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Zombies, Run!


Break the tape

Product: Zombies, Run! | Developer: Six to Start | Format: iPhone | Genre: Shooter | Players: 1 | Version: US | App version: 2.0
 
Zombies, Run! iPhone, thumbnail 1
The biggest obstacle that most runners face is motivation. Well, that and the "wall".

Whether you're a veteran marathon runner or a rookie pavement pounder training for your first 5K, the temptation to skip a run and settle in front of the telly box for the evening is difficult to resist.

In Zombies, Run!, North London-based development / motivational team Six to Start provides joggers with all the inspiration they need by sending hordes of ravenous zombies out to eat them.

Take that, Fitbit!

Run for your life

The Zombies, Run! setup is very simple: install the app on your phone, pop in a pair of earbuds, queue up a favourite workout playlist, and start running.

Once you're off and jogging, the audio adventure begins. In the Zombies, Run! serialised story, you step into the blood-spattered shoes of a survivor in a zombie apocalypse. There are no virtual buttons to hit or shotguns to fire, mind. To 'win' at Zombies, Run!, you see, you simply have to scamper along the streets and collect items along the way to rebuild your base.

IAPs explained
In addition to the main story chapters, Zombies, Run! offers a few DLC add-ons.

The second-season Season Pass will cost you $1.99 / £1.49, and grants you access to the 40 Season 2 missions.

For $4.99 / £2.99, you can download the Season Pass Plus, which gives you all 40 Season 2 missions and all 20 side-quest missions. These quests can be purchased separately in the Sidequests pack for $2.99 / £1.99.

Finally, the Race Missions Pack will give you three training missions for 5k, 10k, and 20k runs for $1.99 / £1.49.
Like the maker of Burn Your Fat With Me does, the creator of Zombies, Run! tricks you into actively wanting to work out by offering up an episodic storyline.

Sure, you could just sit down on the sofa, pop in your headphones, and shake your iPhone for ten minutes to dupe your smartphone's accelerometer into thinking you were running, but that defeats the purpose of the app.

Stretching is for sissies

After lacing up my Nikes, I queued up my first episode of Zombies, Run! and chose a Final Fantasy-inspired playlist.

When the opening chords of 'Don't Be Afraid' started playing through my earbuds, I couldn't help but smile as I set off around the rural streets of my neighbourhood.

The story was delivered convincingly through adequate voice acting, while the additional zombie groans and small-arms fire sound effects enabled me to get fully immersed in the gritty world of Zombies, Run!

I still felt a bit, well, 'safe' running in broad daylight, however, so I tried the next mission on a treadmill with the lights off.

Despite feeling rather silly jogging in a dark basement, I was appropriately scared at points thanks to the compelling narrative at the heart of Zombies, Run!

Warm-downs

In between runs, you can use the resources you collect to rebuild the ruins of Abel Township. This doesn't add much to the gameplay of Zombies, Run!, but it serves as an enjoyable way to measure the progress of your runs.

If gathering resources isn't your thing, you can also download the Zombies, Run! training programs for 5k, 10k, and 20k runs.

Truth be told, I've not quite got the level of fitness to run a 10k in the name of a game review. But if you're a hardcore fan of The Walking Dead looking to run your first race, you'll fall in love with Zombies, Run! from the very first wave of walkers you leave in your dust.
 
Zombies, Run!
Reviewer photo
Matthew Diener | 24 April 2013
Serialised horror stories and serious fitness come together in a way that few would think possible in this oddball fitness app
 
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