The horde at the door
Dead Unending is the first project from solo indie developer Tylario.
It is an incremental survival horror with sandbox elements and retro graphics.
Although the category is saturated with similar titles, this independent game presents some very interesting innovations for the genre.
Dead Unending combines the struggle to survive in a zombie-infested world with a sandbox/management game in which you can build your own house from the ground up.
The small camp you have at the beginning grows as you accumulate resources in expeditions, until it becomes a freakin’ fortress.
The game shows its incremental nature as the base becomes a facility for zombie farming.
The hordes get more and more aggressive and numerous while new weapons and upgrades become mandatory.
Zombie Hot Dog
The graphics are nice and light, with references to Minecraft and other survival games such as Project Zomboid.
The isometric view is 360° adjustable and the models are simple yet convincing.
It’s easy to appreciate the wide variety of skins for customizing the protagonist.
Zombies aswell feature many different and often iconic aspects (my favorite is the Zombie dressed as a Hot Dog).
Every piece of furniture in the player’s home is a riot of beautifully designed details.
Fences, windows, doors and automatic turrets; placing each small building element makes customizing the base fun as hell.
Even the world outside the base has an incredible variety of details, and each building is characterized in a truly admirable way.
The soundtrack flows perfectly with the gameplay.
Simple and cool, the music is a synth composition with a vaguely retro 80s flavor (a reference that immediately came to mind was Carpenter’s “Escape from New York”).
It all works great along with the suffering yells of the zombies and the gratifying “POP” during constructions.
The interface is intuitive despite the complexity of a hybrid title.
Character movement is done with WASD, while aiming and firing are handled by the mouse.
From the Toolbox function, the selection interface for building elements is activated.
In my opinion this is the only weak point, where the title shows some minor graphical bugs between the sandbox part and the resource management that is not always very clear.
Also the visual occasionally limits the building area, being centered on the protagonist.
The survival side of the game, on the other hand, works beautifully, with third-person shoot’em up elements and a wide variety of melee weapons and firearms.
The plot is mostly nonexistent, and I would say: FINALLY!
Trying to find a plot to any zombie-related product would be a waste of time.
I really enjoyed the little intro cutscene with the train wreck.
It has no narrative function, but finding the derailed train in town is another great element of characterization.
Despite the graphic aspect, the focus of this game is not survival, but the frenzy of slaughtering more zombies to level up and unlock new upgrades.
Why? obvious. To slaughter even more zombies!
The game is Single Player only, but it has incredible potential for future Multiplayer either as Co-op or in ruthless PvP.
I hope this is the future of Dead Unending, because it would find its way already paved.
The game’s difficulty curve is very well-designated, and its incremental nature becomes absolute delirium from level 50 on up.
Upgrades become very expensive and it is necessary to turn one’s home into a zombie-farming machine.
The hordes become so pressing that they leave you breathless as soon as you put your nose out of your front door.
This is where the challenge becomes really tough, and even getting shortly away from your camp might bring lots of troubles.
The introduction of groups of “Scavengers,” (enemy NPCs), makes things even more unpredictable and interesting.
This game has an addictive nature and generously gives dozens of hours of sheer fun.
Unfortunately, for now it has little replayability, but I have high expectations from future updates, especially if aimed to multiplayer features
- Highly addictive
- Hybrid unique gameplay
- Good longevity
- Some minor graphics bug
- Single player only
- Little replayability