"I don't know why I was special, and I didn't care."Dead Nation
— Jack Mcready/Scarlett Blake on his/her immunity
is a Shoot 'em Up
3 developed by Housemarque
. It was released on November 30, 2010 in North America, and December 1 in Europe, on Play Station Network
It's Next Sunday A.D.
following a global viral epidemic
and subsequent mass rising of the dead. Two survivors,
Jack Mcready and Scarlett Blake, are trapped in an overrun city, they've just run out of food and water, their last barricade has been destroyed by the zombies, it's dark, and Jack's wearing sunglasses. It's time to make a break for it.
Luckily for them, they're immune to the infection.
Players control Jack and/or
Scarlett from a top-down third person view not unlike Nation Red
and many other zombie shooters. In each level they must navigate a linear route filled with zombies, stuff that explodes
and other hazards. Along the way they can salvage armor and ammunition, as well as cash to use at weapon vendors in safe areas. You'll have large showdowns with hordes of zombies and super zombies
before reaching the level exit.
Dead Nation provides examples of:
- A.I. Breaker: The AI has no idea how to handle two traps next to each other placed just far enough apart that they won't explode if a zombie is in between them. They just stand there, slightly shuffling back and forth until one expires or you kill them.
- Abandoned Hospital: Marrow Hospital.
- Action Girl: Scarlett.
- Action Survivor: Both characters.
- Amusement Park of Doom: Midway through the park level is a small carnival area, replete with zombified clowns.
- Awesome but Impractical: The shocker. It fires a cool-looking stream of electricity to kill zombies...but it's inferior to the SMG in every way, despite being the last weapon you get.
- Boom, Headshot: Interestingly, though it is expressly stated these are zombies of traditional "Living Dead" variety, you don't ''have'' to shoot them in the head to put them down. Which is good, because headshots are kind of hard to pull off in a Top-Down View.
- Boring but Practical: Your starting semi-automatic rifle, when upgraded, remains an effective zombie deterrent up until the last showdown, when the sheer number of zombies finally renders its leisurely fire rate impractical.
- Captain Obvious: Clearly the Department of Survivor Security thinks that Survivors Are Morons, with PSAs like "This just in- fire burns the undead."
- Collection Sidequest: Find all the loot in a level for a score bonus. Find all the loot in every level for a Trophy.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Jack's flashlight and Laser Sight are blue, while Scarlett's are red- as are her jacket and skirt.
- Comic Book Fantasy Casting: Jack looks a bit like Hugh Jackman as Wolverine.
- Charged Attack: Your starting rifle can do this. It's effective against most enemies, and tends to inflict One-Hit Kill and Boom, Headshot on the basic shamblers.
- Crate Expectations: Not crates so much as military equipment boxes. Meaning they have a lid.
- Dead Weight: The Bombie. Don't stand too close. There are also fat regular zombies that take more hits then thin ones.
- Downer Ending: Whichever survivor you picked will decide they'd rather not end up as one of Dr. Morden's pet super-zombies and bites down on their cyanide capsule- only to reanimate and kill Morden.
- Easy-Mode Mockery: Playing on "Braindead" saddles you with a whopping 50% score penalty.
- Elite Zombie: Several types, such as an exploding fat zombie, a tall, lithe zombie that appears suddenly from manholes or conceals itself against walls before rushing you, a summoner that screams loudly to call hordes, a large brawler that can that does jump attacks, a midget zombie with a huge head that spits acid, and an even bigger brawler with blades for hands. To a lesser extent are "level 2" zombies, those that can take more hits then regular ones. These include fat zombies, soldier zombies, haz-mat zombies and firefighter zombies.
- Emergency Weapon: Nearly every gun features a bayonet. Yes, that includes the flamethrower. The ones that don't are big enough to damage zombies by sheer weight.
- Enemy Summoner: The aforementioned summoner zombie, with a head that resembles an opened ribcage. Upon sighting a survivor, it will let out a loud shriek that will summon a horde of zombies. It will do this repeatedly until you kill it.
- Everybody's Dead, Dave: Aside from Dr. Morden, the survivors never encounter another living soul.
- Every Car Is a Pinto: And you can use that to your advantage against the zombies.
- Exploding Barrels: But of course.
- Fire-Breathing Weapon: The flamethrower, of course. Zombies on fire flail about helplessly. Careful though, you can set yourself on fire!
- Foe-Tossing Charge: If the zeds back you into a corner, unleash the rush move and shoulder-barge your way to relative safety. Watch out though, the blade-fist super zombie does this as well.
- Foreshadowing: A large, muscular zombie is seen in the first level, jumping onto the weapon shop van, scanning its surroundings and then jumping away. You do not fight this type of zombie until midway through the game.
- Heal Thyself: Zombies will occasionally drop small (partial) or large (full) health kits. You can also obtain them from vending machines if you give them a good whack.
- It is explained in the scrolling main menu/loading screen PSAs that these health packs are, in fact, soda. Very, very healthy soda. It is not explained, however, why zombies are still carrying this soda or why it jettisons itself out of their bodies when they die, though.
