Project Zomboid is the ultimate in zombie survival. Alone or in MP: you loot, build, craft, fight, farm and fish in a struggle to survive. A hardcore RPG skillset, a vast map, a massively customisable sandbox and a cute tutorial raccoon await the unwary. So how will you die?
Recent Reviews:
Mostly Positive (146) - 77% of the 146 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
All Reviews:
Very Positive (12,369) - 86% of the 12,369 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Nov 8, 2013

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Project Zomboid is a much more ambitious game than we could ever have hoped to fund ourselves. It has grown massively over the years, and it’s been a rollercoaster, but we find ourselves in a stable financial situation with an overwhelmingly positive reaction from the Steam community. We hope you will join us, but if not we understand. If you're not ready to jump in yet, then please consider us when we break out of Early Access.

How often do we update the community?

We have weekly newsletters, known as 'Mondoid's, which we publish on our site and as a Steam announcement every Monday (unsurprisingly) as a small tonic to the depressing 'back to work' feeling. These detail what we've been up to during the week, often with sneak peeks of upcoming features, interviews, videos and all that goodness. We've had an unbroken chain of Mondoids for a long time now, and plan to continue them as long as Project Zomboid is developed. We also communicate with our community directly on our own forums and Steam forums, often with changelists for upcoming builds.

How often do we update?

We have a reputation that seems to diverge greatly when it comes to update frequency depending on who you ask. Many consider our game frequently updated, some consider us slow. In recent times it’s rare we don’t have a release within a month (including beta releases), and these always contain new gameplay features or major tweaks to the gameplay.

Some features, particularly NPCs, have taken a long time to implement. This is largely out of our commitment to getting the features right and them not disappointing on release, but it should be noted that we make no apology for delaying their release until we feel they would be enjoyed, live up to people’s expectations, and most importantly do not have a detrimental effect on the gameplay or stability of the game.

We will admit to a few long waits between updates in the past, but we feel from community feedback that the majority of our customers are very satisfied with the development of the game. It should be pointed out too that the game has significant modding support, with map editors and full unrestricted lua modding access. We have a vibrant modding community that can help plug the gap between updates. It should also be taken into consideration that the game is already very far through development, to the point where we now have 1900+ hour players - There is a lot of content to enjoy in the game already and we firmly and proudly believe it worth its current price as it stands. Please consider reading some reviews if you are still unsure about the content of the game or the release frequency.

Details of major milestones can be found below.

What is required for 1.0?

Two major features are yet to be implemented into the game, both of which are currently in full-time development each with dedicated full-time developer support. These are:

NPCS - A far reaching and in-depth NPC system with character relationships, personalities, and an emergent story engine that allows for diverse and emergent character based zombie survival story unique to every playthrough. This also includes the tutorial, a return of Kate and Baldspot who starred in the early alphas of the game.

Vehicles - Fully physics modelled 3D vehicles, siphoning petrol, mechanics skills.

Several features require either significant modifications, rewrites or completion before we could consider 1.0.

Map completion - We still have a major city, an army base, more wilderness, and several small towns to implement to the game map.

UI Rewrite - The UI isn’t perfect by any stretch. We would like to get a more intuitive and ergonomic UI system implemented.

Stealth / Combat - New animations to allow for stealth mechanics (looking round corners, crouching behind walls, cover etc) as well as a rewrite of the combat system to leverage new animations to make combat more involved, intuitive and fluid.

We want to have all this in the can this year. However, we tend to avoid ETAs because Early Access development in particular is often filled with unknowns and we want to ensure we get these highly anticipated features right. 

In the meantime however we will continue to update the game and provide new features for our community to play with. One of our developers full time responsibility is providing frequent and new items, crafting recipes, skills and survival gameplay elements to fill out any holes in gameplay, and provide frequent feature rich game updates in line with community feedback, while the other developers focus on finishing these specific remaining major features.

What about after 1.0?

At this point, once we feel we have fulfilled every promise we gave when the Project Zomboid site first launched (except the last one, ahem, ignore that. Absolutely no one wanted that, it turned out), as well as the extra things detailed above, and the game is sufficiently polished and bug free, we will launch the game as 1.0 and leave Early Access.

What happens at this point depends entirely on whether the game is making money or not, but given the past solid performance of the game we see no reason why it shouldn’t be. Several developers within the team will likely start exploring our second project at this point, however we have dedicated and passionate developers who were brought into the company via the Project Zomboid modding community, emotionally invested in the game, who are already a big part of the development and communicating with the community. As long as Project Zomboid is making enough to support their continued development of the game, and they are happy to continue working on it (which seems likely), we will continue making Project Zomboid indefinitely as long as there is interest.

That all said, we can’t make any solid promises beyond the 1.0 mark, however there are countless things we would love to do that go way beyond 1.0 and sales make us confident that we’ll get the opportunity to explore them. Truth be told, given that it was Zomboid that put the money in the bank in the first place, as long as our company is secure and we can fund any other project's development comfortably, it's very probable we'd be willing to put some money back into the game beyond the point it's sustaining itself if there are any features in particular we can't bear to leave out of the game. Words are wind though, and all we can do is guess where we'll all be by then. We really want to keep this train going as long as we can though, as long as it continues to the benefit of the game. At which point the modders will hopefully take the mantle with almost unlimited access to the game's core.

Development Costs

Here we hope to give you a better idea of how the sales revenue from Project Zomboid will support development of the game. While we will keep particular developers salaries confidential, we would like to offer a breakdown of developer and office locations, along with the average rent costs, reported on for the Indie Stone offices, along with each developer's location to give you an idea of relative studio costs. It's become clear to us recently how significantly this factors into Early Access games chance of continuing development and we hope others will follow suit in divulging this information.

All percentages are in comparison to New York City (100%) - Other examples would be San Francisco (98.66%), London (93.81%), Moscow (52.71%) and Delhi (9.53%). The lower the % the further your purchase of an Early Access game will go to fund development (or more crucially how long that money will last), as accommodation costs correlate pretty closely with expected salaries and costs of living and working in that location. (Please note that in several cases the developer lives sufficiently outside the given city to make the actual %s likely much lower than reported)

3x Developers + Office
Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom - 32.37%

1x Developer
Brighton, United Kingdom - 56.37%

1x Developer
Toronto, Canada - 51.78%

1x Developer
Surrey, Canada - 30.87%

1x Developer
Lille, France - 31.59%

Monthly development costs are currently recouped within approximately the first 1.5 weeks of the month on average, which means at present each month produces extra funds to further develop the game should sales dry up. This does not include sales or other promotions.

What if PZ stopped making any money tomorrow?

The Indie Stone have made sufficient sales since launch on Early Access to ensure that if the game stopped selling any copies tomorrow, the entire PZ dev team could carry on funded development as at present, with no reduction in workforce, for at least the next two years, potentially longer. This would not be an ideal situation for us, of course, but we are committed to finishing every major planned feature before we consider moving the game to 1.0. Considering the financial situation we are in at present, the chances we will not be able to fund the remaining development of the game are quite small.

In the worst (and least likely) possible of financial cases that required the disbandment of all paid developers of the game, 4 of the listed developers are directors of The Indie Stone with an invested interest in the success of the game and company, who would cut their income significantly and/or supplement development of the game with other work to get through any financial difficulties. Despite this no doubt causing progress to slow significantly, the 4 directors hold all required skills to continue development of the game during this nightmare scenario.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“See above!”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“See above!”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“See above!”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“It will likely be £5, $8 more expensive once we hit 1.0. Due to our commitment to making sure early adopters get the cheapest price in appreciation of their early support, we will never appear on bundles, or in sales that take it to or below the original alpha price of £5, $8 until a long time post 1.0. This commitment also means that, until 1.0 and the price increase, we will never be willing to go beyond a 40% sale.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“See above!”
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Recent updates View all (200)

March 15

Climate Change

Evenin’ all. Here’s the latest from the Knox Event.

We have just released public vehicles build 39. It’s another fairly weighty changelist, but the highlight of it is that the many, varied and major FPS optimizations we discussed last weekhave arrived. We’d love to hear about any changes you notice in performance. Likewise, however, we will need to hear of any bugs this has introduced. We’ve eradicated most of the gremlins backstage (like checkerboard lighting updates, flickering UIs windows, invisible ground objects etc) but there may well be other curiosities that our in-house testers haven’t found. Please let us know in the build release thread.

