Just like any horror franchise, scary cinematics tend to lead to an army of sequels even when they are completely uncalled for. Sega has been fortunate enough to get by with three solid House of the Dead titles and pushes its luck again by recently shipping number four to arcades. Unfortunately, the whole shooting zombies with mediocre presentation thing is starting to get old.
With part four, Sega gives us a continuation of House of the Dead 2. James Taylor from the second installment has evidently received a few promotions within the AMS and tags along with relative AMS newcomer Kate Green.
Gathering information on the Goldman case in Venice, the two are rudely interrupted when the building collapses and leaves the two trapped. Waiting for rescue, the pair notices something unusual on the security cameras and scavenges for weapons to defend themselves from what suddenly bangs down the room’s door.
Give yourself 20 obvious points if you guessed the threat was zombies.
For House of the Dead 4, Sega’s answer for innovation is in the form of its again-redesigned guns. Dropping the pistols from one and two and immediately dismissing the shotgun from three, the fourth iteration puts an uzi-variant in the hands of players eager to mow down zombies.
Aside from the cosmetic change of the guns, the uzis also host a tilt sensor, which allow players to shake the gun for a few different effects. Instead of shooting off-screen to reload your gun, House of the Dead 4 requires players to shake the gun to put more bullets into your “zombie slayer.”
While it makes sense in the regard you shake the empty clip out of the bottom of the uzi, the mechanic can become annoying and most of the time interrupts the players’ aim. With head shots being so crucial in House of the Dead, shooting and reloading the gun will require an extra steady arm and a lot more patience than gamers are likely to put into an arcade title.