Posted on September 24, 2009 by Billzilla
With the runaway popularity of Zombies these days, it isn’t surprising that we’re seeing the shambling undead teamed with nearly every other concept imaginable, from video games to Jane Austen. Even lighthearted zombie treatments are gaining a strong foothold, like Shaun of the Dead, the upcoming film Zombieland starring Woody Harrelson, and, of course, Zombie Mosh from Bucephalus Games.
Zombie Mosh is exactly that, a game about zombies bashing each other apart in a mosh pit. Players select one of six different character cards, then shuffle the Zombie cards and deal four to each player. The dealer then draws two cards and randomly places them in the “damage” row of each player, including himself. Each card has two different results, facing the top and bottom of the card, so orientation of each card matters. The starting player then begins by playing a card, either to damage another zombie or to fend off damage to his own. Each player only has four cards per turn and starts with those two cards of damage, so it’s likely that more than one player will have damage they can’t fend off. Any zombie that has three or more limbs (including heads!) damaged beyond use is out; the winner is the last zombie standing – so to speak. Our gaming group really got into the pounding we were dishing out, even to the point of describing the dance moves we were laying on one another.
The components of Zombie Mosh are of good quality. The cards, damage tokens and character plaques are sturdy and heavily laminated for increased durability. Sadly, the box itself is also heavily laminated, which makes it tough to pull open, particularly if you’re foolish enough to nest the bottom cover inside the lid.
Each zombie card is double-sided, including a “basic” (side A) and ‘advanced’ (side B) face. The advanced side is only different in that one more dot of damage potential is added, and the dots are shuffled around. On side A, for example, each limb (two arms, two legs and the head) has three dots of damage potential for fifteen total points. On side B, some have three, some have four and some have two dots, and in each case the total number of dots is 16. Honestly, if you’re planning on developing an ongoing “campaign game” of Zombie Mosh, you might want to take a long look at the rest of your life and see just what the hell went wrong.
Zombie Mosh is fun. The 15 to 30 minutes playing time is spot on, and probably even six- or seven-year olds could pick up how to play this game in no time – though the game is recommended for ages nine and older. The game requires little luck, very little strategy, but does require the players to enjoy themselves and lighten up a little. What Zombie Mosh is not is a complex strategy game. It does indeed invite repeated playing, but spending too much time analyzing tactics and searching for deeper meaning is a waste of time. And when you’re dancing the night away, time is of the essence. At a $24.99 suggested retail price, Zombie Mosh is perfect, even for those down-on-their-luck hipsters with more time than money.
Review by Bill Bodden