Everyone’s favorite free to play zombie shooter, Dead Trigger 2, has released yet another update. This one is a bit smaller than the previous one, but has a lot of new content for players, including 50 new game play zones, new African environments, and rebalanced zombies. There’s also, of course, the bug fix here and there.
Madfinger Games has also announced some new content coming soon, where players will get a chance to fight the undead hordes in the People’s Republic of China.
The update is available for free for anyone playing the game, or anyone who wishes to download this FPS thriller.
Dead Trigger 2 is a technical spectacle. Madfinger took what was an okay zombie shooter, made it look better, control better, and improved the gameplay too. You can’t teach a zombie new tricks, as the game’s still somewhat similar at its heart – but it’s just a better game.
Yep, this is still about shooting waves of zombies in a wide variety of levels, now all over the world. The game can be rather grindy – there’s lots of missions with very similar goals, and really, it’s all about taking out zombies one way or another. The game randomly notifies that the zombies are getting stronger, seemingly to spur players on to get more powerful weapons just because. Still, the missions all make more sense, especially in the story missions, as there’s just more context to player actions. Then, the random missions are just that: random missions to get coins to get upgrades and replenish the items.
The touchscreen controls, a reviled part of any mobile first-person shooter, are actually quite solid here. Perhaps it was a deal with the devil, or just a year-plus of work to make touchscreen controls work properly, but this is the best-controlling mobile FPS, period. Playing with the touchscreen is an acceptable option! Of course, there’s gamepad support – both MOGA and HID gamepad support were available that I was able to test. The controls are fully customizable for any preferred button layout. Navigating the menus with the gamepad is a bit unwieldy, though. As well, disabling auto-fire and enabling aim-down sights controls isn’t automatic, it needs to be configured in the pause menu, though for those who want to play like that, hey – go for it.
While I want to believe that Madfinger are just technical wizards – and their ability to make good-looking games does help – their ability to get actually-working cloud saves through their custom login system (which does carry over from previous games) is that they might have practiced black magic to get it working and that I am now cursed for having used it. It carries cross-platform: I’ve played on iOS and Android with the system.
Dead Trigger 2 can be a bit of a free-to-play grind, but really, it’s far from the worst kind of grind – I’d rather be shooting zombies while waiting for wait timers to end than just, well, sitting around and watching paint dry. Plus, the game is so well-made that it’s hard to complain.
File this one under “Seriously, Android gamers?” There’s an outrage â€“ if it can be called that â€“ over the new game from Madfinger, Dead Trigger, having dropped from $0.99 to free. Nothing in the game itself has actually changed, with it being supported by in-app purchases, and it’s still $0.99 on iOS, it’s just free to download now. People are apparently hopping mad about this switch, enough so that Madfinger felt compelled to comment on it on their Facebook page.
Now, I will admit that no one likes having something they spent money for being devalued. That’s a hypothetically fair position. However, we are talking about $0.99, not a $59.99 game, or even a case of something like Band Together on iOS which launched at $4.99 and went free days later. Seriously. As well, Madfinger did this because the piracy rates are reportedly “unbelievably high.” So, if people want the game for free, Madfinger’s giving it to them, with the hope that the tradeoff between giving it away (and making it possible to get in-app purchases) will wind up working out for them. Whether or not piracy is the sole excuse, this shift is happening, and the $0.99 price was a perfect setup for this.
There’s a reason why this kind of shift is happening â€“ it’s because of the fact that there are people so cheap that they would do anything to avoid even paying $0.99 for a game. The excuses for piracy in other media segments, like the music and movie industries which many people feel are corrupt at least hold some value in a Robin Hood sense, if Robin Hood was about getting free music instead of giving to the poor. But this is essentially depriving an independent business of a handful of coins instead of paying.
This refusal to pay for apps â€“ by piracy or just a love of free things â€“ has been an economy created by the actions of consumers. While some individuals may feel slighted by it, we’re all affected by it. At worst, we get to figure out if we would enjoy experiences by paying nothing before the game suggests handing over money, and Madfinger are quick to point out that Dead Trigger is desinged to be free-to-play, not “freemium” where a paywall (actual or practical) hinders progress, and that even they on the team play without IAP. Still, it’s there, and on Android, it’s going to be how they make their money off of their game. Indie developers may make games for many reasons, but they’re still businesses. They still have to find ways to bring home the bacon, and the market is forcing developers to get creative, and sometimes do things out of self-interest like this.
Shadowgun finally reached Tegra 2 and up devices late last year after its initial iOS release. Madfinger Games, the developer of the Gears of War-inspired third-person shooter where cover plays an important role, has mentioned bringing multiplayer at some point to the game, and it appears as if it will be coming, just not as an update to the game as expected. The multiplayer Shadowgun will be a separate release for Android, entitled Shadowgun: Deadzone. It will include 8 characters, 4 levels, and several game modes including the standard standbys deathmatch and team deathmatch.
The downside to this announcement for pretty much literally all current Shadowgun players? The game will be a Tegra 3 exclusive. The only Tegra 3 device currently available is the Asus Transformer Prime, so pretty much anyone who has played the original single-player game on Android won’t be able to play it on their current devices. More Tegra 3 devices will be announced at CES, so new Android users will get to enjoy the cover-based shooting.