Year Made: 2012
Platforms: iPhone, iPod, Android, Windows Phone
Content Areas: Physical Education
Suggested Age Level: Middle School, High School
Play Length: 30 minutes or 60 minutes
Number of Players: Single Player
Difficulty Rating: Easy
I do not like typical exercise and was always the kid who “forgot” her uniform for gym class. However, Six to Start’s Zombies, Run! is the only game to ever make me want to run and be good at it. Why?
I don’t want to get eaten by zombies.
Six to Start’s Zombies, Run! places runners in the post-apocalyptic world as Runner Five, a mysterious runner shot out of the sky and taken into the human settlement of Abel. As Runner Five, the player takes on missions on Abel’s behalf, completing tasks such as supply runs, scouting missions, and even missing person searches. To play through a mission, players select the type of mission they want and then the specific mission. All that’s left after that is to put your earbuds in, hit play, and listen while running. The missions function much like an audiobook, but between transmissions, players can listen to their music and collect supplies the longer they run.
The more missions a players run, the closer Runner Five and the people of Abel get to uncovering the truth behind the zombie apocalypse. The emotion and mystery put into every episode pushes players to continue running and exploring this new world. Missions have made me laugh mid-run and they have made me cry. The voiceovers are have so much personality to them that it is believable that they are sitting in a communication tower or running alongside the main character. If players aren't as motivated by the story, they can also use supplies they earn on each run to upgrade their base and build their own version of a strong Abel. And if a beautifully written story and the ability to customize a home base aren't enough to push a player to run more, the game features the option to include zombie chases, in which the game announces the player is being chased by zombies and if the player does not pick up the pace, zombies actually attack the player in-game. Zombies, Run! features a variety of training and mission modes and ways of motivating the player to get off the couch and run for their lives!
Despite hunting for them like a zombie looking for brains, there haven’t been many downsides to Zombies, Run! Some players may not buy into the story as much or might not be interested in another zombie adventure, but it could still be an excellent option for motivating others to exercise. The only other downside is that players will need to purchase season passes for episodes in other seasons to access them all. It feels like a small price to pay for the level of engagement, motivation, and real-world impact Zombies, Run! has for runners.
As a game designed to motivate people to exercise, Zombies, Run! is the perfect game for physical education. While the missions might be long for a simple warm-up run, they can be paused and resumed at a later date. The missions could also be played on free days to keep students moving or when helping students build up to running a mile or more.
With Season 4's release around the corner this spring, Zombies, Run! continues to be an excellent motivator that has a proven track record of getting people on their feet and running from the living dead. Why not bring that kind of golden motivation into a class that’s all about inspiring students to lead healthier lives?
Educational Rating: 6/8
(Classroom Tech Friendly, Motivation, Concrete Learning, Additional Skills, Feedback, Difficulty, Accessibility, Extension)
Overall Rating: 8/8
(Immersion, Environment, Storyline, Replayability, Entertainment, Gameplay, Originality, User Control)
Buy Here (iOS) or Buy Here (Google Play)