Original Pre-Alpha7 Review - http://screencloud.net/v/D4NS
Original developer comment, finally changed on the 29th January - http://screencloud.net/v/pVOJ
Original response to Developers - http://screencloud.net/v/vOcN
Also had my review marked as abusive for no reason by the developers - http://screencloud.net/v/kkMI
Alpha 7 Review
I decided to update my review as it was old and new builds have been released.
Would I recommend the game now? No. For a multitude of reasons.
Gameplay - The game still lags (on the one computer i've tried it on 16gb Ram, Nvidia GeForce 770M, i7 Processor, though I will try it on others also), though not as bad as before which is a plus, the game is now playable if you push the settings right down and it appears the developers have updated the recommended specifications to better match what the game requires.
The updates to the Alpha 7 Build include the ever-so-needed stealth system, a rework of a lot of the in game textures, a looting-timer system (with noise penalties) cooking and a plethora of other things.
There is still no random world generation which I was told would be coming 'soon' by the developers which was the games main selling point for me on their Kickstarter.
They have also removed the ability to punch things for rescources such as wood, which makes the first nights survival down to luck alone, as unless you can find something to break down a tree, you won't be able to build, if you can't build and it hits night you WILL get killed.
Bringing this feature in has serverly hampered the gameplay of the game in order to make it more realistic but it doesn't work. In similar games (Rust, Minecraft, DayZ) you are given the correct tools to start surviving (your hands, a rock, bandages) but not here. You start fully clothed (clothing has no status affect) but with nothing else.
For me the balance between survival realism and zombie-shoot-em-up is wrong.
Some gameplay feautures I do like though is the new loot-timing system. Instead of being able to see what is in a lootable container right away there is a short timer which in real life would replicate the opening of the container. There is also a noise penalty if you decided to 'take all' rather than each item individually which does add a nice realism touch to it.
But that is my problem. The game doesn't feel like a sandbox survival game, it feels like a sandbox trying-to-be-everything game. I don't feel compelled to stay alive like I do in Rust, or build an awesome base like I do in Minecraft. I don't feel compelled to do anything in 7 Days to Die at all. I just don't find the game enjoyable.
I've left the various 'bugs' out of the review, because it is an Alpha, and like all other Alpha's it has a ton of bugs, included some that are gamebreaking so beware of those.
In all, the game is a lot better than it was before, but it's still not worth the price and I can't recommend a game where the developers believe that anyone who critisizes thier product is trolling and marks all and any critisism as 'abusive' and requests that Steam comes up with a way to 'anonomusly silence and report' all negative reviews or remarks. I have no desire to continue playing this game, mainly for that reason, though the game not being enjoyable FOR ME is also one. I do think for the price, and genre, there are many games that do the job of 7 Days To Die and are a lot better with better communities. The game does NOT look set to be finished in May, and if it is I believe the product would be completely sub-par. I recommend saving your money.