State Of Decay Hits Steam, Er, Sans Keyboard Controls

If guttural howls from those strange, primitive hill people in console land are anything to go by, State of Decay is apparently quite excellent. We at RPS have been eagerly awaiting its arrival on PC while sipping fine scotch and inventing new classical instruments, and now it’s finally made the leap. Kinda. The nicely freeform zombie sandbox is playable on our platform of choice right this very second, but you’ll have to contort your highly evolved digits around a controller in order to make with all the driving, surviving, and undead drop-kicking. It’s not all bad, though. Undead Labs actually wants your help coming up with a fitting keyboard-and-mouse control setup – among other things.

To its credit, Undead Labs is being quite upfront about the current state of State of Decay:

“Greetings, PC players! This is the Early Access version (controller only, for now) of the record-breaking zombie-survival game State of Decay. Those willing to throw in with us at Undead Labs and your fellow early adopters will automatically get the final Steam version, completely free, with no need to restart, when we officially launch later this year.”

“What you’ll get if you choose to join forces with us to make the PC version kick ass is an unfinished CONTROLLER ONLY test version of the game. It’s not ready to be reviewed. It will not be perfect. It may still have crashes. It won’t have a keyboard and mouse interface…not at first. Over the next however-many-weeks, we will be putting up versions of the PC interface and using your comments and feedback to make it awesome.”

Which is actually pretty neat, given that many console ports end up stumble-shambling onto our virtual lawns hamstrung by default control schemes that feel like they were intended to be medieval torture devices – not quick, comfortable means of coming to grips with new worlds.

It’s only $19.99 too, which isn’t bad at all for what’s apparently a decently meaty game. I do believe I’ll have a go at it myself before too much longer. How about you lot, though? Has anybody had a chance to put State of Decay through its paces yet? We’ll have some impressions next week.


  1. DanMan says:

    Nice. Are they gonna pay me, too, if they end up using my idea?

    • tanner03 says:

      my roomate’s half-sister makes $61 every hour on the computer. She has been out of a job for 6 months but last month her payment was $17179 just working on the computer for a few hours. Learn More
      >————–> link to

    • Flippyot says:

      Am I the only one who thinks this bot response is hilarious?

      • Yglorba says:

        I like to imagine that their roommate’s half-sister has made all that money suggesting keyboard / mouse control schemes.

  2. Laurentius says:

    If great mean ridiculously pathetic then i agree. Oh right, that unneccessarly nasty WIT on Spleunky port with harping how game is lost without maping whip to mouse button is standard of aprouching these things or not…

    • rei says:

      I haven’t read the Spelunky WIT you’re referring to, but that likely wasn’t an Early Access title, like this is. If the final version still doesn’t have keyboard controls the term pathetic may be more appropriate.

      • mwoody says:

        Certainly more appropriate than “aprouching.”

        • The Random One says:

          aprouch n. to approach silently, such as while crouching. “To kill this enemy silently, press R3 to crouch, aprouch them, and press Y. If you are using a keyboard, may Horace have murcy on your soul.”

    • Yglorba says:

      Honestly, I don’t see anything wrong with saying that a controller is an essential component of a gaming PC nowadays. They cost like $10 on eBay (or less if you get an off-brand compatible one), they don’t take up much space or anything, and the truth is that some genres just play better with a joystick — especially driving games or games that involve a lot of driving, like this one.

      • Teovald says:

        To take a recent example, Dark Souls only added that a gamepad was strongly encouraged weeks after its release and my standard usb gamepad is not recognized by the game…
        Moreover, keyboard + mouse is pretty much the lcd of pc gaming. So optimizing your controls so the game is playable with these is far from being a bad idea..

