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Rock* knows how to have fun and with Red Dead Redemption Undead Nightmare, they produced a cracking addition to the Red Dead Redemption story. Released around Halloween in 2010, this DLC will give you a fright, after all, there are zombies involved...
Story: Set before the end of Red Dead Redemption, Undead nightmare starts with that spooky feel. Storms are crashing down all around and John Martson is at home on his ranch with his family, unaware of the impending doom. He first discovers something is wrong when Uncle comes back in the night and attacks them. John's wife is bitten by Uncle, who is then shot by John. There son appears, wondering what's happening, when his mother bites him after turning into a zombie! Being the gentleman that he is, John hogties both to protect them before heading out to find answers and a cure. What he discovers is hordes of zombies wherever he goes. But some people are still alive and with there help, the adventure is set. From Texas to Mexico, John has to fight the zombies and undead animals to find out what caused this undead plague, who caused this and how to stop it. With returning characters from the Red Dead Redemption game, you find out New Austin ain't what it used to be. Oh and watch out for the sasquatches, or you may become extinct, or them, it's up to you.
Visuals: Just like Red Dead Redemption, Undead Nightmare has stunning graphics. The opening cut scene with the storms rolling in over the plains is so natural and alive. With the eerie feel to the story, the atmosphere is intensified with added fog and mist rolling in, making you feel like your in a horror movie and adding to that waiting to be scared stiff. The zombies (there are 4 types with differing abilities) are creepy and when your out exploring and turn around to see one right next you, well you get the picture.
Audio: The soundtrack is notably more creepier to fit with the story and has a more rocky sound to it. The sounds the zombies make are 'interesting' as well. The music really goes hand in hand with the story quite well.
Gameplay: So with zombies, you need ways to kill them. In Undead nightmare you have your guns still but ammo is a hard thing to find. Now zombies don't like fire, so as a way to save ammo you are given a torch (think Indiana Jones torch and not a battery one!) The torch is handy as it helps seeing in the dark when out exploring. But it's main purpose is setting the zombies on fire, which is fun and saves your bullets. You still have a horse but now its an Undead horse. A normal Undead horse does look creepy but won't affect you in any way.
As usual, you have your side missions and challenges. Each town or settlement you come across will start a challenge where you help the townsfolk to clear out the zombies. Once that happens, that settlement becomes free of them. However, after so many in-game hours/days, the zombies will attack again and its up to you if you wish to go back and help them. This can be frustrating as you could be on the opposite of the map or furtherest away from that settlement. There are also graveyard side missions, where you have to burn the coffins and fight off the waves of zombies.
There are four main challenges to complete:
Undead Hunter which is killing different types of zombies and undead animals, including legendary creature, Chupacabra.
Tresure hunter, which explains itself.
Sharpshooter, which involves killing zombies various ways with your guns.
Four horses of the Apocalypse, which involves searching around for the four horses: Death, War, Pestilence and Famine and breaking them in. Each horse bring with it there own special power. Death casues zombies heads to explode when in contact. War has a fiery mane which sets zombies on fire. Pestilence stuns zombies. Famine is the fastest of all of them.
There are mythological creatures in this game, including a chupacabra, unicorns which you can ride and it has a rainbow trail behind with butterflies surrounding it! I mean, totally cool! Plus my favourite, the Sasquatch. In one of the early missions you are sent to kill them hiding in the forest. But you come across one crying and he asks you to kill him as he doesn't wish to be the last of his kind. It's up to you what you do though...
Added information: If you're a Rock* games fan you will get and understand this special nod to the fans they did. One of the trophies you receive is called 'Six years in the making'. This is obtained when killing a Sasquatch. Six years before Undead Nightmare was released, Rock* created GTA: San Andreas. Many people to this day believe there was a Bigfoot(Sasquatch) in the mountains of this game. However nothing was proven or official, but with this trophy, Rock* had a laugh with there fans to prove what a great studios they are. Note: In the French game, the trophy is called 'No need to seek anymore, CJ'. A really cool easter egg.
Conclusion: Rock* making magic again and for its price, it's a bargain. The graphics and gameplay are fantastic and really set the scene for the scary adventure John sets out on. It's a brilliant add on to one of the best games you can play. I highly recommend it but don't play it in the dark, as you don't know whose watching behind you. Oh and riding unicorns is kind of cool!
Red Dead UN or rather (Undead Nightmare) is an interesting but overall lacking expansion pack, the story starts off with the main character in the last game - John Marston, finding himself in a world of zombies - Sure I love blowing zombies heads to pieces as much as the next person but the game seems to have you perform tasks that are overall the same in every-way, such as resucing towns and saving villagers (Which requires you running around for a good 10 or so minutes giving ammuntion to them, just for the same reward each time 'This town is now safe and you can now sleep here!... Yay' )
Now onto the storyline, I loved the original Red Dead Redemption story, but the zombie one... while being fun or so for the first few mission characters, often repeats itself too much and causes the character to once again run around collecting things for poor rewards... Well sometimes a gun. The characters of the old story are brought into new light, but overall - they didnt seem to change much.
Overall - I give this game a 3/10 for its storyline (Doesnt really grab you and WOW you too often.)
And the gameplay - 4/10 (While being fun to run around and gun down hordes of zombies or lassoing them and dragging them around, way too repeative.))
(This review written by me and also posted on Freeola and ciao.co.uk)
Initially an expansion pack for Red Dead Redemption, Undead Nightmare has been released as a stand alone disc, so you can indulge in all sorts of cowboys vs zombies shenanigans without owning the original. One of the producers of Undead Nightmare stated that the game was what you might get if you took the set of a cowboy movie and used it to film a zombie film. Which is a pretty accurate description of what you get here. The game features many of the characters from Red Dead Redemption, and once again you control John Marston, reformed bandit. Only this time instead of chasing down other bandits, you're out to protect the land from the undead.
If you haven't played Red Dead Redemption, then you might not be familiar with the game's mechanics. Essentially, it's Grand Theft Auto with cowboys - and it is in fact from the people who made that game. You have the freedom to roam the countryside at will, either on foot or on horse, and undertake missions given to you by the various people you encounter. You can also defend yourself in all manner of ways - you can punch, lassoo and shoot things - the latter's your best option since shooting zombies in the head is the most reliable way to dispose of them. And there are plenty of zombies to kill - the towns are crawling with them, and the countryside's none too safe either. Part of the game involves clearing out zombies from towns and protecting the survivors. Which is fun at first, but it does get a bit samey after you've cleared your fifth town.
The story missions are far more interesting - although I would strongly recommend you play the original Red Dead Redemption first. Why? Because otherwise you end up wondering who the characters you meet are - they all know John, and John knows them yet you as the player might not have a clue who they are. This being an expansion pack, the graphics are the same as the original game - pretty good, in other words. Although the landscape has an overcast look to it, to fit in with the nightmarish tone of the game. The zombies are also suitably gruesome looking - they're fairly fast too, so it's easy to get overwhelmed. The game also throws in some other mythological elements - you get to kill yetis, lassoo a flaming horse and even ride a unicorn. No, I swear I'm not making this up.
Undead Nightmare is well worth checking out if you're a fan of the zombie genre - although if you haven't played Red Dead Redemption first, I'd recommend you check that out first. There's also a decent multiplayer mode though again, the original RDR's multiplayer is pretty good too. It's not as long as the original game, but it should take you a good few hours to finish, and when you're done, you can roam around the landscape to your hearts content. A good purchase if you like zombies, not so much if you don't.