Not Built In A Day: Roam Kickstarter

By Adam Smith on January 28th, 2013 at 3:00 pm.

Roam’s Kickstarter page refers to the hordes of nasties as “vicious, flesh-eating monstrosities” and even though it’s later confirmed that they mean ‘zombies’, I’m going to forgive the two-person team for using those most overused of enemies because the game looks absolutely superb. Zombies can be a useful device – a reason for enforced co-operation, bandit brutality, desperate survival and scavenging exploration – and Roam already appears to understand the intelligent application of unintelligent enemies. It’s a procedurally generated, free-form survival game in which you can build, barricade, bargain and band together with friends. The pitch video is mighty.

That’s an attractive proposition. The game is the work of artist Ryan Sharr, formerly of Gas Powered Games, and programmer Zach Barson, and the planned features contain just about everything I’d like to see in an urban zombie survival RPG. Those features include a procedurally generated world that becomes increasingly dangerous as time passes, with zombies mutating and bandits planning raids. There’s also base management that doesn’t rely on a fixed location, allowing the player to build a shelter on top of an office block or prop up a makeshift cabin in the woods.

Fifteen dollars is the minimum pledge to receive a copy of the game, which isn’t due until this time next year, although a beta should be available 1-3 months before release.

The next batch of zombie games won’t be about headshots, they will be about the emergent narrative possibilities thrown up by survival in a world gone to pot. That might involve the tension of DayZ, the inspired madness of Zomboid, or the group mechanics, development and management of Roam and Dead Nation – hopefully, all of the above. I’m dangerously close to being excited about zombies! It’s like being seventeen again, when I’d happily watch something like Living Dead at the Manchester Morgue (warning: gore, rebellious attitudes toward the police, does not take place in Manchester) and believe I had spent my time wisely. Now, when does Resident Evil 6 come to PC?

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107 Comments »

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  1. Triplanetary says:

    I’m going to forgive the two-person team for using those most overused of enemies

    I’m not. While “the emergent narrative possibilities thrown up by survival in a world gone to pot” is always a fantastic starting point for a game, there are ways to do that other than zombies. Seriously, indie devs, there are apocalypses that don’t involve zombies. I PROMISE.

    Seriously, these days, zombies in an indie game just shouts “laziness and lack of creativity” to me.

    • DaftPunk says:

      Totally agree there with you,would love to see something like novel/movie THE ROAD,without freaking zombies all over again.

      • Ross Angus says:

        Perhaps they chose zombies because the AI is easier? Small team, and all that.

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    • Skabooga says:

      I’m going to take grumpiness even one step further and say that I’m a little bored of post-apocalyptic settings in general. Heck, I might even be cool with a zombie game that doesn’t take place in a post-apocalyptic setting.

      • RaiderJoe says:

        So, a zombie game where humanity at large has made peace with the horde? I’m kinda confused as to what scenario could contain a zombie apocalypse without, you know, the apocalypse.

        • Premium User Badge

          Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

          Croydon?

        • Snids says:

          Dead Rising 2. Ten pounds please.

        • sinister agent says:

          Actually a game set just as the outbreak is happening could be an interesting twist. Evacuating towns, trying to keep the numbers down, track down infected people who are being protected by their friends and families (who might turn hostile if you try to break in and kill the victim). Per-apocalypse rather than post-apocalypse, with the possibility that you might even be able to contain it.

          • Beanbee says:

            Something rogue like, where you have to carefully pick your missions as the ever encroaching hordes slowly eat away your available resources whilst you desperately buy time to research/find a cure. That could be very fun given some addictive game-inside-the-game mechanic a-la Faster Than Light. Would be a good way of giving a risk vs. reward game anyway.

          • Boothie says:

            @beanbee like a zombie xcom? =D

          • sysdefect says:

            Sounds like you want Atom Zombie Smasher. It’s kind of a puzzle game in a sense where cities start receiving roaming zed threats and your duty is to contain, evacuate, and minimize damage with a random selection of tools, all with gloriously abstracted people dots. The horror of seeing a crowd of people inadvertently encountering a lone zombie and the ensuing tidal wave of infection is sensational.

