The Walking Dead Our World

The Walking Dead: Our World Game Review

The Walking Dead: Our World (or TWD Our World for short) is an Android/iOS mobile game based on the American television series ‘The Walking Dead’. The TV series was debuted on October 31st, 2010. The TV series is based on the original image comics graphic novel written by Robert Kirkman. It tells a story of a police officer Rick Grimes, his family, and a group of other survivors who find themselves in a fight for survival following a zombie apocalypse.

What is The Walking Dead: Our World?

The Walking Dead: Our World is a popular location-based augmented reality mobile game that puts players in the middle of the action. Turning the real world into a zombie-infested world, where it’s up to the players to fight walkers (zombies) in their own surrounding.

Players can fight side by side alongside their favorite character from the TV series like Rick, Daryl, Michonne and others. In act, every fight you take on in TWD Our World will be accompanied by one or more (if it’s a Raider Outpost) of those characters from the TV series.

Players will be able to unlock more characters (dubbed ‘Heroes’ in the game), weapons, perks, weapons mods and other valuable items that will help them survive against more demanding higher-level engagements.

As I mentioned earlier, this is a location-based game. This means that although players can fight against walkers around their area from within their own homes, at some point the fighting possibilities will end, and players will need to get out to the outdoor area to clear up infestations (multiple highly rewarding fights), fight in raider battles (fight alongside multiple heroes of your choice), obtain loot from supply crates, create shelters, rescue survivors (in rescue missions and complete various missions.

Among the most important key gameplay aspects is the ability to take on rescue missions and bring those survivors to shelters that other you or other players have built. There are different types of shelters, each type rewards players with different types of cards: weapons, heroes, perks or coins.

Both the player and all cards are upgradable. Players collect cards by fighting walkers in the streets, finishing missions and challenges. Upgrading cards require obtaining cards of the same type and then using coins to complete an upgrade. Upgrade cards improve the stats of the card. For example, if it’s a hero card, upgrading means improving the Power, Damage, and Health of the hero, allowing that hero to deal more damage and survive longer.  Hero and weapons also have modifications, for a weapon it calls mods and for heroes it’s called talents.  For example, you can have weapon mod that gives you a 10% chance of double damage on each shot. For a hero, it can be a perk that allows survivors to be able to resist walkers 1 second longer during rescue missions.

Everything in The Walking Dead Our World, whether it’s upgrading a card, unlocking talents or modifications, healing your heroes—all have costs. There are different types of currency available:

  • Coins – used for upgrading cards
  • Gold – used for buying packs in the shop or upgrade shelters
  • Energy – used for entering fights
  • Health pack – used for healing your characters (injured characters can’t fight)
  • Power up coins – used or unlocking weapon mods and hero talents
  • XP – obtained when upgrading cards and finishing different types of missions, needed for leveling up your character
  • Safehouse build coins – there are four different types: A = Armory, S = Shelter, T = Trading Post, W = Warehouse.

I might not be 100% accurate with the terminology, just so you know.

Each weapon and hero cards are useful against specific types of enemies. This means that before engaging a fight, you need to choose the right hero/weapon combination that enables you to deal more damage and successfully win that fight. Failing to do so, might make you lose a fight, so make sure you pay attention to the type of enemies you are fighting against and adapt to it by selecting weapons and heroes that match that type of threat.

As the user levels up his characters (using XP), more cards will be available for the player to be discovered. Some features like “Raider Outposts” (Level 6) and PvP Battles (Level 7) are unlocked at a certain level.

Cards also have a rarity: Common, Rare, Epic and Legendary, with Legendary being the most prestigious card and its hardest to obtain. The lower the rarity of the card, the more likely you’ll be able to obtain it. To give you better chances of obtaining a higher-rarity card, make sure you bring up more survivors to a safe house of a specific type that gives you cards of the type that you want to obtain a higher rarity card off.

An “Armory” type of safe house will give you weapons, “Shelter” will give you hero cards, “Trading Post” will give you coins and Warehouse will give you perks.

Players can also join a group of other players in the social tab. By doing so, players are able to socialize with other players in chat, complete challenges together, get specific rewards by completing missions for that group (e.g. coins when upgrading shelters) and even use a flair object to allow other players to temporarily help you in a specific local fight.

Most of the time, the player will be roaming around the area where he or she is at, looking at the Google Map, trying to locate areas of interest. Those areas of interest are marked on the map using different icons and if they are far away, they will be marked with a light column so you can easily see them. The color of that light also suggests the type of engagement or rarity. For example, the previous week was “Carol Week”, and that type of engagement was signified using a blue light which signifies the “Rare” rarity of Carl’s hero card.

The great thing about The Walking Dead Our World game is that Next Games continues to keep the game fresh and dynamic by adding more challenges, events, and competitions to make sure players always have something new to do and will continue to engage with the game.

For example, the previous week, Next Games created a ‘Season 9 AR Competition’. It’s a photo booth competition where “users snap a picture of Carol rejecting their proposal and share it  to TWD Our World on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #TWDCarolAR and one lucky winner will win a full years subscription to AMC’S Walking Dead Supply Drop and 5,000 Gold in TWD Our World to spend on whatever they like. This also includes other time-limit events that encourage players to get out to the streets and complete those rewarding activities.”.

Oh, by the way, there is an option to add blood & gore (in the game’s settings) but I turned it off. You can also turn off street names and turn the music on and off to your liking.

The Walking Dead: Our World screenshots

Let’s take a look at some screenshots from the game.

Fighting in Augmented Reality

I picked up the game The Walking Dead: Our World because it has an Augmented Reality gameplay feature. In fact, I deliberately bought my OnePlus 6 ARCore-enabled device in order to be able to play this game and similar games of this type, what I couldn’t do using my iPad.

It’s important to mention that although this game is marketed as an AR game (as part of the game’s description), AR isn’t required to play it. You can play it solely on-screen like you do with any non-AR Android or iOS mobile game and that’s fine.

When engaging in a fight, you’ll have an option, if your phone supports it, to engage the fight in augmented reality (AR). You’ll see a white button morph into a green button with a text saying “AR Available”.

AR Available button

It’s worth mentioning that  AR is only available for activation before a battle begins.

The AR fight feels good overall. It’s less exciting than I wanted it to be because there are limited type of enemies and the fights feel the same. It’s unlike Pokemon GO or other types of fantasy location-based AR games where you always discover new types of characters to engage with. In that aspect, the game felt very repetitive, but not in the positive sense of the word.

At some point, I did get bored and I thought about stopping there, but as I know myself, and these type of games, you should give the game some time, maybe you are missing stuff. Indeed that what happened. I think it was a mistake from the developer side not promoting some of the things that users can unlock as they progress. For example, I had no idea that there are new types of fights like Raider Outposts or PvP battles, only after I leveled up my character to Level 6 and Level 7. The thing is that it takes quite a few hours to reach those levels, so some players might not get to that point where they learn about those type of features within the game.

The dynamic activities are shown in the game and players are notified about them the moment they launch up the app, so you can’t miss those. I’m sure there is plenty of information online, but some players just stick to the game, like myself.

The shooting in AR is very simple. You tap to shoot your gun (players in the first-person perspective) and flick up to throw a grenade.  I wish there were more type of options in the fight though.

I’m pretty positive there are more things that I’ll be able to unlock, and due to the nature of the game, I won’t be able to cover all things in this review, as more things are being introduced to the game even as I write these lines. I had to review it at some point, and that’s what I did.

Overall, I did enjoy the shooting in the game, both in AR and in non-AR it felt responsive, you feel the difference between the weapons when shooting, the sound effects are good, and I liked the collapsing animation of the walkers when they get shot.

Fun Factor

As of the time of writing, I am at Level 7 and I’m still looking forward to the new things I’ll be able to unlock at higher levels. I wake up every day with an anticipation, knowing that the developers are injecting new activities into the game and there will be more things that will keep me motivated to go out to the world and fight walkers. It’s similar to other games like Bungie’s Destiny, where people farm the world and work towards finishing activities in order to level up their character and have a chance to unlock epic and legendary gear. It’s addicting, I won’t deny that, but what’s important is that I enjoy it. Until which point, I am not sure.

I do think it was a smart move building a game on top of the TV series because then you can have your group of loyal players who will play the game, those who are fans of the TV series as well.

Having said that, more location-based games are coming out like Harry Potter: Wizards Unite and Ghostbusters World. Those games might offer more depth and more complex and varied content that will make players more engaged and want to take part in the world, more than they do in The Walking Dead Our World.

I personally prefer a fantasy location-based AR game and having the option for multi-user raid battles out there in the streets, and not just on the ground, but on buildings, in the sky and even underground!

