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?
User reviews: Very Positive (10,848 reviews) - 92% of the 10,848 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 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 http://www.numbeo.com/ 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 (103)

February 1

Bites n’ Barricades


 
Short, sharp Mondoid this week as everyone cracks on with their own features for upcoming builds. There may well be further minor updates to Build 33, but attention is now primarily directed towards what comes next, Creative Mode and all the other stuff in the pipeline.

Turbo, for example,  is currently updating our internal WordZed tool to be more like its Excel foundations and so that it keeps track of changes to individual lines – this will mean that Radio/TV modding and community translations will be far, far easier to get into the game. EasyPickins, meanwhile, is starting to integrate the final fruits of resident Artist Mash’s Secret Mission. More upon which at a later date.


FOOD SYSTEM OVERHAUL
RJ has finished his research and is now coding the new nutrition system into the mainframe. Once he has something in and working it’ll then be released in a separate beta branch on Steam as we’ll need to track hardcore player activity to see how it all impacts on the late game and we can collate general feedback.

Something that’s important to underline with all this is that, although underneath the bonnet the game will be keeping track of nutritional intake, we do not intend to get all micro-managey on you.
The intention of this system to start to introduce a fear of starving in the late-game, and somewhat to reward players with varied food stocks and cooking habits with emotional and minor physical bonuses over time. It’ll be available as a Sandbox option, but will be tied to the game’s more hardcore modes like Survival.

The game will keep track of carbohydrates, lipids and proteins – but you’ll only come across real problems if you’re living on poor quality food or a limited variety. Say, for example, you’re getting by through eating 2-3 things at your farm – perhaps you’d now consider going fishing, trapping etc.

Calories will also be important though, simply because characters in PZ are so active. I’m working towards making the current food system more realistic, and it’s my job to make it feel natural and common sense, but at the same time if you want to keep track of exactly what’s going on then it’ll be visible via the Nutritionist trait or Fitness Instructor profession.

This is all going in alongside rebalanced hunger reductions, new foods, new food crafting recipes and indications of whether your character is growing fat or skinny – so you’re nudged to change your diet in plenty of time without you poring over packaging labels. Characters with big weight gains will eventually run more slowly and get exhausted more quickly, while skinnier characters will also get tired out – and have less strength to fight off the zeds.


CO-OP IMPROVEMENTS
We’ve fed back to the guys at General Arcade who are now feverishly attacking remaining bugs in the new easy access server creation and player-invite co-op niceties. Once they’ve tackled the gremlins in the system and made a final delivery we’ll need to make a few UI tweaks, and then the usual pattern of internal testing and a likely IWBUMS will ensue.


This week’s featured image by /u/CJ_The_Zero of Reddit fame. 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 here! Toodles!

26 comments Read more

January 25

Co-op n’ Carbs


 
Happy Mondoid everyone. Let’s dive in…


33 Polish
We recently pushed the fixes and niceness of Builds 33.1533.1633.1733.18 and the 33.19 mini-fix out of the hands of our public testers and into the mitts of the player-base at large. Amidst a lot of other stuff there’s tweaks like the contents of bags left on the ground appearing in your loot window, sound fixes, zed visibility through glass doors, translations and a major fix of a bug that means that bleeding to death will be a lot more of an issue for injured surviviors from now on.

Going into IWBUMS public testing now, meanwhile, is 33.20 – a bundle of further EP and RJ work. This predominantly covers community translation work and some UI and tooltip word polish, but also adds the ability for players to dig with their bare hands (despite risks of hand damage) if they are desperate to start farming and don’t have the necessary equipment. Given a fair wind this will likely be pushed into Build 33’s final form towards the end of the week.


The Return of General Arcade
Time for an update from our gallant friends Serge and Gennadii, who are currently on a quest to make the Project Zomboid MP experience a more pleasant one to set out upon while we beaver away at the main game’s systems. So, over to Gennadii!
“Hello! I’m here to tell you what we’ve been working on for the last two months! It’s already quite impressive just how many people are running PZ servers, with many of them launching servers from their PCs for their friends. And, in short, we’re here to make those peoples’ lives a bit easier! We’ve just submitted our first test build to TIS, so we’re not final just yet, but this is what we’ve covering. Apologies if it gets technical!”

“First of all: UPnP support. We want people to forget about port forwarding for PZ server on your router: instead just make sure UPnP is enabled and watch the magic happen. Secondly, we’ve changed map downloading implementation from Java sockets API to native Raknet API, this will make downloading more robust and also eliminate one extra open port. (You can thank me later!)”