        • dE says:

          I’d also like Post-Post-Apocalypse. When Nature had time to re-conquer everything and the remaining few humans had time to rebuild new social structures and live of scavenging the old ruined cities for tech and tools, gloryfying them like gifts from the gods, while having to deal with all the new toys nature had time to come up with.
          Kinda like Metro but with a fast forward button for a century or two.

          • Koozer says:

            But then you kinda lose the zombies there, and you could substitute in nuclear holocaust, global biological weapon outbreak, meteor strike etc. etc. to set up the plot. I see this kind of setting in books a lot now I come to think of it.

          • apocraphyn says:

            Yeah, that’s pretty much Fallout/Fallout 2.

          • dE says:

            Yeh, which is kinda on topic because it was about how zombies are overdone, no? :P
            And no, not Fallout. That’s just yet another wasteland scenario. Fallout is special because of the strong retro vibes in it. What I’m talking about would require Fallout to take place in green landscapes, overgrown places – not an endless desert. Deserts are boring.

          • FrostySprite says:

            I’d enjoy that. Especially if the atmosphere in the game was a more hopeful one instead of having a doomed feeling. Like humanity is steadily regaining its former glory, except this time they’re smarter and stronger.

          • Guzzleguts says:

            I wrote a novel which was along these lines. Your typical apocalypse story tends to both over exaggerate the doom wrought by humanity (whereas I imagine ‘nature’ would probably get along alright without us) while at the same time not be an apocalypse (people are still alive).
            I took the view that while modern society may well ruin things for itself, but that doesn’t mean the end of the world (even for humans).
            Some of the concept art for Wasteland 2 seems to be going in this direction, which kind of makes the title a misnomer.

            PS: Always thought it odd in Fallout 3 and New Vegas how people don’t bother to perform basic maintenance on their homes despite the fact that they’re set over a hundred years after the 1st game. It’s not hard to jury-rig a mop.

          • Veedash says:

            That would be like The Last of Us. A ps3 game developed by Naughty Dog.

          • malkav11 says:

            Or Enslaved, on 360/PS3. Gorgeous, gorgeous game. Shame about the not-coming-to-PC-and-not-selling-well bit. :(

          • Waltorious says:

            Caves of Qud is a roguelike with this premise. I haven’t played it in a while so it’s probably been updated a lot too.

          • G_Man_007 says:

            Threads: The Game.

    • Ovno says:

      If you don’t like it, why don’t you make your own, indie devs make the games they want to play…

      To be honest I’ve still got zombie apocalypse games I want to make and one thing that’s not gonna put me off is winey bitches in forums complaining how they don’t like zombie games…

      If you don’t like them don’t play them, or even better make your own post apocalyptic non-zombie game and see how f-ing hard it is before you call people who give up their free time to make they games they love f-ing lazy!

      Edit: N.b. I am not associated with this game in any way!

      • RaiderJoe says:

        Here-here!

      • Triplanetary says:

        Haha, the “oh but they care so much and worked so hard at it” line got old years ago. Yes, indie devs work incredible hard for relatively little reward, and I respect the hell out of them for it. That doesn’t mean that shitty ideas/games get a pass just because they come from an indie dev.

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          xao says:

          Disliking an idea or design doesn’t make it “shitty”. If you want to take the time to demonstrate why this is a bad bit of design feel free, I’ll gladly hear you out. Right now, you’re just screaming “I don’t wannnnnaaaaaa”

          • Dances to Podcasts says:

            Originality and personality are big parts of what makes a good game. Starting off with a setting that has been done to death (hoho!) is a good step on the way to shitty.

          • The Random One says:

            Conversely, starting with a setting that has been done to death and then interpretating it in such a way that it feels new and fresh is a sign of greatness.

        • Ovno says:

          “That doesn’t mean that shitty ideas/games get a pass just because they come from an indie dev.”

          No but perhaps it might mean you don’t criticise them for it massively and accuse them of “laziness and lack of creativity” right at the top of the comment thread, got to be a massive kick in the teeth for any dev to see that let alone the poor impoverished indies…

          You could instead, you know, ignore the post and not play their game, it would be the more polite and gracious thing to do.

