Abandoned co-op game from 2020 suddenly has 37,000% more players

One abandoned zombie shooter from 2020 has suddenly gone from 32 players up to 11,859, as the developer makes it free ahead of a sequel.

Co-op zombie shooter increases player count from 32 to 11,859 in one weekend

You’d be forgiven for letting the release of a co-op zombie shooter pass you by in recent years, especially one with the generic name Ultimate Zombie Defense. But, even while recovering from a decade-past glut of undead shooting movies and videogames like Left 4 Dead, The Walking Dead, and Dead Island, a Steam giveaway will still get new players’ attention. Case in point: Ultimate Zombie Defense was recently made free for Steam users to claim, increasing the co-op shooter’s player count from 32 to 11,859 over a single weekend.

Ultimate Zombie Defense, from Terror Dog Studio, is a blend of top-down shooter and base defence that tasks players with wiping out waves of shambling brain-eaters in a dystopian Europe. Aside from an arsenal of guns, there are also deadly traps to install and base upgrades to make in order to better survive the onslaught. Though it’s advertised as an online co-op game for squads of up to four players, Ultimate Zombie Defense can also be played offline and solo (which decades of horror movies have taught us is probably not a good idea).

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Ultimate Zombie Defense was released on December 8, 2020, and has seemingly struggled to attract much attention in the more than three years since, peaking at 1,111 players in January 2021 and rarely breaking through to triple digits in following months. A recent ‘Free To Keep’ Steam promotion massively increased attention, though, bringing the game’s peak player count from just 32 on Friday February 9 to an impressive 11,859 on Saturday February 10.

The Steam giveaway coincided with the announcement of a forthcoming sequel, the not-too-surprisingly-named Ultimate Zombie Defense 2, which currently doesn’t have a release date listed beyond ‘coming soon.’ Considering the attention the first game gathered over the last few days, we’d say the giveaway promo was a smart move.

If reading about Ultimate Zombie Defense has you in the mood for games to play with friends or other opportunities to fight off the undead, head over to our list of the survival games and best zombie games.

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