Thorn: Zombie Dungeon Survival

App review by
Mark Raby, Common Sense Media
Thorn: Zombie Dungeon Survival App Poster Image
Zombie hack-and-slash is bloody and repetitive.

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The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Ease of Play

When players encounter a whole swarm of zombies at the same time, it can be quite a challenge to take them all out without sustaining too much damage. In addition, because of the tight enclosures and lack of space in the dungeon, it's difficult to find places to hide. As players progress through the game and the zombies require more damage to defeat, the challenge rapidly increases. It will likely take a seasoned player to succeed in this game.

Violence

Keeping in mind that this game takes place in a fantastical dungeon with a cartoon-like visual style, the amount of violence is extensive. Players run through the very tight and enclosed corners of the dungeon, attacking discolored humanoid zombies along the way. When attacked, the zombies spray a small amount of blood, but then they collapse to the ground and a large pool of blood forms around them, staining the environment permanently. At the end of the level, players are shown how many zombies they killed; a screen displays a silhouette for each zombie under the heading "Dead Stuff." The enemies are not really human, and all of the action is presented from a top-down, zoomed-out perspective, but nevertheless, in a dungeon scene with as many as a dozen dead zombies all lying in streams of red blood, there is a strong intensity to this game.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Thorn: Zombie Dungeon Survival is a "hack-and-slash" zombie fighting game in which players must escape a dungeon that's teeming with undead humanoid creatures. There is little substance to the game beyond the constant combat, though players will need to use skill and strategy to figure out the best way to take down the menacing force. The game has several factors to lessen the impact of the violence, including the unrealistic environment, cartoon aesthetic, and zoomed-out view. However, there are also numerous exacerbating factors, such as the large pooling of blood under every dead zombie and the frenetic pacing.

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Is it any good?

THORN: ZOMBIE DUNGEON SURVIVAL has some redeeming points, with a user-friendly control scheme and a challenging style that awards players with a sense of accomplishment for completing levels. Beyond that, however, it does little to distinguish itself from the many other run-of-the-mill hack-and-slash games. Without a compelling story or a variety of game modes, the constant zombie shooting can become repetitive and does not offer much reason for players to keep with it. There are other, more worthwhile games that offer the same kind of intensity and challenging gameplay without the repetitive gameplay structure.

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Price: $1.99
  • Release date: August 5, 2011
  • Category: Arcade Games
  • Size: 15.70 MB
  • Version: 1.0.1
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 4.1 or later

For kids who love fast action

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