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Video Game / Zombs

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The loading screen, showing a few top tips and a typical playing field.

Zombs is a free-to-play Web Game, which combines top-down shooter with the "battle royale" subgenre, popularized by Player Unknowns Battlegrounds and Fortnite.

Like in those, a 100 players or so jump out of a plane with parachutes, and land over an island littered with crates full of guns and ammo. The goal is to kill each other until only one (or 2, or 4, depending on the game mode) is left standing, while tension is raised by a ring of poison gas occupying ever more territory on the island. Certain weapons, like rocket launchers, flamethrowers or even Miniguns are far more available, while the top-down perspective alters the calculus on many of the familiar ones.

See,, and for the other versions of this idea in the .io Game world.

Zombs provides examples of:

  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Cosmetics (be they outfits, parachute skins, melee weapon skins, backpacks, or sprays) can either be won at the end of the round, or bought with an in-game currency.
  • Advancing Wall of Doom: The barrier of poison gas, which acts exactly as a wall that moves at a certain time intervals. In between, it respects the arbitrary circle boundaries, without trying to seep past it like a normal gas would.
  • Allegedly Free Game: You can play the game for free as long as you want, though you'll have to watch video ads in between matches, and there'll be nothing putting you at a disadvantage in a match. However, the gems used to buy cosmetics and such accumulate slowly and paying money is often the only realistic way to get them. Moreover, some cosmetics can drop at the end of the match, but a so-called "battle pass" is needed to get the best ones.
  • All-or-Nothing Reloads: Zig-zagged. Automatic weapons are reloaded in this manner, but shotguns, revolvers and hunting rifles are reloaded bullet-by-bullet, and can be fired halfway through the reload sequence.
  • A.K.A.-47: Many guns simply go as a "Revolver", "Submachine Gun", "Rocket Launcher", "Assault Rifle" , etc. Others are a little more specific, like "SCAR", AK, AR, AWP, VSS, "Uzi" or "Deagle".
  • Annoying Arrows: Played straight for the Crossbow, but not the X-Bow.
  • Anyone Can Die: A player might be at full health and shields and collect all Legendary or Mythic weapons, yet still fall prey to a sudden ambush in seconds.
  • A-Team Firing: For automatic weapons like submachine guns, assault rifles and especially the minigun, firing roughly in the direction of a player who just went off-screen can still be worthwhile. At best, you'll wound or even finish off a fleeing player; at worst, your stream of bullets will discourage them from turning back and counter-attacking. Then again, veteran players can still circle around and suddenly flank someone who does that. Also averted in that the crosshair turns red when targeting even off-screen players, which allows for more precise sprays.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Rocket Launchers feel awesome when you first find them, but their slow rate of fire, slow flight speed and high potential to damage oneself in close quarters mean that they are not much good against anyone not caught unaware by them or unless you are using them in tandem with a sniper to corral opponents.
    • A Minigun is awesome to wield at first and can shred anyone within range. In practice, the spin-up time is more than sufficient for a skilled player to get out of range and let loose with an assault rifle. Since it can be fired for a long time, and automatically comes with a lot of small ammo, it can be tempting to start firing before you even see anyone, but that gives your position away, and allows for snipers to focus on you from just outside your sight range.
    • The same applies (to a lesser extent) to the Assault SCAR, which has explosive shots you can damage yourself with.
    • Crossbows also apply, as they shoot an easily-dodgable projectile that does only 50 damage. See Annoying Arrows.
  • Battle Royale Game: About a hundred players jump off a plane and fight for survival while a ring of poisonous gas restricts the playing area.
  • Boring, but Practical: Neither the assault rifles nor the SMGs are particularly interesting, and it is their hail of bullets that will be getting you most kills.
    • Sniper rifles and Deagles aren't particularly interesting either, but they are the weapon(s) of choice for skilled players due to their high shot damage.
  • Bowdlerize: Swearing is automatically replaced by *** in the chat. Averted by putting swear words into a string of words.
  • Color-Coded Item Tiers: White (Common), Green (Uncommon), Blue (Rare), Purple (Epic), Yellow (Legendary) and Red (Mythic).
