Episode 228: Because If You Don’t…

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Zombie Cliché Lookout: The Kind of/Sort of Threat

Threats can be a lot of fun, and – done correctly – can be quite effective. There are a lot of different ways to make a threat. There’s the angry approach of screaming it while you’re being dragged away from your enemy by several other people. There’s the direct approach whereby you lay your cards on the table, and then there’s the sly, subtle approach wherein your words can be construed as a threat or as simple idle chatter.

I really like this last approach because it’s got an element of plausible deniablity. With the other kinds of threats, you’re committed; you can’t really change your mind or deny ever making the threat down the road. But if you’re careful with your words and delivery, you can pass the whole thing off as a silly misunderstanding.

Or not. You know, whatever.

About this Episode:

Okay, so Sam’s little cell is a pretty boring location. You guys are probably getting tired of looking at it, and I’m certainly getting bored of shooting in it (although I love that bucket!). Don’t worry, after a bit more dialog we’re going to get to see a bit more of where Sam is being kept. Of course, that means I’m going to have to do some building here.

Discussion Question: Building a Better Zombie Game

Let’s say you’re in charge of building the next big zombie video game. How does it work? Is it a pure-action shooter like Left 4 Dead? Is it more strategic like Project Zomboid? Tell me about it.

Myself? I’d probably build an action/RPG/strategy hybrid, with action being the least prevalent. The focus would be on exploration, resource gathering and management, and building up defenses. You could recruit other survivors, but you would have to be careful not to spread yourself too thin. Not only would you need to feed anyone you found, but a larger group would make getting found by the zeds easier. Furthermore, each survivor would have their own personality, and some might not like you bossing them around.

61 thoughts on “Episode 228: Because If You Don’t…”

  1. Well a side never seen in an apocalypse is military. So you could be military with any gun you want any kind of ammo (like incendiary ammo or armor piercing) and attachments (like suppressor or grenade launcher) and try to rescue people and go cross country to a rumored safe haven.

    • That could be a lot of fun.

  2. I would make it a tactical fps shooter/rpg. Quite a bit like the game tom clancy’s rainbow six vegas 2, not sure if any of you have played it, but I have been thinking that it would be a very interesting game.

    • I’m not familiar with Vegas 2, but the idea sounds interesting, assuming vastly different tactics when dealing with the undead opposed to terrorists, or whoever the bad guy in the original game is.

      • while they would be different, they would also be very unchanged in some parts, as in shooting for the head, in the game the terrorists have body armor, and zombies can still kill you if you don’t blow apart there head, I think the one thing a person would need to change most would be the movement and attacking of the zombies(in the game that this borrows the engine from there is no melee and no shambling).

        • Yeah, you’d definitely need melee, and I would assume cover wouldn’t be important since the zombies wouldn’t be shooting back.

        • hiding, and so others can shoot over your head at the same time as you are in cover.

        • Napoleonic War style? Awesome!

        • yes, that is my favorite style when gaming with my family, they use a LMG, and I use an assault rifle (that way I can cover them while they fire). I love that style, it is almost as good as having 2 snipers and a guy with a juggernaut suit (call of duty modern warfare games).

          pic of juggernaut http://images.wikia.com/callofduty/images/e/e6/MW3_Juggernauts.jpg

        • Looks like a bomb disposal suit. Crazy.

  3. Well I’m sure Sam’s got something going for him! 😀

    • We shall see.

      • He could end up quite literally pulling his weight around. If you’ve got someone who’s not too intelligent you put them on heavy lifting duty if they’re physically fit, or some task like inventorying. If the worst comes to the worst there’s always washing dishes or ironing! 😉

        • Yes indeed. That’s why it pays to have skills.

  4. Two words: Zombie. Rugby. Can’t trust that they can handle skating for hockey, tactics for baseball, jumping for basketball, organization for football… and headers would be a bad idea for soccer, no?

    • Hah! Do you remember Mutant League Football and Mutant League Hockey? Good times.

      • I don’t, actually! That robot baseball game put me off gimmick sports games back in the NES days, but the idea of Bloodbowl appealed enough that this came to mind.

  5. AWW MAN! I thought she will reveal it all. Now I have to wait for 2 more strips 😮

    anyways, If I WANT to make a Zombie game, It’ll be some sort of RPG/ FPS in a Strategic way, like you shoot lotsa zeds, and to advance you need to solve a lot of puzzles, and figuring out what happened…

    • What sort of puzzles, DeX?

      • Well, normally a Chess game, or a… (I forgot what it’s called. you have to drag the pieces to get the pic right thing), but I want to kick it up a notch: Like you have to put the chess pieces in the right place for the door to open, a musical type of puzzle, ETC.

        • Right on. Sort of old-school Resident Evil/Tomb Raider style puzzles.

  6. Ambiguous implied threats are fun. I deny making them all the time.
    As for a zombie game. I’m thinking real time strategy. Gather resources, build fortifications, recruit a group, repel the horde, and repeat.

    • RTS could be awesome. I was always a turtle in those games, and in a zombie RTS, that would probably be a good play style.

  7. “Pull your weight”.. lol, is that a subtle reference to Sam’s generous curves? (typo alert in the hover text)

    • Hah, that’s just a harmless idiom, Yatkuu.

      Thanks for the head’s up on the hover text!

    • I was thinking the same Yatkuu. Who doesn’t love Sam’s juiciness? lol

      • “Juiciness” that’s an interesting way of putting it.

        • Lol

  8. The “dad”, that’s the one-eyed badass, right? Hehe… I can’t help but think of “the governor” in TWD. Seriously, I wouldn’t want to be in Sam’ shoes.

