Tuesday, June 9, 2015

StreetPass Games Revisited: Battleground Z

I've completed the vast majority of what Battleground Z has to offer.  I have one plaza ticket remaining, for trying every showdown stage.  I only have one showdown stage left to play, which I can't play yet for a reason I'll get into in a moment.

Battleground Z is definitely shorter than Ultimate Angler.  There are 25 story stages, divided among five areas.  Each stage is designed to take less than five minutes.  The last stage of each area is a boss battle.  From each of the first four bosses, you take a sample.  These samples get analyzed and combined together to formulate a cure that you spread through the air after defeating the fifth boss.  I know, spoilers, right?  Well, no.  I avoided the actual spoilers.  So there.

As you play through the game, you gradually fill in information on the Z-Wiki, which is accessible from the title screen.  It gains information about all the weapons and all the enemies, as well as letting you test out weapons to get acquainted with them.  The weapons are based on the hobbies of the Miis you StreetPass, which means there's 26 weapons in total, each with its own strengths and weaknesses.

Each stage has four objectives for which you earn a medal.  These objectives can be easy, or they can be frustratingly difficult.  There is some in-between, thankfully.  The game has a total of 120 medals that you can earn, although you can get all the plaza tickets and Z-Wiki completion once you've gotten 100 of them.

Beating the story makes the five showdown stages show up.  Each of these requires a multiple of 20 medals to be accessible.  The showdowns are basically challenges to see how many zombies you can defeat in a limited amount of time.  They're all about having good weapons and remembering to use your charge attacks.  The showdown stages also have medals.

Also, within 26 of the 30 stages, you can fulfill a hidden condition and make a rare zombie spawn.  The game hints at what weapon you need to use in which stage to make this happen, via the Z-Wiki.  Finding and defeating the rare zombies is of course completely optional, but it does fill in the Z-Wiki section about them with more information as you do it.  Just to clue you in, there's a graveyard stage, and yes, you have to use the dancing weapon in the graveyard stage to spawn its rare zombie.  Heck, the dance even looks a bit like the Thriller dance.

Returning to the subject of my game completion, I've defeated 25 of the 26 rare zombies, and the last one I need is in the 100-medal showdown stage.  I'm currently sitting at 87 medals, and that specific showdown stage is the last one I have yet to try, so I'll get the game's final plaza ticket when I do play that stage.

Overall, Battleground Z is a bit on the short side story-wise, but what it lacks in story length it makes up for in replayability.  Due to the medals, showdown stages, rare zombies, and the vast array of weapons at your disposal, no two gameplay sesssions are ever the same.

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