If you're looking for a great, low effort, entertaining way to waste an evening away with a group of friends then Zombies!!! just might be the game for you. The only thing you need (apart from the game itself, and friends to play with) is a big table... this game takes a lot of space. The premise is quite straight forward. You play one of the survivors in a town that has become overrun with the living dead who are hungrily hunting all the survivors down with the intention of eating their brains. You start out in the middle of town and need to get the hell out of there. It's every man for himself and you win by either being the first to get to the helicopter or by killing 25 zombies. This is a little harder than it sounds because the zombies are pretty tough in themselves and there are hundreds of them, and because your fellow players are going out of their way to hamper your efforts in the interests of their own survival. If you get lucky you might make it through the whole game without dying, but more often than not your survivor is gonna kink the bucket and you're back at town square again with a new survivor desperate to make his escape.
Inside the box you will find a deck of square town tiles, a deck of "beautifully" illustrated event cards, a big pile of red Heart Tokens, and black Bullet Tokens, 6 plastic "shotgun guys", 100 plastic zombies and a pair of dice. Each player starts out with 3 event cards, 3 Heart Tokens, 3 Bullet Tokens and a "shotgun guy". You start the game by placing the "Town Centre" tile in the middle of your table with each player's "shotgun guy" in the centre square. Separate the "Helicopter Pad" tile from the deck and shuffle it then place the Helicopter Pad at the bottom so that it's the last town tile, and randomly decided who goes first. Each player takes a turn, starting out by placing a town tile and the zombies that occupy it, thus slowly building up the board. Movement is controlled by the dice as is the fighting. After a player has finished his movement and done fighting zombies he rolls the die again and moves that many zombies 1 square in any direction. Event cards add an extra level of strategy to the game by allowing you to bend or override rules for a turn, or by causing things to happen to your advantage or your opponents disadvantage. Some event cards give you "weapons" if you meet certain criteria when you play them and these weapons stay in play until you die or have them taken from you by an opponents event card. Play continues with each player moving around the ever expanding city and racking up kills. When a player dies (by losing all of his heart tokens) he ends his turn, halves his zombie kill count, discards any weapons he has in play and starts over at Town Square with 3 Heart Tokens and 3 Bullet tokens.
If I had to pick one truly outstanding feature of this game it would be it's simplicity. Zombies!!! is a very easy game to learn and anybody can go from beginner to master in the space of a few short turns. This makes it an ideal game for those nights that you have new people around. Another nice thing about Zombies is it's flexibility. At the time of writing this are already 7 expansions, adding new Event Cards, extra town tiles and additional rules that enhance the game greatly. Have a look at this game at www.twilightcreationsinc.com
In my next post I'll have a look at the various commercial expansions and add-ons for this game