Lately I’ve been getting a bit of traffic on the site, mostly because of the Urban Dead post I made over 3 years ago. So, I decided to take another look at the game… which lasted about ten minutes before I remembered exactly why I left.
The main crux of that old post, and the reason I quit the game, and the reason my return was so brief is that I have no desire to play a zombie. On the whole, I tend to find stories about zombies to be boring. Stories about survivors in a world of zombies on the other hand are awesome. Even when the survivors don’t win and they all die, because a good zombie story is about humans, and what we will do to and for each other to survive.
Imagine this: you are playing a game where you are a cop hunting down rapists. You find clues, perform interviews, gather evidence and eventually, if you are lucky, you get to shoot them. Now imagine if in this game, when you fail to catch a rapist you are forced to be a rapist until you can be turned back into a cop. Totally unappealing, right? I mean, I hope that is unappealing, because if you want to play a rapist in a video game you need to stop reading and seek help. Now.
I don’t want to be a zombie. I don’t want to eat people. That game just isn’t fun for me at all to play.
What would make Urban Dead worth playing for me?
First, a simple “reset” button. When I die, rather than be a zombie, I’d like to be able to just start over without having to create a new account. I don’t mind losing experience and skills or having to wait a period of days, I just don’t want to be undead.
Second, a world reset event. If all the world is undead, if no survivors remain, wipe the slate clean and start over. If you let people pick zombie or survivor from the start, had levels and skills with the personal reset button causing some skill loss and a waiting period (24 to 72 hours), then you create a true “us versus them” style of PvP, and at that point you can define a win condition. If all the survivors are dead or all the zombies are dead, the server declares that side the winner and the entire game resets. When the world resets, everyone starts off human, but people who pick the zombie side start infected and in X days they’ll all die and be able to stand up as zombies.
I think that would be a great game.