Army of Zin combines elements of an action title, with that of platforming. It is a 3D homage to the Ghosts N's Goblins franchise and borrows heavily from it. Just like the franchise it takes from, Army of Zin is considered a difficult title.
Each of the game's twenty levels is a mix of hack and slash action, with moments of platforming that features difficult jumping puzzles. There are several diversions throughout the levels that reward players for not simply rushing from the beginning of the level. Secret chests, villagers needing saved, and places hiding treasure are spread out among the levels. The rewards for finding these secrets and diversions help Maximo purchase additional attacks, pieces of armor with added bonuses, items to survive as the game's difficulty rises, and bonus unlockables.
Maximo's health is a combination of a traditional health bar and how much armor he wears. When you start the game off, Maximo has a full set of armor, without a helmet on. He is able to upgrade two more levels, the next donning a helmet, and the highest level a set of Golden Armor. A few hits by the enemy, and your armor gets knocked off, eventually leaving you in just your boxers. Another hit kills you.
Maximo can attack the armies he faces with a weapon in one hand, and a shield in the other. With his weapon, he is able to strike horizontally and vertically, and can chain attacks with timed presses of the attack buttons. Combo Attacks range from the simple, two-hit strikes, to high damage, area of effect moves. To use some of these moves, Maximo needs to tap into a Power Meter. These attacks are some of the most powerful in his set of skills. Maximo starts out with a basic set of moves, more purchased with use of the game's currency.
Maximo is also able to call in Grim for a period of time. By collecting the souls of his defeated enemies, Grim can be summoned in. Grim is invisible, and has his own set of attacks. As long as you have souls, Grim will remain on the field of battle.
The in-game currency, Koins, is used to purchase all of the various items, upgrades, and additional moves. These include different boxer shorts with different effects, shields, and items that give you additional continues and armor.
- Parilla - Maximo's trusted sword, at your side as the game starts.
- Flame Tongue - A sword enchanted with fire, shaped like a scimitar.
- Hammer of Heroes - A heavy hammer used to smash switches.
- Bleak Forge Hammer - Enchanted by ice, can freeze most enemies.
- Iron Shield - Maximo's stalwart defender, on your arm at the game start.
- Silver Shield - A shield with an extended throwing range.
- Gold Shield - Most powerful shield, does the most throwing damage.
- Midas Aura - Attracts all treasure nearby towards Maximo.
- Ricochet - Throwing ability that attacks multiple enemies with a single throw.
- Mighty Throw - Powerful shield toss at maximum distance.
- Heart Boxers - A gift from Sophia, worn at the start of the game.
- Armored Boxers - Gain more health, and Golden Armor, from armor pick ups.
- Treasure Seeker Boxers - Boxers with the incredible ability to cause the controller to shake when treasure is near.
- Boxers of Burning Vigor - When all you have on are these, the Power Meter charges up.
- Keys - Opens doors, chests, gates, and whatever they will fit in. They come in regular, iron, and gold flavored.
- Koins - The game's currency, used to purchase a variety of items.
- Death Coins - Extra lives. Gained through collecting souls.
- Souls - Collect these to gain Death Coins, and to summon Grim in battle.
- Treasure Chest - Comes in the locked and unlocked variety. May contain treasure, or a set of teeth that will bite you.
- Tankard - A fresh cup of health.
- Extra Armor - Defensive upgrade.
Five hundred years before the events of Ghosts to Glory, a massive robotic army, known as the Army of Zin, attacked the kingdon of Lord Morgan Hawkmoor. With his armies being pushed back, Lord Hawkmoor drives the army into his castle, locking them away inside of a giant vault. Lord Hawkmoor traps himelf with the army, warning never to have the vault opened ever again.
In the present, eight months after Ghosts to Glory, Maximo still searches for his lost love, Sophia. Helping him on his search is Grim, the Grim Reaper, whom helped Maximo overcome death in the previous game. As they search, they come across an army of robots attacking village after village. It is up to Maximo and Grim to solve the mystery of this violent force, and whom is behind it, before it destroys anything.
Army of Zin released to positive reviews, garnering an 83 from Metacritic. The game did not perform well in the marketplace, and a third title in the Maximo series was cancelled.