- Hollywood Acid: Watch out for spitter zombies. They come in packs, spit gobs of damaging acid, and leave a large puddle of it on death.
- Hyperspace Arsenal: In the vein of classic shooters, Jack and Scarlett can each carry every weapon and throwable in the game.
- Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels: Braindead, Normal, Grim, Morbid and Undead.
- Infernal Retaliation: It's more than possible to set zombies on fire while they're less than a few feet away. It might not seem all that smart when they walk into you, though.
- Inconveniently Placed Conveyor Belt: Found in the penultimate level, complete with grinder saws and fire pits. Watch your step.
- Kill It with Fire: You have a flamethrower and Molotovs. Watch out for firefighter zombies though, they're fireproof.
- Land Mine Goes Click: Go ahead, it's not like they're smart enough to avoid it. You can upgrade them to be able to detonate more then once.
- Lightning Gun: The shocker, when fully upgraded it almost immediately kills any non-super zombie its lightning directly touches, including ones behind other ones, and it does small amounts of damage to the zombies it bounces off onto.
- Loads and Loads of Loading: While it's not bad once you're in a level, the Vita edition takes forever to load screens.
- Lost Forever: Be sure to loot car trunks before you blow them up.
- Ludicrous Gibs: Zombies gib rather spectacularly when hit by an explosive.
- Magikarp Power: The SMG. At first, its only use is killing trash mobs. Once its power is fully upgraded, it can mow down hordes of any type of zombie with ease.
- Metagame: Every zombie you kill helps your country compete in a world league against other zombie-killing nations. This is tracked in the main menu.
- Molotov Cocktail: Toss one to create a wall of extra-crispy area denial.
- Money Spider: Almost every zombie drops some cash, however small the amount.
- Night of the Living Mooks: And how.
- Nuke 'em: The survivors discover that the army was all set to nuke the city before they were overrun. All they have to do is push the magic button.
- Off Screen Teleportation: Hordes of zombies will often appear behind you in areas you cleared out only seconds before. they also pop out of small buildngs, trucks and buses when you draw near.
- Our Zombies Are Different
- Powered Armor: You begin the game with three different suits of experimental armor, and find improved versions in hidden containers as you progress. Each suit consists of torso, legs and arms and each component affords bonuses to two of three attributes: Strength (melee damage to zombies) Endurance (damage resistance) and Agility (movement speed). The endurance-focused suit, Armoshell, in particular makes the survivors look more like space marines.
- Science Is Bad: It's implied that a biotech Mega Corp. is responsible for the infection. Partway through the game the survivors make radio contact with a scientist named Morden who works for them. He initially appears to be on your side, but the ending shows he simply wanted to use the survivors' immunity to create new super-zombies. Why? Who knows.
- Shockwave Stomp: The brawler zombie can do this. Use the dash to avoid it.
- Shoot the Shaggy Dog: Everybody dies and there is no cure.
- Sunglasses at Night: Jack.
- Short Range Shotgun: Painfully so. But few other weapons kill as fast.
- Shout-Out: To Dead Rising, of course. The "Genocidiary" Trophy is awarded for 53,596 killed zombies. Getting every trophy nets you the "Romero Would Be Proud" Platinum Trophy.
- Smoking Is Cool: Jack again.
- Standard FPS Guns: Your starting weapon is a semi-automatic rifle with a Charged Attack. Guns available to purchase from the shop include a Submachine Gun, Shotgun, Flamethrower, Blade Cannon, Launcher, and the Shock Gun.
- Stuff Blowing Up: The city appears to be Made of Explodium, with Exploding Barrels, cars and just about anything else. You have a rocket launcher, grenades, mines and dynamite to facilitate this.
- Stripperific: Totally averted. Scarlett may be wearing a shortish skirt and a half-zipped jacket, but shes got armor and padding to the nines just like Jack.
- The Immune: Jack and Scarlett. Until the ending.
- Throwing the Distraction: You can toss a flare much as you would a grenade or molotov. Nearby zombies will be attracted to the light, leaving you free to devise some suitable demise for them. Like that exploding barrel you probably tossed the flare next to. Alternatively, put a couple of rounds into a car with a visible flashing red light. This will set off an alarm, but fear not, this will not cause zombies to attack you. This will instead cause them to beat the tar out of said car until it blows up, taking them with it.
- Video Game Flamethrowers Suck: While upgradable, it only does a fraction of the damage you'd expect. It does however, open the zombies up to further attacks.
- The flamethrower is an interesting example. While it is terrible if you hold down the trigger, it performs greatly if used in tiny bursts, slowing down almost every type of zombie and killing them in two puffs if you have it fully upgraded. In spite of this, it's better to just use other crowd control weapons or explosives when faced with hordes, as those are faster. Not to mention that the only thing worse than a zombie is a zombie set aflame.
- Who You Gonna Call?: The menu features a news ticker that alternates between updates on the meta-game and displaying PSAs from the "Department of Survivor Security."
- Zombie Apocalypse