Demo Review: State of Decay

state-of-decay-box-art
6 Overall Score
Gameplay: 7/10
Graphics: 5/10
Story: 5/10

For the most part, SoD functions quite well with plenty of interactive facets to keep you planning ahead.

I have a hard time figuring out whether or not this game is trying to be serious, campy or both – in a bad, bad way.

There’s a lot of good stuff on Xbox Live and Playstation Network these days – the problem is that barely anyone knows what is worth purchasing and what is dead on arrival. We’ve decided to do some of the work for you, reviewing up-and-coming games in single-serving form to let you know what’s worth sinking your money into and what should be deleted after playing.

State of Decay is a slowly buzzing game at the moment, particularly since the zombie genre has risen in popularity in the last few years across mediums through things like The Walking Dead, Resident Evil and yes, even in the music world as bands dabble in the lore. On a side note, I’d rather have all kinds of terrible zombie stuff than deal with more vampire shit.

But back to State of Decay. This is an open-world zombie apocalypse game that puts you in the driver’s seat of trying to survive in a sandbox-type game full of weapons, supplies and characters both alive and dead. It feels a little bit like Dead Rising put in a more realistic environment for an outbreak, filled with abandoned cabins, winding forests and seemingly enough enemies to keep you on your toes at all times. There are tasks to be done, zombies to behead and a story that you only really scratch the surface on in the hour-long demo time – a pretty generous one considering some games I’ve demoed.

The demo literally drops you in the middle of a zombie attack that doesn’t give you much of a chance to ramp into the controls – you need to start swinging a stick at some zombies fast or your buddy is going to be eaten alive. After trudging around and doing a couple ‘missions’ where you seemingly are just killing zombies and getting supplies, the story slowly starts to unfold in a painfully dry way. The character interaction is kind of cheesy, but in a weird, not so appealing way. It matches the environment of an outdoor Dead Rising, but with some rather unrefined edges to the presentation. It creates a pretty interesting mix of elements through what can be a pretty lengthy playthrough if you decide to forget about the missions and just run around smashing things.

State of Decay is interesting enough to be a tempting purchase at $20 or 1600 points at the time of writing this. While there are plenty of things to compare it to pre-existing zombie games, such as melee weapons and graphical interface, State of Decay gives you the opportunity to get a little closer to what a zombie outbreak would look like without being completely in the spirit of say, DayZ or a ramped up Left 4 Dead game. If you’re a die-hard zombie fan like myself, State of Decay should give you enough in the demo to make this a pretty good impulse buy – but anyone who is just casually into the sandbox-survival mix will probably want to pass this up.

Verdict: Die-hard survivalists only – the game doesn’t impress enough to attract otherwise.

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Author: Jason Gardner View all posts by

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