Containment: The Zombie Puzzler (PC) (2012)

Containment: The Zombie Puzzler (PC) (2012)

Overview: Containment: The Zombie Puzzler is a tile game where the player eliminates zombies by surrounding them with humans of the same occupation (cop, soldier, scientist, punk).

Relevant Links:
Containment: The Zombie Puzzler Website
Containment: The Zombie Puzzler (PC) (
Containment: The Zombie Puzzler (Steam Store Page)

Although I initially planned to just finish Act 1, I ended up playing through and finishing the entire campaign (Acts 1, 2, and 3).

In addition to the core gameplay, players can also use items and the environment to their advantage.

Some basic gameplay instructions

Cops drop a sniper-shot, soldiers drop a grenade, scientists drop a containment suit, and punks drop a molotov. Other useful drops include a lightning strike (clear three vertically), an airstrike (clear an entire row), and a question mark (2x2 block falls).

Note that in addition to the different items, there are also many different types of zombies. The first type encountered is the standard zombie. Surround a standard zombie in order to defeat it. The second type encountered is the mutated zombie. This type must be surrounded twice in order to defeat it (or a single shot from any weapon item). There are several more, but I'll leave them as a surprise.

Finally, the environment can sometimes be used to help clear zombies as well.

Tip: Using a question mark item drops a 2x2 block from the sky which stays where it lands. Arguably the strongest item in the game, a well-placed question mark item can allow for eliminating multiple enemies consecutively.

Example of Tip: The following is an example of placing a 2x2 block near a corner so that surrounding a zombie only requires two matching civilians instead of four or more.

The game pans from level to level and tells the story through text:
"Heading through the park seemed like a good idea."

A cascade (chain reaction) takes place after dropping the 2x2 block.
MZSP -> MZSP -> ...P -> ...P
MZPS -> MZPS -> MZSS -> ...S
Where we have C = cop, M = soldier, S = scientist, P = punk, Z = zombie, and X = part of 2x2 block.

+ The game does a great job of teaching the player how to play

The game pans from level to level and tells the story through text:
"But we still weren't out of the woods."

+ The way this game develops the story and pans around from puzzle to puzzle is awesome
+ A new spin on the tile genre (not tile-matching, but tile containment)

~ The campaign is short and ranges from easy to medium difficulty. The survival mode is more of a challenge.

Minor Con:
- Setting up combos in Containment: The Zombie Puzzler isn't as easy as setting up combos in standard tile games.

The game pans from level to level and tells the story through text:
"Fraternity Row."

In this respect, the game can feel less exciting. I would easily overlook this aspect due to the game's story presentation

I would definitely recommend this game for players who enjoy zombie-themed video games. I enjoyed the way the story was presented and would focus on this as one of the game's selling points. Otherwise, the game's surround tile X with only tile Y is a novel mechanic, but not a cause for playing the game on its own.

The game pans from level to level and tells the story through text:
"No one could explain it."
"No one could reproduce it."
"No one could believe it."

In contrast, a zombie-themed game that lacks a strong story, yet has strong gameplay is Plants vs. Zombies (2009), a tower-defense by PopCap Games released in 2009.

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