The Dead Linger is the definitive zombie apocalypse survival horror experience! Set in a planet-sized, procedurally generated world, survivors learn to fight, run, and survive against the never-ending and relentless zombie hordes.
User reviews: Mixed (1,253 reviews)
Release Date: Sep 27, 2013

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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:

“Hello Survivors, old and new! The Dead Linger is currently in Alpha stage and in active development. Check out our comprehensive Development Roadmap for the bigger picture! We release updates frequently, usually alongside a dev vlog to show you what's new and let you know we're listening. As the game is in Alpha, there are bugs, missing features, and unfinished bits. Just remember to visit our forums at to participate in discussion, suggest features, and give us feedback! You can also follow us on twitter @thedeadlinger!
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Recent updates View all (56)

November 21

The Weekly Dead 25

Hello Survivors!

This will be a short and sweet little blog on what's happening this week. Not too much has changed externally since our last Weekly Dead. Richard is still hacking away at the Dedicated Server code and it's getting real close. We want this thing running smoothly, and it's just about there! The artists are currently working on content for Build 16 and beyond. I wish I could talk about some of the artwork, but that may spoil some lore things we want to keep under wraps till it's ready! Just because we're in Early Access doesn't mean we want to spoil all the storyline for you in advance!

I had the chance to check out Dec's Steam Uploader Tool this week and it super easy to use! We'll be releasing that as soon as Steam gives us the signal for the TDL Workshop, hopefully this coming week. We look forward to showing you Survivors our latest Design of the Dead explaining everything you need to know about it!

PAX South
Will you be attending PAX South? How about East? Let us know! I even wrote up a tiny survival guide for first time convention crawlers.

I'll be letting our lovely Bug Sniper lady Kate take it away from here!

Bug of The Week
This week's bug isn't very new at all, but it is a dear one many of you love. If you aren't already familiar with Mattress Surfing (aka Magic Carpet Ride), then I'd definitely recommend checking out the following screenshots and videos!

From YouTuber AdvScienceIndustries:

Survivor Guahos shared a clip by TheChipmunkZombie:

Survivor Darknesskills shared this silly screenshot:

Now, last but not least, Survivor MagFlare shared this amazing logo:

I'm so in! Who else wants to join the club?!

Discover a chuckle-worthy bug? Catch it on video or screenshot and submit them to the usual Support and Bug Reports forum and yours may be featured in next week's blog post!

Linger on, Survivors!

Leave a comment on our official forums!

Original blog post.

2 comments Read more

November 14

The Weekly Dead 24

Hello Survivors!

It almost felt like an eternity since our last Weekly Dead. Almost like sitting in a queue for a certain game...*ahem* So, let's jump right into this week and catch you up to speed on things!

Hotfix 15c
Hotfix 15c is underway to correct some remaining issues and will include a massive Dedicated Server update to get dedicated server software that actually works properly the way you need it to run reliable servers. It also gives us a great opportunity to clean up our netcode a bit and streamline that whole system. We're switching over to Steam's networking which will greatly improve how players host and join servers, and more reliably tunnel through the various tubes of the internet to join each other's games. And here it is so far!

Okay, it's not that exciting to look at, but there it is. The Dead Linger's dedicated server running completely independently (without the game installed.) Pretty awesome, right?

Build 16
Artists are already well into finalizing 16 and 17 content, so Build 16 is simply awaiting the end of Build 15's various hotfixes to begin full code development. Bear in mind that Build 15 is laying down some of the core foundation needed for faster build cycles, so these hotfixes are a necessity. Currently and with the latest updates we have been overhauling a ton of major systems that include loot spawns, zombie performance, zone templates, and a whole lot more.

Roadmap Recap
Our Development Roadmap has undergone a HUGE, and I mean ENORMOUS overhaul. (We've basically given you all of TDL's current and future plans all in one place!) You guys wanted transparency, so there it is! There's also tacos. Not transparent tacos, but tacos nevertheless. There's some great discussions going on at the forums regarding various aspects of the roadmap already. Take a peek yourself to see the new roadmap and accompanying Design of the Dead video. Have at it!

