Into the Dead 2 (Review) Nintendo Switch

Into the Dead 2 (Review) Nintendo Switch
Review Score:

Initially a mobile game that appeared on both Android and iOS devices, Into the Dead 2 is a first-person, on-rail shooter that sees the player in the role of James, a survivor who his trying to reach his family amidst a zombie apocalypse. 

The game contains 60 levels that span across 7 chapters, each containing objectives to complete (i.e. Surviving; Getting 2 kills with one shot; and Getting 100 kills, among others). Into the Dead 2 has three available modes of play: Story, Side Stories and Arcade Mode. Story mode, as the name implies, follows a survivor named James, as he runs through open fields, neighborhoods and dense woods to reach his endangered family. The second mode, Side Stories, includes unlockable rewards that activate when the player completes stages 17, 31 and others respectively. The last two rewards are micro-transactions, and they’re based on two (albeit popular) Hollywood franchises, Night of the Living Dead and the Ghostbusters. These ‘upgrades’ change the entire game, mimicking the movies they represent. Last, but not least, is Arcade mode. This feature contains a stripped down version of the original game. The story has been removed, and the protagonist starts off with a rifle. The objective is simple: kill as many zombies as possible while trying to survive. Luckily, Arcade mode is fairly generous with providing ammo to the player.

As mentioned earlier, the gameplay uses an on-rail system that constantly has the player on the move. This means that zombies can (and usually do) attack from almost every direction, even if they’re slightly off screen to the left and right of the playfield. Some of these enemies can be seen in the distance approaching James, as he avoids environmental hazards like trees and fallen debris. Despite the limitations of the on-rail system, the player can move the game’s protagonist to the left and right with the left Analog Stick. By doing this, the player can run through different sections of a level. The Right Analog Stick is used to aim the firearm currently in use, and pressing the Right Trigger Button will fire. If secondary weapons like grenades are equipped, they can be thrown by pressing the Right Shoulder Button. In addition, the player can reload their weapon by pressing Y button.

Combat resembles a first-person shooter, as the player shoots their way through hordes of flesh-eating zombies. It’s possible to aim and shoot at everything on-screen (even if the target isn’t standing directly in front of the player), but the damage inflicted is usually minimal at best. The game encourages the player to hold up on the Right Analog stick to easily ‘land’ headshots, but this only works when the zombies are approaching the player head on.

It should be mentioned that ammo is a scarce commodity; it can only be replenished by finding ‘ammo’ drops, which are indicated by green, glowing flares. Coming in contact with one of these ammo caches will instantly replenish the player’s ammo stock. The only issue with these ‘ammo’ drops is how few and far between they are. Ironically, this is where the game encourages the player to ‘conserve’ ammo where ever possible. This isn’t always possible, though, given the difficulty of some levels.

Into the Dead 2 has a ‘Companion’ system where the player can use one of four available canines (i.e. a Border Collie, a Bulmastiff, a German Shepard and a Mixed Breed) as a combat partner. While optional, having a ‘partner’ can make surviving the game’s more difficult levels a lot easier. However, a companion is only designed to provide minimal support by running ahead of the player, and attacking whatever is nearby. The player has no control over their companion’s actions.

Graphically, Into the Dead 2 for the Nintendo Switch looks no different than its smartphone counterpart(s). The stages manage to maintain a dark, gritty atmosphere throughout, increasing the sense of urgency felt during the game. The zombies – while not as varied as they should be – look terrifying, and they animate at a steady 30fps. In fact, the entire presentation manages to impress despite being a direct port of the iOS/Android game.

As a Nintendo Switch release, Into the Dead 2 is a decent zombie shooter with some replay value. It’s one of those games that works best in Portable mode due to its pedigree – It’s a basic, on-rail arcade shooter that is best enjoyed during short commutes or on family trips.

Mike Pittaro
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Developer: Pik Pok
Publisher: Pik Pok
ESRB: M (Mature)
Price: $39.99

Into The Dead 2 Official Website:

Review Score
Into the Dead 2 for the Nintendo Switch looks no different than its smartphone counterpart(s)
Average sound effects and music.
Challenging and fun, but repetitive.
Despite its flaws, Into the Dead 2 is a fun game to play on the go.
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