I love zombies and games about zombies! In fact, my nickname was formed because of my love of the undead in Call of Duty.
What makes them scary is that the undead are relentless and something you could envision happening in a post-apocalyptic world. Walking Dead, anyone?
What is the best zombie game? That’s difficult to answer, and everyone will have an opinion of their own.
However, this guide should open up ideas for you if you’re itching to smash heads or eat brains.
Yep, there are even games where you can play as a zombie!
Keep in mind that some of these games have multiple versions or releases. Here they are in no particular order:
Call Of Duty: Black Ops 3 Zombies
Call of duty zombies is one of the best zombie survival games that spans across most platforms. People have made their entire streaming careers based off of this game series.
It’s a first-person shooter where you have to survive wave after wave of zombies in various maps. The goal is to survive and defend yourself. It starts off easy but quickly becomes overwhelming when 10’s of zombies are busting through your barricades.
Stumbling undead humans are not all that you face in these games. Everything from zombie dogs to aliens will be after you. Luckily there are better weapons and power-ups that you can unlock with points, but don’t let that fool you. It’s not enough.
This game includes co-op multiplayer, but I prefer playing alone unless I have a friend who can communicate well. There’s nothing worse than a partner luring a hoard of zombies to the room you’re in with no ammo or no way to escape.
The Call of Duty series keeps bringing back the zombies mode, and I can’t wait to see what they have coming next. In the meantime, there are hours and hours of gameplay to enjoy the current games.
DayZ is an open world zombie game where you sneak looting, interacting or hiding from other players and survive zombie attacks around cities.
Once you become decent at this game, your biggest threat is other players who will do anything to take the clothes and gear off your back. That is once you can master the crafting system and basic survival mechanics.
I should point out that the zombies in this game aren’t technically zombies, but rather “infected” people. Whatever you want to call them, they grunt, scream and can kill your character in seconds if you aren’t careful.
The game started off as a mod of Arma 2 by Dean Hall, but he realized there was a large enough fan base who was crazy about it. He partnered with Bohemia Interactive to work on developing a full standalone version. Dean is no longer a part of the project, but it was never intended for him to be on for the full duration of development.
Unfortunately, the DayZ standalone has been in development for years and I’m still waiting for proper vehicle and base building mechanics to function like the old DayZ Mod.
I have spent thousands of hours playing this game. My first experience taught me that there are very few friendly people in the game. It has me on the edge of my seat from the first spawn to moments before my death.
This is a game where you might be better off with a group of friends who can keep an eye out for danger all the while help gather resources for basic survival and base building.
DayZ is available on PC, and there are talks of porting it to console, but I wouldn’t get your hopes up. The PC standalone version still needs work but is awesome to play once you get into it.
7 Days To Die (7D2D)
7 days to Die is another open-world zombie game similar to DayZ set in a post-apocalyptic world, but it’s more focused on co-op and building up a base to survive zombie attacks.
The crafting and building system reminds me a little of Minecraft but is fairly simple to pick up.
I think one of the problems with this game is that it was released during alpha development. Glitches and bugs are to be expected during that phase, but people have rated it poorly because they don’t understand what an alpha release is. I’ll save that rant for another time.
If you want to work with others online, this is a game to check out because you don’t have much choice. You need help to survive!
7D2D is available for PC, PS4, Xbox One and Linux & MacOS.
Stubbs The Zombie – Rebel Without A Pulse
It’s hard to find games where you play as a zombie, but Stubbs fits the bill! While this game is over a decade old, it’s still a fun one to play.
Stubbs is a zombie that you control and get to decide his fate by roaming around eating human brains one at a time. The game is cute yet extremely gory.
There’s the option of whistling and grabbing the attention of fellow zombies to help you out. In some cases, you will need to sacrifice them to save yourself.
There is a multiplayer mode, but single player is where I spent most of my time. I can recommend this one because the story and gameplay are pretty sweet for 2005.
Stubbs is a bit harder to find these days, but it was available on PC, STEAM, Mac OS X, and Xbox.
State Of Decay 2
State of Decay is an open-world survival zombie game set in an unspecified location in the United States.
The main point is to make sure your community survives the zombie apocalypse, and you can do it with friends in co-op. Being an open-world game, exploring and gathering resources is important if you hope to survive.
You should keep in mind that any character in the game can die. The death of one of the characters can affect the group depending on the dead character’s contribution to the group. The zombies in the game are agile and fast.
Every choice you make in the main plot is crucial, so be smart.
The Dead Rising franchise has come a long way. The games are both fun and scary, but I think best played with friends.
Despite the massive amounts of slow zombies, you will find out that you can’t save everyone.
You can kill zombies with almost anything that you can pick up and can perform combo attacks to kill them and save your friends.
The level of your experience in the game will be the factor determining your strength and speed when dealing with the zombies.
Released in 2011, Dead Island is an open world survival horror game with RPG elements. It can be played on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Windows, Linux and OS X.
It’s one of the most popular zombie video games of the decade and has been re-released in a remastered edition with additional content.
Set on an island called Banoi in the midst of a zombie infestation, the game offers a combination of first-person combat and exploration. The story unfolds through a series of quests, which also help to level up your character and provide additional stats and weapon modifications.
