Initially I was very excited when making this list. After all I’m a big Call of Duty Zombies fan and shifting through the various maps was actually very fun at first. The real trouble began when I had to actually start eliminating choices to narrow it down to ten. I really enjoy most of the Zombies maps, and narrowing it down to just my top ten was hard! There were maps that I really enjoyed, but just didn’t make the cut. That said, here are my top ten favorite Call of Duty Zombies maps!
Honorable Mention: Ascension
I actually added this one after completing my list. As I was looking over my choices, I couldn’t shake the feeling something was missing. I just couldn’t manage to fit Ascension into my top ten. Now I’m sure there’s plenty of people who’d argue that it deserved not only to be in the top 10, but in the top 5, or possibly even No.1….but I just couldn’t seem to work it in.
10. Green Run
I’ll admit, Green Run had a few design issues, but damn if it wasn’t iconic! It introduced one of my favorite dynamic map elements ever: the Bus!! At it’s best times, Green Run was riding around on the Bus with friends shooting zombies….at it’s worst times it was demon babies from the mist clinging onto your head. I feel it deserves a spot on this list, for at least managing to change the way zombie maps were played and providing a fun time.
One of the funnest things when waiting for zombies maps is trying to guess the theme. With zombies maps, it’s always a surprise. Shang ri La? Germany? Post apocalyptic future? A frozen wasteland? Buried managed to blow me away with a theme I would have never guessed: Wild West! After Mob of the Dead, I was afraid whatever came next might feel pale in comparison, but Buried lived up to the legend. Buried is a great example of how the Zombies experience can evolve across so many different settings.
Origins not only managed meet the quality of it’s predecessors, but end the season with a bang! What do you do when you want to step up your Zombie game? Include the original cast and add giant robots. Duh. Now there’s some controversy regarding where Origins actually took the story, but the map itself was really cool. There was simply so much to do, from crafting magic staffs and fighting zombie Templars, to crawling around inside giant robot heads.
Ahh, we’ve reach the first of the classic maps on this list. Spoiler alert, all four are on here. Verrukt added a lot to the zombies franchise, introducing Perk a Cola machines, electric traps, and the concept of turning on power. Atmospherically it’s actually one of the most impressive zombie maps. It is perhaps the most genuinely spooky map. It’s a little eerie….
6. Kino Der Toten
Who could forget the epic return of zombies to Black ops 1? Kino is just all things considered one of the most balanced zombie maps around. No overly weird gimmicks, no complicated map, it was simple, but still very well done. It is perhaps one of the best “core” zombie maps out there.
5. Nacht Der Untoten
This is where it all started. I considered giving Nacht der Untoten the No.1 spot purely out of nostalgia, but I decided I had to look at things a bit more rationally. It may be old school, but Nacht der Untoten is still a fantastic map. It is the most simple form of zombies you can get. No pack a punch, no perk a cola, no traps, just a mystery box and the most iconic map ever.
The sheer absurdity of it was enough to grab your attention. Zombies….on the moon? What?! Moon several knew elements to now well known zombies formula. On Moon you had to deal with things like no gravity or no oxygen. The map itself was very big, and very fun to explore and discover all of it’s little secrets.
3. Der Reise
I would classify Der Reise as the first “modern” zombie map. It was the first map to finally have all the basics. Perk a Cola, mystery boxes, electric traps, and the map’s newest addition: Pack a punch. Der Reise is a very well designed map, and was a fantastic way to end the first season of zombies.
2. Shima no Numa
I strongly considered giving Shima no Numa the No.1 spot. The third of the classics is by far my favorite. I was almost embarrassingly excited for this map. Keep in mind, the only other two zombies maps at this point were Nacht der Untoten and Verrukt. Both indoor only maps. Shima No Numa was the first map which the player was actually allowed to go outside. That was a pretty good deal. It was easily the biggest zombie at the map, almost three the times the size of Nacht or Verrukt. To this day this map still holds up very well, the map design is one of the best in the franchise.
1. Mob of the Dead
This map did so many things right. First off the design and atmosphere is fan-freaking-tastic. Zombies in Alcatraz was just a stroke of genius. Also, this new cast of old movie stars was easily my second favorite zombies group, second only to original. The map itself introduced a perfect balance of new elements and old ones. I could go on for quite some time explaining why this map is so awesome, but I’m out of time here folks!
Please feel free to let me know what you think of my list! Or tell me your list!