        • EvilEgg says:

          Please, Triplanetary, where do you get off calling this a “shitty idea(s)/game(s)”?

          I think the genre has seen too much attention lately, but right now I’m just talking about your incredibly bad attitude.

          You are very fast to judge somebody else’s work and label it as shitty while hiding behind ‘it’s overdone, mkay, so it’s shit, mkay’.

          May the same treatment be allotted to you, should you ever apply your time, effort and money into something you care about. I hope people judge you harshly without experiencing your work, and I hope they tell you to eat shit when you say that “It might be overdone, but I have a new take on it,” or, as you so blatantly pointed out, call your work shit because caring about it and working hard doesn’t make it good.

    • Shuck says:

      Seriously, these days, zombies in horror games, fantasy games based on Tolkien by way of Dungeons and Dragons, sci-fi games based on Aliens or Warhammer 40k, and post-apocalyptic games based on Mad Max just shout “laziness and lack of creativity” to me. Granted, that doesn’t leave out many games…

      • Syra says:

        So basically all the games? I suggest a new hobby friend.

        • x1501 says:

          You call yourself a gamer, and you can’t come up with a sufficiently large number of first-rate games based on themes different from the ones named above? I suggest a new hobby, friend.

        • Shuck says:

          I’m assuming Triplanetary will be right there with me.

    • Runs With Foxes says:

      Shut up about theme. It doesn’t matter if they’re zombies or bandits or robots or whatever. A zombie theme is just a shorthand way of establishing the scenario, so players load it up and half a second later go “Okay I see what’s going on here.”

      • HighHill says:

        I love myself a good Zombie game. An instantly recognizable setting to easily get into that offers so many exiting possibilities for a game setting.

        I don’t even have to feel bad about killing them in the thousands!

  2. Brosepholis says:

    Good heavens, there’s little I’m looking forward to less than another ‘batch’ of zombie games.

    The only thing that raises my eyebrow further than making a zombie game as your debut is actually naming your indie studio after zombies in some way (e.g zombie studios, zombie cow studios, undead labs…)

  3. Artist says:

    Roam – Happy Zombie Hoppers! I like it! =)

  4. Xocrates says:

    It does sound hugely promising, and I admit I love the colourful art style.

    Goes into my kickstarter radar, though I’m unsure zombie survival appeals enough to me for straight up support.

  5. Triplanetary says:

    Plus and too, I’m fairly certain that zombies as a video game genre primarily serve as a shortcut to an apocalypse where you don’t have to bother helping out your neighbors, but can merrily slaughter them instead, since they’re all mindless husks anyway. That in itself doesn’t really offend me, but its massive popularity in the world of video games does disturb me a little.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      I think it’s a result of the question ‘what is OK to kill?’, which in itself is a result of the fact that most games somehow revolve around killing stuff.

  6. Stromko says:

    Looking at the video I kept thinking it’s about time someone else tried to go the Project Zomboid route. Being able to build a shelter anywhere, gathering survivors, that seems to be the core things that set it apart from other zombie games just like Project Zomboid.. but it’s a totally different take on it in terms of style, intensity, etc so I don’t mean to put it down as being part of the same mold as another very promising game. We need more like it.

    • JFS says:

      Especially when we consider that Project Zomboid looks more and more as though it’s never gonna get released. I’m quite disappointed.

      • Sic says:

        Why would you say that?

        The developers are still making releases.

        • JFS says:

          That’s true, but it’s taking forever and it’s not really going anywhere. Changing the engine mid-development is always a bad sign, and from my point of view the game is still about 80 to 90 percent away from the promised state.

        • Guzzleguts says:

          The last official release was a long time ago. Forum delving for a current build is a disheartening process and my enthusiasm gets killed off pretty quickly. I’m already starting to feel burned over buying it. I think they need to get a new, good build out ASAP.

      • Premium User Badge

        JB says:

        The Indie Stone make regular blog posts on progress and RC3 is thundering ever closer. I can’t believe people are still thinking that PZ isn’t going to happen. The changes they’ve made should improve the game a huge amount and make things a lot easier with regards to the remaining development process. And you think it’s LESS likely the game will make it out? Sheesh.

