Now some of you may of heard of State of Decay, most of you may not have. This is no fault of your own, it’s had a name change since the project first started. It was previously ‘Class 3’, yes I know even that is an epic name.
Now this is a Zombie game but not any old zombie game, the developers – Undead Labs have put in a lot of leg work before they even put pen to paper. They studied everything that falls under the Zombie category including books, comics, TV shows, film and even other games.
All just to give us the best Zombie survival game possible. Undead Labs have updated excited fans like myself every step of the way, they are constantly releasing pictures and general teasers to whet your whistle.
The game its self is classed as an ‘open world zombie survival horror’ and will be available on XBOX Live Arcade and Windows. Now I know what you’re thinking, this is just going to be yet another Zombie game. I beg to differ, literally this game will differ from previous popular zombie games. Left 4 Dead and Dead Island was heavily based on going at the Zombies, killing them was necessary to progress.
That is where State of Decay is going to be different you have to use stealth, evasion tactics, distraction methods all to move through the world safely. That doesn’t mean that you won’t be killing any of the undead, you can if you want go in all guns blazing and take them on but these Zombies are going to put up a fight, especially if you aren’t properly prepared. Which brings me onto my next point, preparation. It’s key in this game, you can enter shops in towns and clear them out of what loot there might be in there but be warned where there’s loot there is Zombies. To add realism Undead Labs have stated in one of their posts that loot does not respawn, Zombies however do. It’s the little things like this that are making this game shape up quite nicely in my eyes.
State of Decay develops in real time and so when you leave the game mid morning, when you get back later on in the evening the game will reflect that. Which means the hordes could of moved, you may of went into town and counted 10 zombies surrounding the gas station and 5 inside the grocery store, now when you come back into your game they’re gone – but where… This brings me to the most important thing, Shelter. You can inhabit certain building and upgrade them how you see fit. Upgrade your fence for protection and erect watch towers for an easy vantage point. Base’s or Dens or Safe Houses whatever you want to call them can have gardens so that the player can grow and sustain fruit and veg, making the need for food much less meaning the chance of running into a zombie much less. Unless of course you just want a bag of crisps and can of coke from the shops (I hope it’s worth the risk). Aswell as having a garden you can make room for tents for other survivors, which I’ll go into next. A work shop to upgrade, repair and build new weapons and what not.
Now, other survivors. Yes there will be more of you, people will need your help. But, whether you want to save them again is entirely up to you. You can be the lone ranger or the team leader yet another thing great about the game, the choices you make have a huge effect on the game. If you choose to save people you add them to you outfit of survivors, and with saving these people you are gaining that persons skills. Save the local mechanic and now you have someone to look after the workshop. Maybe a nurse, and we know how handy that would be. Once you have a nice team behind you, you can give people tasks. Set up 2 looting teams to cover more ground and get more resources or post people in your defense towers or guarding the perimeter. The player and survivors can have their skills progress over time, for example the more repairs you do the better you will eventually get, you may break some to start with. But just like real life that’s how you learn. Now here comes the tough part, you can die. There’s no easy way to say it, death is apparent in these games but not normally with the player. That’s right once they’re dead, there’s no respawn.
You have to then assume control of another member of your team (being a lone wolf doesn’t seem so good now). It’s the thought of dying in this manner that will give this game an exciting but realistic edge. Vehicles will feature in the game too but they’re not your ticket out of the hell hole, you run the risk of being overcome by zombies as they are attracted to noise (standard) and at night the light from your headlights will also attract them, but don’t worry you can turn those off. You also may break down, a badly timed flat tire could see you and your comrades killed. As long as the engine doesn’t blow then it can be repaired, that’s a good rule of thumb.
Now let’s talk about the team, A name that alot of you may very well recognise is Jeff Strain. Jeff was previously the lead programmer on World of Warcraft, Blizzard’s MMORPG. Jeff Strain was also responsible for the creation of StarCraft’s campaign editor. He also helped out on Warcraft 3 and Diablo, all of which are very prestigious games to be linked to. State of Decay will run on CryEngine 3, previous games linked to CryEngine are the original Far Cry, Crysis 1,2 & 3 and even the up and coming Homefront 2.
State of Decay was originally called Class 3. That being said there is a Class 4 being developed. Class 4 is the online expansion to the game. Undead Labs have said they want to set State of Decay into place first before releasing an online version, they’ve cleverly done this so that they can iron out any problems with single player and get feedback from the users like you and I on what may need to be improved in the future or what we want from an online experience. State of Decay is going to be released on XBOX Live Arcade and on Windows. No word yet about PS3 or Steam etc. The game has been given an early 2013 release so it could be coming sooner than we think.
I hope this has gotten you all as excited as I am for State of Decay. Let me know what you think of this brief insight and what you would like to see in the game when it is released in the comments below.