ZORP: Zombie Oblivion Response Pack

 Game: ZORP  Age: 12+
 Publisher: Wonky Rhino Games  Time: 30 minutes
 Players: 2- 4  Replayability: 5/10

ZORPZORP: Zombie Oblivion Response Pack

Admittingly, I have yet to play many Horde type board games, however, I am a huge fan of fighting off waves of enemies and such. Dead of Winter is what comes to mind as one of the only horde games I’ve played and I love it. It’s effective in storytelling, organizes components and their use in an orderly fashion throughout the rulebook and into the gameplay, and interprets fun gaming into a zombie thriller. So, with that being said–yes, I want to play more horde games. ZORP is a board game I was tried out recently and to my surprise is a horde style board game! Following the Zombie Oblivion, one player takes on the role of hordes of zombies while the other players play as human looking for a cure. In this semi-modular board game, you will journey from one side of a parking lot to the other collecting weapons, spawning events, and making your way to the pharmacy for the cure. Though it’s a player versus zombie scenario; each human plays indepdently, collecting points along the way and claiming victory over the others after nine turns if they have the most points.

On your turn as a human, you will choose to move two spaces and/or attack in any order. As you make your way through the parking lot you’ll find an assortment of guns with varying damage, ammo, and range as well as event cards that can trigger quick time events. Each time you kill a zombie you gain a point and when collecting a cure you gain ten points. If you’re touched by a zombie, you become infected which triggers a new goal which is to steal all the weapons and events before the humans get to them, however, in a two player game this ends the game. As a zombie, you are out for brains. You will be moving varying powered zombies around the parking lot trying to infect humans. Every turn introduces a new wave of zombies to the board equal to the current round. Game ends after nine rounds.

My Experience

I played a couple different versions of this game including a two-player run and a four-player run. Beginning my ZORP interaction with a two player game I was a little underwhelmed. The games mechanics are fluid, there isn’t anything broken about it, however, I think delivering the immersion of a horde style board game can be quite difficult. I spawned my zombies close to the human spawn and made my way toward weapons in order to block his opportunities to damage me with any dual wielding (he begins with a weapon). He made his way through the board, activating an event that involved a live grenade which he through over toward one of my zombies directions. After a dice roll, he made it far enough to kill my zombie and paved a way to his dual-wielding option. He journeyed toward it and became a shotgun dual wielding a flame thrower type-of zombie killer. The next few rounds were very similar, I spawn some zombies close to his human, and he kills a couple of them. I eventually infected him after he couldn’t outrun my zombies.

My four-player experience was similar, however, infecting humans became a lot more difficult with zombie spawning having no change with the introduction of two new players. Sure, I still start with seven zombies, but they can die quickly when humans have the correct weapons. As a zombie master, I was feeling more like a point influence rather than a threat. I pushed my zombies toward a bias choice in who I’d like to win (usually the underdog) and was just an easy grind for points.

Final Thoughts

ZORP fell a bit short for my taste, however, does satisfy the thirst for a horde mode board game. It is for sure a light experience and can ask for an interaction of strategy and tactics in order to kill the zombies and collect points. While it’s not a cooperative board game, the human players in my games collaborated on ways to manage the waves of zombies. I think with some new graphics and a bit of balancing this game can be a very fun experience. I did enjoy the variety in weapons and found they were effective in their own ways. The rulebook defines gameplay well and illustrates board game setups for different player ranges. While easy to set up and play, I feel the lack of content could hinder its replayability. I enjoyed the quick time events and felt they added a nice change of pace to the quality of the experience.

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Joseph Nicholas

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Indietabletop. Communication major. Favorite mechanics include: Bluffing and Deduction, modular boards, and action point allowance. Favorite video game genres are Rpgs, Puzzles games, and Sim/Tycoons.