World War Z seemed like a weird project when it was announced years ago, and it wasn't until I finally got to play it that I learned to look past the weirdness of its attachment. to a seemingly dormant franchise and appreciating it for the great zombie shooter it is.
Over two years later, the game has received several major and minor updates, both paid and free, but arguably none has been as significant as Aftermath, a new expansion offering new levels, new ways to play and additional improvements.
While none of its new offerings seem revolutionary, it's also certainly true that any fan of World War Z or co-op horde shooters in general should consider unlocking the fun new content in this post-apocalyptic postscript.
The Consequences of World War II – A New Perspective
Perhaps the most frustrating part of World War Z Aftermath was its deployment. Is this a complete sequel? A standalone DLC? A refurbished original game? Even I had questions, and I tend to pay close attention to anything with undead in it.
The answer is Aftermath is a new expansion for the 2019 game which may also include the full game for early buyers who need it. It comes with a free next-gen console update that all gamers can enjoy as long as they have a PS5 or Series X|S.
As for paid content, the headliner is the new first-person mode. The feature can be toggled in the pause menu on an individual level, so if I want to play in the new perspective but want to stick with the legacy third person view, we can both do it our way , which is really fantastic .
During my review with Aftermath, I couldn't decide which I liked best. I tend to prefer third-person in games in general, and the game's quirky POV has helped separate it from countless other horde shooters in recent times, which are almost always first-person games. First-person mode works well in World War Z, surprisingly.
Running is a bit heavy, but I think on purpose. It's also a piece with what it feels like to move around in the third person. This is a game about scratching, and even the most bombastic scenes require tight teamwork, not John Wicking the zeds with grace and flair.
First-person mode can, of course, be applied retroactively to previous levels, but Aftermath also adds two new campaigns – one set in Italy for the first time and one that returns to Russia but features our quartet of Japanese heroes. Each brings with it three additional tiers, though none of the tiers rewrite the rulebook of what a WWZ campaign has been like to date.
For the most part, the levels all play out the way you're used to if you've played World War Z before. neither Rome nor Kamchatka strays from the path left by most previous levels.
A fun wrinkle is the attention to freezing temperatures in Russia, requiring players to quickly switch between radiators or slowly fade in the cold. So there is at least some variation here.
The cadence of crawling, clinging, crawling, clinging, etc. is alive and well in Aftermath, although I've found that for dedicated players like me, adding more levels in quickplay matchmaking is a value in itself.
Horde shooter fans are downright spoiled with options right now. We're right between the launch of Aliens Fireteam Elite in August and Back 4 Blood in October, with even more to come. World War Z throws away its expected lifespan by continuing to add fun content to a base game that was already very good on day one over two years ago.
I wouldn't have predicted that a game tied to a dormant license would be so memorable, and I certainly wouldn't have identified it as a game ripe for a strong post-launch roadmap.
Aftermath content is now about the third or fourth time I've had to step back and enjoy this game for becoming so much bigger than I probably thought possible, including myself.
World War Z Aftermath – The Result
- First person mode is enjoyable and can be set by every player
- New levels and characters bring even more variety to the growing game
- Mission objectives don't challenge what we've seen before in WWZ
If you've ever enjoyed World War Z, the first-person mode alone is enough to earn you another run. And if you're totally new to World War Z, then this new all-inclusive release is clearly the best way to play the game that came out of nowhere to earn a place among the genre's greats.