    • We’ll be meeting dad on Friday, and yeah, odds are heavily in the favor of the dude with one eye.

  9. I would definately make a LEGO Zombie game. Who’s with me?

    • I would play the hell out of such as game.

      • Ooo! ooo! I want to be co-maker of the game! 🙂

  10. I don’t play video games any more, aside from the occasional vintage game.

    If I were to play a zombie-based game, I would want a next-generation role-playing game, like the Knights of the Old Republic games, with a lot of choices, an evolving plot, and multiple playable characters. I’d like the fighting to be more playable, too (unlike the Knight of the Old Republic games).

    But I wouldn’t buy a console just to play it, even if I made it. 😉

    • What about a pencil and paper RPG?

      • Look up All Flesh Must be Eaten… I’m a Zombie Master for pencil and paper like games .. Or DnD as most people that don’t know the different between DnD, Unisystem, Omnisystem, and Pathfinder would call all versions of it.

      • I haven’t played a pen-and-paper RPG since the nineties, I think. the problem with RPG’s is the gamers. It’s hard to find folks that have an understanding of the world that doesn’t follow the Hollywood model.

        For instance, one good thing to do to gamers that insist that their characters sleep on their armor is to give the characters gangrene. Then, when their new characters aren’t sleeping in their armor, have the antagonists launch a sneak attack.

        A zombie RPG, using GURPS, maybe, would be cool. if the party was smart, and the game master was even smarter.

        A computer-based RPG crossing elements of KotOR with Fable, using the latest tech would be fine by me.

        • Yeah.. I’ve actually lacked a group to master over for awhile now, and I’ll be honest.. I’m feeling a big gap in my heart because of it. ._.

        • I’ve been in good games and bad games; and I’ve found that the system matters less than the group of gamers. One of the best games I ever played was a VtM game with a bunch of theater majors. Yeah, dice pool games are shitty; but most of the group was great, and the game master was quite Machiavellian. He let me play a human vampire hunter infiltrating their group. It was very cool.

          As it stands now, I’d only play with folks that were socially stable. I don’t need the drama of folks living in their mother’s basement. BTDT (“Been there; done that”, for you, Dave).

        • Oops. Wrong avatar. 😉

  11. For a zombie game…I’d use some crazy, pure nonsense, yet brand-new idea. Like Plants vs. Zombies or something.

    • And you’d make a boatload of money, I’ll bet.

  12. How about an RTS where military units fight huge numbers of zombies? That would be different…

    • That could be a lot of fun, and you could really get create with resource gathering/management.

  13. For mine? Look up Arma 2 Day Z.

    • Except it would be slow zombies, in larger numbers, the cross bow wouldn’t be as shitty, full character customization, and melee weapons.

    • I haven’t played it yet, but this weekend I plan on buying the game so I can get the mod, looks so awesome!!!!!

      • Don’t you gloat about having money..
        Jk.. I would like to get it, but games.. Games cost money.

        • Looks pretty badass.

        • I am only going to be able to get it because I have been saving and scrimping, and working for my grandpa a lot so that I would be able to get it.

  14. Hmmmm. Maybe a ‘sandbox’ one where there is no required target, where you can pick up anything you want, and having to perform real-world tasks, eg. cooking food, building barricades, and finding good weapons. If you wish you can finish the game by completing the final task of getting a vehicle and leaving away.

    • Lol.. Super undramatic ending… An ending is in death.. Death is the only true ending to anything.

    • I could get into a sandbox style game, only I’d want there to be no ending. You play until you die or get bored and walk away.

  15. rpg/strategy game, you would starrt off as a group (5 or 7 survivors) looking for a good shelter, you would have three options, the well secured prison, (easy), the condo, (medium), and the rikety old shack,(hard). From there, your group takes in 6 food points, one for each person, you would have to periodically raid the suburban enviroment around you for food, start a garden, or “get” a farm. From there on your goal is to slowly expand your fortress to the point of invincibility and continue to barricade surrounding buildings for more room for the added on survivors. Each type of building secured would have a purpose, like farm= food, dairy= food, house= room for people, and police/gun shop= ammo and fortification supplies.

    Idea based on flash game= Rebuild

    • I’d play it.

      • I would as well, seems right up my alley

  16. My game would be a Fallout / Minecraft mixup. You would go out usually during the day (for safety reasons), search for stuff, then go back to your group of survivors when it starts getting dark (Or else you’re stuck outside for the night). Then, if you have the energy to work during the night, you could construct utilities like vehicles or weapons, or you could repair items you already have. I’d probably run it off the Source engine, seeing as Valve uses that for every game and it hasn’t failed them yet.

    • Source engine with the new soft physics from that.. I can’t remember who made it.. And the beautiful graphics from Frostbite?
      Hehe.. That would be the best game ever.. Back to minecraft!

  17. I would make an interactive, choice-tailored point-and-click adventure like The Walking Dead. Great game, even if it has some cursing.

    • Sounds like fun

  18. That’s a little ominous too, although I’m still more worried about the whole “saved” thing, depending on how high their standards are.

    I’ve actually thought about looking into finding an engine that’s good to work with and trying to make a zombie game, since the ones I’ve tried are fun, but ultimately not really right.
    I’d probably try to mix the scale up a bit, let you switch from controlling one guy like a FPS, to a top-down mode where you could manage a whole group. I’d try not to lock people in to one play style, and make a small roaming group playable even though that’s totally not my style. Ultimately, I think it would be part sim game, part strategy – although one where you can jump into a dude to shoot some zombies up.