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Author Topic: 5/2 Monday Design Update - The Reality  (Read 20377 times)
Brian
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« on: May 02, 2011, 07:01:50 pm »

With all the debate about gun stats and what kills zombies the best lately, I thought it was time to bring the discussion back to why we’re making this game. In the last decade, the zombie genre has morphed  from a horror genre into a gunchuks and teenage revenge fantasy fulfillment vehicle. The zombies are no longer scary, but moving targets for whatever badass weaponry people hope to get some use out of after gun show buyer’s remorse. There’s this pervasive personal delusion that a crisis situation is going to unleash someone’s inner hero and they’re going to run around the ruins of modern civilization dual-wielding shotguns and yelling “come get some” like it’s an endless game of drunken paintball. The everybody’s stupid/unprepared/panicked/sheeple but me mentality is in full-effect in the modern zombie fan scenario. 

Here’s what it would actually be like (and what we’re aiming for in our presentation). Imagine yourself outside your usual supermarket. It’s the middle of a sunny day. There are only a few cars in the parking lot. You hear a lot of birds, but no automobiles, no people talking, no music – none of the white noise that makes up the average human soundscape. It’s quiet in a way that modern man cannot fathom, stripped completely of the drone of civilization.

The doors to the supermarket are open, but it’s pitch black inside. You haven’t eaten in over a day and you’re pretty hungry, but there’s something about the store that makes your heart sink into your gurgling stomach. There are other buildings, apartments in the area, but nobody around. It’s been two weeks since you’ve seen a human being. You had a gun, but it’s locked in your gun safe over sixty miles away, because you had to abandon your car when the traffic never cleared. All you have on you is the shirt on your back, a backpack containing nothing but an empty water bottle, and a wooden pole that formerly had a rake attached.

All of the sudden you see a faint shape at the entrance of the supermarket, just hanging out there. You can’t tell if it’s an actual human. The last actual human you saw took a shot at you, so you don’t want to draw attention to yourself immediately. You’ve learned that it’s better in general to stay quiet as a rule. That last gunshot you heard from the last actual human you saw brought out dozens of the dead from within those darkened storefronts and apartment buildings.  Just the sight of them, the way their sun-ripened heads turn at you on their flimsy necks like you’ve hooked them with a fishing line, makes you want to instinctively run until you reach safety. But there is no safety – no police stations, no military patrols, no house with loved ones to comfort you. You don’t even know if your loved ones are safe. Sometimes you pull out your cellphone like a rabbit’s foot, just to hold it and hope that someone calls you – anyone – just to hear a voice. But it doesn’t even have any juice left – it’s a fetish now, nothing else.

The figure is still standing there, just out of the light a few feet inside the supermarket. Human or not, your stomach rumbles, and you realize that you need to get in there and eat something or you won’t be able to keep moving. You start walking toward it, hand firmly grasping your stick, driven more by the instinctive need to feed than courage. As you close the distance, it hits you as a spring breeze wafts in your direction – the cloud of rot overtaking your nose and making you gag. The shape moves forward and you can see its feet – burs stuck to its pants and a nail sticking right up through the unlaced sneaker. It makes a loud, painful moan like someone choking on tacks and you freeze right in place. Then you hear more noise, behind the shape, weight being dragged on linoleum, metal being knocked onto the floor. Your eyes adjust as a cloud blocks out the sun for a second. There are a dozen bodies in there wobbling in the darkness - they are all moving toward you.

--

And that's kind of what Dead State's about.
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LibertyRansom
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« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2011, 07:26:44 pm »

Fantastic writing and use of imagery.  Invigorates my interest in this game.   
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Caidoz
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« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2011, 07:27:04 pm »

And that's exactly why I'm so excited for Dead State, the fact that all things considered, it's still more "realistic" (I use quotes because we are of course talking about zombies here) than about 98% of zombie games I've played.  To use L4D as an example, even if you ignore the fact that all you do is run from one end of a map to the other and shoot everything in your path, the game is hardly realistic; you can't chug countless bottles of painkillers and not do serious damage to yourself, and no city in the world leaves as many automatic weapons laying around as the locations in L4D.

That's not to say it's not a fun game, but it, and pretty much all the others, miss the point of zombie games as far as I'm concerned.

If the scenario that Brian described is a common example of the level of detail and "reality" we can expect from Dead State then the game has already succeeded, in my opinion, at being the most realistic zombie game out there (or soon to be).

Keep up the great work guys.  Salute
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Robert Kingfisher
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« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2011, 07:31:25 pm »

Your vision is amazing. I hope that the balance between game and survival sim will match. sounds like it will
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TailSwallower
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« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2011, 08:54:50 pm »

Sounds fantastic. Can't wait for this game...
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« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2011, 09:23:36 pm »

Reminds me of the way I present OWoD zombies with the only difference that they don't moan, usually.  So same thing only the dead are dead silent.  Adds another kind of creepiness to them, not better or worse per say, just another flavor to the many types of zombie variations.  Come to think of it you guys should think about adding those as another genre of zombie, stealth zombies.  It might sound silly in that term but it makes sense when you think about it.

They don't breathe and can stay still as a corpse until prey comes close causing them to spring to life.  They're nearly impossible to hear closing in on your back as your shotgun roars in the direction of the zombies that you actually see.  The irony of your possible last moments being that it likely wouldn't have even known you were there if you didn't stop and open fire just to off a few slow moving walkers at range.  The kind you could have probably out jogged.
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MerinTB
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« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2011, 09:32:41 pm »

Very nice, Brian.  Very nice indeed.
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Caidoz
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« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2011, 01:15:21 am »

Reminds me of the way I present OWoD zombies with the only difference that they don't moan, usually.  So same thing only the dead are dead silent.  Adds another kind of creepiness to them, not better or worse per say, just another flavor to the many types of zombie variations.  Come to think of it you guys should think about adding those as another genre of zombie, stealth zombies.  It might sound silly in that term but it makes sense when you think about it.

They don't breathe and can stay still as a corpse until prey comes close causing them to spring to life.  They're nearly impossible to hear closing in on your back as your shotgun roars in the direction of the zombies that you actually see.  The irony of your possible last moments being that it likely wouldn't have even known you were there if you didn't stop and open fire just to off a few slow moving walkers at range.  The kind you could have probably out jogged.

I think moaning zombies work for Dead State though, because if one starts moaning and you don't shut it up, it'll add to the amount of Noise you're making.  Also, I figure that even though they don't breathe, moving around might still cause air to move through their lungs.
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« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2011, 01:59:47 am »

That's the stuff, Brian. That's the stuff. Bring the horror back to zombies.

Reminds me of the way I present OWoD zombies with the only difference that they don't moan, usually.  So same thing only the dead are dead silent.  Adds another kind of creepiness to them, not better or worse per say, just another flavor to the many types of zombie variations.  Come to think of it you guys should think about adding those as another genre of zombie, stealth zombies.  It might sound silly in that term but it makes sense when you think about it.

They don't breathe and can stay still as a corpse until prey comes close causing them to spring to life.  They're nearly impossible to hear closing in on your back as your shotgun roars in the direction of the zombies that you actually see.  The irony of your possible last moments being that it likely wouldn't have even known you were there if you didn't stop and open fire just to off a few slow moving walkers at range.  The kind you could have probably out jogged.

Could name them Silent Walkers. I like the idea, especially because it wouldn't be another zombie superbreed, just the same kind of zombie, with a dangerous twist.
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Sicram
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« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2011, 02:05:42 am »

And this is the sort of game I'm looking for! Not where your entire group is made out of rambos and you seek out the zombies to kill them but rather looking for supplies and try to survive the zombies that you stumble upon.

Soooo looking forward to this game! And I'm not even a big fan of turn based games to begin with! :V
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Joseph
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« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2011, 02:33:27 am »

10/10 post. This has probably got me more excited about Dead State than any other design update so far!
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Super-Dragon
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« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2011, 06:04:49 am »

I can already see it: Dead State - The Novel.  lol

Brian's story kind of reminded me of Stephen King's 'The Stand' - it expressed the same feeling of total isolation and the fear of the unknown. Very well written indeed.
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« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2011, 08:04:34 am »

Nice!
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« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2011, 10:12:23 am »

Totally awesome,
Makin me want this game even more
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erbgor
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« Reply #14 on: May 03, 2011, 10:23:03 am »

Have to agree with everybody else, fantastic! Looking forward to Dead State more than ever.


Edit: Love the "matter-of-fact" style - no fluff, to the point, and much more effective because of it.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2011, 10:24:36 am by erbgor » Logged

Just what is so great and serious about videogames that videogame journalists should be fighters for truth, rather than purely promotional devices for a niche hobby (which is what they were meant to be).?
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