Posted in Project Zomboid

Project Zomboid: Venturing out into the apocalypse

For months now, it’s been on my want-to-play list to get into Project Zomboid. I respect the word of mouth that’s built up around this survival game, and once I saw it go on sale for $13, I figured there was no more reasons to hold out.

After going through the tutorial, I decided to jump into a normal survival game to see how I’d fare. I chose my starting town of Muldraugh, playing a burger flipper who is overweight, all thumbs, a fast reader, wakeful, and stout. Like most everyone else, I imagine, I made my first character to look as much like me as possible. Beard, chest hair, check!

First run… didn’t go so hot. I got to two whole hours, folks. Didn’t even leave my house. I managed to block one window with a sheet, but didn’t see another window I had to cover. And since I didn’t find any weapons, I was defenseless when two zombies came barging in. I did my best — I knocked down and killed one — but the other chomped its way into my brainpan.

Run two. Rolled up Elaine, a carpenter who has a posture of “why do *I* have to be your sacrificial lamb?” Her starting home was small and mostly empty, although I did get a rolling pin to use as a club, a can opener, and a few containers for water.

Elaine heads over to the next-door neighbor’s house, but it’s crawling with zombies. She kills four of them and cripples a fifth, but takes severe damage in the process. I need bandages, but she keels over and dies before I can find any clothing in the place to tear. Whee. Another two-hour run. I’m TERRIBLE at this.

As kind of a kick in the pants, if you wait around after you die, your character becomes a zombie and starts shuffling around. Can’t control it, it’s just there to mock you.

Run three, meet Dexter. At this point, I’m hoping to make it to a single day, to tell the truth. Unlike the others, Dexter doesn’t start out in a house — he starts in what I think is some sort of bar. Lots of beer, not much else. I got a garbage bag to carry stuff, a couple of cigarettes for his smoking habit, and kept on moving.

It’s a real rough go for ol’ Dex. He’s in the middle of some sort of downtown district crawling with zombies, and he can’t find a weapon. Even crouching and creeping around, trying to find a way into places, the zombies spot him and start coming. I’m proud of him — without a weapon, he takes down seven, which is a personal record. Of course, he’s also bleeding like crazy.

So I find an unlocked door to a department store stocked with clothes — future bandages in the making! That excited me… right until the store’s alarm went off and called every zombie in the tri-state area. I got the bandages at least?

Dexter ended up dying in the back store room of the department store, looking in vain for a weapon to fight off the hordes. Oh well. Four hour run.

2 thoughts on “Project Zomboid: Venturing out into the apocalypse

  1. My experience with the game is that initially it feels really open and fun, but because death comes so quickly so often (or you learn to play ultra-cautious which makes things crawl), it quickly starts feeling pointless. Why spend a ton of time to fully barricade a house only to die from a single zombie that catches you off guard outside? Why haul loads of good, or go down the crafting track, or upgrade a car etc, all when it goes poof so easily.

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