Age of Zombies Anniversary iPad Review

App Store games grow up fast, don't they? It seems like only yesterday that we took control of hero Barry Steakfries and went on a time traveling, monster blasting rampage in Halfbrick's dual stick shooter, Age of Zombies.

Turns out, it was roughly a year ago, and to celebrate, the developer just released Age of Zombies Anniversary, a slightly retooled version of the critically acclaimed smash hit.

The basic formula remains the same. You, as the grizzled Steakfries, charge through a variety of locations (prehistoric era, ancient Egypt, feudal Japan) blasting a plethora of zombies with a nice selection of weapons, including a pistol, shotgun, UZI and flamethrower; there's also grenades and a gun turret.

That said, a few features separate this version from its predecessor, starting with HD graphics. While not a dramatic improvement, the added clarity definitely makes a subtle difference on the iPad, now that the colors look sharper.

In addition, the game comes with a new environment to explore, the Wild West, complete with signature zombies and weapons that reflect the time period. Unfortunately, these stages are all the way at the end, so you must beat prior boards to unlock them. You can do it the old fashioned way, or pay $0.99 to unlock everything.

Up next is iOS 5 support, particularly iCloud, which gives you the opportunity to record your progress and have it transfer to multiple "i" devices. A nice touch for sure.

Beyond that, it's the same Age of Zombies you presumably know and love. Enemies explode in bursts of red, a zombie T-Rex runs amok and Steakfries spouts humorous one liners along the way.

Whether or not you should purchase the game depends on how big a fan you are. Of course, the app is a must buy for newcomers, since it's one of the iPhone and iPad's more enjoyable (and shamelessly violent) titles. Besides, it's only a buck.

Review code provided by Halfbrick.

Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 3.1 or later.

Download Age of Zombies Anniversary

What's Hot: Wild West levels, HD graphics, iCloud support, same old zombie blasting fun.

What's Not: Minor upgrades may not be enough to entice AoZ owners.