It’s no surprise that the Bridge Constructor series has endured and flourished for the better part of a decade now. There’s something inherently fun about building bridges while taking into account the various effects of gravity and physics. It’s also satisfying knowing there are a multitude of viable ways to build bridges, and so the Bridge Constructor games are like these awesome puzzle games where every puzzle has a personalized answer crafted by you. Yes, building bridges is great, and it’s all I ever thought I’d want out of the Bridge Constructor series. What I didn’t anticipate was how a heavy dose of tactical gameplay could complement the physics-based puzzling so well, but that’s just what has happened with Bridge Constructor: The Walking Dead, the most unlikely of chocolate-and-peanut-butter situations I’ve ever encountered.
So how does the world of The Walking Dead, and specifically AMC’s television series, fit into the world of Bridge Constructor? In a number of interesting ways, it turns out. You play multiple characters from the show who are constantly on the move and searching for new resources while also being constantly pursued by the walking dead. Each level is its own little scenario where your goal can be getting your crew safely from one point to another, killing a certain number of zombies, or both. You do this by yes, building bridges, but also by utilizing each character’s unique skill sets and any number of different objects and variables in each level.
These can be things like triggering a giant barrel to roll down and crush a bunch of zombies, throwing a creepy talking doll to lure zombies to it and then crushing them with a giant shipping container, shooting weapons, hitting switches, and more. Basically at various points in a level will be these “action spots" where you can issue a number of commands to each character. When a character reaches that spot in the level they’ll perform the actions in the order you’ve issued them. By harnessing the powers of your crew of characters AND your bridge building abilities, you’ll make your way through all sorts of creative and complex scenarios, and to be honest I can’t imagine going back and playing a regular Bridge Constructor game after having this layer of tactical gameplay injected into the formula.
My one criticism towards Bridge Constructor: The Walking Dead is that controls can be a bit finicky on a smaller iPhone screen, as I’ve frequently grabbed the wrong anchor point on a bridge or moved something where I didn’t mean to because my fingertip was blocking the screen. You do get used to these quirks though, and any mistake you make is just a simple tap away from being undone anyway, so it’s never more than a mild annoyance. I’ll also say that there is A LOT more to learn and keep track of compared to other Bridge Constructor games due to all the new tactical elements that have been added, though it’s hard to call that a negative. It’s really what makes this entry in the series so fantastic as it has reinvented itself while making great use of an awesome IP like The Walking Dead. If you’re a fan of Bridge Constructor or The Walking Dead, or both, or NEITHER (I’ve never even seen a single episode of TWD) then you’ll find plenty to love in this new entry.