Boardgame Review: Zombie Plague


zombie miniatures

I’ve become obsessed by zombies! This great little game is for all you zombie movie fans out there… not only is a lot of fun, but it’s a free download. There’s also a little community of zombie game fans adding new rules to it all the time here.

I downloaded the game, mounted the boards and cards on foamcard and card, and found some some old painted zombie and human miniatures which made a huge difference to the game atmosphere (told you I’m a game geek). If you happen not to have some painted zombie miniatures lying around (what’s wrong with you?) you can buy some via the game download page. The rules are simple to learn—the map is of a house and garage; the humans have to search all the search squares available for weapons, and the occasional nasty surprise, and the zombies have to kill all the humans. A simple action point system keeps the zombies slow, but since they keep coming until there’s four times the number of zombies as humans… the game captures the feeling of a slow but relentless zombie assault really well.

I played the zombies and my friend played three humans, two guys and a girl. Things got off to a big start when one of the guys ran straight for the car boot, discovered a ‘power drink’ and headed for the garage, only to be crash tackled by my first reinforcement zombie that appeared next to him on that side of the board and zombified him. Suitably chastened, the other guy and the girl, who had gone for the front door of the house, headed straight for the search squares. The zombies started piling in.
Eventually armed with the pistol and the rifle the two humans started dishing it out, but by this time the house was filling up with zombies. The girl was getting hemmed in the bedroom when she searched the cupboard and got a Surprise! card—an extra zombie—to add to her woes.

A few house rules on the spot always help when there’s a bit of confusion, so in our game we decided humans couldn’t make it out windows, used the extra Outta My Way! rules for dodging zombies, and decided that after an Oops! roll (a 1 on a dice) with a firearm, which usually means no more ammo and throwing the gun away, a human could keep it until finding an Ammo card and reload.

In the meantime the other human was being chased around the living room, occasionally stopping to use his ammo-less rifle as a baseball bat… he soon discovered a new tactic however, which was to back out of a door and then barricade the door from the outside… a pack of zombies lined up on the other side then proceeded to smash through the barricade to get at him.

The two humans met up near the garage and as luck would have the guy found the car keys in the boot and headed for the tyre-screeching escape… we then ruled he couldn’t escape without his girlfriend so, dodging a pack of zombies on the lawn and taking a couple out with her recently-reloaded pistol, she made it to the other side of the car and the two of them made a hasty getaway, no doubt glancing briefly at their zombified friend reaching after them in the rear view mirror as they escaped…

See how much fun board-gaming can be? Four double-barrelled shotguns out of five.

More: You can download my own re-work of the cards (with colour backs) here.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. anaglyph
    Nov 06, 2004 @ 17:30:07

    Yes, you are a geek Pete.

  2. UniversalHead
    Nov 07, 2004 @ 20:14:29

    I wish we had a new word that meant you were a geek, sure, but still had excellent personal hygiene, a good relationship, a relatively large group of friends, did other things that were actually quite non-geeky like playing in a band and scuba diving, and had many other interests apart from board games and blogging… ‘geek’ is so… narrow a definition of someone! 😉

  3. Javier
    Nov 08, 2004 @ 11:44:00

    That’s a cool game man! but i download the PDF files and the quality of the cards is not the best for print. No?

    Anyway, is a good game for we “zombie-geeks-fans” 😉 Excelent choice!

  4. UniversalHead
    Nov 08, 2004 @ 11:59:28

    Glad you like it! If you go to the mailing list here and join up you’ll find a set of cards with higher-res type. Alternatively, you can download my own re-work of the cards (with colour backs) here. Urrrr …. urrrrrrrr …