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Walking Dead: Survival Instinct Review

 
 
Welcome to our CHEATfactor Game Review of Walking Dead: Survival Instinct. We review the game and then factor in how the available cheats affect the overall game experience.
 

Reviewed on: PC
Developer: Terminal Reality
Publisher: Activision
Rated: "M" for Mature

 
CHEATfactor Game Review
by Joe Sinicki
Presentation 2/10 
The zombie apocalypse won't be pretty, and Survival Instinct captures that perfectly. Environments are flat, and come off as shoddy sets from terrible local theatre productions
Gameplay 2/10 
The saddest part of Survival Instinct is that there are some really interesting ideas at play here - but they're implemented so terribly that they're not just wasted; they're trashed and thrown away.
Lasting Appeal 1/10 
The lasting appeal from the game isn't how much content that's on the disc, but how long you can last banging your head against the wall in frustration.
Overall 2/10 
Awful. Terrible. Lazy. Disappointing. Unoriginal. I could go on for pages with adjectives that describe just how bad The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct is, but the truest word - wasteful.
CHEATfactor 6/10 
 

Last year, Telltale Games released a remarkable Walking Dead game. It was a poignant tale of loss, survival, love and the human spirit. It hit all of the right notes and felt like Robert Kirkman's comics have come alive.
This is not that game. In fact, The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct could be the farthest thing from TellTale's Zombie Opus - it's lazy, cheap, terribly designed and disappointing. This is the whoring of a license to the highest extremes, which is disappointing because there are some interesting ideas at play here - they're just executed so poorly and caught in a game that doesn't deserve them.

Whereas TellTale's Game draws its inspiration from the original Walking Dead comics, Terminal Reality is based off of AMC's much loved TV show. Set before the events of the show, you step into the boots of Daryl Dixon as he and his brother Merle make their way through a newly infest American south. At least, that's the idea. The game's logic and timeline is so screwed up that it's hard to follow. The game opens with Daryl, his father and hunting party discover the walkers for the first time. They're confused - -what are these things? Then in the next scene; the VERY NEXT SCENE, a member of the hunting party suddenly not only knows all about their shambling enemies, but how to dispatch them as well. Contradictions like this are common in Survival Instinct, and they're evidence that the developers gave up during the game's production.

"...which would be a great idea...if it were in another game."

 
   

Ok, so the story isn't up to par - at least there are sweet zombie brains to splatter right? Sort of. Survival Instinct is half first person shooter and half resource management game - -which would be a great idea...if it were in another game. See, you'll go from town to town in search of supplies like gas, weapons and food and you'll be given a choice of which route you want to take, with each one having its positive and negative aspects. Taking the highway uses less gas but you'll have less opportunity to get out and look for supplies, while taking the back roads will use less gas but you'll have plenty of time to stop for supplies. Oh and these travel sections? They're presented in the form of a map. Yes, a map.

Regardless of which route you take, you're eventually going to run out of gas and be forced to go into a small town to find resources. (and it usually has no bearing on which route you take). Each of these small towns looks like the one before it and you're goals are often identical as well. Go in, kill some zombies, find some Gatorade (seriously, there's a ton of Gatorade lying around, zombies must love PowerAde) and get back to the car to go to the next town. Of course, there are zombies wandering around and are it's your job to dispatch them at any cost. You can either sneak up behind them and stab them or just go all out and go in guns blazing. The later is supposed to be more risky and attract more walkers, but like most aspects of Survival Instinct, it disappoints.

That's mainly because the zombies in this game are so unpredictable and unreliable that it's almost funny. Sometimes a shotgun blast will alert an army of the undead, but other times you can shoot from five steps away and they just stand there as if nothing happened. Regardless, most fights with zombies go the same way - get into a shoving contest with them and then hit them in the head or shoot them with whatever weapon you have until they get knocked down. Which weapon you have makes no difference, they all sound the same and work exactly like the others. Combine that with the fact that the game has such unresponsive controls and you'll get an idea of how frustrating this game is.

"...you're frequently leaving people behind for no reason at all..."

 
   

The game also allows you to pick up other survivors throughout your journey and send them off separately to find survivors. They sometimes come back with weapons, and sometimes gas (if they survive), but more often than not, they're going to come back with a few random things and yes...Gatorade. The funny thing about all of this is that you're supposed to show humanity and care who you take with you and who you let survive, but since Daryl's car is so small, you're frequently leaving people behind for no reason at all other than to save space. So yes...the survival or death of certain people in The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct comes down to how well you can pack your car.

Survival Instinct also looks absolutely terrible in all aspects. Rocks are buildings often don't fully form until you get up close...so it's like you're in the matrix, and the game is filled with invisible walls. Oh, you're in a forest and you want to go over by that tree? Nope, you're stuck in this stream. Deal with it. The whole game also looks like it takes place on flat and uninspired movie set. Buildings and environments are flat and lack any depth. They're just there.

Awful. Terrible. Lazy. Disappointing. Unoriginal. I could go on for pages with adjectives that describe just how bad The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct is, but the truest word - wasteful. There are some interesting ideas here; ones that could have made for an interesting game in the hands of other developers, but instead we're given this garbage. There are so many other great games with zombies in them - hell, there's even another great Walking Dead game. Why waste your time here?

 
 
CHEATfactor
 
CHEATS USED: Freeze Zombies, Super Jump, Unlimited Items, more
 

If you absolutely must play Walking Dead: Survival Instinct, you may as well play it with the new trainer from Cheat Happens. With options like the ability to freeze zombies, max out all of your resources and inventory -- you're sure to be able to get the experience over with before too long. Hell, with the save and load position cheat, you're also able to zip closer to your goal and make the game even faster. 

What cheats do I want? I want t a cheat to erase my memory of the game. Or maybe just some aspirin to get rid of the headache it caused from beating my head against the wall.

 
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