Something we are aware of is that in this version there’s more work to do with the UI. We’ve made significant optimizations by sacrificing UI FPS for the sake of the FPS of the overall game, which is clearly of a greater priority. On top of this, some of the windows may appear more transparent than usual. We’ll look to improve smoothness and responsiveness in future builds, but we hope any additional bugs or annoyances will pale compared to the significant FPS improvements. Elsewhere in the vehicles beta, meanwhile:
  • In preparation for the full release of the vehicles we’ve also added some tutorial windows that appear when new players first boot the game up. If there are any salient details we’ve missed here then please let us know! We’ve also made it so that vehicles are automatically enabled in all games, unless deselected in Sandbox options.

  • For MP we have raised the speed limit we previously imposed when map loading was far more of an issue. The default is now an in-game 80mph, although this can now also be played around with in your Server Options.
  • Car spawn zones have been added to the small settlement south of Riverside. Various unclear aspects of in-game text and UI icons have been improved. Car damage at low speeds has been nerfed. Radio transmission ranges have been increased to cater for the extended map.
  • In terms of fixed bugs, there are a few, but the biggest irritations hopefully salved include: miniature MP vehicle sizes gone, reversed textures and backwards writing on some vehicles fixed and the much-reported self-duplicating cars on servers addressed. Likewise various background memory leaks and the like have been knocked out of the build, and your FPS no longer holds as much sway over your steering.

Beyond immediate bug fixing from community reports the coming week’s focus will be on wider player-built gates to let players store their vehicles more safely, addressing the teleportation issues that can occur when passengers sit in a lag-impacted vehicle and implementing the final sounds for our ‘normal’ and ‘small’ car types.

While the majority of the team work on the vehicles build – Stas (chat upgrade), Mark (animations) and Turbo (fog, snow and new climate/weather system) continue to work away in the background.

Turbo tends to sit away from the main team (his speciality being over-arching systems that we can tie into the main game like his existing seasonal changes and radio systems) and he’s currently working on an improved dynamic weather system that he hopes will make his existing seasons feel more real, and give a greater sense of day-to-day variety.

This will also mean that different weather effects will move over the map in real-time. Here, for example, is a debug thunderstorm moving over the south of the current map – between March Ridge and West Point.

This all generated by a system of simulated cold and warm fronts of varying strengths. An in-game change from Warm to Cold, for example, will result in a day with rain in the morning getting heavier as the day goes on, with the possibility of a tropical storm in summer, or a blizzard in winter. The intensity of the rain, and thunder, meanwhile is all dependent on the simulated front strength.

When mixed in with the new fog that’ll see misty mornings slowly clearing in the sunshine this should give a far greater feeling of variety as each day passes. What’s more, as a part of this weather upgrade Turbo is also looking at improving our current use of shaders to increase the feeling of seasonal change in PZ – giving it a subtle yet tangible feeling of it being either a warm and vibrant day of summer, or a pale and hazy day in winter.

Alongside this Turbo intends to improve the SFX to reflect seasonal change better too – removing birdsong from winter, introducing snow crunch etc. When this ready, in the world beyond vehicles, we will also need to rebalance our farming system too in terms of the change in daily/seasonal rainfall – itself a fairly old system that could do with some TLC.

This week’s bannister-less deathtrap from актёрище. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right hereOur Discord is open for chat and hijinks too. Oh, and check out the findings of the latest great loot survey from ShylokVakarian. Fanks!
43 comments Read more

March 8

Performance Enhancements

Ello’ Zomboids and Zombettes. Some cool stuff to talk about this week!


Today we released public vehicles build 38, which is a general fix/polish update while the more structural optimization work detailed below has been running in parallel. You can find the changelist here.

Items of note include an improvement to vehicles clipping over characters and over each other – although to eradicate this completely will require structural work on a depth buffer, and more importantly the rewritten 3D model system that’s a part of future animation builds. This said, this build should at least see a marked improvement.

