Red Dead Redemption won the hearts of many gamers this year when it released to great review scores and managed to sell a horse-cart load of copies to boot.
While DLC packs have been released since launch, the one pack that the game was sorely missing was a taste of more of the single player action. Instead of doing something boring, Rockstar took a swig of their “screw-it” bottle and decided to release an entire DLC pack about zombies.
We put on our brave-man underpants and ventured into the wicked wild west to see what all the zombie fuss was about.
Firstly, if you were hoping that you could finally just get your hands on some more of the same ol’ Red Dead Redemption single player, then you may find yourself disappointed. Thing is, you won’t be disappointed for long when you realised that there is more to the Undead Nightmare DLC than just more of the same. It’s Red Dead Redemption, but it isn’t… let me explain.
The story in Undead Nightmare will run you around 6 hours and takes place near the end of the usual story in RDR, *which will not be discussed due to spoilers* but the Undead Nightmare pack is selected from the main menu and runs completely separate from your RDR progress and saves.
Undead Nightmare is a completely different world, with its own atmosphere and its own rules, so be prepared for something different. In a world where the dead have suddenly started to rise and towns are being overrun, things change… they have to change.
As John Marston, you will roam the very same map you have before, but in a bleak world where money means nothing, towns are all but deserted, ammo is scarce and a strange alternate reality has come upon your poor gunslinger. You are, in essence, now playing a western survival horror of sorts, and its pretty awesome.
You will interact with many of the characters from the RDR campaign again, but this time under very different circumstances in a world-gone-crazy plot that is delivered by the same kind of cutscenes, animations and voice acting that we already love. The majority of your time will be spent clearing out towns to create safe havens (where you can then quick travel to, and sleep – not to mention it the sun magically comes out) and you will also spend a lot of time in the early stages clearing out towns and cemeteries of hordes of zombies.
If there is one thing I need to emphasize… it’s that the zombies in Undead Nightmare are no friggin’ joke. While the idea of playing RDR with zombies might sound like a good laugh at first, be prepared to turn-tail and get the hell outta there when you see the hordes coming. They are rough, tough, mean and only killed with fire or a shot in the head. Once you have been surrounded, be prepared to get your butt handed over to you in a swift fashion as they will knock you down and beat on you with no mercy.
Along with zombies, all of the wildlife are on the undead side of things too, and if you thought the idea of cougars was scary enough, think about zombie cougars… and bears… and more. You will however, also find yourself pleasantly surprised by other cool additions to the game, including some mythical creatures and some of the greatest horses to ever grace a western ever.
The presentation has also taken a turn, with the entire menu being changed in its appearance to better suit the undead theme. The map is all yellow and harsh and the music is all sorts of strange. I also really enjoyed the effort put into the zombies, as their voices are a very frightening mixture between normal moans, deep growls and louder echoes.
Multiplayer also get a bit of a boost with some additions, notably one of the coolest modes you will play in Red Dead Redemption, called Undead Overrun. You and your buddies have to work together to take on waves of zombies, while also opening coffins to extend your time as well as reload on ammo. It’s frantic and a boat load of fun to hear your buddy screaming like a girl, only to turn around and see him booking it over the landscape with a huge horde of zombies hot on his trail. Really great stuff.
For the price of 800 MS points or around R75.00 ($10) Undead Nightmare is a complete bargain, and a really fun one at that. The best part is that by changing the world around the DLC, you are getting a new experience with Red Dead Redemption, rather than just more of the same.
If you loved Red Dead, get this pack, even if you think you had enough of the standard setting, it’s something different.
Final Score: 9.0
Rockstar have treated RDR fans to an insanely creepy and fun DLC pack that is well worth its money and great for both single and multi player gaming.