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Z-Run dashes onto PS Vita next month

Apocalyptic arcade game tasks you with picking a path through the undead horde

Hello there! This is Alexey Menshikov from Beatshapers and we are proudly announcing our 20th PlayStation Network release: Z-Run for PS Vita. We delayed it since our announcement last summer in order to make it bigger and better. Our previously releases include StarDrone Extreme, BreakQuest, Furmins, dozen of PSP minis and recently announced PS4 title Ready to Run.

Today, we are presenting a gameplay tutorial video – take a look above.

The world has been over-run by flesh-hungry zombies, and you’re stranded in the middle of a post-apocalyptic city with no way out. Are you going to just stand there and get eaten, and turn into a brainless living dead creature too? Not likely.

In Z-Run, you never stand still. Anyone who does, winds up dead. Stay on your toes if you want to stay alive in this thrilling infinite runner game.

zrun_screen001

The city is a mess after the zombie apocalypse, so you need to be agile as well as fast as you attempt to sprint through the crowds of undead assailants. Falling over an obstacle or running head-long into abandoned cars is a sure way to get caught by the legions of zombies, so you must dodge, sprint slide, jump and dive to find a safe path.

But you’re not expected to go in empty handed. An arsenal of weapons is available to collect, including guns, bats, planks, wrenches and even an electric guitar that will help you to fend off the flesh eaters and keep on running.

Be careful how much you exert yourself, though. This is a big city, and it’s packed with hungry zombies. Every move you make, punch your throw or guitar you swing will cost you energy. Find yourself exhausted too quickly, and you’ll be an easy meal for the army of undead attackers.

zrun_screen006

Z-Run is built entirely in 3D, pushing the spectacular PS Vita hardware to its limits through the game’s detailed, immersive world.

The game is viewed from a third-person perspective, with the camera controlled automatically to always deliver the best possible view of the action, maximizing your field of vision and allowing you to build your dodging and attacking skills as you play.

There are multiple routes you can take as you sprint through the city, and exploration is an essential part of survival during the undead armageddon.

Campaign mode tasks you with working your way through the debris-strewn streets in an effort to find your way out with at least a few limbs still intact. There’s also a survival mode included, which keeps on going until the living dead finally get to feast. The more you unlock in the story, the more you get to test your skills in survival mode.

The better you get and the longer you survive, the more you can work to upgrade your runner stats. Your experience builds the longer you survive the further you run, and the more effectively you use your attacks against the zombie horde.

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As your character levels-up you can begin to add to your stamina, allowing you to attack and dodge more, and recover more quickly. You can also upgrade your weapons, ammunition and inventory to help you keep running for longer.

The game is scheduled to release in early May – we’ll confirm a release date as soon as possible.

37 Comments
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I remember the first video for this a while back and it was less than impressive but due to it being beta footage I understood it could improve.

I see it has a little but it’s still a no buy from me,the animation and movement still looks clunky, the textures on the cars are pretty poor looking, it looks like an early ps2 game.

I’m not one to slate games that don’t look the best graphically as it’s all about gameplay but with the movements looking like they do this will not be bought.

Sorry but just pointing out the trailer does nothing to sell the game.

1.1

^ this. Also, 480p we’ve met again, they didn’t even bother to put out a trailer in HD -.-”

A little bit more polish needed on this one.

Everytime i saw these mobile-games on PSVITA just made me sad. Until today i just bought 2 PSVITA games: Uncharted and Killzone. Don’t bother yourself asking me why i haven’t play Soul Sacrifice, Dragon Crown or Blahblahblah. I hope that SCE and the western third parties could make great games for PSVITA players but maybe it’s just my dream.

icecrasher_zero 04 April, 2014 @ 16:28
4

It looks like most Android based games. Waste of time and money. Sorry.

4.1

That’s why I complain about this “indie thing” because we all know what that means and it isn’t AAA games -.-‘

icecrasher_zero 05 April, 2014 @ 11:16
4.2

I like indie games: Rocketbirds rocks, Hotline Miami is great, but… This is another poor game such as King Oddball released on PSVITA and (sic!) PS4…

I actually really like some of the small mobile style games…

But seriously… Beatshapers….. i think next month is a bit close, saying it needs a little work is a understatement.
low graphics and textures are fine, sometimes even good, but that animation… if i had to play it, (at this moment, i wouldnt if it was free) every time i roll, it would completely break the immersion.

Other than that, its a nice idea, i really dig running games, i even enjoy “sonic run” and “into the dead” on my tablet. something like this *could* have been nice on the vita.

superpatchy66 04 April, 2014 @ 16:55
6

Not really my sort of thing as it looks like it could get very boring very quickly.
This would be more akin to a ps mobile game rather than a full vita release.

Does this game really push the vita to its limit?

7

Ok, early PS1 game there, what about making PSP or even PS Vita games now?

7.1

this is how PS1 games look :

http://www.evernote.com/shard/s9/sh/6eca50c6-6e22-4d59-a093-7e2597206c74/f3a6146a3fb69dc4ecb507b038571e4f

in motion, the difference is ,well, noticeable :)

icecrasher_zero 06 April, 2014 @ 19:17
7.2

PepsiMan looks great ;)

Arthurlantern 04 April, 2014 @ 16:58
8

For 50p maybe

8.1

I wouldn’t even want this for free.

I had a lot of faith in Sony as far as the Vita was concerned and I’m sad to say I feel let down. I like a lot of the Indie games but It’s getting ridiculous now, especially the PS+ offerings as of late.

Arthurlantern 04 April, 2014 @ 17:14
9.1

Totally agree there feel let down also

Ishan_The_King 04 April, 2014 @ 17:46
10

Every day there is a new article about a new upcoming indie game, well that might be good for some but the lack of higher quality games especially for PS4/Vita is making me feel claustrophobic around all these indie games now.

