FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Apr 12, 2006


All right, I know I said something yesterday about watching a movie and doing a review. But I didn't promise, did I? Well, if I did, I clearly lied. I thought about watching a movie, but instead I went out and spotted Land of the Dead: Road to Fiddler's Green at the videogame store and...let's just say that my eyes currently feel like itty bitty crunchy raisins from playing the game all afternoon.

This game is pretty sweet! It's a first-person shooter that's chock full of zombie-blastin' action. Basically, you're a poor and noble farmer (alright, I'm only assuming the "poor" and "noble" bits...I think it adds a certain pathos to the game, don't you agree?) who suddenly finds himself thrust into a world gone mad! Mad, I tells ya! Mad with the undead! Fighting the evil, hungry hordes, said noble farmer must make his way through the city to Fiddler's Green, which if you've seen Land of the Dead you'll remember Fiddler's Green is Dennis Hopper's haven for the wealthy.

The game puts you in the action almost immediately as you look out of your noble farmhouse window and see a "stranger" standing in your yard. You approach to ask what indeed be the dilly-o and the stranger attacks you! Aye, 'tis a zombie, matey!

Notice how I slide smoothly from street-speak to pirate-speak? I'm a polylingual chameleon. I'm the United Colors of Final Girl. I'm like the wind! I've lost my mind from staring at a video game for hours!

Anyway, what I like about this game so far is that it feels really...real. That might sound silly, but the game captures, to me, what it would really be like to suddenly be thrust in this crazy, zombified situation. In a game like Resident Evil, you basically shoot a zombie or two every once in a while, then go on to solve puzzles. If you're at all skilled in the game, it's not the zombies that usually kill you, but rather the bigger, faster monsters. The zombies in Fiddler's Green pour over walls...they break down doors...and they don't stop coming until you kill them. Apparently as you progress through the game the undead can wield weapons and objects against you- not cool! A few times I tried to simply outrun one or two zombies in an effort to save ammo, only to find 3 more zombies around the corner- shortly thereafter I was but an all-you-can-eat buffet for the bastards. These zombies don't run, but they don't shuffle, either- they're very determined and they shamble along after you at a good clip- sort of like Michael Myers. You know that slasher killer strut I'm talking're running faster than they are, but somehow they catch you anyway. Speaking of running, that's another element of realism here; the farmer may be noble, but he's no athlete. Sprint a little and soon you're out of breath and practically crawling.

Fiddler's Green isn't a moody mindfuck a la Silent Hill- like I said, it's action packed, baby! That's not to say it isn't scary, because it is, albeit in a different way. Anyone who trots out the "Zombies ain't scary 'cause they's all slow n' shit" should 1) learn some proper grammar and 2) lock themselves in a shed with 5 bullets and many zombies beating down the door. That's scary! That's intense! And I like it. I haven't played much so far, but any game that's got me wandering around a cornfield at night while zombies are a-moanin' and a-groanin' all around me is awesome in my book.

And by the way, they're "a-moanin' and a-groanin' " because that's what zombies do- there's not some big zombie cornfield orgy, you sicko.

At least I hope there isn't- like I said, I haven't played much so far. Now where's me eye drops, matey?


Des said...

Big Zombie Cornfield Orgy sounds like a fun country music band.

Des said...

I've been hmming and hawing over this game for a while. I'm definitely going to check it out now.

Silent Hill fucked my mind, thanks to your high praise, so this one can't be bad.

John Barleycorn said...

Funny that you enjoyed this game. The second I saw George Romero's name slathered on a zombie kill-fest, I figured I'd have to rush out and buy it. But the reviews were startlingly terrible. Check out Metacritic's take on the game. I've never seen such anger ... except in my own heart.

I'm super fucking psyched for Dead Rising to premier on the xBox 360. I bought one just for it! (That and other things, really; but Dead Rising really gets my dead to rise).

Zombies in a mall? Using potted plants to bash in brains? What more could you possibly want in lonely, lonely entertainment?

Stacie Ponder said...

Brennon: Hmm. Those *are* some scathing reviews, eh? Well, it's not the best game out there, for certain. The graphics aren't bad, in my opinion- better than, say, Deus Ex. I'm not a big FPS fan, so I don't have much to compare it to in that department. I think it's mindless fun that really captures the feel of a zombie flick. Fuck critics! Nyah!

Dead Rising is the game that would probably get me to buy a 360 as well- it looks soooo amazing. But man, I just can't justify the price for the system yet. Maybe I'll just come steal yours.

Des: "Big Zombie Cornfield Orgy sounds like a fun country music band"

Or a very, very special episode of Hee Haw.

It appears I'm in the minority on Fiddler's Green, so who knows if you'll like it. Mayb rent it first or something...perhaps my standards are lower than I thought! :P

Mistah Wade said...

I heard there is a thriller-esque dance sequence 3/4 of the way through the game

Stacie Ponder said...

If there is a Thriller dance sequence in this game, I will stand atop the Empire State Building a la King Kong and sing its praises to passersby below forevermore.

Of course, I'll be really high up so they probably won't hear me, but still. Maybe I'll get shot down by planes!

This game IS pretty buggy. There's been alot of frame jumps, and the interior environments are a little dull-looking. Still mindless fun so far, though!

John Barleycorn said...

You should totally buy an xBox 360 (they're not $500 anymore) and we can play Dead Rising online together. Wouldn't that be fantastic? It'd be like the Film Club but with a complete absense of films.

Stacie Ponder said...

Oh man, that sounds awesome. The game is ONLINE?! droool........

It's gonna be awhile before I can even pretend to justify a 360. I've got 4 game systems as it is- I feel like a fucking Electronics Boutique.

I'm totally the coolest kid on the block, though!