There will come a moment when I won’t be able to spend hours outside playing all of these games altogether and I’ll need to prioritize just one or two at most. whether it will be The Walking Dead Our World, Ghostbusters World or Harry Potter: Wizards Unite (or another title), I don’t know. I will need to try them out, once they are released, to see whether I will be motivated to continue playing TWD Our World or switch to a new game. All of these titles that I mentioned will have augmented reality (AR) gameplay feature.

I personally prefer vibrant and interesting looking fantasy characters to fight against than zombies and this is the reason why I think that I will need to make different priorities once Ghostbusters World is out. I am a big fan of the movie, and I see myself putting quite a few hours into that game as well unless it won’t stand out to my expectations and I’ll decide to not play it.

Until those games come along, I continue putting most of my time in playing one location-based AR game, and this is TWD Our World. Although it’s not 100% answer my taste for a location-based AR game, I enjoy playing it, whether I am at home, at the bus, as a passenger in a car, while in the streets, etc.

Even with all hours invested, it still that things are just getting started. Soon Next Games will add “Battle Leagues” to the game (“Fight and defeat other players, win trophies, and climb up the tiers to become the best!”), which is the PvP aspect of the game, where you will be fighting other players. This can be really cool and I’m sure it will add another layer of entertainment to the game and I can’t wait to try it out.

What started as an OK location-based AR game, start growing on me and I found myself quite invested in it and already enjoy playing it quite a lot. It starts slow, so I do recommend spending a few hours to at least get to Level 6-7 before you decide whether this game is for you or not.  The game has more than meets the eye and more things are added to the game on an on-going basis.

Once you invested quite a few hours into it, it starts feeling like you have that second life. When you are a break of doing something, you feel the need to launch the game and see what’s out there. Because the game is dynamic, things are changing all the time all around you. You never know what threats are around you and you need to launch the game, enter that new virtual world to find out.

The Exercise Aspect of the Game

I cannot finish this review without mentioning the physical aspect part of the game. One of the motivators for me was being able to do exercise while also playing a mobile game. When I do my walks, I usually go out for about an hour just walking in circles around the block. Honest, it’s boring as hell. Now with an on-location game like The Walking Dead Our World, I can do exercise and play at the same time.

This can definitely be the main motivator for some users and it’s better than spending most of the time sitting, health-wise. If there isn’t anything that I wrote here that might convince you to pick up an on-location game and get outside and start walking, maybe this one will.

This is a great good game to play on the go, even if you weren’t planning on playing. For example, if you walk to school, take a taxi, waiting in line, taking a bus, etc.

Speaking of taxis. Yesterday I took a taxi and I was able to loot so many things, like what I do regularly in 1 hour, I was able to do in a few minutes, seriously. Just never play the game while driving, I always was a passenger when I played (BTW, the game will alert you about this if it thinks you are playing while moving fast than standard walking pace).

Conclusion

If you follow my YouTube channel and my blog, you can see that I needed to spend many hours on this game before I was able to review it. This is the type of games that do require some time investment before you are able to asses their quality. Even when writing these lines, I still feel that there are more things to discover and there are many things that will come ahead.

By the time you read this review, many new things might be added to the game, things that I haven’t covered in this review.

As a whole, I can sum up my experience (I do continue playing the game) as a positive one. I did find the AR fights to be lacking, and they are far from my vision how amazing fights in AR could be by taking a different approach to on-location game design. Of course, we need to consider the theme and TV-series that this game is based on, which kind of limits the creative scope.

There will be some more ambitious projects that will try to take location-based AR to the next level, but this one isn’t the one, I think mainly because its theme is limiting .its creative possibilities. By next level, I mean great support for local-MP battles, battles that take place all around,  in the sky, on buildings and even underground. Ones with lots of enemy characters variety, voice acting, high-quality visuals and animations, on-location gathering places with benefits (Destiny Tower-like on-location social areas), trading,character customization, VR/AR cross-play (a larger community that supports the game), remote play (helping on-location players from home), and more. I will probably write a post dedicated to the ideas that I have in mind, once you read, it, you’ll understand what I see as the ultimate on-location AR game.

In terms of gameplay mechanics. The gunplay felt unexciting at most part. Unlocking new weapons does help, but still, it doesn’t elevate the shooting fun-factor by a lot. Many of the weapons feel more or less the same, based on their base types (e.g. shotguns, assault rifles, submachine guns, sniper rifles, etc.). You can’t compare it to a sci-fi shooter where you can really go crazy with things and create guns that are much varied from each other in therm of their shooting mechanic.