Vastly improved since the first video was shown. Congrats

I wouldn’t be too worried about jaggies/textures. Purely because when scaled down to the small OLED screen they wont be noticeable.

The animations are a little stiff. And you could maybe do with a few different run animations to break up the monotony (think Uncharted/Last Of Us), a speed up animation for when he is gaining speed, a hurt animation for when he knocks into things (that again break your speed). A stutter step here and there. Things like that really make it feel more alive.

One feature I think you should try (even though its very late in the dev process at this point). Is a sprint feature.

Think Velocity Ultra. A way for the experienced player to really go fast through a level. Maybe have the gauge empty (stamina meter) over a period and fill up again. Just a thought!

Also one concern I would have is how dark some of the obstacles are. If I’m having a hard time distinguishing the shape of an oncoming car full scre...

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Vastly improved since the first video was shown. Congrats

I wouldn’t be too worried about jaggies/textures. Purely because when scaled down to the small OLED screen they wont be noticeable.

The animations are a little stiff. And you could maybe do with a few different run animations to break up the monotony (think Uncharted/Last Of Us), a speed up animation for when he is gaining speed, a hurt animation for when he knocks into things (that again break your speed). A stutter step here and there. Things like that really make it feel more alive.

One feature I think you should try (even though its very late in the dev process at this point). Is a sprint feature.

Think Velocity Ultra. A way for the experienced player to really go fast through a level. Maybe have the gauge empty (stamina meter) over a period and fill up again. Just a thought!

Also one concern I would have is how dark some of the obstacles are. If I’m having a hard time distinguishing the shape of an oncoming car full screen on my PC. I know I will have a heck of a time trying to see it on the Vita screen.
So a thought might be;
A glow around the nearest oncoming car.
A luminous outline on the nearest oncoming car.
Street spotlights specifically on where cars are bunched up together

Obviously its an ‘Arcadey’ game, so you could go crazy with the lights/glows/outlines or whatever. As it doesn’t have to scream realistic!

Those are my thoughts anyway :)

11.1

Actually, there is ‘sprint’ mode (which burns stamina faster) and stop/step-back animations when player bump into things.

On too dark obstacles, it’s not that bad on Vita screen; and this is also part of design — you have to look and think ahead to survive.

Was just curious what the EU blog response to this is and well… Same as USA… Pretty bad. More I think about it, Im kinda of shocked this got by SONY…..

This looks kinda disappointing, the draw distance is bad, the physics etc are bad. Its like a zombie mode of temple run to me and temple run looks better + its free

Wow, that looks truly bad and not in a so bad it’s good way. Good luck selling that.

15

Well done. A Temple Run clone but with zombies.

I bet that pitch took all of thirty seconds!

superpatchy66 05 April, 2014 @ 23:49
15.1

There are so many games that are either complete rip-offs of other games or very similar. There is little wrong with that, as long as the game is good. The problem with this game is that it looks poor.

To be fair, you cannot play Temple Run on your Vita, and I think there is certainly room for a PS Mini or PS Mobile version of Temple Run at 99p or less.

I wonder if this game will get panned, or disappear for a few months for a re-design.

16

But,but… it’s a Indie, what most all of you’s say needs to be given a play, Before judging, oh, it has ‘Zombies’ in it, maybe if they were flat paper like ones?.. pick a side and stick with it, indie supporter, or not?, personally i like the look of it, but don’t particularly like the extreme focus on indies, above cod clones, or whatever there called. yes indie can also mean mid range almost AAA type product, though 8/16 bit seem more common when referring to that title, IF theres a trial i will try it, given a reasonable unlock price of course.

This looks absolutely awful. Honestly. Compare this to Golden Abyss.
Terrible animation, art style, everything. What a waste of the Vita’s potential.

17.1

Comparing full-price AAA-game made by first-party team of 50+ people in two years with indie-game made by team of 2-3 people in 1 year is a little bit unfair, no?

@BLK–Dragon Thanks for the clarification! I only went off what I saw in the posted video.

Another thing I would look into changing is the button choice for the various abilities.
Triangle to jump? Doesn’t makes too much sense. When X has historically been jump.
Square should be for melee, and circle for slide.

No need to try and unlearn decades of what is already rooted in gamers minds, just to be different ;)

18.1

‘Triangle’ for jump is because ‘cross’ is for slide. Slide is used much more often; in fact, it’s most frequently used move in a game so it’s mapped to a button closest to your finger.

Jump/slide controls are like ‘up’/’down’ buttons.

Besides, very first Devil May Cry used ‘triangle’ for jump, so it’s not so unusual :)

@BLK-Dragon Yep I understand some games have used it in the past. Just going with the majority. When you think jump in a game your mind thinks X. Square for melee and usually circle/triangle for interaction. I just think you should test out Circle for slide and X for jump that’s all :)

20

@Syph33r Of course I’ve tried different button layouts during development;
‘cross’-jump and ‘triangle’-slide just felt ‘wrong’.

20.1

Cross jump and Circle slide was what I was thinking. Or Cross jump and R1 slide. As the slide mechanics reminds me a bit of something like Vanquish :)

a piece of carp when you don’t edit out comments about this pushing Vita to its limits. The gameplay looks dire and not even worth free. The team May have potential but why would you possibly plan to release an Android game on Vita.

21.1

I’m curious, what’s so ‘Android’ about this game. Examples would help.

Half my comment vanished!

23

Honestly, it does not look horrible like many people try to say that here. But it does not look fun. The animations are kinda bad, and the game pace is too slow. But it does not look unplayable.

24

This video shows Z-Run gameplay a bit better :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yhfqnkiEVw

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