Zombie Grenades Practice VR – A Virtual Reality puzzle game that’s much harder than you’d expect.
Zombie games have always held a special place in my heart – there’s something to the idea of killing massive quantities of humanoids that are ravenously chasing you. There’s tons of ways to kill them – shooting them, beheading them, trapping them in a hallway and unleashing a comically insane amount of gas cannisters burning them to a crisp. Sometimes, more is not always better however. Sometimes, its better to do one thing really well. As far as Zombie games go, that’s exactly what Zombie Grenades Practice does.
I’m a simple man, and maybe I have a bad habit of judging books by their covers. Initially, I kind of expected a wave shooter except, you know, grenades only. Instead I was met with a very interesting puzzle game that challenges my arm, my (abhorrent) ability to throw stuff accurately, and my mind. And occasionally my patience on the harder levels. One of the big things that was apparent very quickly in this game, compared to many other VR games, is the sense of difficulty. Some games don’t bother making themselves too difficult, instead focusing on whatever sort of VR experience they’re presenting. No need to make the player suffer under twenty attacking enemies when they can more easily dismember four enemies at a time, right?
Let me just be clear and say it: This game can be extremely difficult. Not only do you have to figure out the puzzle, but you’ve then got to throw the grenades perfectly where they need to go without running out. It’s hard to do.
Now, that level is one of my favorites so far. In a game about killing zombies with grenades, you’d think you’d always have grenades… right? Wrong. In this level here, there are a bunch of landmines all over the place. Your objective is to hit those landmines with rocks at just the right time to blow them up and take out as many zombies as possible. The rocks can obviously directly take out the zombies, but you certainly don’t get enough to try to clear the level that way.
Those like me with low ceilings may want to be cautious. I put two small holes in the vaulted part of my ceiling playing this game, but that’s kind of my own fault considering I’m playing VR in that particular room. On that note, however, I am very glad to say that the game definitely supports underhanded throws, and in my most recent testing of it – very well. Initially there was some issue with it, however, the last time I played I had no issue and could get the grenade up good and high with a good hefty underhanded pitch. Frankly I could have been doing it underhanded this whole time, but well, like I said I have terrible aim. You’ve got to go with what you know in these cases.
So while I hate to spoil this, I’ll say it’s not the only thing like it in the game – but this thing with the train was really, really cool. I had no idea this was over there, previously I had been almost stuck on this level because there’s a zombie in the right corner that is almost impossible to hit with a rock. Then I wondered what that panel was and if I could use it. Sure, I could, but it didn’t do anything. Then I followed the cabling in the game and, well, I just tried it. This is the original clip of me trying it to, you might not be able to tell from my face but I was very perplexed at the whole thing.
That additional puzzle that changes the map is basically the easiest one as well, ones in later levels require you to hit/destroy multiple objects which have varying effects – mainly zombie killing effects though.
This is one of the levels that has frustrated me the most. The way the grenades bounce is really cool… trying to get them to bounce exactly where you need them to? Not so much. That’s kind of the fun with it. As you can see, I did a pretty good job of almost eliminated myself – which is not a way to win.
I still managed to take out the friendly soldier though, losing myself points. That’s all those soldiers are for is something you have to try to ensure you *don’t* kill. Which I usually did a pretty good job of – however with those bouncing grenades you never know where they’re going to go. Maybe with more practice I’d be better at them.
The game has some really well detailed and interesting interiors. As you can see above, there’s good reason to look around. There are also collectibles… I didn’t realize it at first because they’re pretty well hidden, however a tooltip does tell you about them in the loading screens.
The mechanics always seem to be evolving in this game as you progress through the levels. This was a really cool thing in one of the slightly later levels I played. I say slightly because it’s not even halfway through the game I don’t think – I haven’t been able to beat it yet honestly. Like I said, it’s challenging both physically and mentally – so I guess it’s fair to say it’s good and long enough of a game that I don’t expect it to be something you finish in your first playthrough, or even in just a few.
That being said, more levels are something I hope to see in this game in the future. I haven’t played them all yet, but I know that when I finally do I’m going to be left wanting more.
This was really funny when I made the gif, not so funny when I was playing. I was like… oops! I grabbed the pin. It’ll be fine though right? Grab the grenade and BOOM! Nope – it was an impact grenade, and I touched it when it was live. It was funny in the end though.
Now, I do want to say, as much as I enjoy playing this game, I did run into two fairly major issues while playing it. Nothing that can’t be solved however. The first was fairly long loading times – which seemed to be worst the first time you load up the game. If you need to reload a map, it’s almost instant, but opening it the first time is a bit lengthy. I suspect I’d be able to mitigate this personally if I were to install the game on my SSD. The other issue was, at least in the build I was playing, the “next level” button never worked. I had to go to lobby and then load into the new map. Which sounds kind of annoying, but it really wasn’t bad. Going to the main menu room and selecting a new map is a quick and easy experience. It wouldn’t be fair to write a review and not mention those issues, however.
All said and done, I really like the game. It’s got zombies, it’s difficult, and it has fun physics especially with the bouncy grenades (as much as they’ve annoyed me even!) I normally don’t comment on price, because well… it’s an $800 headset running on a $2000 computer… you don’t get into VR because its cheap. That being said, at $12.99… Unless you hate zombies or despise the idea of throwing grenades, I don’t know why you wouldn’t pick it up. Zombie Grenades Practice on Steam
Thanks for reading! If you want to see more, you can find my Twitch stream at: twitch.tv/crimsonBZD – I play virtual reality, and a wide variety of games. Fun and friends are more important than playing like a pro. This article is just a glimpse of what I and VR have to offer. I plan on making more virtual reality videos and articles for you to enjoy. Thanks to my girlfriend @ChelzBZD for editing this and a huge shoutout to @Kitsuga_Gaming and Kitsuga.com, thanks ya’ll!
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