The gun gameplay isn’t completely shallow, don’t get me wrong. It is built on fast reaction (tapping), the ability to aim at moving enemies and those who appear smaller as they are far away from the player. You need to throw the grenade at the right speed and angle to maximize its damage, choose the right weapons and heroes for the fight and emphasize on headshots that deal the most damage. Some guns have different mods and heroes have talents, so you also need to consider how to make the most of those to win fights. So when I engage in fights, there are definitely a few things that I consider prior to starting the fight. The same goes to upgrade weapons and heroes when dealing with Raider Outposts and upgrading different perks that can help you maximize the damage output and the ability to upgrade your cards.

The other thing is that although the game requires a great deal of time investment, for me it’s a casual game that I can play on the go. So when I played it at home, on the bus or when walking, I liked that the overall experience isn’t complex.  I go into a fight, finish it in a few seconds and I can move on. This allows me to concentrate on playing and doing other things. Give attention to other things and then jump back to the game and play more. I play other shooters, and those require full attention, which means that I play them and only them during the (approx.) 15-30 gameplay session straight. TWD Our World shooting gameplay isn’t like that. It keeps things simple, which encouraged me to engage into many small fights, rather than saying to myself: “No, it’s going to take time, I’ll do it later.”.. It’s the same as Pokemon GO, you have those micro-gameplay sessions that you can take casually on the go. I don’t say that there aren’t ways to improve the shooting gameplay experience, but I like that it’s simple and short.

This is significant because for many players it can be a difference than playing those sessions and playing much less, which might eventually make them stop playing the game altogether. So you can play this game bit by bit and move on doing whatever you were doing. I do this as well, before I go to bed, between work session, when walking outside, when on the bus, on a taxi, waiting in line to the doctor, etc. So when you come to think about those things, you understand what the design isn’t that bad as you might have thought in the first place. Even after reviewing this game, I will probably log in and see what’s out there and finish like 5 nearby fights.

So that in mind, I think that the game adapts well for our busy daily lives and this is a good thing.

Most of the excitement for me comes from unlocking new cards, upgrading weapons and heroes with new mods and talents. I enjoy finishing missions and I can’t wait to try out the PvP mode when it comes out.

So yes, I had quite a few mixed feeling about this game, but the game started growing on me the more I played it. I do enjoy it but the question is how long this game will be able to retain me as a player. Whether a new location-based AR game comes out, whether I will continue to play this game or not. There are several of them coming out pretty soon and these type of games are games that require a large time investment, not a game that you play a few hours and move on to the next.

For newcomers who love playing on-location based AR games, I recommend trying this game out. If you are highly invested in Pokemon GO, nothing stops you from installing another on-location AR game and try it out. I’m sure you like it even more if you follow the TV series, which if you are, you probably already tried it by now.

In the future, those location-based games will become more and more prominent in the AR/MR game topography. Pokemon GO is more than 2 years on the market and still very strong. No doubt that TWD Our World need much more content to make it more appealing compared to current and upcoming titles of a similar type of games.

The Walking Dead: Our World is available for free on the App Store and Google Play. There is no reason not to try it out unless you don’t like on-location based mobile games. If you do, just give it some time, don’t give up on it in early stages, try to level up and then see if you want to continue playing it or not. It’s quite a beat of grinding, but at some points, more features open up, you unlock new cards and can try out new cool weapons and things start becoming more entertaining in most part.

I’m sure there will be many people who won’t enjoy this game and indeed, there are many mobile shooters with much better fun shooting action and gameplay mechanics. That being said, for me it took a few hours until I was able to get into the game, and I think there will be quite a few players that will quit playing it in an early stage.

So what about me and this game. This isn’t the end. I will continue playing the game and share great moments with you on my YouTube channel, so make sure you subscribe if you want to see more TWD Our World gameplay videos.

I hope you enjoy this review and find it useful, please don’t forget to share it with your friends, it will help a lot. Thank you.

P.S. I didn’t put any real money into this game. You can progress faster by buying packs in the store. I guess it might frustrate some people who want to get epic and legendary cards and find it very time to consume to obtain them in game.

The Walking Dead: Our World
7/10

Summary

The Walking Our World starts slow, but it doesn’t take long until you start feeling part of this virtual apocalyptic parallel world of The Walking Dead. The game does have its caveats, the fighting felt repetitive and quite dull. However, the dynamically changing world, missions, events, social features, AR mode, the large variety of cards, card upgrades, items, and constant updates—all eventually help to build a world that is fun to be part of and a fun game to play overall.