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Project Zomboid multiplayer: how to play multiplayer in Project Zomboid

Learn how to play Project Zomboid multiplayer

Project Zomboid players teaming up to build a base and paint the walls. They are all wearing construction clothes
Image credit: The Indie Store

Want to know how to play multiplayer in Project Zomboid? The latest Project Zomboid update introduced multiplayer servers to the game, along with a range of other improvements and overhauls to various systems. If you want to jump into the zombie apocalypse with other people, we’ve got you covered.

Below, we’ll cover everything you need to know to play multiplayer in Project Zomboid, including how to host and join open multiplayer servers and how to play in co-op with your friends.

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How to play Project Zomboid multiplayer

To play Project Zomboid multiplayer, you need to either host or join a server. These options are both found in the main menu.

If you want to join a server, press join and then select internet on the top bar. This will bring up a long list of all servers that are currently online. You can filter this list in a variety of ways, so we recommend filtering out empty servers if you want to find other players. When you’ve found a server you want to join, click on it to bring up the server details on the right hand side.

Here, you’ll need to enter a password if the server has one (plenty are just open for anyone to join) and create an account name and password. Creating an account is mandatory if you want to hop into multiplayer. When you’re ready, hit join server to create a new character and enter the world. Make sure you head in with the best character build if you want to make it past the first day.

When joining an ongoing multiplayer server, it’s important to note that you won’t start on the first day of the apocalypse, unless you join as soon as the host creates the server. It’s likely that some time has already passed, meaning the water and power could be shut off, loot might be gone, and other players may have already claimed houses and cars. It can be very difficult to survive online, so make sure you’re familiar with our Project Zomboid tips and tricks if you want the best chances of survival.

When you’re ready to quit, simply go to the pause menu (remember, this won’t actually pause the game) and press quit. The server will automatically save your progress while you play. If you want to join the same server again, check in the favourites tab, as it should save the server there so that you can easily access it again and pick up where you left off.

How to host a Project Zomboid server

If you’d rather host your own server, you’ll have a lot more control. You start by setting the server name and memory size. When you're ready to dive into the details, click on manage settings to open the toolbox and start tinkering with every little part of your experience. Here, you can tweak the apocalypse to perfectly match your tastes, with almost every aspect of the game available for you to edit. You can also set the max player count, toggle which Steam Workshop mods you want to use, and set how players can interact with each other and the world.

When creating a server, the most important part that you need to choose is whether to make it private or public. If you want to set up a co-op server to play with friends in Project Zomboid, head to the Details tab (found at the top of the manage settings menu) and make sure that the public checkbox isn't ticked. We also recommend setting a password and sharing it with your friends. If you want to host an open multiplayer server that anyone can play, tick the public box and start the game. This will list your server in the server browser, allowing all players to join.

That’s everything you need to know about Project Zomboid multiplayer. If you've set up a server and found some friends, check out our guide on how to build a base in Project Zomboid so that you can hang out safely without zombies eating your brains. If you've found enemies instead, take a look at our infections and illness guide to learn how to heal any wounds or cuts you may have received from zombies or players.

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