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 (10,897 reviews) - 92% of the 10,897 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 (104)

February 8

Food for Thought


 
Quite a lot of ‘under the hood’ stuff going on this week at Zomboid Towers, including the exciting integration of Mash’s Secret Art Mission with the foundations of the next build and the current iteration of Creative Mode. This is now being cleaned and tidied for its future reveal, but had us all in a tizzy and no mistake. Elsewhere, meanwhile, in Zedland the following have seen occurrences:
 

FOOD SYSTEM BETA RELEASE
It’s important that we get the work we’re doing with hunger, nutrition impact during extended survival, new traits and foodstuffs right – so as of right now we’ve released a ‘Food Tracker’ test build containing early versions of the new systems. In fact, a new version of this has been released for testing only this afternoon – featuring new recipes, balance and traits.

The primary purpose of this playable build is to let us statistically trace your exertion and your intake during typical Zomboid lifespans. The Food Tracker build comes with a constantly updated debug file that saves information from your playthrough that’s useful for us in the creation of the overall system. We’re also going to use this space for some experimentation, for example limiting the sheer amount of stuff you can shovel down your throat when your stomach is full etc.

You can learn how to access this beta branch of the game in this thread, where you can report your findings and post your debug files. We’d like to thank everyone currently taking part (especially Ohbal, Moose65 and Vanorfeadial) for their diligence and enthusiasm!


NU-WORDZED
Over to Holland where TurboTuTone has been back under the bonnet of his WordZed utility in preparation for its release to modders and community translators.

“WordZed was originally a light editor, with the biggest chunk of editing being done within an Excel file. However, what with translations and the necessity of keeping track of changes in the huge PZ broadcast files I’m updating it so all radio/TV data can be built up from scratch and has similar editing capabilities to Excel.”



“After this rehaul it will be easy for the community to create their own broadcasts and stations through radiodata mods that supplement/tweak the existing ones, along with lua mod support for the radio stuff in an upcoming version. Another key factor within it, meanwhile, is translation management. The radio data has thousands of lines that may change which could potentially vary from changes within the line itself to lines changing position within the structure – and all this needs to be tracked.”

“As such WordZed will now generate translation files which translators can fill in, and should later changes be made to the overall radio/TV data then it’ll generate smaller files that only flag what the translators need to see and work on. Our community translators will also be pleased to hear that translated files can come from multiple authors, and then merged more a final version. It’s like a radio/TV translation version control.”

“All a bit involved and techie I know, but a necessary step as we move the whole system towards gameplay-impacted broadcasts and to get creative juices flowing within the budding apocalyptic writers in the modding community.”


HOUSEKEEPING NOTICE
Messrs Connall and Kirrus would like it known that the Indie Stone forums and Bug Tracker will be updated with spangly new versions over the next few weeks. As such the Bug Tracker will be set to Read Only on Thursday in preparation for its new form, so if you spot stuff disappearing/reappearing you’ll know why. Our thanks to the guys for all their hard work.
 

This week’s featured image by Бомге over on Steam. The Block of Italicised Text would like to point earnestly in the general direction of 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! Happy Lunar New Year to all those celebrating!

43 comments Read more

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!

28 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
62 of 63 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
32 of 40 people (80%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
91.9 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
20 of 25 people (80%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
96.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 13
Early Access Review
An amazing game. They took an unoriginal concept and made it more.



Now, where are those NPCs?
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
154.8 hrs on record
Posted: January 29
Early Access Review
Amazing, just amazing.

+Deep survival simulator, that will only get better with more updates. (hunger, sicknes, depression, fear, temperature, etc)

+Logical crafting system that goes way beyond other games and is very, very extensive.

+HUGE map http://pzmap.crash-override.net/ EVERY house, building, complex can be entered and can be turned in to your homebase/fort. You can even wall in the entire downtown area and be a self proclaimed mayor. Imagination is the only limit.

+Realistic zombies with tons of options to customize them to your liking in sandbox mode. Only want shamblers, with bad hearing, excellent eyesight, average smell, dont respawn after being killed and is urban focused? YOU GOT IT! PLUS a TON more options.

+Looting and scavenging for survival. Break in to every house and see what goodies you can find, maybe it is a former survivor house with tons of food stashed away or maybe the house alarm will trigger and draw massive zombies to you location, LEG IT!

I mean, I just scratched the surface here, I could go on and on about this game. it is fantastic! AND it will get better. With a mature community and a developer that listen to its players, thing can only go in one direction.

Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
212.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 26
Early Access Review
This is my first review on Steam, even though I've been a member for 7 years... THAT'S why you should give this game a try. ;-)

I'm a fan of builder games and zombies, so when I saw a zombie game where I can build, I had to have it. I wasn't sure I would care as much for the gameplay, but it definitely gets addicting. I spent my first few tries in an easymode sandbox and still managed to die. The graphics actually suit me great, since I'm an old-school gamer and prefer it more simpler than newer games today have. The action is pretty much the same no matter what you do, but the way it goes down differs. You could lose your focus and walk into a bathroom without paying attention and a zombie will lunge at you from behind the door. You could turn a corner and walk right into a herd. You could be bashing a zombie in the head with a shovel and think you're winning, but a zombie out of your line of sight comes up from behind and you're now infected. I once survived for 3 months and had stocked up on everything to outlive a lifespan, and then fell from a roof I was building and died anyways. Why do I keep restarting after such heartbreak? It must be a good game!
I am excited for more updates on this game. We definitely could use more to build, more items throughout, and my most requested is different maps to explore. I'd love to not only have more maps to choose from, but maps that edge to another map.
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