  3. Ravenholme says:

    It actually does have keyboard controls, they’re just not final and not recommended. As one commenter on Facepunch put it:

    “WASD to move, E to interact, left click to shoot things right click to zoom in

    Tab to access inventory

    Esc to access game menu ”

    So it can be played with the keyboard, it’s just better and advised currently to use a gamepad

  4. GamesInquirer says:

    Kind of a lame excuse honestly. Just make the keys configurable, silly.

    It’s not like Dark Souls which has the valid reason of being tuned to controller gameplay similar to say, a fighting game would be more fitting for that (or an arcade stick) than a keyboard which is why it’s clumsy with that. This game has rather standard controls that would convert to WASD (or whatever) schemes fine. Left click to melee attack, right click to aim ranged weapon and then left click to fire, shift to sprint, space to jump, ctrl to creep, F for the (currently invisible on character models) flashlight, E to interact, a few keys for inventories, journals, etc. Edit: oh, I see above that they have it essentially like that already.

    But yeah, configurable please, and mouse driven inventories.

    The game seems alright but not exactly mind blowing to me so far, it seems quite shallow even, melee combat is especially clumsy and simplistic for example, you just mash the single attack button, or press two buttons together to context stealth kill (why two I don’t know, the interact button would have done fine). It’s also glitch happy, hopefully they fix that aspect, I don’t know if the 360 version was like that. I run over some zombies and one stuck on my hood, I used the breaks to get it off and it seemingly worked but when running it over again it clipped halfway through the car and caused it to basically backflip.

    Well, exploring a relatively open world and scavenging for supplies is still pretty neat anyway, hopefully the game shows some depth as it goes on, though even character leveling seems simple.

    Edit: oh yeah more graphics options too please, I get 60fps (with vsync) in “maximum” settings but the (yes, above maximum) “ultra” setting can dip down to like 40fps, I’d like to know what exactly it does and pick options accordingly to hopefully get some of its benefits while maintaining optimal performance. Unless all it does is add absurd amounts of AA, I don’t know, though the game’s quite aliased.

    • Stemot says:

      They will be entirely configurable, The current controls are the default for the engine as explained on the games forums, they haven’t touched them yet. Seems people are expecting the game to be completely finished even though it’s early access and they have explained all this.

    • Jesse L says:

      There are actually a variety of controls for combat, the game just doesn’t do a good job of explaining them to you.

      link to

      You also learn more abilities, and have choices about which to learn, as your combat skills level up. Some characters are capable of learning certain kinds of special moves. Basically there are three types of people: normal, with no special moves; strong (like Marcus), and agile (like Ed).

      And yes, the console game is buggy too. Tons of pop-in. The game runs like a dog, and not just because of console hardware restrictions. It’s special enough that I enjoyed it quite a bit despite the bugs. I did stop playing eventually because I moved my base of operations into a large town, and the density of the buildings there dropped the frame-rate, when traveling quickly by car, to less than 10 fps. I doubt they’ll ever fix all the problems for the PC release. Buyer beware. If these things bother you, stay away. It’s a budget release, though, so keep that in mind. This is one of those big, gorgeous, shiny diamonds in the very very rough.

      • GamesInquirer says:

        That’s good to know, I’ll wait for the post-early access release to get further into it to ensure it’s at least at its best even if its best is still rough :)

    • kyrieee says:

      As someone who played Dark Souls with kb+m I don’t think there’s any excuse for why the controls were as bad as they were. It’s not fundamentally different from any other 3rd person game with direct character control.

      • GamesInquirer says:

        It is quite different actually, turning the controls to something like a third person Chivalry (or like Skyrim or whatever else), would completely change the gameplay and require reworking of every mechanic, AI, boss, attack move, and so on. Dark Souls is more like Monster Hunter than that, and that’s another game that wouldn’t work nearly as well on keyboard and mouse without enough changes that it then wouldn’t be the same game, even if that game could still be pretty good (I’d like a single player Chivalry in a continuous world, yes please, though its combat still needs far more refinement). You should play it again, with a controller, then you won’t talk as someone who played something with unfit hardware but as someone who enjoyed a great game.

        • rebb says:

          Dark Souls is perfectly playable with Mouse and Keyboard after you apply some community fixes.

          I finished DkS that way multiple times without problems.
          Some time later i got a PS3 and finished Demon’s Souls with a controller a few times, but honestly that didn’t feel in any way superior to the KB+Mouse Dark Souls experience. Just different.

          So in the same way you suggest a KB+M User to try playing with a controller, i would suggest any Controller User to try playing with KB+M for a while, and without prejudice.

          • GamesInquirer says:

            I play with keyboard and mouse in the games it’s right for and Dark Souls isn’t as far as I’m concerned, community changes or not. Workable? Sure. Anything is. It’s technically workable without the changes. That’s not too different to the people who made a dance pad workable for Super Mario and have practiced it enough to master such controls. Dark Souls and almost any such action game is optimal with a controller, vs something like Chivalry that is optimal with a mouse and keyboard and would also in theory be workable on a controller (just as various FPS games are) but far from ideal. Edit: yes, you beat the game, good for you, nowhere did I say such a task is impossible so, yeah, woosh. Just like a console player would tell me he plays FPS games just fine with his controller. Meh.

          • nimbulan says:

            I can safely say that Dark Souls is still not playable with the community fixes. It partly has to do with how clunky the entire game feels and partly because even with the fixes, the game still treats mouse input like a joystick (I don’t even want to know how bad it was before applying the fix.) On top of that, there’s no button prompts and the default controls are mind-bogglingly bad.

            It’s pretty sad too, I find any third-person game in which the developers actually put the couple hours of work necessary into making keyboard+mouse work properly to play superior that way compared to a gamepad. The Dark Souls port is simply inexcusable.

        • suibhne says:

          Huh? I’ve played with both a controller (on PS3) and over 50 hours with KB+M on PC, and I don’t have any idea what you’re talking about. The game works perfectly nicely with KB+M, and in fact I prefer it once I’ve rebound the keys to my liking – since I tend to like using archery, and the mouse offers vastly superior control for that. DS is not a game that really benefits from two analog sticks (or is hurt by the lack of analog movement control), and that’s the only real advantage a controller offers for PC gamers.

        • kyrieee says:

          I just beat Artorias SL1 with kb+m, I daresay that control method is not unfit for the game. I haven’t run into any situation that I thought was made harder because of the controls not being good enough.

        • Urthman says:

          Can you give an example of something you can do on the controller in Dark Souls that you can’t do with mouse and keyboard? I’ve been interested in playing that game, but I’m so clumsy with a controller, I’d like to know if it’s really worth trying that way. I can probably do something very difficult on M+K more easily than something moderately difficult with a gamepad.

          The only game I’ve ever run across that absolutely requires a controller is a little indie game called Paper Plane where the analog triggers (being able to hold them half-way for long stretches at a time) are needed to keep the plane steady.

          • Hidden_7 says:

            As someone who played Demon’s Souls on PS3, and Dark Souls on PC using M+KB, the only thing I’ve seen that the controller has over KB is analog movement. There’s a walk key on PC, so you have two speeds. Other than that I’m not seeing anything that the controller has over M+KB.

            Personally, I’ve never once felt that I was hindered in any way by fewer movement speed options. The precision of footwork required in that game isn’t THAT precise at all. And of course with the controller you’re also forced into analog stick for looking around, rather than mouse, which for me is a far, far bigger tradeoff, especially with all those secret passages to find, and beautiful scenery to look at.

            The real problems with M+KB in Dark Souls are entirely down to dev apathy, not anything intrinsic about the controllers. Mouse movement is wonkier than you’d like in one of these types of games (though again, for me personally, better than a stick), and without a community mod you can’t use the mouse in menu.

            Also all the button prompts are for the 360 controller, so initially learning the controls is a bit confusing as all the tutorials are giving you completely worthless info (Press A to use, what is that? Ohh, Q. That took some doing). You get used to it eventually, but it did put me off quite a bit initially. It’s worth looking up some of the control cheatsheets that are floating out there online, especially since the default keybinds (configurable, thankfully) are a bit odd, as well as as which keyboard key is bound to which Xbox button isn’t consistent. e.g. LB might map to Shift if you’re in game, but it maps to Insert if you’re in menus.

            It’s perfectly playable that way, and I much prefer playing it this way than I did Demon’s Souls on the PS3, but it does have a few hurdles to learning that really don’t need to be there.

          • GamesInquirer says:

            It’s not about what you can or can’t technically do, it’s about how you do it. You should practice with the controller, it’s really not a big deal and you’ll get the hang of it and then open yourself up to tons of great games that aren’t very suited to keyboard and mouse (like fighting games, platform games, and so on). Just as people can technically do anything you can with a mouse and keyboard in an FPS by using a controller (ie, aim and shoot, and run and crouch and change weapons and so on). It all works on all sorts of inputs, but is optimal in certain ones. The game isn’t like a third person Chivalry where you mouse aim your sword at your enemies, you simply use your analog stick to move your character who can move independently of the camera angle towards your opponent or use the lock on function that allows you to strafe them a la Zelda, so the advantage of the mouse isn’t present anyway, not even for the ranged weapons since they don’t function quite like guns in an FPS.

      • noodlecake says:

        Even if the keyboard and mouse controls were as good as they could possibly be, it’s a third person action game with mainly melee combat and driving and therefore will play much better with a joypad anyway. I don’t see the problem. I think it’s a pretty strange state of affairs if you can afford a gaming pc but not a 360 controller.

        • grable says:

          Its more about NOT WANTING to play with a controller.
          If i can get away with it, i will. if not, i prolly wont play the game.

        • Hidden_7 says:

          I honestly don’t understand this sentiment. It gets brought up all the time, so I’m definitely on the wrong side of this one, but it baffles me. If there are fixed camera angles, I can see why an analog stick would be useful (but only if it gives you all sorts of weird skewed angles), but if you’re using the right stick for free camera movement I just don’t understand what the controller is doing that makes it obviously superior.

          Like, to each their own, everyone has their controller preferences, but if I’m allowed to look around I want to be using a mouse. Regardless if I’m shooting guys or wacking them, regardless if my camera is in a dude’s skull or over his shoulder. This isn’t the case that I’m making do with the not as good controller because I’m too cheap or trying to prove a point, or anything, this is me wanting to use the M+KB because, for me, it’s the better choice. If I had a 360 controller I’d still pick M+KB.

          I understand certain games work better on different controllers. I just don’t understand the orthodoxy that 3rd person melee action games are one of them, and that it’s specifically for controller. Can someone explain to me what I’m missing, because I feel like I missed the memo on this one something fierce.

  5. Bull0 says:

    Ooh, they’re using Xbox 360 reviews on the store page. That’s… that’s murky

    • VelvetFistIronGlove says:

      Not really. The page for the PC version is very clearly labelled as Early Access (= unfinished, so too early for reviews), and anyone who cares to click the links to those reviews will see they’re for the Xbox version. Nothing underhanded about that.

      • rei says:

        I don’t think people can be expected to visit other sites to find out whether the reviews refer to that particular version of the game or not, even if that would seem like the obvious thing to do.

        • Big Murray says:

          Frankly, if people don’t bother to look up reviews of the game even when doing so is literally a click away before they spend their hard earned money on it, then they deserve everything they get.

      • Bull0 says:

        Sorry, you’re fine with putting reviews for another product on the store page for a different product because “people will know” that the information isn’t relevant? Fair enough. You’re very, very forgiving.

        • Big Murray says:

          It’s still reviews for the same game, just on a different platform. It’s hardly like the reviews are “not relevant”.

          • Bull0 says:

            They aren’t relevant, because the PC version isn’t finished. If the early access game was the final released product it would get marked down accordingly. It’s not as simple as the same game on another platform.

          • dE says:

            Did you play the console version at release? While it was a great game, it was marred by bugs and glitches, many of which ended up gamebreakers. It still got those raving reviews.
            You can argue “marked down” all you want in this case, the console version was at release a semi-broken mess. The PC Version can’t be any more broken.

          • Iaksones says:

            I agree in that the 360 reviews would be relevant in some areas, like comments on how fun/compelling killing zombies and looting containers is this time around. Not so relevant on bugginess, controls, etc.

    • rei says:

      Huh, that’s sleazy. I understand that they would want to give people who are unfamiliar with the game an idea of what it may or may not be like, but they definitely should preface it with THESE REVIEWS ARE FOR A DIFFERENT VERSION OF THE GAME in red capital letters.

      • Bull0 says:

        Yeah, or better still, wait til there are PC reviews.

        That said, Space Hulk is still misusing a quote from Alec’s preview as a quote from the review. That’s pretty damn sleazy too.

        • The Random One says:

          I tried to search the tag Space Hulk to reread Alec’s review and nothing came up. It’s a conspiracy!

          I do remember it was super negative, so yeah, rather sleazy.

          • Bull0 says:

            Alec previewed it quite favourably but it was a developer led demo- I’ve done those and it’s very easy to divert attention away from the negative. Rab subsequently tore the game a new spacehole in his review, but SH are using preview quotes in the reviews section even though a condemnatory review has been published since. Dodgy as fuck

    • Flappybat says:

      Most game reviews for multi platform games are from console versions. If you read a review on Eurogamer, Gamespot, Destructoid etc it’s probably for a console version.

      • Bull0 says:

        I know, and if another major multi-plat game issues an early access, unfinished port on Steam and slaps console review scores on it I’ll disapprove of them too. With finished titles it’s less of a problem in my eyes, but still not ideal. I think Steam needs some kind of policy on use of reviews on store pages.

  6. HadToLogin says:

    I really hope SoD will turn out great, but leaving keybaord+mouse is making me afraid it will have piss-poor support of them – just look at Skyrim – GUI obviously not made with mouse in mind – or Dark Souls.

    • Ravenholme says:

      The reason they’re leaving them is to give them more time to work on implementing them, so… like, the complete opposite of what you said.

      This release is about gathering PC performance data, discovering if certain set ups break the game graphically or otherwise, etc.

      Early Access for real, basically.

      • HadToLogin says:

        We’ll see. Look at Skyrim’s Vanilla UI and it’s obvious lack of thought about keyboard+mouse gamers. There are many things mouse players expect to be working differently than pad players, and it might turn out they would need to rewrite half the code because they didn’t thought about… mouse invert, for example (I probably exaggerate with this example, but hopefully you’ll get what I mean).

        • Spakkenkhrist says:

          I don’t think Skyrim’s UI was given much thought for any format, it’s incredible how much better an enthusiast’s mod (SkyUI) was able to make it.

        • nimbulan says:

          Skyrim’s default UI is a perfect example of the modern design philosophy of form over function. The main focus is on making it look as good as possible with little thought as to how functional it is. The problems aren’t even solely for mouse users, I saw game reviewers complaining about the UI on consoles as well.

  7. dE says:

    Did they manage to fix the extreme flickering and popups from the console versions? That’d be reason enough to re-buy it on PC for me.

    • SkittleDiddler says:

      I haven’t seen any instances of pop-ups or flickering in my six or so hours in the PC version so far. Here’s praying that they don’t come up at all.

      There is a weird halo effect on all the characters, however.

  8. Prolar Bear says:

    Lazy SODs.

  9. midhras says:

    Such a pity that you have a constant on-screen HUD. I wish developers would allow for a way to toggle that stuff off. Immersion, you know?

  10. HisDivineOrder says:

    Actually, kb/m controls are present, just not listed in the menus and not customizable. Considering it’s “Early Access” and extremely beta, that’s probably okay. The biggest problem I’ve seen on the forums with the game is the extreme up’s and down’s of the optimization (if there is any) plus some missing sound effects and some rather horrible texturing.

    If they’d provide a list of things they ARE going to improve (re: textures especially), I’d probably buy into the Early Access. Short of that, I don’t feel confident they’re going to fix absolutely necessary things because they haven’t said as much.

    • Ravenholme says:

      On the plus side, going by what I’ve seen on Facepunch, it may be inherently and incredibly moddable, all the files appear to be easily accessible with a .pak extractor and compiler.

  11. SilentDawn says:

    You made me learn a new word, sans. thx RPS :D

  12. whoCares says:

    There must really be a better way than to pay 20 euro to a developer so you can playtest the game for him. This is not meant to be an insult, if you like the idea that is fine, but somehow it feels wrong to me.

    • JR says:

      It’s definitely bizzare, however I’d argue that you are paying for the game itself. In a way it’s like a preorder, however you just get to play it right away and thanks to the internet you get a chance to actually hear what others think of the game beyond teaser trailers.

  13. burben says:

    I purchased the game knowing full well MK support would not be included and I’m thoroughly enjoying myself. It’s a truly fun game and definitely worth 20 bucks. There are some minor quirks, and the controller takes a few minutes of re-learning if you don’t frequently play with it, but this game is solid. I’ve got a mid-range system and I can run it on “Maximum” settings (which incidentally are not the maximum; Ultra is the true maximum). If you’ve got the money, and want a more accessible Day Z experience, I’d say pick it up. I haven’t had an adrenaline rush playing a game in a while, and this shit was a breath of fresh air.

  14. SkittleDiddler says:

    Here’s what I’ve run into so far: a ton of zombies clipping into walls, static zombies that do no damage and cannot be killed, inventory items disappearing from storage, NPCs becoming completely uncommunicative after entering certain areas, and a weird “aura” graphical effect on all the characters. Also, the sound is way too low and the game is too dark overall. GPU-wise, it runs my 560 Ti at 72+ degrees constantly which is a bit worrying.

    The devs removed any plans for co-op and I get the impression that they may do the same with sandbox mode, but they’ve hinted that modding will allow both of those in the future.

    SoD is a blast to play even with all the issues. The zombies mobs are a real threat, the survival mechanics are well done, and the management aspect is actually fun. It’s an entirely different experience from DayZ, and for that I’m fucking thankful.

    • Loxosceles says:

      Thanks for the great info regarding the game’s current state. I’m probably going to buy it and play today. About your 560 temps: Is v-sync on? I used to have an overclocked 570 and in just about any game that did not already push the card to its limits, without vsync, it would be rendering 80-110 fps on my 60fps monitor and thus heating up considerably (77+). Still, 72 degrees is definitely nothing to worry about. Those cards are rated safe up to the mid 90s, but I would only worry at 80. If 72 is your absolute max, you don’t have anything to worry about.

      • SkittleDiddler says:

        No v-sync for me. The reason the temps in SoD worry me is because, even on graphcs-intensive games such as Far Cry 3 or Metro 2033, my temps normally run at around 55-65°. 72° or more seems like a lot for a game that uses such a streamlined engine as CryEngine3.

        I have a feeling the SoD devs still haven’t gotten the hang of working with CE3 yet, especially in the PC realm.

    • Walsh says:

      Some of those are features. NPCs will take items from the stash and use them. NPCs will go on missions on their own and are unreachable during that time. Some times they put out a request for help. If you don’t help them, there’s a greater chance they will be torn apart.

      • SkittleDiddler says:

        That explains the missing inventory. As for the NPC “non-communication” thing, not so much — I was referring to the fact that directly interacting with NPCs (i.e. pressing “Y” on the gamepad when in close proximity) just doesn’t work sometimes. I have a feeling it’s a scripting issue, but restarting the game seems to fix it.

    • Henke says:

      Yeah a lot of those bugs are in the 360 version as well. SoD had more bugs than any other game I’ve played the past year, though thankfully nothing game breaking. I still had a really good time with it in spite of all its issues. :)

  15. barelyhomosapien says:

    One wonders about the readership, or at least the readership inclined to comment, of RPS when an Early Access Game, meaning pre-release quality, emblazons it’s store page with warnings that the game is not yet ready for Keyboard and Mouse play but will be made such, get’s chewed out for warning non-controller owners to avoid the product at this stage and pay later.

    It says multiple times that KB+M support will be added and will be tweaked for player suggestions. It’s an Early Access title, which means it’s unfinished. So pull your head out of your bums, actually read the article, and stop whining.

    I apologize for the rant, and should point out it’s aimed at the “NO KB+M SUPPORT WTF RAGETYPE” lot but god, really?

    • The Random One says:

      I don’t see any comments like that you described, so I think you scared all of them off! Good job!

    • Bent Wooden Spoon says:

      You can’t have been reading closely, this undoubtedly the whiniest, most pathetic grab-bag of comments I’ve seen in years of reading the site (other than the utter shitshow that rears its head any time the writers talk about women). I’ve battered my head off my keyboard so often reading these I think I’ve got a concussion

  16. Branthog says:

    I paid $15 for this on the 360 and played it for about an hour, figuring it would never see the light of day on PC. Now that it’s here, I’d rather have it on PC and play it. I was dreading dishing out *another $15 for the game — but now they want $20 for it on PC (versus $15 on console) and . . . well, I guess I won’t be showing any support of it until there’s a massive Steam sale of some kind.

    • noodlecake says:

      If you had it on the 360 and only played for an hour, why would you buy it on PC? Clearly you didn’t enjoy it enough to play it. Why not invest in a game you actually like? :S

      • analydilatedcorporatestyle says:

        My back aches, this is the random moan thread right?

      • grenadeh says:

        Because he/she likes to bitch for no reason. I too bought it on XBL when it was new and played it for a couple of hours, and haven’t touched it since – because I have 500 other games to play or finish. Plus it pissed me off by getting one of my best group members killed, who I needed for a quest – which I cannot now do.

  17. chaoticgoon says:

    Hi, I’ve played the game for 13 hours now according to steam. I’ll tell you about the technical experience and then what I thought about the game

    I’m playing on a laptop and with a 360 pad. Apart from 1 bit where its obviously loading the next huge part of the map I haven’t seen the game really dip beneath 25fps and its usually between 40 and 60. Sometimes its over sometimes its under and I can never really tell why because there tends not to be that much more going on on screen when it does dip. I haven’t experienced any flickering or pop in that people mentioned about the console version. Or not enough to really notice. You have to turn the gamma up a good bit though because its dark as fuck normally.

    As for the game its janky, really really janky. I really enjoy it though. You know how Civ would be a crap game if it was just the fighting bits, or just the political bit, or just the city management but when you chuck all those systems into the one game it adds up to something really good. Its like that. I wish the individual elements were less clumsy but I’m ok with that although I can see other people being less ok with it and being very loud about it but I would take a wild guess and assume these people are ubisoft fans.

    On the whole the game reminds me of Bully, deadly premonition, the walking dead and stalker

    • Danda says:

      This. I have played it for a few hours and I’m enjoying it a lot. The writing is a bit cliched, but the exploration aspect is quite addictive.

  18. grenadeh says:

    Or you can just get over yourself and use a controller like any reasonable PC gamer. I’ve been a PC gamer for over 20 years, I can recognize when a game exists that is more suited for a controller than the keyboard. Seriously if it’snot an FPS or a strategy/sim game or MMO, there’s no point in the MKB.