Art Stuff
In an effort to push ahead the concept of survivor's having stable and self-sustained bases in the game, Parker has been tossing around some concepts for The Dead Linger's farming system. We're planning out how it will look and how you'll plant seeds into the fertile earth.

Jeff seriously surprised us last meeting with the progress on the HM Typical. It's just about done in every way, and almost ready to toss into the game, after a bunch of accompanying code work, that is. This ordinarily extraordinary vehicle is planned for Build 20 at this time. Check this baby out:

Chaoss has been working on two very cool things. First off, the new terrain is coming along great, which will provide a massive increase in performance, use proper LOD methods that the current one doesn't use, and it will allow us to paint the terrain in a much more realistic fashion - a feature we'll be adding to Watertower so that you can paint your own dirt paths and such.

The new terrain also features 1 meter resolution, which is way higher resolution than the previous (current) terrain supports. This means we can do way more detailed things with it, and no more crazy jagged angles on the terrain. Here's a picture where Chaoss wrote his name in the terrain to show you exactly how detailed it can be.

Chaoss is also working on the new suburban homes. We're re-creating the Middle Class Suburban Home with 1, 2, and 3-story to better match the current art, quality, and performance. The new houses are also built with modular layouts in mind. This house you see in the picture below can result in about 10,000 different permutations, and that's not even including color. Oh, and house colors will be returning! You can expect these new houses around Build 16.

Chaoss also spent some time getting the textures ready for all of the houses to use. With this system, we can recolor the walls and wood trim paneling different colors however we please. This means no house is the same as the other, both in appearance and layout.

Some painted drywall with fancy lights on it.

Bug of the Week
Now I get to hand the keyboard over to Kate, our bug sniper! Welcome to the debut of the Dead Bug of the Week! We've decided to start up a weekly issue of the most hilarious (and sometimes ridiculous) bug to add a bit of humor into the development process!Our first bug comes from Aether245 and FallnMastr; two survivors who discovered that running into each other would launch one or both into the air. They have lovingly named it the Rocket Man Glitch, and they provided a couple hilarious clips.

Aether245's Clip

FallnMastr's Clip

Discover a chuckle-worthy bug? Catch it on video or screenshot and submit them to the usual Support and Bug Reports forum and yours may be featured in next week's blog post!

PAX South

We're doing that thing where we go outside again! This time you'll be able to find Geoff, Kate, and myself at PAX South this coming January! You better come find us and say hello, we may just have some neat pins for you.

That's everything this week.

Linger on, Survivors!

Leave a comment on our official forums!

Original blog post.

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About This Game

The Dead Linger is the definitive zombie apocalypse survival horror experience! Set in a planet-sized, procedurally generated world, survivors learn to fight, run, and survive against the never-ending and relentless zombie hordes. With pure sandbox, free-roam gameplay, multiplayer, exploration, barricading, physics, and intense realism, this is the zombie apocalypse experience you've longed for all these years. The zombie genre has died. We're bringing it back from the dead. Be sure to check out our Development Roadmap!

Latest Update:

Key Alpha Features

  • Explore a planet-sized world, full of the restless undead!
  • Slay the undead hordes, with whatever you want!
  • True free-form barricading; nailing boards wherever and however you want!
  • Interact and explore every item, weapon, object, and building that you can see! No fake doors, no fake windows, no invisible walls.
  • Full multiplayer support; as many survivors as your server can handle!
  • Survive the apocalypse YOUR way. True multiplayer zombie survival, with a major focus on classic zombies as the core enemy!
  • Once purchased, all future updates are FREE!
  • Yes, this is the zombie survival you and your friends have been waiting for.
  • Lower price during Alpha!
  • Be part of the Sandswept Legion community; led by a dedicated development team who listen and discuss the game with the community on a daily basis!
  • And a whole lot more to come as we roll out updates!

