Stop eating all of the brains, zombie.
Run, it’s zombies! That’s right, Sony has been working on a survival MMO, inspired by The Walking Dead. H1Z1 is an open-world title that will have you on the edge of your seat non-stop. So far, early models of the game look like a cross between GTAV and Left4Dead, but with a twist of its own.
Survival truly is the name of the game. Think, if a real-to-life post-apocalyptic situation happened—a world bomb is dropped, plague breaks out, people go crazy. What would you do? Most would want to survive and rebuild their newly found lives. And with this title, that’s exactly what your objective is… live.
Starting with the basics, a player will have a flashlight, axe, and a couple other small items. From that, you want to explore the world in order to find elements that can be combined and crafted. Creating “recipes” are vital to survival, so harvesting materials like wood, fat to make fuel, and metals for weapons could spell life or death.
And with death, it is permanent; well, at least in the sense that if you die, you must start over, with most of what you have created in your world. But this doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. Building shelters with locks, booby-trapped areas, or secret hiding places for important items can be strategically beneficial. Dying in this world means anyone can collect all of the items on your body. But after three minutes, if another player doesn’t claim your goods, a zombie can. In that situation, you can find said zombie later, kill him or her, and reclaim your loot.
Over time, teaming up with other players may prolong your life expectancy. I’m sure with the growing number of online players, communities will quickly form. But in the meantime, check your vitals and don’t go out looking for trouble or trouble will find you.
As a 24-hour, persistent open world, nothing is safe. Not just from zombies but other players as well. Running into fellow survivors can be costly. Interactions may result in stick-ups, hostage takings, or even death. This is when communities come in handy. You will constantly be looking over your shoulder in this one, but staying aware is the key of the game.
Other small details include the sheer number of players able to join a world (at least 1000), dynamic weather patterns, crafting discoveries, and more. A detail like weather changes can heavily play a role into gameplay, not just cosmetically but in preparing strategically for certain issues. Heavy rain could make a player colder, force the player to deal with dying fires, or even make it harder to hunt for food.
Everything a player does or doesn’t do could cost them dearly in H1Z1. Keeping an eye on your vitals is a must. Health, stamina, hunger, and thirst all play a role in your daily routine and will be that pushing factor in satisfying your day-to-day needs. There’s no telling what kind of evil is out there. Look for a PC and PS4 release of H1Z1 sometime at a later time. [2014 release date is not confirmed. ~Ed. Nick Tan]