    • jrodman says:

      That’s kind of a weak argument.

      It’s valid to criticize a game for not working with the default inputs, or worse not working well and not advertising that it requires an add-on controller. Not everyone is a dedicated gamer with a gamepad.

      That said, if it works acceptably with the default input, there’s not a lot to complain about if it works better with a gamepad.

      • dE says:

        You keep mentioning default input… since we’re talking PC, it should work with a joystick, right? Perhaps a wheel too. I’m wondering if everyone forgot there was a pretty long era where the PC used all kinds of periphery to play games, some of which ended up quite outlandish. Yet when the whole PC Versus Console Hissy Fit started, it was suddenly M/KB or get lost.

        • jrodman says:

          I don’t think that era ever existed.
          On the c64, or the amiga, or to some extent the apple II, joysticks might have been assumed. But on the PC, definitely not.

          Or do you mean games supporting *optional* peripherals in addition to mouse and keyboard? I do remember that, eg Wing Commander, but I also remember people playing them with mouse and keyboard.

          If you own a modern PC it can be assumed you have a mouse and keyboard. Technically you can operate many operating systems without one or the other, but realistically the number of people who lack a pointing device and/or a keyboard is going to be less than one in one hundred thousand. The number of people who own a pc and lack a gamepad are in the majority.

          That’s what i mean by default inputs. The inputs that you use normally to use the PC, which are pretty much guaranteed to be present. It’s obnoxious to not work with those, and valid to criticize if a game doesn’t.

          You don’t have to personally agree with the criticism, but there’s no reason to catcall if someone does.

          • derbefrier says:

            no, hes right and you are wrong. People didn’t bitch about having to spend 20 bucks on a controller back then because it wasn’t seen as some stigma like some see it now. If a game played better with a controller or didnt support mouse and keyboard very well or if you wanted to play local co-op you just had to have one. It was a part of the gaming experience. It wasn’t until this whole PC Master race crap did you start seeing these floods of kids refusing to buy a controller, Joysticks, steering wheels, and yes even controllers were always essential to the PC gaming experience as long as PCs have been gaming platforms. Its really just stupid to think otherwise. This really did start with the PC Master race generation of gamers were before people just played with whatever worked best and had fun.

      • Mattsetback says:

        It does make it very very clear that you need a controller.

        • jrodman says:

          If it wasn’t clear, I wasn’t saying they did that. I was saying in that case, it would be worse.

  19. Mattsetback says:

    Kind of agreeing with all the above, it’s all a little shonky, but great fun. They have nailed the atmosphere perfectly.

    I can see why the m/kb thing might be an issue – if you could pull off headshots easily (which is really quite tricky with a controller) guns might well be bit OP.

    • analydilatedcorporatestyle says:

      To be fair, guns in the real world are quite powerful.

  20. Paroxysm says:

    Are you meaning to tell me they launched on Early Access with only controllers officially supported exactly liked they stated would happen months ago (link to! What shocking news! If only there were people whose business it was to pay attention to these things and then report on them.

    Hey Nathan even wrote the news story about that announcement: link to

    • 1stGear says:

      So the developer has known for months that they were going to be porting to the PC and yet couldn’t be arsed to add proper mouse support and just change the UI icons to keyboard ones (since the keyboard controls are actually present, the game just hides them)? Instead they’re hiding behind Steam Early Access and “We want community help!” as an excuse for really basic negligence and laziness and RPS commentators who readily castigate other lazy ports for not having control rebinding options are defending them.

      I would honestly consider Undead Labs MORE defensible had the keyboard controls be completely absent as opposed to present but disguised but instead they decided to go barely halfway and opted to take the Bethesda approach of “the community will fix it for us”.

  21. DapperDirewolf says:

    Maybe I’m being ignorant, but I played the trial of this on 360 and found it really disappointing.

  22. MechanicalPen says:

    Am I the only one who confused this with Dead State?