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Zack Zero PS3 Review - -
Zack Zero
Reviewed by
Michael Riling
Zack Zero PS3 Review. Overall Zack Zero looks like a game that was developed on a low budget and as such decided to go for a more fun, focused gameplay.

Gameplay 6.0
Graphics 7.0
Sound 5.0
Value 8.0
Developer: Crocodile Entertainment
Review Date:
Feb 2012
Michael Riling


Zack Zero

Zack Zero is an exclusive title for the Playstation Network that combines retro 2D action platforming with 3D backgrounds and visuals. The game starts the title character Zack as he travels through various levels trying to defeat his arch-enemy and rescue his kidnapped girlfriend. The story is clichť and rather corny at times, but I get the vibe that the game wasnít trying to take itself too seriously. Itís a fun laid back game with a few hiccups and problems, but one that is rather charming and cute at times.

The thing that separates Zack Zero from other platformers is the unique spacesuit he has that comes with four different forms. The normal one, a fire form, an ice form, and a rock form. Each suit plays a different and unique role with all different powers, abilities, and uses. For example the fire suit can surf in the air for a bit as well as move faster, the rock form can move heavy objects and pull switches, the ice form can slow down time, and the normal form gives you a fast ranged and melee combination for fighting.  

As you travel through the game you will come across a few puzzles and areas that will require use of each suit to traverse the map. The puzzles are very simple and as such anybody looking for a challenge wonít find one. However with the child-like story and corny voice acting it could be fun for children or adults who donít require a serious game.  

Although the game personally entertained me, it does have quite a few flaws and problems with it that cost it in the review area. First off I would highly recommend not being logged onto the PSN while you play for a few reasons. The main reason is that there is a bug where the game will freeze if you are logged in at various points in the game. The other, more common reason is that every few seconds the game feels the need to pop up with the stats for the leader board over and over which eventually gets annoying.

The graphics are actually rather pretty and could have scored much higher had it not been for the fact that a few of the platforms and background graphics are very unclear on which is which. Some backgrounds look like platforms, some platforms look like backgrounds, and while the game features the ability to ďjump into the backgroundĒ from time to time the majority of the times you canít tell when you can and when you canít. However, the colors, the style of the suit and enemies, and the beauty of the levels do add and help attract your eyes. 

The game lacks a multiplayer mode, but does have leaderboards as I mentioned in passing. The downside is that due to the bug that causes it to freeze at a specific point in the game and the annoyance of the continual leaderboard pop-up is that playing without the PSN is better, yet without the PSN you canít use the leaderboards. It ends up being a catch 22 that forces you to pick between dealing with an annoying constant pop-up and game freezing bug or just sacrificing the leaderboards and thus it might as well not exist. 

The game features eight varying levels and the replay value simple comes down to if you donít mind doing the same platforms over and over. It doesnít lack a replay value, but other than the leaderboard mentioned earlier there isnít any positive replay value either. It ends up being in the middle ground in terms of length and replay without any clear verdict one way or the other. 

One other key annoyance exists and that is the level-up system. Zackís suit levels up as the game goes on and the powers increase in strength each level, however the system for the leveling up was implemented very poorly. Every time the player levels up a big screen pops up pausing the game saying LEVEL UP and then automatically throwing the points in. There are a few problems with this. The first is the annoying pause that interrupts what you are doing, which can be devastating in a platformer or during a boss fight, and the second is that you donít control your own level-ups. In other words the game interrupts you, pops up, and then forces its own power-up points on you with little say. When you unpause, there is a delay between when the game unpauses and when the screen goes away which cost you one or two seconds of being completely vulnerable and helpless. 

Overall Zack Zero looks like a game that was developed on a low budget and as such decided to go for a more fun, focused gameplay. It isnít a serious game, but it does serve the goal of entertaining you while you sit down and play it. If you have no problem with casual games and just want to kill some time and doesnít mind a few bugs or kinks, Iíd recommend the game for you.

-Michael Riling


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