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP / Vista / 7
    • Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6000 series or equivalent AMD AthlonX2 processor
    • Memory: 6 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 8000 series or higher, ATI Radeon HD2000 series or higher. (512 MB or higher)
    • Hard Drive: 6 GB available space
Helpful customer reviews
146 of 194 people (75%) found this review helpful
3.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
Early Access Review

Ive been in this games alpha for 2 years now, and this game is still the same buggy mess it was 2 years ago. I have seen games like Rust, 7 Days to Die,The Forest, Space engineers and many other early access games, update regularly with content whereas The Dead Linger just sits in its same shameful state. When they give a date for an update it is always delayed by months....they initially said an update every 2 weeks, when that turned into 2 months and someone asked on their twitter they responded with a attitude and how they can take as much time as they see fit. These are truly amatuer developers and there are so many better titles out there for $20. This game at this rate will take 10 years to develop, Ive been waiting 2 years and it still looks and plays the same (unplayable and my computer can handle it).

TL;DR Save your money, this game is not worth $5 let alone a full $20, go buy anything but've been warned
Was this review helpful? Yes No
48 of 68 people (71%) found this review helpful
7.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Early Access Review
Warning right now I am writing this after playing build 15 with hotfix A.

Right now this game has tons of potential. If the devolpers meet their goals that they laid out in the road map then this game will be one of the best zombie games out. Unfortunately the bugs really bring this game down. Once the graphical errors are fixed I could then reccomend this game but untill then I would not spend the 15 dollars the devolper is asking for. The bugs really take you out of the game, not very immersive. When you walk trees will come in and out of existance, grass and many other objects dont spawn more than 5 feet infront of you so you are constanly surronded by a circle of objects that go away after moving. Multiplayer does not work, the characters have glitched models and players easily become invisible and out of sync after fighting zombies. The devolpers seem to put a lot of effort into this game so if you can deal with the bugs go ahead and buy it because in the future it will be a great game but right now it is to buggy for me to recomend.

If you want gameplay I recorded my 1st time playing. -
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35 of 52 people (67%) found this review helpful
4.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
Early Access Review
Every build, they say it's optimized. Every build, it runs more poorly on my machine. If I buy a game because I have the specs to run it, and I can run it when I buy it, updating it 'til I can't run it isn't doing me any good. The optimization for this game is very poor, the graphics are VERY bad, and the gameplay, although it has some clever ideas, is weak. The guns don't feel right, the animations aren't very good, melee is floaty and feels downright messy to play with. The physics manipulation is so weak that you can get stuck trying to open and close doors, because you have to drag them around. Furniture is theoretically used to block doors, but zombies phase through walls, so why bother? (note: supposedly fixed, but the motion blur in the new update was so nauseating I didn't get a chance to try that out. Plus my FPS on this newest update were so low zombies were moving towards me like the Weeping Angels from Doctor Who) To top it all off, the open world feels very empty, with huge stretches of nothing but empty terrain and the occasional zombie between POI's. Which is realistic, I'll grant you, but the key to making a realistic survival game is realizing that it still needs to be fun, too.