  7. misterT0AST says:

    Is it so freaking hard to just call them “mutants” and paint their skin blue, or call them “clones” and make them bald and gray skinned, or give them pointy ears and call them “ghouls”, or just using skeletons?
    Or demons? or aliens?

    I bet they think being similar to famous games will help them.
    Guess what, it’s NOT. People to this day bash 3079 and Brickforce for “ripping off” Minecraft, bash Gurdians of Middle Earth for “ripping off” Dota, Battlefield Heroes for “ripping off” TF2.
    People HATE to see their favourite games emulated, they feel offended. Especially since most of the internet is composed of angry 13 years old.

    As I said, just calling the zombies “mutants” would be enough of a difference to make it acceptable.

    • GameCat says:

      Or make it more interesing and put strange, non-humanoidal creatures in, or at least zombie zombies with zombie dogs, zombie cats, zombie crows, zombie goats and zombie turkeys. And zombie elephants, tigers and monkeys (like in RE: Outbreak). And giant spiders.

      BTW, clever title pun.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      Most of those “this rips off that” are recent games which basically start a wave of clones… Zombies have been wide-spread in media (and myth) for way longer than anyone is going to site a single source example to “rip off”.

      Zombies are a tired, generic and known quantity.

      I wouldn’t mind seeing a game like this with triffids, though I’d guess it wouldn’t be as fun if everyone is blind.

    • wodin says:

      erm..what difference would it make..they’d still act like zombies no matter what they looked like. I’d rather they be upfront and call them what they are rather than gloss it over to be something else.

    • Baines says:

      Zombies gives you an in-built excuse for “not intelligent”.

      If you make it aliens or even mutants, people will question why they mindlessly run forward into the slaughter. Or just call it a reskin of a zombie game.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      Or gentleman robot hunting parties.

  8. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Eh. Zombies. A good zombie game isn’t that easy to pull-off IMHO. So why they keep making zombie-themed games is beyond me. Perhaps because zombies are so easy to put into a game.

    Ah well, who knows. This could actually turn out to be decent.

    • RaiderJoe says:

      Easy AI? See player -> walk to player -> do x damage.

      • Guzzleguts says:

        That reminds me of every Bethesda game. Maybe they should do zombie apocalypse form now on?

  9. Premium User Badge

    Cross says:

    I’ll keep an eye on it. Also, was it just me or was that music AWFUL?

  10. Rsharr says:

    Thanks for the article RPS, we appreciate it! Fun little factoids about the game – the core concept behind the game has always been survival. We didnt find the zombies, the zombies found us! Prior to its current theme, you would have played as a pixel hamster – http://www.roam-game.com/images/hamster.jpg

    • sinister agent says:

      If it’s not too late, please consider making your monsters a little different, at least. Make them ape-monsters who run on their hands, or a failed experiment by aliens who dumped them off on earth in a panic, or simply hostile animals that carry a deadly virus. You’ll get more people interested today by saying “this game is NOT about zombies!” than by including them.

      Very impressive prototype, though, I have to say. After six week I’d still be pissing about with the colour scheme.

      • Rsharr says:

        Just to clarify a few things. It is a another zombie game in the sense that it has zombies in it. We hope to expand off that idea with our ‘mutate’ mechanic as well as the hostile/bandit npcs.

        We are really close to releasing our first update and it covers “Enemies” but I’ll type it out here to let you all have a heads up.

        Over time the zombies will randomly mutate based off different factors- time and location being a couple. A few examples include corrosive blood that damage nearby structures/players, “acrobatic” mutations allowing zombies to leap and climb, and radiation mutation which will sap players. Any combination of these mutations can cause one of many “boss” zombies to spawn.

        We have a skill based aiming mechanic, something you dont see in top down shooters, meaning you have precise aiming in all directions.

        Now try to imagine the aiming system plus a mutated boss zombie who has specific parts of their body that are weaker than others. Other than zombies, Bandits and Survivors will set up patrols/raid/scavenge the world. This means your base might be one of the places they decide to raid.

        If you guys have more questions feel free to ask!

        • sinister agent says:

          I really appreciate that response. It also sounds like they’re already more “mutants” than zombies, although that risks going down the “what is a zombie” path, which is less of a path these days and more of a dual carriageway.

