Daymare: 1998 (Deliberate Zombie Horror Homage)

 

Ugh another "zombies are everywhere I must run and shoot them to survive" game? Yes, there are zombies and yes you will be running and, wait, yes you will be shooting at them, but there's more to Daymare: 1998 than rebooting the past. Everything about it sounds typical, but it's entirely intentional. Taking its cues very clearly, and very openly, from old-school zombie horror shooters and survival games, it's a deliberate exercise in playing homage while forging a path. Taking the "evil corporation causes a zombie and mutant freak apocalypse" plot, this third-person shooter places you in control of different characters as you unravel the story of why just why did it all happen to this poor little town? Daymare: 1998 is not hiding its roots. It lays them bare on purpose.

 
 

You need to look at what it says and how. The story has cool twists built upon what's come before. As for the details, weapon drops are set to a nearly perfect level, the puzzles are well-integrated, and the story flows beautifully through each character's separate path. Visually it's like a classic reboot without running the risk of derivation. So yes, Daymare: 1998 is supposed to be what it is, and for that it's great. It hits very hard at first until you get used to AI tricks and stage layouts. My only complaint is, aside from boss panic attacks, once you get used to enemies you can almost always call their actions. When a zombie first stands back up after a point blank shotgun blast, it will scare the shit out of you, but you learn to expect it. Still, a learning curve is typical for any game of this type and Daymare: 1998 is sure to make you collapse a lung more than once. Considering how open it is about its origins, it's solid. Plus, it's supposed to be like this fools.

 

Daymare: 1998 Official Steam

Written by Stanley, Devourer of Souls

Daymare: 1998
Invader Studios (developer), All in!Games, Destructive Creations (publishers)
4.5 / 5