Death Road to Canada – Xbox One Review
Sometimes you see a small snippet of gameplay from an upcoming game and you just know that you have to own it. Death Road to Canada is one such game and it’s satirical take on the zombie apocalypse genre means you should too.
Your mission is to survive long enough so you can reach the Canadian border within a fifteen day window. Now that might sound easy but we all know by now that nothing is as simple as it sounds when your facing down a horde of zombies. You’ll need to constantly loot shops and houses for supplies, fend off zombie add bandit attacks whilst making sure your clapped out car is kept in good enough condition to transport you to safety and with permadeath constantly gnawing in the back of my mind it’s something that kept me on my toes.
Before you start the game you can create a version of yourself in all your 8-bit glory. It’s here where you can define the types of skills that you think will help you on your way to escaping over the Canadian border. The choices you can make are huge and with eighty different slots available for you to create additional characters to bring along with you every trip is completely different.You can create a brilliant mechanic who can service any transport you use but they will be totally lacking in combat or how about a real meat head who lives for the fight but is utterly useless at everything else.
You will soon find yourself making life or death choices not only for yourself but for the good of the group. Everything you do can increase or decrease your slats and the stats of those around you. Picking the right person to complete a task can make the difference between survival or death and it’s these decisions that shape the game. Nothing is a given either and sometimes you won’t have the right person in your group to complete a specific task which is just as it would be in real life. It’s a great risk/reward system that sometimes feels a little harsh but not to the point where it becomes frustrating.
Each scenario you face is isn’t played out on screen, instead it’s relayed to you via a text message screen that pops up informing you about what is happening and what you need you need to do. If that all sounds a bit pedestrian for you don’t worry. You will find yourself facing off against the unrelenting zombie hordes a lot as you loot areas for food and other supplies. Ransacking supermarkets for food, ammo, gasoline and medical supplies are paramount to your survival and in short supply.
As you progress closer to Canada the choices you must make to survive become a lot grimmer. Nothing you hold onto will last forever and your supplies will dwindle as your group increases in size. You’ll soon be faced with making some harsh decisions about leaving party members behind but will you sacrifice them so your supplies last longer or do you keep them because their skill set in invaluable. The amount of zombies you face will also increase which begs the question of safety in numbers. No decision you make is clear and it’s one of the reasons Death Road to Canada is insanely repayable.
There is a great drop in/out co-op option which allows you to team up with a mate but they are really only there for one thing and one thing only and that’s to mash zombies. There is very little interaction going on between the second player and the other characters which is a shame. This could have been bisected way to mix things up with both players having to agree on a course of action or disagreeing and seeing what the consequences will be. More could have been done here and it feels underdeveloped.
Death Road to Canada’s mash up of satire, horror and very dark humour is balanced perfectly. Playing alongside a friend gives the game extra length even though they are just a bit player. It’s good to see a zombie game that knows how to take the genre and poke fun at itself and the genre in general. Thankfully this is one of those times when a game has exceeded my expectations and brought some much needed humour to the table alongside a robust playing experience.
Death Road to Canada is available now for £9.95
Review code supplied by Plan of Attack.