Stuck in a remote, abandoned town, you must lead five survivors with conflicting motivations, fragile relationships and fiery prejudices to safety from the roving undead. A sophisticated engine generates new survivors, towns and content so every adventure is a different experience, and you can use built-in editors to add yourself and...
User reviews: Mostly Positive (166 reviews)
Release Date: Sep 6, 2013

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About This Game

Stuck in a remote, abandoned town, you must lead five survivors with conflicting motivations, fragile relationships and fiery prejudices to safety from the roving undead. A sophisticated engine generates new survivors, towns and content so every adventure is a different experience, and you can use built-in editors to add yourself and others to the game.

Features

  • Deal with the volatile relationships of your survivors by strategically assigning them to tasks, siding with them on difficult decisions or seeding rumours about their past
  • The undead aren't the only threat - negotiate, bargain, trade with or fight merciless lynch mobs, zombie hunters and bitten survivors
  • Experience a fresh story each time you play as the procedural engine crafts new survivors, towns and content
  • Built-in editors make it easy to add yourself and your friends to the game. Create your own survival horror story in your hometown
  • Unique diary interface records each action, choice and disaster. Save your heroic story and share it with others

Zafehouse: Diaries is a fresh take on the zombie / survival horror genre. If you're sick of mindless shooters or generic-looking top down affairs that just don't get what the zombie genre is about, this is the game for you.

About Screwfly Studios

We're a two-man developer based in Australia, dedicated to creating deep, innovative strategy games for PC. Zafehouse: Diaries is Screwfly's debut title and the spiritual successor to the highly-regarded Zafehouse.

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows XP / Vista / 7
    • Processor: Dual-core 1.8GHz or equivalent processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DirectX 9.0c compliant video card with 512MB RAM
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 379 MB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX compatible sound card
Helpful customer reviews
37 of 47 people (79%) found this review helpful
22.8 hrs on record
Game: Zafehouse Diaries
Summary: Plays like Rebuild, not for everybody
Rating (5/10 = failure): 8
Multiplayer: No
Completion: 10 hrs
Cards: No
Cloud: No
Cost: ~0.5 USD bundled

Zafehouse is a fascinating game (to me). Those that have played the excellent Flash game, Rebuild, will get the basic idea - you have a small group of survivors and you spend turns trying to survive and win. Standing in your way are ever-increasing hordes of zombies (depicted with their dazzling animation of... a still-frame blood splatter) and your survivors who snap at each other because of their race, gender, and music-playing.

All games are randomly generated. With three modes of gameplay, the replay value is good. Be prepared to lose the first few games, as there is a lot to absorb, and the fact that your survivors are ravenously hungry, fragile and dumb. With the default settings, the game is indeed quite difficult, but learning what's worth the risk and what isn't is part of the fun.

The interface is rather minimalistic. As best I can tell there are less than 10 screens in the whole game! For the most part it does its job. For a good few hours I didn't know how to breach or assault a place because there's no tutorial and I didn't know you could click on the tabs up top on the investigation screen. There's an online manual, but who clicks on that?

The ability to customize your own survivors with your own photos is a nice touch. I appreciate that a lot, as I was a lot more connected to the survivors with my own pictures. You can also create custom jobs, but this is very easy to abuse and makes the game far too easy if used (and consequently disables achievements). Speaking of achievements, even though I disabled all custom content, I was still unable to get any achievements, so I don't know what's going on there.

All your actions are recorded in a "diary" that can be saved upon game completion, but honestly, those records strike me as... uninteresting. I don't care to reexamine my escapades, nor would I want to read someone else's. It's not a bad feature, but it just feels... I dunno, wasted?

Overall I had a good experience. I'm giving it an 8/10, knocking points for its almost lazy interface, occasional events with no positive outcome, and incredibly dumb survivors in a life-or-death situation. The big question is, is it fun? Even after completion, I went back to play it some more. That's not something I can say for many games these days.
Posted: April 25
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21 of 27 people (78%) found this review helpful
20.6 hrs on record
This game is a work of art. It's just amazing! If you're into strategy in general, this game is for you.