          Those sound like some interesting features. Careful aiming is seldom rewarded in top-down (or near enough) shooters, and a bit of tactical play like that could really help it stand out. I’ll have to wait and see, though, I tried Project Zomboid and ran out of things to do after a few hours, it just felt aimless.

          What kind of things are there to do in the long term? Is it possible to clear out the whole town, or try to rebuild a community, or just an endless attempt to survive as long as you can?

        • Geen says:

          That actually sounds pretty cool. The construction system looks fantastic, too. I shall assume there will be human enemies as well? (bandits, military cover up, or doom-style zombies perhaps?)

      • PopeJamal says:

        “You’ll get more people interested today by saying “this game is NOT about zombies!” than by including them.”

        Bullshit.

        They’ll get more people interested by coming up with an idea they are passionate about, sticking with it, demonstrating that they are hiring competent professionals, and doing a good job.

        I swear, this place gets more and more like NeoGaf everyday…

        • JFS says:

          The tribal hamster still looks way cooler than any zombie I’ve ever seen, and I say this as a zombie fan…

        • sinister agent says:

          They’ll get more people interested by coming up with an idea they are passionate about, sticking with it, demonstrating that they are hiring competent professionals, and doing a good job.

          Yeah, because well-made games always sell well, and cynically hashed out rubbish never gets anywhere.

          • EvilEgg says:

            “Yeah, because well-made games always sell well, and cynically hashed out rubbish never gets anywhere.”

            Yes, let’s not make a good game, as PopeJamal suggested. Let’s just advertise it right.

            So your advise is to cry ‘You’ll get more people interested today by saying “this game is NOT about zombies!” than by including them.”

            This turns it from “cynically hashed out rubbish” to a “well-made game(s)”?

            Yes, yes… I’m going to make a new FPS, it won’t be good, but I’ll make sure people know it’s not like CoD.

            Perhaps I’m just reading you wrong, maybe you want it to be good AND “NOT about zombies!”

            What a profound and insightful statement.

            Bravo.

          • sinister agent says:

            Good grief, are you trying to embarass yourself, or what? Whether or not the game is well made has nothing to do with whether it’s a zombie game, and besides which, as I’ve already pointed out, making a good game is no guarantee of success.

            You’re being bloody ridiculous, backing up a completely irrelevant strawman argument that I’ve already pointed out is critically flawed anyway.

          • EvilEgg says:

            I can’t believe I have to spell this out, but fine. Let’s dance.

            You suggest replacing zombies with something not-zombie and advise that they should state it clearly with “this game is NOT about zombies!” You say that this will promote interest. Correct?

            PopeJamal beat me to it by calling bullshit, saying that they’ll promote interest, not by following your shitty advice, but by sticking to their guns and doing a good job…

            …which you then proceeded to sarcastically shoot down. Correct?

            If you answered yes to the above, then please don’t give in to your inner-asshole this time and try to tell me why we, who advocate a quality game versus your advice (making it “NOT about zombies!”), are under the wrong impression.

            Read it twice, I deigned to reply but I’m not rephrasing this again just because you fail at comprehension.

          • sinister agent says:

            Popejamal’s comment was irrelevant, because it had nothing to do with whether people are sick of zombie games or not. Replying to a suggestion that peoplpe would be put off by zombie games with “no they should just make it a good game” is pointless because (a) it has no relation to what monsters are in it, and (b) good games don’t automatically succeed. If your game is brilliant but people are sick of the theme, this hampers your chances.

            The idea of making a good game and the idea of whether or not to base it on tired stock monsters that many people are sick of aren’t connected. I never went along with the idiotic false dichotomy you’re presenting between “make it good” and “don’t make it a zombie game”, and repeating it won’t make any difference.

          • EvilEgg says:

            Here I go, doing what I said I wouldn’t.

            You say remove zombies, gain interest.

            We say, no, produce quality, gain interest.

            You say no, and sarcastically invalidate by saying quality ≠ interest.

            What’s left? You guessed it…

            Remove zombies, gain interest.

            Good night.

    • wodin says:

      Take no notice..if the game is great it doesn’t matter about the Zombies..infact the whole game sounds like it revolves around that kind of enemy..

