In my continuing adventure through boardgames I finally got round to playing Last Night On Earth. I was really impressed.
Lets start with the physical product. Everything seems to be made to a very high standard. All the map pieces, tokens and cards are printed clearly and the cards themselves display high quality photos of grizzly zombie action, nothing too graphic though. The miniatures are sculpted to a great standard and have a good amount of character in them. This quality makes the box price seem pretty reasonable.
Now onto the game itself. During the evening myself and my 3 friends played the “Die, Zombie, Die!!” scenario (kill 15 zombies in 15 turns before sunrise) a number of times switching teams/sides after each game. We used the basic rules although advanced rules are available in the main box. We started by setting up the map, 1 center piece that never changes and 4 randomly selected corner pieces, then the 2 players on the survivor team randomly selected the heros they would be playing.
Survivors can choose to move or search the building they are currently in. Searching a building lets you draw a card which could provide anything from a weapon or other useful item, to a special event or stranger that hinders the zombie players. After moving or searching they can commence with their ranged attacks then close combat. Close combat is a dice off versus the zombies, and although the survivors have a slight advantage, actually killing zombie rather than just fending them off is tricky unless properly armed.
On the zombies turn, the players controlling them can draw cards that assist in their munching of the survivors. Zombies can only move one square per turn but can ignore barriers that survivors cannot pass through. More zombies can spawn each turn until you run out of models for them.
I feel the game is pretty balanced. It’s no walk in the park for the survivors unless they play clever, but that’s how it should be. The peril adds a real level of excitement to the proceedings. Sometimes the special play cards can have a massive impact on each game. One game when I was on the zombie team our cards allowed us to kill one of the survivors before they even got a turn.
If you have a bit of imagination the game can produce some hilarious cinematic plays. Such as in one playthrough one of the survivor team was controlling the Preacher character… who was wielding a chainsaw. He storms into a hospital with the intentions of hacking down the cursed undead, fails his first attack, the chainsaw runs out of petrol and he gets dragged down and eaten in seconds.
All the artwork, flavour text and characters give the overall atmosphere of a cheesy B-movie and this really adds to the whole experience.
I would definitely advise people to buy this game if they are looking for a really fun, action boardgame that doesn’t require too long to play.