While you're never really IN the game itself (smashing zombie's to pieces) you control what goes on;
Make 'Kin' watch for zombies, while 'Jine' makes ammo.
There's skill levels; One star to five stars (though without making custom content, I've never seen anyone go over 4 stars)
There's medicine; 'Jine' threw a chair at 'Kin' and broke his arm. (The wounds never fully heal while I play, but you can turn off survivors hurting each other)
There's noise; While 'Jine' is making ammo, the noise attracts zombies.
There's custom content; Want a superawesomemegazombiekillingmachine? I did. I made one. It uses pistol ammo, while being a sniper. My survivors also modified it so that it's a shotgun as well!! You can also make custom survivors (AMAZING!!!)
There's rain; ...the rain should dampen the noise.
There's random events; A woman with a shopping cart came by today. She says she'll trade ____ for ____
You can make notes and signs on the map; Cross out a place you've looted and moved away from, circle and note down your base.
You can ajust difficulty SPECIFICALLY; How many zombies per in-game hour flow into the city? How much ammo is scattered? How many zombies in the buildings to start with? How much food? How much medicine?
There's hunger.
Survivors rest after working for some time.

THIS GAME IS JUST AMAZING!!!!!!!

Oh, Pro Tip: CHESS SETS ARE DEMONNNNSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!
Posted: April 29
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
0.9 hrs on record
Please ignore the time played here, I played the game on an average of 10 hours back before it came onto Steam.

Zafehouse: Diaries is a rather unique take on the survival/strategy genre. There are 3 different modes with different difficulties, that ultimately have the same goal, survival. Towns, events, items and survivors are all randomly generated. You can customise a survivor with your own story and backgrounds, which will then be randomly generated from a pool.

You interact with a diary that displays all the events that are happening during each hour. When I first played the game I was alittle put off by the fact that you interact with a diary. However as I played I fully understood why the interface is how it is and it is surprisingly informative. You can assign tasks for each survivor that they will try to acomplish to the best of their ability depending if they are any good at it (i.e. scavenging, barricading, cooking, etc.).

The game has quite alot of depth to it and some deep mechanics. A good example is that it might be wise to get one of your survivors to scout that motel a few doors down to see if there's any zombies, so that your group have somewhere nice to rest. Or maybe that hospital crawling with walkers has that bandage you so desperately need.

It also runs pretty well, even on them old toasters that are years old.

I did a mini Let's Play series on it that covered some of the newer updates, you can find the playlist here
Posted: September 23
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6 of 9 people (67%) found this review helpful
1.5 hrs on record
Not a bad game for killing a bit of time, its good to see a new twist on the text based genre.
Posted: May 23
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7 of 11 people (64%) found this review helpful
16.9 hrs on record
It's a nice little zombie game. What makes it special is that it's almost completely textbased. This won't stop you from spending a great amount of time with it. The "special effects" bring some colour and action into the gameplay and you often find yourself bitting your nails, waiting for the results of your last turn.
An additional Perk is that you can customize a great deal of things. Adding your own pictures or making your own weapons and tools for your survivors to find adds a personal note to your struggle for survival.
If you play it on endless mode this struggle can become pretty boring though. You might end up wondering if you should just send your survivors into a zombie horde and be done with it.
But for this little money it's a nice game for every now and then if you're bored with fancy animations and 3D Gameplay ;)
Posted: June 21
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69 of 83 people (83%) found this review helpful
20.5 hrs on record
No, this is not that kind of zombie games, where you push W and smash left mouse button to kick the sh..t out of zombies. This is something better. Thriller with great T as it should, you can´t expect what´s gonna happen and this keep level of tension very high. You manage group of people, giving them orders and goal of this game is simple: survive as long as you can, everytime you start the game, you get different people with different experiences in different places. Manage them to survive and watch out for their relations. Everything they do is written in diary, so you can think, what to do in next turn 9/10
Posted: November 27, 2013
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