’re camping in one spot.
Explosive decoy (unlocks at level 14): a clown toy that attracts zombies and then explodes, killing the curious undead fools. That’s the idea, anyway, but the decoy can be frustratingly ineffectual.
Stimpack (unlocks at level 21): a shot of pure immortality, the stimpack renders you briefly invincible and ultra-fast. Great for getting out of dodge, though you need to use it wisely since the cooldown takes a while.
Meet the coins
Coins are the most important currency in Zombie Blast Crew. You pick them up after killing zombies and get them from chests, though the most abundant source is event modes. You can also pay for them with gems in the shop.
Coins are used for upgrading everything – i.e., your characters and their gear. But you can’t use coins alone. You also need upgrade cards.
Meet the upgrade cards
You could have a trillion bazillion coins in the bank, but if you want to upgrade Kate and you don’t have enough Kate upgrade cards, you’re stuck. Everything has its own upgrade card, and the more a thing is upgraded the more cards you need to get it to the next level.
There are several ways to acquire upgrade cards – in crates after every stage, in larger crates when levelling up, by hitting star milestones, by visiting the shop, and so on. There’s only ever a random selection in the shop, though you can refresh the cards available by spending a gem per shuffle. They’re always random in crates.
- While every character can be upgraded, you get a very good idea of their potential at the outset. That is, Michael and his assault rifle never overtake Bill and his shotgun in terms of effectiveness, so you might as well pick a character you like and channel your efforts into them. For us, that was definitely Karen.
- Relatedly, don’t be tempted to upgrade characters and gear just because you’ve got the upgrade cards you need and the dough to make it happen. You’re better off saving.
- Some zombies like to chuck stuff at you. If you find yourself in a red targeting circle, get out, and in general if you see projectiles flying in your direction you should head straight for the zombie who’s throwing them and take him out.
- Never stop moving. As long as you keep weaving and backpedalling you’ll have a chance, but stand still for a second and you’ll be swarmed and out of health before you know it.
- Even if you’re not particularly motivated by leaderboards, it’s worth dipping into the events as often as possible. Not only are they good practice for the campaign stages, but they pay out huge rewards.
- If you’re not getting the upgrade cards you want through random crates, you can always buy them in the shop. The selection here is random too, but you can shuffle them by spending a gem, hopefully bringing the one you want into the mix.
- Don’t forget that you can watch ads at various points in the game to earn rewards or double the ones you’ve already earned.
And that’s your lot. With this overview of Zombie Blast Crew’s gameplay and systems – as well as some top tips – you’ll be standing atop a mountain of undead corpses in no time. Check out the game for yourself on the App Store and Google Play now.