Other bugs fixed that’ve proved an irritation to testers include far more satisfying zed/vehicle collisions in MP, key loss lessening, a limitation on the threat of invisible trees and the removal of in-car 3D sound to make the sounds less disorientating.


Despite a lot of work and improvement over recent builds, for a little while we hadn’t been satisfied with the performance in our vehicles beta. It was workable, and clear that testers are having a lot of fun with it, but not something we felt was good enough.

As such over the past couple of weeks we’ve been working on what we feel are rather special and significant optimizations – basically going through every area of the game code and shaving off every millisecond we could, and the results have been quite profound.

On our internal test PCs (fairly good set-ups) it’s now possible to obtain a solid 60fps when zoomed out at almost every point in the map, save for the mall and downtown West Point – which regardless are themselves a lot more playable now.

The following video is shot in 1920×1080 and shows the improved performance we’re seeing on standard settings. Note the FPS read out in the top left. We thought about editing together pieces from different tests, however felt that cutting between them may look like sneaky editing, so have opted to use 5 minutes of uninterrupted recorded footage.

This video is recorded in 3800×1600 and shows the sort of performance you could expect on much higher resolutions. Hopefully not that much different from 4k framerates:

Additionally, as you may be able to tell from the videos, we have also added support for uncapping the FPS into the game options, now the FPS has improved significantly to make use of it. Hopefully this will make those with high refresh-rate monitors happy. Internally we have hit 300+ fps when zoomed in in low density areas of the map with FPS uncapped, which is pretty nice and silky on a 144hz G-Sync monitor!

We had hoped this optimization build would have been ready to release today, but when doing such deep and all-encompassing optimization that touches on many areas of the game, there are always new unintended side effects and new bugs introduced from changing the code to make it faster. Aspects of the UI suddenly become unhinged by the frame-rate, lighting refreshes go wonky etc.

As such we decided to release the existing changelist of Vehicles Beta 38 and leave this until next week, when there’s a few less gremlins in the system. We hope this will then be the candidate for moving vehicles into our established IWBUMS beta as we step up plans for animations etc.


As mentioned previously, alongside the animation systems that Bitbaboon Mark is prepping, we have a few other new systems to drop into testing once vehicles are out of the way.

The first is Stas’ new chat window and functions for MP, and the second, meanwhile, is the new snog/fog that will come hand-in-hand with a general improvement/deepening of how weather works in-game. This all comes from Turbo, once a modder and now a valued contributor to PZ, who generally sits aside from the main team cooking up crazy/intricate concoctions that can then be passed on into the main game.

We should have a full time-lapse next week, although existing fog vids live here, but for now you can see how it all works on Turbo’s debugger. Right now we only have a single daily temperature, precipitation values etc, but now an extra layer on top of the existing climate system will have more varied weather/temperature change throughout the day – and also more realistic weather systems over multiple days.

So a quick example, here you can see a foggy day – in which the sunlight is a white line. Here you can see the light blue fog line building up in the morning, just before the sun rises, after which the sun has rises and the in-game fog starts to fade away.

Meanwhile over longer periods, rather than it feeling rather random, precipitation will be clustered so you can have lots of days without rain and then a longer period of days with a lot of rain/snow.

As you can see from the following picture, the climate modelling goes much deeper than that though, tying temperature, wind, and other factors together into a pretty deep system worthy of Project Zomboid:

This week’s zed race from JoeScore. A general list of stuff added to PZ, and vids of features being worked on, is kept here – so you don’t have to plough through endless dev blogs for info. The Block of Italicised Text would like to direct your attention to the PZ Wiki should you feel like editing or amending something, and the PZ Mailing List that can send blogs like this and patch notes direct to your mailbox. We also live on Twitter right here! Our Discord is open for chat and hijinks too. Fanks!
78 comments Read more
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“What can I say? This game's interface looks so simplistic by today's standards, and yet the Indie Stone team has managed to possibly create one of the best post-apocalyptic zombie survival games in existence to date.”
Max Power! (105 hrs)

“Most realistic zombie apocalypse scenario game to date.”
democar821 (81 hrs)

“The gameplay is surprisingly addicting, sometimes I look at the clock and wonder where the last 4 hours went, but looking at my fort shows me where they went.”
syfy2K4 (1,021 hrs)

About This Game

Project Zomboid is an open-ended zombie-infested sandbox. It asks one simple question – how will you die? 

