Gaming Magazine

S&S; Review: State of Decay

Posted on the 12 June 2013 by Sameo452005 @iSamKulii
S&S; Review: State of Decay Title: State of Decay
Format: XBLA, PC
Release Date: June 5, 2013(XBLA), Coming Soon for PC
Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios
Developer: Undead Labs
Price: $20
ESRB Rating: M

State of Decay is yet another zombie game we've received this year, and it is the zombie game that we've all been waiting for.  If you can get past the rough edges, State of Decay is a true gem.

S&S; Review: State of Decay Story and Presentation:
There really isn't a full blown story in State of Decay, you're just thrown into a world that's littered with the undead.  The characters you play as and the ones you don't know nothing about the infestations, and you progress through the story learning more about what's going on.  The narrative gets pretty interesting towards the end of the game, but it falls short since you never really form an emotional  connection to these characters.  It could have been neat, but the gameplay really made up for it in the end.  The presentation of the game is not good, plain and simple.  This has to be one of the roughest games I've ever played.  Textures constantly pop in and out, the framerate frequently takes huge dives, and it can get pretty buggy at times.  Character A.I. can get stuck on objects, forcing you to have to restart your mission.  You would think these annoyances would get in the way of my enjoyment, but it didn't.  I actually said out loud while playing, that if the game had a locked framerate and no texture pop in, it would be the perfect game.  The music is solid, but the voice acting is pretty uninspired.  Characters begin to repeat after the first hour, and it just gets a little stale when you put more hours into it.
S&S; Review: State of Decay Core Gameplay:With all of the presentational mishaps the game has, it didn't detract from how much fun I was having with it.  State of Decay is marketed as an open world RPG, but it's mostly an RPG, in my opinion.  There's a lot of action and exploring, but there is also a ton of relationship management.  You have to search a lot of houses and abandoned stores for supplies, weapons, medicine, and ammo to maintain your group's home establishment, and to keep everyone happy and hopeful.  These mechanics come together perfectly, and it creates one of the most addicting games I've ever played.   Melee combat is a huge part of the game, and it's always satisfying to bash a zombie's head in a with a metal pipe.  Melee is tied in with your player's stamina, you can't just continuously swing away at multiple enemies, because you will tire out.  It's pretty similar to Dead Island in that respect.
There are guns in the game, but they're extremely loud, which attracts more zombies to your location.  Luckily, you can craft suppressors to lower the decibel level of your rifles.  You can follow the main storyline if you wish, but the sheer amount of secondary missions in the game will almost guarantee you to veer off the main quest line.  These side quests can vary from helping a survivor make it home, recruiting new survivors to your base, and clearing out nearby infestations with a buddy.  The more side missions you do, the more Influence you earn.  Influence is the brilliant currency system the game has, which allows you to gain access to different items in your group's supply locker, including weapons, ammo, and food for health.  Another thing I love is persistent the world is, even when you turn the game off, your A.I. buddies will still go out on supply runs to keep them alive.  You'll be able to switch between survivors as well, depending on your relationship level with them.
If you or any of your fellow survivor dies, there gone forever.  The inclusion of perma-death adds a lot of tension to the game, especially with a player you have leveled up.
S&S; Review: State of Decay
Final Thoughts:There is so much to do in the game, from base management to clearing out zombie hordes, there will never be any downtime.  The rough presentation holds the game back from being perfection in my eyes, but you'll still have a blast with it.
S&S Rating: 8.5/10 @whatsPlay

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