Thursday, February 28, 2013

Keyboarding with Zombies

Friends, Library of the Dead users, confused yet intrigued first time visitors, let's venture back in time to the mid-90's. Way before THE WALKING DEAD was even a comic, let alone a TV show or a video game, before LEFT 4 DEAD, before DEAD RISING, a couple of major video game series were just beginning. It wasn't the first time some form of zombie would appear in a game (that's been going on for at least 30 years) but both RESIDENT EVIL and HOUSE OF THE DEAD would have a significant impact on horror video games featuring the undead.

The former has probably been more successful, and I'm not just saying that because I own a blood red Resident Evil 5 edition Xbox 360 Elite. There are just more entries in the series, and the movies have been better received (if worse over time). Even the games themselves have been more action than horror of late. But HOUSE OF THE DEAD is special to me as well. I think it's a lot of fun to play in an arcade with a friend, and I take a sort of sick pleasure in occasionally watching the train wreck that was Uwe Boll's film adaptation.

But probably my top reason that I'm thankful for HOUSE OF THE DEAD is because of a little spin-off called TYPING OF THE DEAD.

TYPING is based on the plot from HOUSE OF THE DEAD 2, but instead of any sort of conventional weapon you have a big ol' keyboard strapped to your front with a "Dreamcast" battery backpack over your shoulders. As you run around encountering various zombies, words or letters appear in front of them. You have to accurately complete the word in order to kill the zombie, that means capital letters, spaces, punctuation, everything. This is not a game for the hunt-and-peck style typers!

I myself am terrible at shooter video games, doubly so if there are scary things chasing me. There is utter panic, there is loss of aim, there is me shooting and losing ammo, and then I'm dying. The End.

But typing? Oh. I'm a wonderful typer.

TYPING OF THE DEAD is just plain fun, even if you don't have my speed. The animation is laughable by today's standards, and the dubbing is just... well, HOUSE OF THE DEAD special.

You can download the demo in various places online, but as far as I can tell getting the full game is tougher. Legitimately buying it for the PC will cost you $50 on Amazon or Ebay, maybe only $30 or so if you've still got a working Dreamcast. If the day ever comes when Sega puts it out again for a more reasonable price, I'll be first in line.

The Typing of the Dead via House of the Dead Wiki
The Typing of the Dead via Gamespot
Video of Typing of the Dead gameplay via Youtube
List of Zombie Video Games via Wikipedia


  1. SO glad that someone else remembers this - I used to play this non-stop back in the day.

    Welcome to HBA, by the way!

  2. HBA Welcome Wagon...
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    Jeremy [Retro]
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  3. Thanks for the welcomes!! (And the tip...)

    Eric: YES! I swear I used to have a full PC version of it years ago, but must have lost it. Playing the demo is a nice reminder, though. If they ever put this out on Steam or something, I'd be ecstatic.