Arizona Sunshine 2: Elevating VR Zombie Action with New Twists and a Canine Companion

Review scene for Arizona Sunshine 2, featuring armed survivors and zombies in a desolate desert landscap

Vertigo Games’ latest virtual reality offering, “Arizona Sunshine 2,” brings a fresh wave of excitement to the zombie-slaying genre. Building upon the foundation of its predecessor, this VR-exclusive first-person shooter enhances the player’s experience with a more diverse arsenal, improved set pieces, and an intriguing addition – a canine sidekick.


My initial encounters with “Arizona Sunshine 2” were a mixed bag. The first playthrough left me slightly disoriented, a side effect of my hiatus from VR gaming. The second attempt plunged me into overwhelming hordes of undead, raising concerns about the game’s balance. However, by my third session, equipped with my Quest 3 headset, I’d regained my VR bearings. Mastering zombie crowd control, I began to appreciate the game as an adrenaline-fueled, arcade-style journey through a post-apocalyptic world.


Set in varied environments like airports, sewage tunnels, and rooftop parking lots, “Arizona Sunshine 2” immerses you in a world teeming with zombies, referred to as “Freds” by the protagonist. The game is unapologetically a power fantasy, offering abundant ammunition and intense moments of tension.


The game truly excels in its large-scale zombie encounters. Initially challenging, these battles become exhilarating as you hone your skills, especially mastering the reload animation – a critical aspect of VR shooters. The sense of progress, from struggling with reloads to slicing through zombies with the precision of a John Wick character, is immensely satisfying.


“Arizona Sunshine 2” also introduces an array of firearms, each with unique firing patterns, adding variety to the combat. On easier difficulties, guns come with red dot sights, an added mechanic that enhances aiming while still challenging players to improve their natural shooting skills.


Beyond the already impressive gunplay, the sequel brings two significant enhancements. Firstly, melee weapons offer a fun, arcade-like alternative for close combat, contrasting with more realistic zombie games. Swinging these weapons feels more like playing “Fruit Ninja” than a gritty survival challenge.


The most notable addition, however, is Buddy, a loyal dog companion. Buddy is not just a pet; he is an integral part of your survival strategy. From attacking zombies to fetching items and aiding in puzzle-solving, Buddy’s versatility adds depth to the gameplay. Learning to effectively coordinate with Buddy transforms daunting zombie hordes into manageable, even enjoyable, obstacles.


The game’s puzzles, while straightforward, provide a welcome break from the relentless action, and Buddy often plays a key role in solving them. This dynamic creates moments of strategic gameplay, where directing Buddy and managing zombies becomes a dance of survival.


Despite its action-packed nature, “Arizona


Sunshine 2″ also delivers some high-tension moments, particularly in set-pieces that restrict movement to amplify the drama. These scenarios, from navigating an airport on a lift to a zombie-filled concert, maintain the game’s suspense even amidst an arsenal of weapons and Buddy’s assistance. Managing ammo and timing reloads become crucial skills, fulfilling the classic zombie survival fantasy.


For those seeking cooperative play, “Arizona Sunshine 2” offers a full online co-op mode. Teaming up with a friend adds a new dimension to the game, though it amusingly contradicts the narrative of being the ‘sole survivor’ – a point further muddled by Buddy’s presence.


The game’s weakest element, however, is its story. The protagonist’s constant quips and one-liners can be more distracting than entertaining, and the plot unfolds predictably, lacking any real twists or surprises. While it aims to be more than a shooting gallery, the narrative falls short of adding significant depth to the experience.


In summary, “Arizona Sunshine 2” may not be the definitive VR game that revolutionizes the platform, but it stands as a commendable sequel. It expands on its predecessor with more weapons, strategic gameplay elements, and the novel addition of a canine companion. For fans of zombie games and VR enthusiasts alike, “Arizona Sunshine 2” offers an enjoyable, albeit predictable, adventure through a zombie-infested apocalypse.


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