In the towns of Muldraugh and West Point, survivors must loot houses, build defences and do their utmost to delay their inevitable death day by day. No help is coming – their continued survival relies on their own cunning, luck and ability to evade a relentless horde.

Current Features

  • Hardcore Sandbox Zombie Survival Game with a focus on realistic survival.
  • Online multiplayer survival with persistent player run servers.
  • Local 4 player split-screen co-op
  • Hundreds of zombies with swarm mechanics and in-depth visual and hearing systems.
  • Full line of sight system and real-time lighting, sound and visibility mechanics. Hide in the shadows, keep quiet and keep the lights off at night, or at least hang sheets over the windows.
  • Vast and growing map (loosely based on a real world location) for you to explore, loot and set up your fortress. Check out Blindcoder’s map project:
  • Use tools and items to craft weapons, barricade and cook. You can even build zombie proof forts by chopping trees, sawing wood and scavenging supplies.
  • Deal with depression, boredom, hunger, thirst and illness while trying to survive.
  • Day turns to night. The electricity falters. Hordes migrate. Winter draws in. Nature gradually starts to take over.
  • Farming, trapping, fishing, carpentry, cooking, trapping, character customization, skills and perks that develop based on what you do in-game.
  • Proper zombies that don’t run. (Unless you tell them to in the sandbox menu).
  • A ton of amazing atmospheric music tracks by the prodigy that is Zach Beever.
  • Imaginative Challenge scenarios and instant action ‘Last Stand’ mode, on top of regular Sandbox and Survival 
  • Full, open and powerful Lua modding support.
  • Xbox Controller Gamepad support on Windows. [Others pads can be set up manually. Gamepad support not currently available on Mac]

    We’re a small team at the moment, but we’re also committed to providing the following:

    Planned Features:

  • The return of our PZ Stories mode that also serves as first ever tutorial actively trying to kill you at every turn. Kate and Baldspot return!
  • In-depth and varied NPC encounters driven in a persistent world, powered by a metagame system that turns each play-through into your very own zombie survival movie with emergent narrative gameplay.
  • Constant expansion of the countryside and cities around Muldraugh and West Point
  • Full wilderness survival systems, animals and hunting for food.
  • More items, crafting recipes, weapons and gameplay systems.
  • Steam Workshop and Achievements support

For more details on the game follow us on @theindiestone or visit

A huge thanks to the wonderful MathasGames and Dean Cutty for making the awesome intro video. If you love indie games their channels are well worth a sub.

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • Nb. This is an Early Access game. A demo has been provided so you can be sure the game runs on your set-up to your satisfaction.

      Radeon 4xxx series (or below) graphics cards / Please make sure to try the demo before purchasing!

    • OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7, 10
    • 64bit OS required
    • Processor: Intel 2.77GHz Dual Core
    • Memory: 2Gb Ram
    • Hard Disk Space: 1.23gig
    • Video Card: OpenGL 2.1 compatible dedicated graphics card
    • Sound: OpenAL compatible sound card
    • Nb. This is an Early Access game. A demo has been provided so you can be sure the game runs on your set-up to your satisfaction.

    • OS: OS X 10.7.3, or later. 
    • Processor: Intel 2.77GHz Dual Core
    • 64bit OS required
    • Memory: 2Gb Ram
    • Hard Disk Space: 1.23gig
    • Video Card: OpenGL 2.1 compatible dedicated graphics card
    • Sound: OpenAL compatible sound card
    • Controllers currently unsupported in Mac
    • Nb. This is an Early Access game. A demo has been provided so you can be sure the game runs on your set-up to your satisfaction.

    • Processor: Intel 2.77GHz Dual Core
    • Ubuntu LTS 6.04/Steam Machine. Requires Libgcc 6 or higher
    • Memory: 2Gb Ram
    • Hard Disk Space: 1.23gig
    • Video Card: OpenGL 2.1 compatible dedicated graphics card
    • Sound: OpenAL compatible sound card
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