Years of waiting and it comes to this. I've been excited about Dead State since I first became aware of it, long before I merged with the RPS Hivemind. Since then, I've discovered more about Doublebear's plans for the zombie survival RPG but I hadn't had a chance to play it until late last night when the game launched on Steam Early Access. Oh no! Early Access means the game will be crumbling, rotten and bug-ridden like the dead that inhabit it, right? Not so, says the man at Doublebear. This is an early section of the game rather than an early version of the entire game. The first seven days, to be precise, forming an opening act (though for backers and buyers only) rather than a beta build.
I've waited long enough for Dead State that I'd be willing to wait a little longer if this was the typical Early Access release. Playing a small section ahead of release seems like a fine idea though - in fact, I'm planning to play as soon as I finish writing this post and I'm hoping to be occupied into the wee small hours. Here's what to expect:
Dead State: The First Seven Days is an early, WIP preview of the first week of Dead State's gameplay - an opportunity to prepare your strategy for the full game and help us test and polish the full Dead State experience. You'll meet some of your initial allies, explore a dozen or so locations, and settle into your base of operations, the Shelter. There are several solid hours of gameplay in the Early Access alone, and it barely scratches the surface of what the full game will provide.
This demo doesn't herald the arrival of the full release in the near future though. There's approximately 3-5 months of work left to complete. Among the elements missing from the game are animal NPCs, some perk and XP functionality, and in-game tutorial text. The lack of the latter can be circumvented by peering at the manual, which is available here.