      People on the net just like to bitch and moan without knowing any facts..

      Dressing them up to look different just to say hey look not zombies is silly..it wont fool anyone and will actually make people think your trying to kid them. Make your game with Zombies..I’m interested.

  11. wodin says:

    The perfect survival zombie game hasn’t been made yet..so keep em coming until it is I say. People who moan about Zombies are starting to annoy..why not moan there are lots of space games or war games etc etc, it’s a genre of it’s own and long may it continue (until the perfect game is made).

    SO what enemies do you want..vampires..yawn..mutants..yawn…see you could moan about any kind of enemy as they’ve all been covered. Maybe if they changed it to flesh eating Cuthulu like creatures you’d all be happy? Yet boil down to it it would still be a zombie or near enough.

    I think it’s just become hip to moan about them..and I’m sure the developers know that, so really they are taking a bigger risk with the game than if they chnaged the enemyformat. Hmmm..maybe they should have used Aliens..oh erm maybe not been done to death…what about possession…hmm..would just be like zombies though…how about PEOPLE i.e gangs..ohh just like reality..no thanks..

    • sinister agent says:

      you could moan about any kind of enemy as they’ve all been covered.

      God, it’s depressing that someone thinks that. Off the top of my head: insects that eat your eyes when you fall asleep. A shimmering mist that possesses children. Giant parasitic wasps that lay their eggs in large mammals. A bacterial infection that reproduces when it feeds off pain signals from your nerves.

      Monsters haven’t all been done. They’ll never all be done. People just rely on a handful of tedious stock ones because it’s easier than thinking of something new.

      • Milky1985 says:

        Are you trying to say that your examples are things that haven’t been done yet or have been yet? Am confused because last i checked humans were mammals so

        ” Giant parasitic wasps that lay their eggs in large mammals.”

        was done in dead rising, as that was the cause of the zombies :P

        • ucfalumknight says:

          I thought that was a bit silly. Especially when you caught the queen in the jar and used it as a weapon. Made me giggle.

      • Saarlaender39 says:

        You know, making silly proposals without working them out isn’t helping anyone.

        Tell me: how do you implement insects, that eat your eyes, in actual gameplay?

        And what, if they eat your eyes? Blackscreen…playing by hearing?

        Or that bacteria…how do you make a game out of that? And what is the sense behind?

        Give me an hour, and I bring up several dozens of ‘not-yet-overused’ enemies…but without an idea behind, how a game could/would work with them…they all are useless.

        • sinister agent says:

          Oh for… do you not understand what “off the top of my head” means?

          Insect thing – spend the daytime trying to find nests of them, study them, research their habits, work out a way to kill them, and preparing a shelter where you can sleep without fear.

          Bacteria thing – infected people are still human, and spend their time harming themselves, but will attack if you get too close, trying to infect you, and the more you hurt them, the worse the infection gets. Having someone leap on you and start screaming for you to help them while they’re clawing at their own skin would be pretty fucking disturbing. Similar to, but different to, a zombie thing.

          They’re just quick ideas that could be developed. That’s the point. I’m not about to create an entire game just to prove to some random internet commenter that “all the monsters have been done” is an absurd statement. Have some bloody imagination.

          • EvilEgg says:

            How marvellous, you’ve solved all our “recurring enemy” problems.

            You might not want to make a game to prove your point, but I’m betting there are a few developers who DO make games for a living and would be delighted that they should just “Have some bloody imagination”

            Let’s get this straightened out and see if we can’t sum this up…

            If zombies are in a game, it’s WRONG because there’s a veritable brick shithouse full of monster ideas that haven’t been done and these developers are just LAZY.

            This right?

            You know, I really think you should make a game. You’re clearly a visionary that’ll revolutionize the entire industry. Please make sure that you advertise your future game with “this game is NOT about zombies!”

            Perhaps, and this is a shot in the dark, our ‘lazy’ developers are cautiously approaching the game development business, using an established genre (zombies) as a basis to enter their ideas for new and refreshing gameplay and features. You know, instead of making a game with some “Bacteria thing” that might, or might not, go over well.

