Didn't see a thread for this yet, and I wanted to talk about SoD 2... so here we are.
What is State of Decay 2?
State of Decay 2
is the latest installment in the State of Decay series, a game that focuses on surviving the zombie apocalypse one awkward heart-to-heart with an upset/angry/afraid community member at a time. Then, when you run out of supplies or people, pack up a select few of your survivors abandon the others to their fates! Or all your good/favorite survivors get killed and then you start all over. Permadeath!
The game is available on Xbox One and PC, and if you bought the fancy copy you can play it now instead of it's official release date, Tuesday, May 22, 2018
. If you have Xbox Game Pass, the game is available to you w/o purchase, at it's normal release date. The game is also an Xbox Play Anywhere title, meaning you can play it on your Xbox One or PC (and share saves).
A major feature that has been added this go round is co-op (up to four?)! However the game does not
support cross-play, such that you can play with a friend on PC with your console or vice versa. There is no
direct PVP contact between players, however you could probably kill or be killed by player induced environmental hazards. You can restrict how people join your games too. An additional player or two will *not* turn zombies into damaging soaking sponges.
For a more detailed description of State of Decay 2
gameplay, see this spoiler:
So, another zombie apocalypse game you said?
The meat of State of Decay 2
's gameplay is very similar to the original game. The first run of the game will always be the tutorial wherein you choose from several sets of characters with narrative hooks like family members, partners, or friends. Once you go through the tutorial map, you can choose which map you want to start on (haven't done the other two yet so I can't speak to how hard/easy they are yet). Then you set up your base, gather resources, grow your community until it gets large enough to move to another place, repeat. Along the way, there are narrative events (quests) that each community member has. Enclaves pop up from time to time with their own quest lines and irritations (they can be naggy). Ignoring enclaves can make them go hostile to toward you.
New to this game is the plague heart mechanic, in which 9-10 nests are seeded randomly throughout the map. Plague hearts are the source of Plague zombies, who are faster, blood covered zombies that carry the blood plague, an additional mechanic added to the game. Get hit enough and you build up infection, fill the bar and the character has the plague and must be cured or turn. Destroying plague hearts and zombies drops an item that can be used to craft the cure to the infection. With an appropriately leveled infirmary, resting a character who hasn't gone full blown infection will allow them to recover. Some survivors can provide a buff that increases your communities' resistance to this "damage" when they become heroes. Survivors also have a trait that can apply to them individually. As you progress in the game over time, upgrades and plague hearts killed, the map grows more difficult. You cannot place mines and 100% zombie free buffer zone around your base via outposts this go round. You win by either moving your community to another map (same as the Breakdown DLC), or completing the Legacy of your leader. I believe you have to clear all plague hearts from a map before you can establish a Legacy though. (NOTE: Be careful with the quests for your leader because there may be an issue with completing all their quests before making them a leader). Which we'll talk about next.
New to State of Decay
is the leader system. Completing quests and generally doing things with a survivor earns XP and standing for your characters. After they gain enough XP they will become a hero. There are four types of heroes in the game: Sheriff, Builder, Warlord and Trader. These provide perks to the player and their legacy. Once a survivor becomes a hero they can become the leader of your community, at which point they can progress to a legacy. Heroes offer benefits to the community, and are random. Completing a legacy finishes the campaign for that community, at which point you have to start a new one. You can use old characters to start a new community. Depending on the type of hero that triggered the legacy you can select up to two Legacy boons for your new community:
- Sheriff: You will randomly receive items once a day to your locker.
- Builder: Your community will receive power and water for all structures.
- Warlord: You get a ton of weapons and ammo when starting a new community.
- Trader: You get 4000 influence at the start and a trader will visit you.
You would have to beat the game four times to be able to choose from all four, obv. I do not know if a legacy character dying in a later community would remove access to a boon, however that character would be gone for good regardless.
Once you pick your new starting group, you pick one of three maps and go from there. And that's the loop.
Yes! But State of Decay
uses a community mechanic that works surprisingly well. While I will expound on the details of the game loop after release and as I get more info, it's a sequel that lies soundly in "improve upon what you did without reinventing the wheel" territory. One such improvement: this game features three slots for communities. Progression while you're not playing does not return in the sequel.
The game takes place after the events of the first game and its DLC packs, Lifeline in particular. You start your community building adventure off with your buddy/relative/partner archetype and it goes from there. Appearances of your characters are randomized, as are the names afaik. Show us what you got!
Note 1: As with all games that are online, you *cannot
* truly pause the game if you are set to accept online sessions. When you press start, the game will let you know this too. Pulling up the mini-map and inventories won't pause the game.
How does the co-op work in this game?
Giving it its own section because I've read in a few places people expecting one thing and then getting something entirely different and complaining after they bought it. The Co-Op in State of Decay 2
shared-world Co-op. If you've played a game like Monster Hunter World
where you fire off an SOS and a player comes in and kills the monster with you and maybe sticks around or leaves your session, that's about it. Other examples would be Far Cry 5
or the Fable
games. Each player gets their own loot feeds. You gain influence, not standing, as you do things with the host in a Co-op setting. You can trade loot via dropping and picking up. If your character dies in Co-op, they die just the same as if they were in your own world.
In short, at its core, State of Decay 2
is still a single player game. This is by design. If you are expecting to start a base with your friend(s) and share a community using the same group of people, you will not get this from State of Decay 2
Lastly, this is a spoiler related to being infected:
There are two kinds of cure item, the single use cure and a tradeable brick of cures. If you have the latter, you must break it down into single cures to be able to use it. You cannot use the cures prematurely, and if you just have infection accumulated you cannot use the item. In that case you must rest the character with at infirmary 2, which means going back to your world and playing as a different character.
How do you climb down ladders?
Walk up to them and then press A with the movement stick neutral. Yes, I am both deeply committed to that joke and telling you that a thing that will save your life/HP. They forgot to improve on ladders.
So then, go forth survivors! Pop some zombies with car doors either now or see you on the 22nd! Until then, here are some official trailers to conflict with the tone of this post: