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Review: World War Z: Aftermath grinds through the apocalypse with fun weapons

Updated: Aug 22, 2023

More like Left (the country) 4 Dead, am I right?

Image: Saber Interactive
Image: Saber Interactive

World War Z is a game that I played on Game Pass a few years ago with a friend of mine and we had a lot of fun with it. The gameplay loop of killing zombies (known as Zekes in the WWZ universe) in incredibly high numbers with all sorts of big guns and explosives was an absolute blast.

“The Zekes aren’t your typical zombies”

So when I realized that an update called World War Z: Aftermath had been released with a bunch of new content and quality-of-life improvements, I was very happy.

The Zekes have really made a mess of things on Earth in World War Z, and it’s up to a resistance of survivors around the world to take them on and try to contain the virus that keeps turning people into mindless zombies.

However, the Zekes aren’t your typical zombies. They sprint at high speeds and move in massive numbers; so massive that they can create pyramids with their bodies to climb up the sides of buildings and over any other obstacles that are in their path.

Image: Saber Interactive
Image: Saber Interactive

This makes them a force to be reckoned with, but thankfully the survivors have plenty of guns, explosives, and ammo to help take them on. World War Z: Aftermath has extremely satisfying gunplay.

Players are able to fire from the hip or aim down sights with both their primary and sidearm weapons, use melee attacks instantly if they start to get surrounded, and even throw grenades to try and thin out a horde so they can catch their breath. The combat is intense and only lets up occasionally while you and your team try to complete objectives or prepare to take on a giant Zeke tsunami.

“The combat is intense and only lets up occasionally while you and your team try to complete objectives or prepare to take on a giant Zeke tsunami.”

These objectives range from protecting other survivors from waves of Zekes, escorting vehicles, throwing switches, grabbing car parts, or even loading missiles into a launcher and blowing up certain targets before you get overrun.

I found the variety of these to be done well enough that neither my friends nor I got bored of the situations we were thrown into. It was a lot of fun just trying to survive during intense encounters with the Zekes.

Zekes don’t just come in one flavor either. Much like Left 4 Dead, there are specialty Zekes and your team will need to be on the lookout for all of them.

Infectors can spit on you and if you don’t disinfect quickly, it’s an instant death and you turn into a Zeke. Other specialty Zekes include ones wearing heavy armor that charge into you called Bulls, Bombers with bombs strapped to their chests, Lurkers who hide in the shadows waiting for lone survivors separated from their teammates, and several more.

“If you want to roleplay as an Amish farmer or a Ninja Turtle during the zombie apocalypse, WWZ has you covered.”

You just never know where or when one (or many) of these Zekes are going to show up to the party.

Image: Saber Interactive
Image: Saber Interactive

Weapons have plenty of flavors too, with lever action rifles, carbines, machine guns, submachine guns, shotguns, grenade launchers, rocket launchers, pistols, chainsaws, sickles, and even sais. These are all really damn fun to play around with and see what suits your fancy. So if you want to roleplay as an Amish farmer or a Ninja Turtle during the zombie apocalypse, WWZ has you covered.

World War Z: Aftermath defaults to a third-person perspective, but a first-person mode can now be toggled and it’s an interesting way to play the game. It adds more immersion while also adding a bit of challenge since you have a more limited field of vision.

However, I wish that a better aim down the sights option was included because instead of looking down iron sights or through your weapon’s optic, the screen just zooms in a little bit.

“If playing a game like Payday 2 with bots doesn’t bother you, you might be okay.”

The most satisfying thing about the combat is the pure carnage that you and your team will unleash upon the Zekes. With the impressive amount of enemies able to be rendered on screen at one time and the gore effects when they are being mowed down or blown up is truly a beautiful sight to behold.

Image: Saber Interactive
Image: Saber Interactive

Finishing missions will net gold supply points that can be used for buying perks for the character class of your choice, or leveling up weapons and adding things to them like suppressors or extended ammo magazines.

I wish that you didn’t have to use supply points to level up weapons because it makes the grind of maxing out a class while also leveling up weapons very tedious unless you are trying to ascend just a single one.

To make matters worse, difficulties dictate how many supply points you receive after a mission. So, people who are playing the game casually on easy or normal difficulty are going to have a difficult time grinding to get their classes and weapons leveled up.

“There is a decent amount of content here and the gameplay is fun.”

This is exacerbated when playing solo because the AI teammates don’t do a great job of helping. They drop explosive ammo for you, but won’t lift a finger to protect an escort, look for objectives, do objectives, or even shoot at the looming Zeke hordes half of the time.

The few times I played with bots offline, I was often reminded of my days playing Ghostbusters: The Video Game, where I spent more time trying to get my teammates back up and babysitting them rather than focusing on what needed to be accomplished. However, if playing a game like Payday 2 with bots didn’t bother you, you might still be okay.

Another issue I had was that a lot of the perks that can be unlocked for each class are too situational. Like being the last of your team standing and only getting a buff for a matter of seconds. When your gold supply points take so much time to acquire, these perks just don’t seem very practical.

Blue supply points are even more rare, and the best ways to get them are by completing weekly challenges, playing on harder difficulties, or in the Horde modes. They are used to unlock weapon perks, so high-level players are going to want to grind for these in order to unlock everything for the higher difficulties.

Image: Saber Interactive
Image: Saber Interactive

All in all, I would say that if you have a group of friends that want to play something similar to Left 4 Dead, or Aliens: Fireteam Elite, then you can’t go wrong with checking this out. The game has crossplay that seemed to work well with my friends and me.

We were playing across Steam, the Epic Games Store, and the PlayStation 5; besides just a few small hiccups like having to regroup our party after a few missions here and there, everything seemed to go smoothly.

World War Z: Aftermath has a solid eight to ten hours or so of campaign content, two horde modes, and daily as well as weekly challenges to do. Not to mention several difficulty modes and different classes that you can try.

There is a good amount of content here and the gameplay is fun. My only real complaints are that the game can be a pain to play solo, the class perks don’t always make a lot of sense, and the points grind won’t be a fun time for people who don’t want to move the difficulty mode up as their characters level up.


  • Solid gunplay and intense battles

  • The amount of zombies and gore is just wild fun

  • The weapons are very satisfying to play around with


  • The points system for upgrades can be a bit of a grind

  • AI bots aren’t the sharpest tools in the shed

  • No Brad Pitt as a playable character

Score: 7.5/10

The reviewer played on PC.

World War Z: Aftermath is available now on PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.

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