The game has an expansion, Dead Island: Riptide, that can be played as a stand-alone title. There is also a spin-off game, Escape Dead Island, and a 16-bit side-scrolling game called Dead Island: Retro Revenge that was created as bonus content for the Dead Island: Definitive Edition released in 2016.
A battle royale game released on Steam for Windows, H1Z1 came out in 2017. Early in its development, the original concept was broken into two games, King of the Hill and Just Survive. The current H1Z1 game is the King of the Hill version.
Because both are made by the same game creator using the same engine, the games have many similarities. However, they are different genres and focus on different goals.
H1Z1 pits up to 150 players against one another in a battle royale death match that goes on until just one player or team remains standing. Players start at random locations on the map and must explore to gather weapons and defenses while hunting other players and hiding from danger.
More: Realistic Hunting Games
Gameplay is fast-paced with the map forcing players to converge on a smaller point after a certain period. This encourages conflict and keeps the session running quickly.
Just Survive, by comparison, is set during the zombie apocalypse and provides a sandbox-style survival game environment. The game focuses on multiplayer cooperation and team-building.
The game differs from many other survival games in that PvP elements are de-emphasized in favor of encouraging players to cooperate to build defenses against the NPC zombie villains.
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
Unlike other Resident Evil games, Resident Evil 7 is a first-person horror game.
You play as Ethan Winters who goes to Dulvey, Louisiana looking for his wife, Mia. He later gets kidnapped and tortured by a murderous family of cannibals called the Bakers.
The game centers around the Baker’s residence where you need to explore their big house, collect resources, memorize passageways, and try not to get killed.
Run out of ammo? Good luck.
Since Ethan has no military skills, when enemies start showing up, the best option is to run or use other secret passageways where you can.
You will save ammo and healing items by finding alternative solutions. You aren’t able to do stealth attacks on enemies, but there are chances to hide and evade attackers.
You will soon realize that closing the door behind you is extremely important.
Although zombies are the main enemies to kill in most Resident Evil games, this latest franchise skews towards the Bakers family.
The game is available on Xbox One, PS4, and Windows.
Sniper Elite: Nazi Zombie Army 1, 2 and 3
This action horror game has co-op campaigns for up to 4 players. It is a third person sniper shooter and a spin-off from the Sniper Elite series.
What got me initially interested in this game was the slow-motion bullet shots and bone-crushing x-ray scenes, similar to Mortal Kombat X. It’s extremely satisfying to see what damage your shot did internally to the undead.
The game time setting focuses on the end of the second world war. The story is that Hitler, in despair, unleashes an army of the undead which threatens to take over Europe. You play as Karl Fairburne as one of the last living people in Berlin, Germany.
The game emphasizes on teamwork. If you want to survive in the game, you will have to work with other players. The campaign mode allows you to team up with three other players to increase your chances of survival.
You get to experience all the realistic features that make Sniper Elite a best-seller while killing zombies. The zombies in the game are noise sensitive which means, once you start shooting, you will have to finish off the whole zombie wave in that location.
Do you have what it takes to defeat Hitler’s Nazi army?
Left For Dead 1 & 2
The Left For Dead franchise is another one of my favorites! It’s difficult to choose between 1 and 2 because both have taken hundreds of hours of my life, which I do not regret.
Still hoping for L4D3!
This first-person shooter is set in a post-apocalyptic world filled with all sorts of zombies including ones that explode, ones that are almost invincible and even crying witches.
In each game, you choose a character from a list of 4. After selecting your character, you will select a scenario to play. The goal of each scenario is to go through a series of safe houses until you reach the rescue point.
One of the unique features of this game is that each scenario starts and ends like a movie. If a teammate dies during the game, the episode will be dedicated to him or her at the end.
Multiplayer and co-op are what makes this game fun because you work together trying to complete each scenario. There are different modes in each, all with tons of exciting gameplay.
Left For Dead is available on PC and Xbox 360
Fortnite: Save the World
Save the world is the PvE side of Fortnite rather than its famous battle royale style arena shooter.
The story takes place where 98% of the earth’s population vanishes overnight as a result of violent storms which descended upon the earth.
The storms spawned undead-like creatures and had consequently taken over the world.
After a few weeks, the survivors set up storm shields which block the storms. This allows them to build whatever they can within the safety of the shield. You must defend this shield with up to 4 players.
Looting is a key part of the game. However, you get most of the gear through crates called loot pinatas.
The enemies come in hordes, and you will have to build strategically and kill them. If you don’t, it’s game over.
There are a lot of systems to master in this game, so it is a bit more involved and may not be for everyone.
While I’m not excited about this game, I thought I’d include it anyway. To be fair, this game is currently in early access. However, you might be better off picking up Dead Island instead.
Disaster befalls Granichny Island, in the Soviet Union, as a corporation referred to as “The New Light” tries to cover up the events that occurred on the island. The corporation aims to correct its mistakes by sending volunteers into Granichny to investigate the island’s paranormal activity.
When playing the game, you take control of volunteers by either uniting with four other players or by yourself if you think you can take the heat.