          • sinister agent says:

            You really need to learn how to discuss things like a grown up, because if you don’t, you’ll just continue to spout this kind of childish, bitter nonsense until everybody stops paying you any attention.

            Step one: Stop arguing with people who aren’t there. When somebody says a thing, discuss the thing they said, not a thing you wish they’d said.

            Once you’ve overcome this hurdle, you’ll be ready for the next.

          • EvilEgg says:

            Yes, I thought that I would have to walk you through this one as well.

            You faint at the idea that somebody could say ‘all the monsters have been done in the zombie genre,’ because in your opinion, there are many fantastic untapped ideas, examples of which you so generously provided from the top of your head.

            Your ideas have no merit, because firstly…

            If you’re talking in context with the zombie genre(you know, like OP), then your suggestions are moot. They would significantly impact written backstory, but gameplay-wise they would have little effect. Your newly named monsters would still greatly resemble zombies in behaviour. I don’t see how this constitutes a ‘new’ idea. Perhaps a different take, but nothing completely original.

            Secondly because of your pompous statement…

            “People just rely on a handful of tedious stock ones because it’s easier than thinking of something new”

            … as opposed to your unique view? Things like this really bake my noodle.

            Since we are talking about monsters in zombie games, and oh look, this game is about zombies, then these devs were just reaching for a nice stagnant stock monster. We love generalizing, yes we do.

            I would in truth not concretely connect their choice in monster to anything at all. Least of which because ‘it’s just easier’ and therefore attributed to laziness. Perhaps they are just cautious and prefer to use an established element, such as might be the case in Roam.

            It’s easy, when somebody does something/makes something, to pull smoke out of your ass and tell the world ‘This is how it should be, kinda, you know, off the top of my head’ and say that their choices are contributed to “easier than thinking of something new.” Then as a cherry on the cake you refuse to do the one thing that would justify you, making it yourself.

            I am all for new monsters, I too agree that not all have been done, but what you propose is just a different interpretation of the setting, and afterwards, a blatant insult to the devs working with that specific material. After all, these guys are working on a zombie game, right? And because of that they’re using unoriginal monsters, right? Enter the devs of Roam who clearly stated that their variety of zombie will be different from others while still maintaining the core elements of survival that makes the genre so popular.

            I propose this, why not see what these devs do with their game before spewing generalized insults?

            I’m not responsible for your grasp, or lack thereof , when it comes to written language, so please spare me your asinine name calling and proceed to address the issue at hand.

      • Hoaxfish says:

        Even lesbian bikini vampires from space seems to have been done at least a couple of times.

    • x1501 says:

      The perfect rat, giant spider, or skeleton fighting RPG hasn’t been made yet either, so make sure to keep ‘em coming as well. In fact, in our relentless quest for perfection—not at all as blatantly lazy and completely devoid of imagination as it may seem—let’s just concentrate on continuously remaking these four not-yet-perfected enemy types forever and forget about creating anything new. Wouldn’t that be perfect?

      • bigjig says:

        “The perfect rat, giant spider, or skeleton fighting RPG hasn’t been made yet either, so make sure to keep ‘em coming as well.”

        Dark Souls?

  12. mraston says:

    The song reminds me of Super Metroid.

  13. Parge says:

    This looks awesome! Lovely visuals, zombies (yes, not original, but I love the mouldy buggers), base building, procedural generation, and perfect co-op fun.

    What not to like?

    Can’t go wrong for $15 – backed!

  14. Snids says:

    No-one has made a proper one yet so we have to keep trying!

  15. ucfalumknight says:

    I will have to admit, all of the animosity toward Zombies as antagonists doesn’t quite make sense to me. But first, let me explain. I have been a fan/terrified of Zombies since 1983 when my brother rented Dawn of the Dead on video cassette and I accidently watched it with him. I was 12, and it terrified me. Not so much the bitey moany bits, but the actual walking around without a soul and persistence that they have. This terrifies me. The running, jumping zombies of today are mere caricatures of what Romero did, and I do find them comical. But these antagonists, coupled with the end of the world, truly creates a grim atmosphere for me. What choices does the protagonist have? Fight for survival, end their own life, or become one of the relentless undead. Are there other vehicles? Sure, The Road does it very well. But, at least for me, the concept of the Romero Zombie does indeed inspire fear.