“The most important feature, however, is co-op play. This feature aims to get you playing PZ online with friends right from the game UI without messing with config files and console. We want it to be perfect for short playing sessions with friends. We’ve still got testing and tweaking to go, but all-in-all it’s looking really good!”
“I also want to add in a word about Project Zomboid itself.” [Mondoid writer’s note: Gennadii has not been paid to say this, and we only include it as he says nice things about you, the reader, too :P] “We’ve worked on dozens of indie projects it’s always great to find Zomboid’s code base very solid to work with. Contributors know what they are doing and they don’t afraid to refactor the code, which helps maintain the code in a good shape.”

BUT! What’s more important is the community. Some Early Access games suffer from a toxic environment and, of course, that does reflect on a game itself. Since we began on PZ, however, we were amazed at how friendly the Project Zomboid community is. It’s just another reason why General Arcade is very happy to work on Project Zomboid for all its survivors.”


Nutritional Value
Now over to France for the latest on RJ’s plans for a full nutrition system to lie beneath your frantic chip over-eating survival habits.

“As you may know I’m working on the nutrition system, so what does it involve? Alongside my coding I’m doing a lot of research on how it all works, and how best to balance the system.”

“Right now I’m dealing with variables like Carbohydrates, Proteins, Lipids and Calories, although just how much will be directly shown to the player remains to be seen. The plan is, however, that if you only ever eat junk food (chips, soda, candy…) then you could start lacking protein or be taking in too many carbohydrates. Likewise it’ll cause issues if you’re only ever eating one or two varieties of fruit and vegetables from your garden.”

“Clearly none of this will kill you, but could add some bad effects for your character if you regularly survive for extended periods. Less endurance, loss of strength, getting more and more tired even after a good night of sleep… that sort of thing. We’re currently debating how all this will be conveyed to the player, but my own thought is that in real life it’s hard to tell if you’re lacking in something – so if you find yourself getting tired faster than usual then you should think about nutrition and maaaybe it’s time to go fishing or trapping to get some extra protein.”

“I’d also like to tie in the player’s mood a bit more tightly to the system – so endlessly eating the same stuff depresses you, and as with the rest of the game that impacts on timed actions. Likewise there’ll most likely be a Nutritionist profession. More on both in a later Mondoid perhaps!”
 


This week’s featured image by erm… ‘Dildo~Baggins’ over on Steam. Crikey, that’s a bit NSFW for a Mondoid. Apologies if that made anyone faint or made any bow-ties start spinning. 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. Oh, and we live in Twitter here! Speaking of

63 comments Read more
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Reviews

“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: http://pzmap.crash-override.net/
  • 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 http://www.projectzomboid.com

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

Windows
Mac OS X
    • 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
    • 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
    • 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
Helpful customer reviews
114 of 140 people (81%) found this review helpful
116 people found this review funny
43.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 11
Early Access Review
>Made Character.
>Made Base in isolated area/house thing.
>Killed over 400 zombies.
>Had enough food to last forever, basically.
>Had water and rain catcher.
>Survived for over 100 days.
>DIES BY WALKING THROUGH CAMP FIRE INSTEAD OF GOING AROUND.
>Cries.

10/10. - Would die by camp fire again.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
45 of 46 people (98%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
12.0 hrs on record
Posted: January 24
Early Access Review
While Zomboid is a great game for anyone who likes hardcore survival games, one aspect I'd like to talk about is the multiplayer. This game has something that I've never seen before in other zombie survival games. This game encourages you to team up with others and support eachother. Sure, there are people who will kill you for your stuff, but I have never met any. I think that this is because of how realistic the game is.

Keep in mind that this is a game where broken bones and injuries take a pretty long time to heal, and you don't just bounce back. Additionally, food and weapons are not readily available in multiplayer. It gets to the point where the game is so hard that teaming up with others is an obviously wise move, compared to murdering them for the rare chance that they have a weapon or food. What I'm saying is that this game often makes you think like you're in an actual zombie apocalypse situation, where people are worth more than just what items they have.

Once I fell out of a two story building's window and ended up breaking a leg. Remember, Project Zomboid is not a game where mending broken bones and injuries just means slapping on a bandage. Broken bones are supposed to take weeks to heal in this game. And to add insult to literal injury, broken bones make you slower than a sloth. Luckily, I was with other people, but without them, I would have been easily a meal for zombies.

My point is that if you enjoy realistic and difficult zombie survival games, where the emphasis is on surviving, and not killing other survivors, then by all means, do get this game.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
77 of 98 people (79%) found this review helpful
75 people found this review funny
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: January 11
Early Access Review
Open a Locker in a school

Find a Rifle, twenty rounds, a Santa Clause hat and Bandana...

Damn... That messed up.

10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
41 of 57 people (72%) found this review helpful
41 people found this review funny
39.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 8
Early Access Review
you can kill zombies with spoons. best game 10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
26 of 32 people (81%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
85.4 hrs on record
Posted: January 24
Early Access Review
I recommend this game to anyone who is into bashing zombies heads in and grinding for hours trying to survive. Best early access game I have ever played. BUY IT!!!!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny