Nation Red review by Honorabili
One Sentence Review:
“Smash TV + zombies = fun”
8 out of 10
While everybody knows Left 4 Dead 1 and 2, Nation Red offers arcade zombie killing action for the single player masses. The game consist of you being a woman trapped in a zombie infected quarantine area, with endless (depending on the game mode) hordes of zombies coming to eat your sweet flesh.
There are different game modes, the campaign which involves playing a series of missions (which is basically like training/tutorial mode for me) and the free play mode and its variations. That’s basically the game mode I recommend playing as it offers an online ladder high score table in the style of old arcade games to see who is the champ.
You basically run around in a limited area blasting away at the damned with a variety of pistols, SMGs, and rifles and assorted weapons. There is an XP bar next to your score that shows you how far you are proportionately to level up and earn an upgrade. You can set the game to give you a finite upgrade path but a level cap or make it have unlimited leveling for your avatar but the upgrades will come at you randomly. I find that more challenging and funner, every time. Upgrades vary from self regeneration, faster fire rates, higher DPS in different combinations, damage reduction, special attacks, special ally summons, booster item drop modifications (drop rate, quality of spawns, variations on what items will do), and so on.
Not only is there now still the Free play mode which has been slightly altered but they added Barricade survival mode which also has a ladder high score table.
If you enjoy shooting endless hordes of flesh eaters with the constant stress of being under siege then this is your game. The developers update this game at least once a month, usually making it into a different game because of rule/item changes so this keeps the game fresh. The game has a sheer level of destruction that will bring a smile to any pyro’s face. They keep adding new guns every month and that is a sweet pleasure. I give Red Faction a Fun Factor score of 8 out of 10 with variations to that based on how the latest build changed the game.
The game starts out pretty simple with the difficulty upscaling itself every 5-7 minutes in a linear path. Since the game gets updated often, the game becomes easier/harder depending on the build that month. You really don’t have control over this so that hurts versatility but it modifies the difficulty factor. I would say the Difficulty Versatility for this game is a 6 out of 10 because of the variation on the game rules but your lack of control as to what the developers do to the game.
I got this game via Steam for $10, although it’s sometimes on sale on there ranging from 3-7 dollars as well. For the amount of classic arcade fun the game provides, it’s worth getting at that price definitely. As for Value, Nation Red gets a score of 8 out of 10.
Because of the rate of build updates this game gets and the fact that it’s fun in general to blow away those freaking zombies, this is a game that you can come back to over and over again. I have played the game in some builds to the point where it took 50 real life minutes for me to finally die and I mainly die because I get braindead. However, that’s not the case anymore and they stepped up the difficulty/score generation rate, so it still makes me want to come back to it after 6 months of ownership. I give Replayability a score of 8 out of 10.
The sounds for the guns are great, although the sounds for the zombies are kind of generic. The explosions sometimes sound kind of muffled so in general Sound gets a score of 7 out of 10.
The music the game comes with will drive you insane eventually because it loops relatively fast and it’s never ending. What I do is turn it off and put on a fun playlist that will keep my energy high and won’t let me get bored of hearing the same 1-2 minute loop of the same thing over and over and over and over and over. Yeah, you get it. Music gets a 4 out of 10.
The game looks rather gloomy as it has this nasty yellow dirt look to it but that’s fine because there is carnage all over the screen within a few minutes of playing. Eventually, most of the screen will be red covered in zombie residue. The graphics look decent for a game put out by a small studio. I give Graphics a score of 7 out of 10.
The game never really crashes as the engine is solid. The game never refuses to launch, even if you force it to while it was downloading an update for it. It’s stable as a mountain, so Stability/Reliability get a score of 10 out of 10.
Simple controls keep you focused on the game. You move around with WASD and shoot stuff with the left mouse button. You use grenades with the right and press E to do a body roll. ESC pauses the game any time you want and you activate the level up option (which pauses the game too) by hitting space. You can force lock the weapon you’re holding by using F. There’s really no need to remap the controls as the default really work already. I give controls a score of 10 out of 10. Get ready to put in some wear and tear on your mouse though. =P
This game runs rather well on most gaming PCs although occasionally the game engine will hickup and you will experience a slight lag, although the game is single player offline. Because of that glitch, the game loses points although it can run on most machines. Performance gets a 7 out of 10 until they fix that bug in the game engine.
My history with this game:
I got sick of playing Left 4 Dead so I thought I’d give the Nation Red demo a try. After half an hour I had already bought the game because the game can be pretty addictive at times. For the price, you really can’t go wrong. I recommended it to various people and they all have fun playing it so far, so you might want to give the demo via Steam a try, just for shits and giggles.