PAX 2015: Hand’s On Ray’s The Dead


The second game I saw at the Adult Swim booth was one that Glenn backed on Kickstarter. This one kind of combines the game mechanics of Pikmin or Overlord with the zombie genre into a really cool game called Ray’s The Dead.


In the game, you play as a character, Ray, who is resurrected as a Zombie with a huge lightbulb on his head. The main enemies in the game are evil humans, and you are able to control zombie minions that will help you throughout the game. The gameplay mechanics start out pretty easy: you can press one button to have your minions huddle around you, and you can press another button to send them off to do tasks (similar to firing them off). So, if there’s a tree or fence blocking your path, you can send your minions out to take it down. Some minions can even burrow under obstacles and collect objects on the other side.

If there’s an enemy nearby, you can send your minions off to kill the enemy, and then you’re able to get into a circular radius around freshly dead corpses to create new minions. There’s also freshly buried bodies around that you can also bring back to life as minions. If you get hurt, you can eat brains to regain your health (naturally). The game also has collectables in each level that you can find, and you’re allowed to replay levels to find them all.

Ray’s The Dead has quite an interesting story that’s played out in flashbacks that you play through within the game to learn more about what happened. The demo I saw at PAX showed the very beginning of a school bus crash before you were zombified. The mechanics were similar though, but in this case you’re mainly guiding the hurt kids through an obstacle course of falling trees and downed power lines.

Also part of the story is that you’ll meet your friends alive in your flashbacks, and then you’ll reconnect with them after you’re dead. So throughout the game you’ll be flipping back and fourth between the past and present to reveal the complete story.

The great thing about this game was the cute graphics, the puzzles, and the story. I personally really hate the zombie genre, and I don’t really care for Pikmin, but this game has really piqued my interest. I think what makes this one is the story and the puzzles really make me want to know more about it.

Ray’s The Dead is coming to PS4, PS Vita, and Steam, and is targeting early 2016.

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Written by Jason Honaker

Jason Honaker

A software developer for over 15 years, originally from St. Louis, MO and currently living in Seattle, WA. Started gaming in 1979 on the Atari 800 8-bit PC. I play all sorts of games, but am partial to RPGs and 3rd person brawlers and shooters.

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