The zombies in the game are not scary or as aggressive as most other zombie-based video games. The AI kind of sucks. You can explore the island to solve different mysteries. To increase your chances of survival on the island, you will be able to unlock new abilities.
The game allows you to craft and upgrade your weapons and equipment by collecting recipes and components. And you can also customize your clothing and armor.
That’s all I want to say about this game for now.
Dead ahead is an android based game where you have to be tactical and strategic survive hungry hordes of zombies by shooting them while on the motorcycle, or luring them into traps while they follow you.
The goal of the game is to become the ultimate freedom fighter. To stay alive, you need to collect items on the road such as ammo for your guns and nitro to boost your speed.
You perform combos by firing at the zombies chasing you and crushing the ones on the road. When you earn experience, you will be able to take on more zombies and compete against high scores of other players.
The controls of the game are simple. The shoot and boot buttons are on the bottom left part of the screen while the acceleration is automatic.
The game is free on Android platforms, and IOS users can similarly access it.
Plants vs. Zombies 1 and 2
In this over-head strategy game, you use plants to fight off hordes of zombies that are trying to invade your house. The game starts off quite easy, but as you advance, challenges become quite difficult.
The plants are combat-ready.
You plant combat-ready plants in the garden outside your house in grids, and the plants prevent the zombies from entering the house by either eating them or shooting them down with things like corn and peas.
However, for the plants to grow, they will need sunlight by clicking on it. It either falls from the daytime sky or pops out of sunflowers plants.
You will need to come up with the best strategy and balance between growing sunflowers and growing defensive plants.
After a few rounds, there is a final wave of zombies. If you win the final round, you are rewarded with a new type of plant or a new mini-game.
You can opt to play the survival mode or the adventure mode. In both modes, you can preview the types of zombies so you can organize your defenses appropriately.
Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 1 and 2
Garden Warfare 1 and 2 is the 3D version of Plants vs. Zombies. It is a multiplayer shooter with up to 24 players.
There are a variety of modes that you can pick from and can choose to play on team plants or team zombies to complete missions.
The closest mode to the original plants vs. zombies is the horde-like survival mode. Here you can team up with other players and take out as many zombies as possible.
The game maintains its originality and is fun to play.
GTA V Zombie Apocalypse Mod
Surprisingly, GTA V has a zombie mod. I haven’t played it personally, but it looks pretty fun and something I’ll be checking out in the future.
I guess I’m still too much of a DayZ fan.
ZombiU is a first-person survival horror game released in 2012 as one of the launch games for the Wii U.
As the player, you assume control of a survivor of the zombie apocalypse and must fight through waves of the undead while gathering items, using stealth to avoid detection and exploring the map.
Your ultimate goal is to gather information about what happened to bring about this apocalyptic scenario.
In addition to the story mode, there are also three multiplayer modes: time attack, survivor, and king of zombies. King of zombies is a “capture the flag” style map where players must control various points.
The game makes good use of the Wii U GamePad with context-sensitive actions handled through the touchscreen. A ported version of the game, Zombi, offers a pared-down version without GamePad capability.
Aside from differences in controls and platform, the two games are essentially identical.
Dying Light is a first-person open-world horror game released in 2015 for Windows, Linux, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
The game takes place in the quarantined city of Harran, where the player controls an undercover agent seeking to infiltrate the city and defeat the enemies inside.
Much of the game is built on parkour mechanics, which provide unique ways to explore the map while searching for weapons and gear. These mechanics carry over into the primarily melee combat. Various special moves can be made while fighting enemies in the game.
The game features a dynamic day-night cycle with enemies growing more dangerous at night. Survival requires the player to make smart choices about what actions to take at what time of day to minimize risk.
You can play a single-player campaign, recruit up to three friends for a co-operative mode or face off against other players in a competitive multiplayer mode.
Project Zomboid is billed as “the ultimate zombie survival RPG.” This indie game is currently in alpha development and has been available through Steam Early Access since 2016.
The game is made in an animated third-person isometric style, and the engine supports user-made mods and mapmaking tools.
The concept of Project Zomboid is an open world survival game with horror elements set in a quarantined area during the zombie apocalypse. Multiple maps and locations can be explored. The player must manage a variety of stats in order to stay alive.
This requires gathering weapons and supplies while evading zombies.
There are two available game modes: survival and sandbox. There are also challenge scenarios that can be played for variety. Multiplayer and single-player modes are currently supported.
All Zombies Must Die!
All Zombies Must Die! is an action-adventure shooter game released by Square Enix and developed by Doublesix. It is available for Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox360 and was released in 2011.
Players can choose from one of four character options. The game supports multiplayer, allowing up to four people to play together in the quest to fight back zombie hoards. The game combines RPG elements like quests and non-linear exploration with standard shooter combat.
A robust crafting system helps to add variety by giving players the ability to modify their weapons.
Unlike many zombie games, All Zombies Must Die! trades in horror tropes for a more comedic feel. It features cartoonish graphics and a lighthearted story.
A spin-off game called Scorepocalypse was released in 2012. This stand-alone title is built around getting a high score and provides a more stripped down version of the game than the original title.