Review posted on 7/8/2015 Build 32.
To give you a little bit of insight as to the type of person this review is coming from.
I have played a good number of Zombie Apocolypse games with and without the survival element and am a big fan of the genre/concept.
One of my favorite story(s), accounts, or portrayals of this genre would have to be World War Z (the book by Max Brooks, the movie is rubbish in comparision).
No it is not perfect I would not try to tell you otherwise, I see people on the forums who are having issues installing or running the game for various reasons. Personally I had no trouble at all, it runs great except for occasionally closes out of the game completely upon exiting out of the current game, which should have brought me to the main menu.
It is often easy to forget that this game is still in early access. While there are many exciting items and features planned for the future, the game feels and plays almost like a finished game.
Here are some features in the game at the time of this review that I like and/or appreciate and feel add a substantial amount to the immersion of Project Zomboid.
-Crafting & Barricading.
-Day & Night cycle.
-Logical loot distribution. In other words you will find loot in places that make sense in the world.
-Hunger & Thirst system.
-character creation process. Play as a male or femle, name them, choose a pre apocolypse profession (each profession comes with bonuses) or unemployed, plus give them merits and flaws. (I am paraphrasing here, I forget what they are called in game).
-Weather (rain, snow) and yes, seasons!
-The ability to create your own "custom sandbox" zombie apocolypse
-Upgrading and repairing. Bat+hammer+nails=Spiked Baseball bat, then use tools to repair it when needed.
-Item conditions. Weapons get damaged and then eventually break.
-Functional L.O.S. (Line of Sight) for both players and Zombies. In other words you can only see the zombies in the direction your character is facing.
-Multiplayer. Lots of Servers to join.
-Skill system where if you want to improve a skill, you have to keep using it...and live long enough to improve it! Also you can read books related to skills for a xp boost when said skill is used.
*Combining. Example A: I already have a kitchen knife and a jar of peanut butter. Find some bread, use the knife to cut the bread, knife+sliced bread+peanut butter=peanut butter sandwiches.
Example B: Enter a house that still has power. Already have a frying pan equipped. Look in the refrigerator. Frying pan+chicken+peas (perhaps with a dash of salt and/or pepper, optional) = chicken and vegetable stir fry. Turn on the stove, place the stir fry in the pan on the stove, cook, and yum!
Honestly I am glad I paid full price. Yeah I know it might sound crazy, it was just on sale not long ago but honestly the devs deserve every cent.
I would easily give this game in its current state a 9/10. *Important* Just keep one thing in mind, this game is hard. Actually for those who may not know, you CANNOT win. There is no cure for the zombie virus and I am not sure if that will ever change. Playing Project Zomboid is playing out the story of a character, the story of how they died. This may be a deal breaker for some, which is why I bring it up. There is no way to 'WIN" the game, you just survive as long as you can.