Zombies, Run! App Review
//archive from March 20, 2012
I just got back from being chased by zombies, and boy am I tired.
Joking aside, the Zombies, Run! app is a brilliant idea that made its way into the appstore through KickStarter. It achieved massive success, with $72,000 in donations which surpassed its goal of $12,500. And I can understand why.
The essential idea of the app is to provide motivation for running by simulating a zombie attack. Through the use of short audio clips interspersed in a playlist of songs, the app perfectly simulates the dangerous situations that it inflicts on the runner.
The audio clips are organized into missions that range from about 25-30 minutes, depending on the length of songs in your playlist. Afterwards, a couple of guys operating the radio come on to discussion the comings and goings of the surviving township, Able.
The first mission starts off in a helicopter, but it is mysteriously gunned down near Able township. As the zombies begin to decend on the crash site, you must run as fast as possible, as the Zombie Alert message kicks into gear. Seemingly random points in the game spawn Zombie Chase mode, which differenciates itself from merely a glorified audiobook.
Zombie chases force the runner to pick up speed or drop all of their virual goods that they picked up along the way. As the game progresses, you pick up virual items, like a shirt, medicine, or books, to resupply Able township. And averting a zombie chase allows you to keep them to distribute to the various buildings in the township.
As each building in the township levels up with more supplies, the more missions you unlock. So it behooves you to avert the zombies at all costs, to keep your supplies intact.
The voiceover work for all of the characters in this game are fairly superb, though I doubt anyone is getting an acting award. Disappointingly, the voice that recites the virual item collected is not good, considering its volume is low and hard to understand sometimes. But I suspect that the developers did not want to distract the runner, especially since they can just see the items collected after the run.
Most of the things that are missing have been addressed by the developers, like RunKeeper integration, multiplayer, more missions, and celebrity voiceovers. But right now, it is a fantastic app that really motivates a casual runner into getting out there for a great run.
Even the price maybe a high for a mobile app, it is certainly worth it, especially considering that all new missions will be included. I would recommend this app for all runners and walkers alike. Just becareful out there. Zombies are everywhere!