Gateway Games: Halloween Edition! – Zombie GamesOctober 23, 2018
Gateway Games is a series of articles aimed at helping you find the games that are right for you. Today let’s get into the spirit of Halloween and explore some zombie games.
I’ll be honest, I’m not the biggest fan of horror. However, I do love some horror-themed games. I’m a big fan of Arkham Horror and any game like One Night Ultimate Werewolf. I’ve played a lot of zombie games and wanted to recommend some of the best ones in case you are looking for some fun games to play during Halloween festivities.
First of all, I already wrote about Zombie Dice, which really is the best zombie party game. So I highly recommend having that for this time of year!
Now for some longer zombie games that require more strategy and time to play.
1. Dead of Winter
Dead of Winter is by far my personal favorite zombie game! It might even be my favorite cooperative game (well, mostly cooperative). This survival game really pulls at our emotions as humans, forcing players to make difficult moral choices and having to pick between personal objectives versus the survival of the group. Thematically, I feel like the game does an amazing job of making you feel like a survivor in a zombie apocalypse, forced to work with other random survivors. Event cards (Crossroads Cards) have huge story elements written in and each scenario has a beginning and ending in the rulebook to read before and after the game. The characters are interesting, with different abilities that tie into their archetypes. There are 20 different scenarios to play, 24 different secret objectives for players, 80 different Crossroads Cards, and 30 different characters to play, so the game is different every time. There is also a 1/8 chance that one of the survivors is a traitor, which can cause super interesting surprise interactions during the game. The game is the perfect balance of complexity, player interaction, strategic (yet emotional) decisions, and suspense.
Zombicide is a straightforward cooperative survival game, perfect for a group of friends looking for a simple way to work together to fight off a zombie hoard, or more likely, many zombie hoards. The trick is that you must continuously split up and find weapons, having less ammo than the number of zombies that keep showing up. The figures are well made with impressive detail, and there are ten different scenarios and ways to create your own!
3. Last Night on Earth
The most interesting thing about Last Night on Earth is that teams of players are pitted against each other – some play as zombies and some as small-town heroes. Each side has a special deck full of abilities to help along the way. Just like in Dead of Winter, characters each have their own special abilities that tie thematically to their character. In this game, the character cards have images of real live people, which I think is an awesome feature. There are also different game modes to play depending on how the group feels, such as different goals of survival, escaping, or rescuing someone.
I hope this helps people get into the Halloween spirit!