Previously known as Class3, State Of Decay is the upcoming open-world zombie thriller from developer Undead Labs. The 3rd person game looks like a hybrid of The Sims and The Walking Dead, in one moment allowing players to tend to their character’s needs while in the next moment hurling an axe into the forehead of their enemy.
State Of Decay casts players in a constantly evolving world where every action has its consequences. The environment is abundant in various supplies, weapons, and tools that are vital for one’s survival in such a place. It is up to the player to choose how to go about the world. The developers note that it is a player’s role to “Decide where you’d like to set up a fortified safe haven for you and other survivors you’ve rescued, then form raiding parties to gather resources and create supply chains. Use the materials you’ve gathered to develop your community as you see fit, but be careful — resources will deplete as you pillage areas, and zombies are attracted to noise and activity.”
One thing to keep in mind is the perma-death system integrated into the game. What this means is that once a character dies, they are gone forever. The bright side of this is that players can control more than one character.
[pullquote_right]The end is here. Life as you knew it has gone to hell after the mother of all zombie outbreaks. [/pullquote_right]
The choices players make will quite possibly weigh heavily on them later down the road. Bringing in too many survivors means more mouths to feed, but more hands on deck also means better protection and an increase in productivity. Setting up a fortress in the middle of town may prove to be an efficient means of gathering supplies, but may also be a beacon for the hordes of undead that inhabit the area.
Even while players are away, the world in State Of Decay will continue without them. But rest assured, you will not miss out on too much of the fun. “The core point is that whenever you are away for a while, the state of the world will evolve based on how you left things. If things are basically in good shape, you will come back to find your survivors rested and some resources stockpiled (garden advanced, etc.). Invariably, the threat will ramp up a little too, with things like increased zombie activity in areas where survivors have been active, and maybe some new challenge like a disease outbreak, but these are meant to set the stage for how you play, not substitute for you having played.”
The game appears to take place in a small rural town and the surrounding areas, giving players plenty of room to hack and smash their way across the beautiful countryside. It will be interesting to see how some of the environmental factors such as rivers or large fields can be used to the player’s advantage, or how the day/night cycle will alter the way the game is played out.
An official release date for State Of Decay has yet to be announced. As of now, the game is being developed for the Xbox 360 and PC. Undead Labs has also been developing an MMO, entitled Class4. “Part of what shaped our thinking is that Class3 is a precursor to an online world game.” A developer explained on the Undead Labs forums, ” The world won’t stop for you in Class4, so we have to make sure all of these mechanics are fun and well-balanced in Class3.” For more information, head over to the Official Website.