The success of popular zombie mod Day Z, while blinding the media, has opened the eyes of publisher’s wide open and left dollar signs in place of pupils. Day Z blew up within weeks of release, close to a million people are now trying to survive the unrelenting apocalypse, 160 million zombies have been slaughtered, 400,000 bandits killed and 867 years of game time has been played.
The mod is a remarkable phenomenon, and now publishers are looking to cash in on such success. A persistent survival shooter based in a sandbox world between 200 to 400 square kilometres with MMO characteristics, PvP as well as PvZ and hunger mechanics is in development. Sound familiar? So does the name, The War Z is being developed by Hammerpoint interactive.
The newly assembled studio has said to be working on their first title since last fall, according to executive producer Sergey Titov In an interview with IGN. He goes on to acknowledge Day Z and the fact that “some of their latest design additions have been influenced by the mod” but senior game designer Eric Nordin defends The War Z’s singularity to Day Z as being an “accessible standalone game” with qualities over its competitor such as seem less “download, install, login and play”.
Dean “Rocket” Hall, the creator of Day Z, welcomes such a game as “healthy competition” and stating that such a development could be a step forward, showing that “the absolute truths in the industry” may have cause to be questioned.
At first glance The War Z looks and sounds like a well-polished and oiled answer to its competitor, but can an ill experienced and newly assembled studio really create a title true to such a competitive list of features and to a stature even with Day Z?