I've given this game several builds to develop. Each time I played for a painful hour or so and said "Oh well, it's alpha. It'll improve." It really hasn't. Perhaps these improvements are still on the horizon - in which case I'll try to remember to come back and update this review. As it stands, the community is good, the developers are really nice, and they have good ideas, but the implementation is just pitiful. I cannot name a single system in this game that actually works properly. I am normally all for early access, and I want to support this developer, but I'd say give this game a few more months before considering it.
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23 of 34 people (68%) found this review helpful
31.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Early Access Review
Would be better if there was something to do beisdes eat. The zombies don't pose a threat, I like the version of zombies. slow and numerous, but they have bad detection, path finding, and AI in general. Theres nothing else to do in the generic "towns", farms, and prisons. It has potential, just put off on buying it for now.
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56 of 95 people (59%) found this review helpful
13.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 28
Early Access Review
Amazing potential. It's not quite there yet, but it's still fun, and each release is very promising.
Was this review helpful? Yes No
15 of 20 people (75%) found this review helpful
2.5 hrs on record
Posted: November 8
Early Access Review
Game feels exactly the same as when I purchased it over a year ago. I expected there to be some hiccups and bugs being that it is an alpha, but I find it sad that steam allows games like this to be sold to people. Yet another "Early Access" game that will only ever be an unfinished peice of garbage. There are many other games more deserving of your time and money.
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29 of 49 people (59%) found this review helpful
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Early Access Review
Let me start off by saying I'll GLADLY change this to a 'yes' recommendation in the future, if things change. But as it stands right now, you'd have to have a multi-thousand dollar gaming rig to be able to play it. Which is absurd. I payed a grand for my rig and this is about the only game I've ever had problems playing, despite its extremely basic textures and models. But other than that, there's 0 story (which is partially understandable for a survival, horror, sandbox, game, but even Rust has more of a story to it than this), and it's quite obviously an alpha because not all the models animate (for example the bike's tires don't spin). It's an Alpha, I get it. So I'm not saying don't buy the game it's terrible, I'm just saying it's not ready (or anywhere near) for release. But if you've got a multi-thousand dollar rig and a need to play a simplistic zombie survival game, go for it.
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9 of 13 people (69%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 11
Early Access Review
Every time an update is released, I jump into the game to try to check things out. I can't though. 1 year later, this game is still as unplayable as it was when it first launched on early access. Given how long it's taken and how little progress has been made, this project is simply too big/ambitious for this team of developers. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone in it's current state. I hope it does get finished, but realistically it probably won't happen. Save your money.
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14 of 23 people (61%) found this review helpful
7.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
Early Access Review
Dead Linger Review
The Dead Linger has clear potential, it is a very solid game already, although it has a lot of game breaking bugs that make me not wont to play it, the developers are very hard at work to stamp out these bugs and make the game much more enjoyable. The developers on this game are extremely active compared to many other "early access" games that are on steam, they openly post on what they are working on and when the new updates will be coming out. I 100% recommend buying this game now, even if you don't play it until the bugs are gone, buying it now just to be a part of the community as the game is built.
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9 of 14 people (64%) found this review helpful
45.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
Early Access Review
This game has amazing potenieal. if compleated this will e the zombie game we have all been hoping for and while thats still a long ways away the progress made since i started following the developement of this game ayear ago is amazing... even of every update is rater late its always worth the wait.
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21 of 38 people (55%) found this review helpful
138.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Early Access Review
I've played a generous amount of this game. It's a fun concept. The developers just need to get their ♥♥♥♥ together. They are using a ♥♥♥♥ty engine that can't handle what they are trying to implement into their game. When the game isn't glitching the F**K out, it's a very fun multiplayer survival game. Other than that, no reason to play it in it's current state.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
14.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 14
Early Access Review
Is lacking behind other games but has enough potenial to show promise. As of right now I do not recommend buying the game, unless you want to contribute the TDL, and wait until the game gets further in development. The game is fun but does not have enough to do in the current stage to provide a long term survival.

This game is fun, I'm not saying it's a bad game but that the game is not far in development and you should wait until the game is further in its development.
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8 of 13 people (62%) found this review helpful
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 11
Early Access Review
Don't buy this. Save your hard earned money!!

The devs are incompetent and do not know what they're doing. Zag spend more time to be "fun" in his Vblog, which mostly just seems awkward rather than funny ...

little progress has been made, this project is simply too advance for this team of developers. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone. I hope it does get finished, but realistically it probably won't happen.

The Build 15 is even more unstable than the old build 9
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15 of 27 people (56%) found this review helpful
14.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Early Access Review
Okay, first and foremost, just wanna say, I LOVE THIS GAME!! It's exactly what I have been looking for: a freeform, sandbox, open world zombie survival game. However, having said that, there are a few things you need to know about the game before buying it.

This game is in early alpha development. This means that the game IS NOT FINISHED YET. It has plenty of bugs, glitches, and unfinished systems/functions. Some things may seem a bit barebones. Basically, the game is not finished yet, indeed far from it (the finished release date is 2016 I believe!), so if you are looking for a finished, polished product, look elsewhere, or wait till 2016 and come back.

Now, on to all the MANY things I adore about this game: I think the barricading system is absolutely awesome. The ability to settle down in literally any structure, and then create a formidable defense system around it is so intriguing to me. For instance, I began my game in a small, ranch style house, and boarded up the doors and windows, and pushed some furniture against the front door. After scavenging around for a while, I found myself wanting to upgrade to a larger home, so I found a two-story building, and again, boarded up the exits. This time, I also constructed a makeshift fence around the house by driving posts into the ground and then nailing plywood boards up between them. All in all, the barricading system is awesome, and according to the developer's roadmap, they aren't even halfway finished with it yet. The combat is still pretty raw, with scoping being the only reliable way to hit things when using a ranged weapon (even at point blank I couldn't hit a zombie in the head with my pistol), but I'm sure that is something that will be fine tuned. The whole concept of the game is great, and something that is so different from any other zombie game I have played.

