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Video Game / Zombie Raid

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The title screen, and some gameplay.
"This night reminds me of the nightmare...a small village had a major catastrophe. Robbing graveyards and kidnappings occurred every night. And there was a villager who saw a horrific monster. Even the police found this unstoppable. My name is Edward Windsor. I'm a miserable detective. When I was approached about this case, I was uninterested in such ridiculous monster-hunting. But I was pressed for money and took the job reluctantly..."
Edward Windsor, providing the synopsis of the game in the title crawl.

A 1995 arcade Light Gun Game by Sammy Industries, which tells a grim and bloody horror tale. A village in 1918 England is being terrorized by the lord of a nearby castle, who has been robbing graves and abducting innocent people. Anyone who's taken back to his lair is never heard from again, and rumors abound that ungodly experiments are unfolding within the castle's musty halls. Further fueling these rumors are sightings of horrific monsters, and corpses that have come back to life. The local authorities are powerless to stop the twisted madman's experiments, and it seems nothing can stand between him and a world filled with ghouls.

Enter Edward Windsor, a private detective who's down on his luck. Despite having little interest in getting caught up in something as insane as monster-hunting, he takes the case for the sake of a much-needed paycheck. What follows is perhaps the most harrowing night of his life—armed with a pump-action shotgun, Edward must battle legions of undead monsters as he hunts them back to their source, wading his way through a knee-deep flood of terrors beyond anything he could have ever imagined...

This game is especially noteworthy for excellent (if bloody) hand-drawn visuals, Everything Trying to Kill You, and difficulty of both the cheap kind and the challenging kind.

Examples of tropes in this game:

  • Abnormal Ammo: Some of the weapon power ups include lightning-calling silver bullets and fiery incendiary rounds.
  • Anti-Hero: Edward Windsor, a self-claimed "miserable detective" who's Only in It for the Money.
  • Bittersweet Ending: In the end, Edward destroys the coven and its warped master, returning safety to the villages nearby. However, Edward's new friend Charles was killed when he was corrupted by the Big Bad, and Edward himself is resigned to his fate as "a miserable detective" as he trudges off to find his next case.
  • Big Damn Heroes: During the elevator ride during the 5th stage, a werewolf similar to the first boss drops into the elevator with Edward, necessitating him to blast away at the creature at close range to keep out of its reach. The werewolf seems invincible until the door opens and Charles, who got separated from Edward earlier, blows it away from behind.
  • Body Horror: This being a Zombie Apocalypse, it comes in all flavors. Special note must go to the Big Bad, whose skin is a mottled purple maze of tumors, sagging jowls, and a metal plate set in his skull.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Implied to be the case with Charles, whose spirit becomes helpful to Edward after his corrupted form is killed for the second time.
  • Brain in a Jar: Several brain-spine monsters are chilling inside jars like goldfish in a bowl in the lab of level 5. Their jars are bullet-proof, but they'll eventually break out on their own to attack Edward.
  • Clown-Car Grave: Almost literally. In the second level, you and Charles drive the latter's car to the Big Bad's castle, with the Big Bad's minions chasing you all the way. The number of thugs that pop up from each car seem to exceed the number of seats in a car.
  • Evilutionary Biologist: The Big Bad, who was carrying out his twisted experiments in order to "evolve the human race."
  • Face–Heel Turn: Charles ends up being converted to the Big Bad's cause, and boasts about his newfound nigh-immortality when he reveals his transformation. However, it's implied that this is a case of Brainwashed and Crazy.
  • Face-Revealing Turn: Edward Windsor does this at the end of the opening cutscene.
  • Fake Difficulty: With the number of enemies on the screen at any given time, the amount of damage it takes to kill some of them, and the way they can get an attack off with little warning, you're going to see the "Continue?" prompt more than once.
  • Faux Affably Evil: The Big Bad is mockingly polite as he invites you to his castle, refers to you as "pal," and outlines his motives before the final confrontation. All of these cultured mannerisms do nothing to hide what a twisted psycho he is.
  • Foreshadowing: In the darkness that fills the screen after Charles's Big Damn Heroes moment, you see a single red eye and a fanged Slasher Smile in the blackness. Later, after The Reveal that Charles was turned, he shows a similar wicked smile with his eyes turning red.
  • Gorn: Whether it's enemies exploding into Ludicrous Gibs after being shot, the general Body Horror of zombies, finding the mangled remains of victims, or seeing the results of the Big Bad's twisted experiments, there's plenty of Nightmare Fuel to be had.
  • Guide Dang It!: The location of the three crystal orbs needed to advance to the True Final Boss. Without memorizing the busts you saw earlier and knowing which to shoot in exactly the right order, you're doomed to the bad ending.
  • Haunted Castle: The Big Bad's lair, where most of the game takes place. It crosses over with Mad Scientist Laboratory in the later stages.
  • Have a Nice Death: Get to the end of the game without the three crystals or put in the wrong combination, you will fall to your death in a spike pit, and at your grave, the Big Bad will congratulate you for making it this far and taunt you about the arrangement of the three crystals before laughing at you.
  • Hostage Spirit-Link: Be careful on the trigger, or you'll lose as much health to accidentally shooting innocent people as you would to the undead hordes. This is especially annoying because many of them wear similar outfits to the bad guys.
    • One particularly cheap moment is with a girl hiding behind a gravestone: Since you're likely mashing "Fire" to destroy them, you're guaranteed to hit her unless you were lucky enough to break it on your last bullet.
  • Humans Are Bastards: The Big Bad thinks of the rest of humanity as "silly animals," and considers his mutation research as "improving and evolving" them.
  • It's Quiet… Too Quiet: Charles muses that there doesn't seem to be anyone around prior to the fifth stage's boss. Cue him being gunned down by a random Mook, only to rise up and reveal himself to have been turned into part of the Big Bad's forces.
  • Jump Scare: Several times throughout the game, complete with a Scare Chord!
  • Knight in Sour Armor: Edward Windsor's a grizzled private eye who only took up this case for the money. However, his friendship with Charles seems genuine, and he acknowledges that things will be safer for the villagers in the ending.
  • Made of Iron: Many of the zombies can soak up multiple rounds before finally going down. The Big Bad also deserves mentioning, as he takes a ridiculous amount of gunfire even BEFORE he's forced to resort to his Psycho Serum.
  • Mad Scientist Laboratory: In one of the later stages, you proceed through a creepy, machinery-packed series of chambers where it's implied the Big Bad was carrying out his twisted research.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: The Big Bad's means of creating zombies. Is it just warped science, or is there black magic involved, too? Charles post-Face–Heel Turn refers to being part of a "coven," and teleports into the room for the final battle with him. Meanwhile, the Big Bad himself refers to his zombies and mutants as the products of his "research," but glows with eldritch energy after drinking the serum that transforms him into a monster.
  • Monster Mash: You fight a lot of monsters from all across the horror spectrum, including zombies, werewolves, mutant bats, mummies, and self-roaming brains.
  • Multiple Endings: Depending on whether or not you were able to find all three orbs by the time you reach the Big Bad's lair—and shoot them in the proper sequence ( Red -> Green -> Blue) once you get there:
    • Rocks Fall, Everyone Dies: Fail to meet the above criteria, and you promptly get dropped onto a bed of spikes. Have fun plaything through this nightmare all over again!
    • True Final Boss: If you do meet the requirements, you'll be free to enter the Big Bad's inner sanctum and confront him for the final battle.
  • Mummy: In the catacombs of the castle, you'll encounter an entire host of bandage-wrapped cadavers emerging from coffins. They hurl their wrappings at you to attack.
  • Obviously Evil: Granted, he's not exactly pretending to be a nice person, but the Big Bad checks off a lot of bullet points for the wardrobe of a Card-Carrying Villain:
  • One-Winged Angel: The Big Bad downs a beaker of monster serum after you blast him full of holes, taking the form of a massive reptilian demon for the final battle.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: In this case, they're a group of beast-men wearing jeans who look like a cross between wolves and yetis. Oh, and they spit ectoplasm/acid/slime at you.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: Apart from their typical shambling gait and rotted appearance, they seem at least intelligent enough to use rudimentary weapons like stakes—which they also know how to throw at you. They know how to use guns, too.
  • Poison Mushroom: Usually destroying background objects reveals health and ammo powerups, but sometime you'll get a flask that says "Drink Me!" You lose health if you are dumb enough to do so.
  • Police Are Useless: Edward Windsor is a private detective, but it's said outright in the opening cutscene that the local police of the village are helpless to do anything about the monster problem.
  • Red Right Hand: The Big Bad has a rather pirate-worthy hook hand.
  • Sean Connery Is About to Shoot You: During the end of the opening cutscene, Edward Windsor swings around to point his shotgun at the screen.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: Edward Windsor seems to favor a pump-action over-and-under shotgun.
  • Schrödinger's Player Character: There's clearly only one protagonist, so who the hell is player two supposed to be?
  • Take Over the World: Why the Big Bad's performing all these crazy experiments. Bonus points for him shouting that the whole world is his right before the final battle.
  • Terms of Endangerment: The Big Bad calls you his "pal," even when it's clear he plans to kill you.
  • Torso with a View: Charles, after being shot by a random Mook.
  • To Serve Man: The Big Bad says as such when you first confront him:
    Big Bad: Tonight, we're serving a special dish. It's...'you!
  • Transhuman Treachery: Charles. It's implied to be a case of Brainwashed and Crazy, as his spirit give you some parting encouragement after you kill him the second time.
  • Turns Red: Every boss you fight begins flashing a bright cherry-red as they approach death...but be warned, they'll fight even harder. Before assuming his final form, the Big Bad's suitcoat becomes tattered with bullet holes as a sign he's close to going One-Winged Angel.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: With a title like Zombie Raid, how could it be anything else? It seems isolated to a local village for the time being, but the Big Bad expresses his intent to spread it to the rest of the world when you confront him.