  • Combat Resuscitation: In team modes, getting killed at first simply places you in a "downed" state, where you can't do anything besides crawling slowly to seek out allies, but your health bar is initially at 300, going down by 5 hitpoints a second. If an ally manages to revive you, you begin at 30 health. If it runs out, you are gone. The person who downed you gets the kill if it happens on its own; otherwise, it goes to the player who finished you off.
  • Continuing is Painful: In the Weapons Race and Crystal Clash modes, death is not permanent, and killed players respawn in five seconds, up until someone wins the race/the space battle clock runs out. However, once the round has gone on for long enough, most players will no longer have a hope of catching up with the leaders.
  • Crate Expectations: While some weapons and equipment can be found just laying on the ground or inside houses, most will be inside crates. Common wooden ones (and their variations in various areas) usually contain just one item that could be anything in the game, golden "Z" crates will usually contain one high-grade weapon or several low-grade ones, and green military and white "space" crates are somewhere in between. Ammo-only crates are self-explanatory.
    • While crates disappear into thin air once opened, they act as obstacles for both the players and their projectiles, and can absorb a few bullets before falling apart.
  • Critical Existence Failure: It doesn't matter whether the player is at 100 HP, 100 HP and 100 Shields, or at 3 HP: their other combat capabilities are the same either way.
  • Damage Over Time: The poison gas field erodes HP per every second the player is inside it.
  • Do Not Run with a Gun: Averted. Movement does not affect weapon accuracy, and not standing still is utterly necessary to avoid getting killed. Only those wielding Rocket Launchers might want to think twice about moving and firing: otherwise, one might accidentally kill themselves by launching a rocket right as they pass by a nearby tree/crate/picnic table, etc.
    • However, it is impossible to use healing items on the move, whether it's bandages/medkits or shield/hybrid potions. You have to stand still for the 2-5 seconds it takes to apply them.
  • Emergency Weapon: Each player's melee is their only option at either the very start of the game before they pick up anything, or if they happen to run out of all their ammo for all weapons. That melee is fits for those who just started out, but experienced players will usually swap it out for a cosmetic, like an axe or a telescope.
  • Everything Breaks: Most objects placed on the map break really easily. It only takes a few shots from any weapon to completely destroy a tree, for instance, and stone objects are only a little more durable. The houses used to be the sole, highly important exception, as they were completely unbreakable (though the objects inside them are), and couldn't even have their windows shattered. However, the later updates increased their destructibility as well.
  • Everything Fades: The dead players swiftly disappear from existence, leaving only whatever items they've collected behind. The destroyed environmental objects also disappear almost immediately.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: The Grenade Launcher launches grenades.
  • Friendly Fireproof: During Team games or events, players are immune from each other's shots.
  • Gameplay Grading: As soon as the match ends for you, the game takes your spot on the match leaderboard, number of kills and the time alive, in this order, to calculate the amount of experience gained from it.
  • Gatling Good: The Minigun; a Legendary unique weapon with a 100-bullet belt, 2-second spin-up time, and 2-second reload time.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: The default "weapon" of everyone, before they begin picking up proper guns. Unlocking melee cosmetics can replace it with something like an axe, or a telescope. Either way, it deals 18 damage per punch, which is actually higher than the damage from individual bullets of the weaker pistols/submachine guns, or the 10 damage inflicted by individual Cactus bomb fragments.
  • Guns Akimbo: Dual Pistols is one of the available pistol types, but which is closer to an SMG in effectiveness. Their rate of fire is still lower than that of an SMG, making them easier to dodge, but they can be fired for longer, and can deal more damage to a stationary player before they respond.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: All players manage to carry a maximum of five weapons of any kind note , regardless of whether it's five pistols or five Rocket Launchers. Moreover, there's the ammo, which can be carried in indefinite amounts. By the end of the round, it's quite normal for the last 10 or so players to carry +1000 Small ammo for Pistols and Submachine Guns, 700+ Medium ammo for Assault Rifles, several hundred units of Shotgun ammo, and 100+ ammo for Sniper Rifles and Rocket Launchers.
