Shoot the Zombirds is a charming Hallowe’en themed target practice/wave defense game that is doing extremely well in Google Play and has been recently been updated with a few new in-game items. Players have to protect their pumpkin patch from being pecked apart by zombie birds by shooting them down with a crossbow. The overall-clad Pumpkin Boy has only a limited number of arrows, and zombirds only have to get away with a few of the pumpkids before players fail, but luckily there are a bunch of power-ups and upgrades that can be earned over time to aid the cause. 

Graphics and audio

Android Central

Shoot the Zombirds adopts a Tim Burton style with wirey, exaggerated characters, creatures, and setting. Even though it’s all done in 2D, the artwork is spectacular and the animations are smooth and convincing. The continually shifting colors of the background are really great, though purposefully distracting to add some difficulty to gameplay. The only real eyesore are the banner ads, which are a bit annoying when used in conjunction with IAPs. At least there aren’t any pop-up adverts.

As for audio, the spooky soundtrack amply suits the wacky atmosphere of the game, and the ongoing trash talk by the main character never seems to get old. The gurgling squaws of half-rotten birds are impressive, too. 

Gameplay and controls

Android Central

Starting off, zombirds only have to make off with two pumpkids from one side of the screen to the other in order to finish your game, but that number can be bumped up if you get the appropriate upgrade.

Firing the crossbow uses a pull-and-release mechanism that feels similar to Angry Birds. The gameplay stands very much apart however, as the physics are distinctly different, targets are different sizes and speed, plus there’s a wider range of angles in which one regularly plays. That said, Shoot the Zombirds offers some unique challenge while still feeling familiar.

Speaking of which, you earn coins for saving pumpkids and dropping special skullbirds. Those coins are what you spend on new upgrades and consumables, but as usual with free games, you can also buy coins straight-up through in-app purchases. There are also vanity items available, such as a zombie outfit included in the latest update.

Though zombirds come in waves, players really just have to last as long as possible. There are challenges to meet, which can provide players with extra coins and crank up their score multiplier between rounds. As of the recent update a few weeks ago, there are detailed stats available which keep track on how many birds you shoot, accuracy, and total playtime.

Pros

  • Excellent art style
  • Challenging gameplay

Cons

  • Banner ads

Bottom line

Shoot the Zombirds is a really addictive, polished game with a unique flavor. For a free game with ads and IAPs, it’s not that obnoxious about the revenue model. Even if in-app purchases drive you nuts, it’s really satisfying landing clean shots against tiny zombirds, and the ongoing challenge of getting through more waves with new upgrades is a constant attraction.

 
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