  16. Sic says:

    … isn’t this just a 3D version of Project Zomboid with fast zombies?

    Doesn’t look very promising to me.

  17. CletusVanDamme says:

    I’m still not bored of zombie games!

    Keep on makin’ ‘em, and I’ll keep on tryin’ ‘em!

  18. ScorpionWasp says:

    Steam tells me I’ve been playing Left 4 Dead 2 for 300 hours now. Shooting zombies just doesn’t fucking get old for me. I don’t know why that’s so.

    I think there’s something about the Zombie Apocalypse trope that makes it extremely convenient, stream-lined, zero-fat included for the exploration of certain themes and fantasies. That’s why it’s used time and time again. And that’s a good thing in this case.

  19. Flavioli says:

    Sounds like Zombie games are very divisive… some people seem to be OK with them, and some people seem to be downright sick of them… wouldn’t it be safer to pick a different adversary at this point?

    I personally feel more tired of the Zombie genre than any other genre… and I’d safely say that the market (especially the indie market) is more saturated with Zombie games than with other of the over-saturated genres like modern military shooters.

  20. The Random One says:

    I’m not sure it’ll displace Rogue Survivor as the ultimate zombie game. For all the things it can do, it feels like it can do less than the isometric roguelike.

  21. Arkh says:

    Looks somewhat interesting, but they are trying to appeal to too much genres and will probably end an arcade shoot em up by the looks of their vid and their kickstarter page.
    The survival (not the horror one) genre is, well, practically empty. I always welcome more games in this genre, be it zombie themed or wilderness themed. While I do enjoy roguelikes, Cataclysm and Rogue Survivor can’t quite inspire fear as one game with third person view and dynamic lightning can., but this game tries to be too many things. I would like something with less shoot everything and kill hordes and more survival via cleverness, or at least an option to turn it off. Project Zomboid pixel/isometric art is too “happy” to add tensions and the way zombies come and go just seem artificial (not to mention it’s built in java), and the closest thing we have is not sandbox nor good at all, that is, Fort Zombie.
    Alas, I still want to see the perfect survival/zombie survival game: Procedurally generated BIG world with a variety of ambients, free form base building like this one promises, only with time to build things (not instant) and NPC gathering to build forts and assign people and a lot of other things. At least this one is closer to that than the other upcoming games.

    Basically, I wanted a I am Legend game. Faithful to the book, not the movie.

  22. Lucky Main Street says:

    Is there a zombie RPG where you play from the perspective of a zombie?

  23. Okama Gabesphere says:

    ” It’s a procedurally generated, free-form survival game in which you can build, barricade, bargain and band together with friends.”

    I just wish the 30 different 2-5 person devs making extremely similar games to this would just team up already.

  24. vecuccio says:

    Another blatant Dayz ripoff.
    Are the unimaginative morons behind this not ashamed to be begging for cash ?

    • EvilEgg says:

      Every FPS game since CoD, every sandbox survival/building game since Minecraft, every zombie orientated game since DayZ… it’s alllll a big fat ripoff.

      Amirite?

  25. nbringer says:

    Another cool zombie game!? Why not!? I like the idea of fortifying positions and leading small groups of survivors. It blends RPG and strategy naturally.

    As for those denying the merits of the zombie horde… they actually have no time to play games (obviously) and only feel some joy reading articles. That’s ok, they are working people with families. After some time with zombie articles and no time to play they get bored. So let’s be patient with them.

  26. DarkFenix says:

    I’m quite surprised (and indeed disappointed) at the sheer amount of venom and hostility being thrown at this, it’s more along the lines of what I’d expect from an MMO forum, not an RPS comments thread. It’s a two man development team, they’ve got a good idea for a take on the genre, one that has as yet not been done successfully, and they’re running with it. Good on them I say, it’s a style of game I haven’t encountered before and they have me interested. Backed.

    • EvilEgg says:

      I wholeheartedly agree.

      And speaking of the venom on RPS, I’m still waiting for a “Misogyny!!” thread.

    • benkc says:

      Seriously. This may have finally convinced me that I should stop reading comments on RPS. It’s a shame.