  • Hand Cannon: The "Deagle" pistol variant.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Explosive weapons can easily be a source of this, whether it's you getting too caught up in dodging enemy fire and accidentally firing the rocket into a nearby tree, or a common grenade bouncing off an object and towards you. For new players, this can happen in houses before they learn how windows work: it's possible to throw grenades and fire rockets into a window from outside and they'll just pass through, but doing the same from inside will result in them exploding/bouncing off as soon they hit the window pane.
  • Improvised Weapon: Some melee cosmetics are this. Telescopes are probably the most obvious example.
  • Improbable Weapon User: The players can provide examples of these, as they are able to wield weapons like a Rubber Gun that shoots bouncy projectiles or a Gift Launcher that shoots sticky bombs.
  • Insurmountable Waist-High Fence: There are wooden fences that literally seem waist-high from above, and yet absolutely do stop the players from passing through them. However, they can be broken with just a few bullets, or even a few punches.
  • Lead the Target: Has to be done in battles, since while bullets travel quickly, they are still real, physical objects that can be seen from the top-down perspective. In the battle between two players with assault rifles of SMGs/sniper rifles and a similar amount of health, the one who is better at leading the target usually wins.
  • Luck-Based Mission: You might immediately get an Epic AR or a Legendary SMG in the first crate you open...or you might get a crappy Common pistol, or even worse, a Bandage or another healing item that's not only useless at the start, but also makes you a priority target for other players wanting to loot it.
  • Missing Backblast: Rocket launchers do not produce any backblast. Averted for shotguns.
  • More Dakka: The Minigun is an archetypal example. Submachine guns can also offload a lot of bullets, fast. Exaggerated with the P90s and Vector, which can spray up to 24 rounds per second.
  • Multiple Life Bars: The shields act as a second health bar, once the player obtains them through drinking the corresponding potion.
  • Mutual Kill: Can happen. The player who dies first doesn't get credit for their kill count, though.
  • Non-Fatal Explosions: A rocket explosion from a "common" launcher does 90 damage, regardless of distance, so a full-health player can be hit head-on and (barely) live, while someone with full health and shields will withstand two hits and require a third one. Grenades do the same amount of damage, but are more convenient at tight distances, while cactus bombs are unpredictable, but are unlikely to kill a full-health player outright, unless they were thrown into a house and all bomblets ended up bouncing off the walls towards the player.
  • Non-Lethal K.O.: In the team modes, the end of the normal health bar simply sends the player in a downed state, during which they are unable to do anything besides crawling on the ground, and possess 300 health that slowly drains on its own. Allied players can revive them, though it takes 5 seconds of standing still next to them, during which they are wholly vulnerable. (In particular, both players can be easily hit with a rocket.)
  • No Plot? No Problem!: Though, in that matter it's little different from its inspirations. As in, literally none.
  • Random Drop: The airdrops of exclusive items, which come in heavy crates that take 5 seconds to unlock. Players are notified of their approach and the location of the upcoming drop on the map.
    • There was also a "Thor's Hammer" drop which also randomly drops, though presently it has been replaced by the "Trident of the Depths" drop, has currently been vaulted.
  • Randomly Generated Loot: The locations of the loot crates are fixed. Their contents are not.
  • Regenerating Health: Hybrid potions provide healing and shield gain over time, rather than all at once like the other healing items.
  • Rising Up The Food Chain Game: The Weapon Race mode, available on some days. All players begin it with a common pistol, and transition to revolver after the first two kills, then to another pistol, etc. The round is won by the one player who finishes the race, by getting two kills with a crossbow - a weapon so rare, it's basically impossible to find in the regular game.
  • Revolvers are Just Better: Averted. If anything, revolvers once were practically the worst pistol variant in the game, since they deal less damage per shot than Deagles, yet their fire rate is almost as slow, and far lower than that of other pistols, making it difficult to win a proper shootout with it. Later updates addressed that somewhat.
  • Short-Range Shotgun: While the pellet may travel a distance comparable to that of pistol rounds, the Spread Shot mechanic means that they rapidly lose effectiveness at even medium range, and their slow rate of fire makes anything but close-quarters combat highly undesirable. Averted for shotguns using the "instant fire" exploit.
  • Sniper Pistol: Deagle, and to a lesser extent, the revolver, are pretty accurate over their entire firing distance (which is still lower than that of assault rifles, let alone sniper rifles). The other pistols are semi-automatic and have enough noticeable spread to disqualify them from the trope.
  • Sniper Rifle: A weapon category, which uses Large ammo along with the Rocket Launchers, somehow. Having them as an active weapon automatically increases the player's sight range - a bonus that applies even if it's carried empty. Have five varieties:
    • Bolt-action rifle. Does the most consistent damage per bullet, but has to be reloaded after every shot.
    • Hunting rifle. Does much less damage than the bolt-action one, but allows for several shots to be fired before the player has to reload them all one-by-one.
    • Semi-automatic rifle. Can be fired in bursts, and is quickly reloaded by changing the entire clip, but does substantially less damage per individual shot than any other sniper rifle.
    • VSS. A full-auto rifle with good fire rate and shot damage, which is also reloaded by changing the clip.
    • AWP. Mythic-level only rifle, obtained exclusively through opening the airdrops. Variable (66-80) damage.
    • Dragunov. Mythic-only, variable damage (79-90) and deals slight knockback.
  • Smoke Out: There are smoke grenades, but the top-down perspective limits their usefulness. This shortcoming is somewhat mitigated by them continuing to function and expand the smoke cloud for a good 15-20 seconds. Same goes for Gassy Grenades.
  • Spread Shot: The way shotguns work in the game. The spread can be relatively narrow (pump-action shotgun) or extremely wide (tactical shotgun), trading range for close-quarters reliability.
    • This property also makes pump-action and assault shotguns the best weapons to fire out of the windows and doorways: their somewhat narrow but decently-ranged cone will catch any unwary player trying to peek inside, without opening the shooter to retaliation.
  • Standard FPS Guns: The game contains a load of weapons, roughly divided into pistols (common, dual, revolvers and deagles), shotguns (pump shotgun, assault shotgun and tactical shotgun), submachine guns (several types, including Uzi and Tommy gun), assault rifles (normal, SCAR, AK and AR, snipers (bolt-action, hunting, semi-auto, VSS and AWP), grenades (see Trick Bomb below) and unique "legendaries" - minigun and flamethrower, for instance.
  • Technicolor Toxin: The poisonous gas that regularly advances and shrinks the playable area is purple-colored.
  • Temporary Online Content: Played with. Along with the three main game modes, there'll often be a "unique" fourth mode available for 2-3 days. It may be a Zombie Apocalypse mode, 50 vs. 50 player battle, Weapon Race, Space Battle (essentially a complete clone of Diepio), or a Superpower mode. In practice, the game tends to continually cycle through these additional modes, so it's only temporary in a loose sense.
  • Trick Bomb: In addition to common grenades and smoke grenades, the game includes impulse grenades, reverse impulse grenades and cactus bombs. The former deal no damage but create a blue impulse wave that pushes anyone affected by it a good distance away, and so can be a good Emergency Weapon to create some room between yourself and the enemy (or to insert yourself into an opponent-held house for close-quarters combat). Reverse impulse grenades cause a red wave that pulls players towards the epicentre. Cactus bombs are cluster explosives that deal the normal grenade damage by themselves, but rely on the cactus bomblets to do most of the damage. Unless there are a lot of other players around, or you threw one into a house, they are unlikely to do too much.
  • Video Game Flamethrowers Suck: The flamethrower here might count as a "Legendary" weapon, but it still falls into most of the typical videogame pitfalls. It has the shortest range of all the weapons, cannot start proper fires in spite of most of the island consisting of grassland, and does most of its damage over time, while the player being burnt with it is not impeded in any way.
  • Wins by Doing Absolutely Nothing: Landing far enough away from the rest of the players allows one to spend most of the match just picking up whatever weapons and consumables you find, potentially getting to top 10 or 5 players before having to fire a shot.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: The Zombies mode generates zombies out of thin air, while the player teams are trying to kill each other around them. They are weak at first, but soon, the night falls, and they become faster and harder to kill.