So, to summarize in a few words: Great game, but not finished, so don't buy unless you're okay with playing something that is a work in progress. (Still completely playable as is, just not completely fine tuned yet!)

7/10 for what it is
11/10 for what I think it will wind up being
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15 of 28 people (54%) found this review helpful
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Early Access Review
Do not buy this game. The development period has been horribly sluggish. I bought the game almost a year ago, and it is still a bug infested mess with hardly any gameplay and most of the features that were promised to be available at this point are simply nowhere to be found. The "development roadmap" is an outright lie.

With a million open world zombie survival games like DayZ, 7 days to die, Infestation and even project zomboid, this game is the weakest out of all of them and is literally pointless. If you want an open world zombie survival game to play with friends I recommend 7 Days To Die first and DayZ second.
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5 of 9 people (56%) found this review helpful
17.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
Early Access Review
(Review as of 10/27/2014 Build 14) Not the best game at the moment, still a lot of issues, and there isn't too much to do. However when you're playing with friends it is fun and the radomization of the world, once it gets better, will make this game have some amazing replayability. Some pros and cons so far:

-Zombies (Surprise)
-Some Crafting implemented
-Basic Barricading
-HUGE Randomized world
-Really good community and the devs do a VERY good job of keeping people up to speed

-Some pretty large fps issues which can render the game unplayable
-Not that much variety in buildings yet
-Zombies are boring looking
-Zombie animations are boring and lacking
-Slow updates

There are more for each, of course, however I don't really want to waste too much time writing this. Overall the game is fun while you're playing with friends for sure. But at the moment (as of build 14) there really isn't that much to do in the game and nothing to really keep you playing. However what the devs have planned and from what I've seen from the new builds that pop out this game is going to be phenomonal upon full release. So unless you really want to help the devs money wise and report bugs, then I would wait for a couple more builds to come (there is a lot of content coming in Builds 15-18). They did say that after Build 15 releases the builds would start coming out faster.

So the real question is "Should I buy this game?" and my answer to that is not right now. Like I said I would wait for a couple more builds to come out while they fix stability and fps issues and release more content (Cities, the start of the military AI, more props, more animals, water etc.). Based off of what I've seen from the devs and the improvement from build to build I'm going to recommend this game for anyone that wants to help this game develop. The devs are awesome and what their small team is capable of is amazing. By far my favorite early access game I have, and the one I'm most excited about when a new build is coming.
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6 of 11 people (55%) found this review helpful
5.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Early Access Review
Easily my most anticipated zombie game of all time. It's everything I have always wanted to make in a zombie game, now it's just a matter of time and support. Keep up the great work SandSwept and I look forward to playing the future builds. As of this review weapon mechanics are place holders, the worlds are fairly simple yet massive. There is basic forms of transport and building is a ton of fun. Once it's feature complete, I will be hard pressed to play anything else for hundreds of hours.
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20 of 39 people (51%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
Early Access Review
10/10 Dont buy this game. I got the 4-pack for me and my friends and we cant even play together. DEVS Get your ♥♥♥♥ together!
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9 of 18 people (50%) found this review helpful
38.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
Early Access Review
This game is the epitome of Alpha. The base of the game is laid out, but there's constantly new major updates making the game feel completely new. The graphics don't look all that great at the moment, and it doesn't run all that great at the moment, but that's the thing. AT THE MOMENT. Optimizations are constantly happening, and graphical updates and additions are as well.

Granted I can't tell you how the final product will be for certain, but I personally would reccomend getting this purely for the savings and to track development as time goes on. It's got enough ambition and skill behind it that I believe it will end up in an amazing final product.
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7 of 14 people (50%) found this review helpful
9.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 28
Early Access Review
Great game, with updates coming out, guns, swords, knifes, bows, what ever you could think of is in it.
The world is over, How will you survive?
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