Q&A: Day By Day Followup, 1/18/2013

Discussion in 'State of Decay News' started by Undead Sanya, Jan 18, 2013.

  1. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    Here we go! (This Q&A is a followup to Day By Day.)

    You regulars can skip right to the questions. If this is your first Community Q&A: I edited questions for clarity, and if in so doing I changed your intent, I apologize. We tried to answer everything that made it into the queue before the cutoff. If the question could be answered by the FAQ, I skipped it. There were a couple questions that I removed because the final answer is pending some work we're doing right this minute.

    This is a multipost Q&A due to a hard limit on the number of words per post, so keep scrolling until you see me say it's over!



    Survivors

    Q: screenamesuck: If some of your survivors leave due to low morale or whatever, are they gone for good or can you convince them to come back later (assuming they live that long)?


    A: If they leave your community, it is possible to win back their trust, but it will be very, very difficult.

    After a survivor runs off or goes missing, you may get an opportunity to find them and bring them home. If that opportunity appears, you’d best take advantage. Their odds of survival drop the longer they’re on their own.


    Q: Creed: Can you tell a survivor to leave your group?

    A: Yes, but only if you have a really good reason, such as a bad attitude or a persistent cough. In such cases, you’ll see you have an opportunity to have a talk with the survivor and one option will be to tell them to leave. They may or may not accept your suggestion. Either way community morale will likely drop if you expel or attempt to expel someone.


    Q:Jedi Spartac227, DwarfBanew: Will we be able to come across the people in the "handbook"?

    A: The Church of the Ascension is a location in the game. You’ll have to go there and see for yourself.


    Q: Creed: Can we save survivors and take them to other groups? I would like to save anyone I can, but I can't feed/protect everyone.

    A: You can save people when they’re in danger without also inviting them into your community.


    Q: JPMurdock11: What are the basic abilities that all survivors come with? For example, do all survivors have the ability to climb a fence?

    A: A fuller answer to your question will appear in the upcoming skills article. The short version is that everyone has basic gun skills, basic self-defense, enough Wit to come in out of the rain, and the ability to run faster than a zombie. And, to your specific question, yes, everyone has enough athletic ability to hop a fence.


    Q: JPMurdock11: Do survivors have fears? Like, if someone is afraid of heights, he'll move slower or make more noise when up on high areas?

    A: Nothing as elaborate as that... yet. But some characters definitely have weaknesses which may affect how you use them. For example, someone who is Squeamish improves their hand-to-hand combat skills slower than normal. And someone with a Bum Knee has trouble resting while crouched.


    Q: Creed: Will there be survivor relationships? For example, if two characters are brothers and one dies, the other will be very upset/want to kill himself. Could two characters want to become partners?

    A: Not in the sense you’re talking about. In the storyline, there are relationships between characters (you noticed how some of them have the same last name, I’m sure), and the story we tell goes into their emotional reactions to danger and loss.


    Q: MAJOR WARPATH: Will the survivors attack others? I know there are no human enemies but will there be survivor on survivor violence, or will they just run away from the group? Maybe steal something, or sabotage stuff in your home base.

    A: If things get ugly in your community, the results can be very serious. Remember, State of Decay works in two phases: There’s how you deal with the challenges of the day when you are playing, and there’s also the offline simulation that results from your choices.

    As a matter of principle, we try to give you a warning about brewing situations with potentially fatal consequences. So you may hear about minor scuffles between community members while you are playing, but it’s in the offline events where they’re more likely to seriously injure or even kill each other (accidentally or otherwise). Theft can happen as well. In fact, in most cases when survivors abandon your community, they take a little something with them.


    Q: Vanilla: Does the primary character you play as take a leadership role right at the start or does he have to earn that role?

    A: There isn’t much of a formal command structure in most of the survivor groups, so you’ll have an opportunity to shape community actions from an early point. As mentioned in the article, we abstract this as a kind of currency that we label “Daily Influence.” You start each day with an amount of Influence determined by your Fame. You gain Influence whenever you accomplish anything, and any time you want to direct the community to do something or any time you want to take extra supplies, you’re spending Influence. You can’t really stockpile Influence (except by gaining more Fame), so you may as well use it.


    Q: Jesse: Are there any social actions with your survivors, beyond missions or calling them to pick up supplies?

    A: Yes. If you’re a character who has strengths in Leadership, there are emotes you can trigger that have effects such as rallying and inspiring other members in your party.


    Q: Xazbot: Will we be able to influence the morale of others group members by having some kind of conversation, where we could influence them to change their "state" or "levels in said state" by answering them in a specific way?

    A: Doing positive things for your community always has the chance of turning someone’s attitude around, but one of the tools you’ll have for affecting someone’s Attitude directly is having a “friendly conversation” with them.

    This doesn’t involve conversation trees. Instead, you’ll invite the individual in question to go for a walk with you and will talk through the issues in between zed encounters. There are a few ways for that play out. There’s no guarantee you’ll turn someone’s attitude around, but you do get to say fun things like: “You gotta figure out a way to deal with that shit. Take it out on the zeds, not the rest of us.... Or you're going to answer to me.”


    Q: Robert: If a member dies will we have the ability to bury or burn their body, or will it just eventually disappear like regular zombies?

    A: Typically, the zeds don’t leave you a whole corpse to bury. You will have an opportunity to collect their belongings though.


    Q: laijka: Am I wrong in thinking that Influence is personal? So it would make sense to keep your scavenger types high on Influence so that the others are more willing to come help them carry all that phat loot?

    A: Influence is shared among all your playable survivors. This is for two reasons: First, it’s just to remove hassle for you. We don’t want you jumping back and forth between people just to figure out who should spend Influence telling the community to set up some Generators. Second, it’s because all of your playable survivors are, by definition, friends. In fact, that’s how it works. In order for someone to be playable, you need to befriend them. After that, everyone else views you as a social group and judges you that way.
     
  2. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    Survivor Groups

    Q: midniteryu: Can influence buy things from other survivor groups, or do you have to use cases of ammunition?

    A: Besides cases of ammo? You can bum a molotov or something like that off of another survivor group with Influence if you’re on good terms. It’ll usually cost more Influence than at home, though, and just how much depends on how much they Trust you.


    Q: Vanilla: Can you abandon one group of survivors for another?

    A: No, it’s your community for better or for worse. On the plus side, it reflects all of your choices.


    Q: Guest: Can the other survivor groups grow in numbers? And can my community aid theirs and vice-versa?

    A: Yes and yes... Though many of them tend to dwindle in numbers over time rather than the reverse.


    Q: Guest: Are the hordes attracted to the other survivor groups? If yes, can I aid them in their defense?


    A: Yes.
     
  3. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    Bases/Facilities

    Q: screenamesuck: When you decide to leave one home for another I know you have to leave it for good, but will you have to rebuild everything you've already built all over again. If so, will it take just as long to build it a second time?

    (and related:)

    Q: Morgan: Can you disassemble bases? It'd seem like a waste if you're moving from one base to another to expand, and then have to leave behind perfectly good facilities that you can disassemble for spare parts or something.

    A: Your people will do their best to maintain the things they’ve created. This may mean transferring full facilities or may just mean collecting resources.


    Q: Mackenzie: You mention putting barbed wire around the exterior of your base as a method of slowing the invading Zeds down and giving you more time to react. Will this be a feature we can use in State of Decay?

    A: Yes. Everything in the journal is something that happens in the game. In the case of the barbed wire, it’s done automatically as a part of moving into a new home. A watchtower, on the other hand, is something you’d choose to build.


    Q: Dalendos: This game is based on real time. Does it take a long time to build the different facilities?

    A: A quick clarification: The game is not exactly real time. For instance, when you are logged in our day/night cycle is two hours long. There is such a thing as too much realism, and we would hate for people who can only play at night to never see the Trumbull Valley sun.

    What the game does have is persistent time, time that continues to pass when you are offline (though not at the same rate as when you’re actively playing).

    I edited your question, but the example you’d used was the watchtower. It takes an hour (real time) to build a watchtower. However there are methods of decreasing your build times. As we keep repeating, survivors are your biggest asset. If you have a community member with, say, a construction skill, this would speed up the process. Making friends with certain groups of other survivors can also provide ways to accelerate construction.


    Q: KlayerBear: If the place you’re staying at ends up being overrun, can you and other survivors run and find a new place? Or will they just stay and fight? Or scatter and run in all directions?

    A: Packing up and leaving your home base won’t be a light decision to make. First of all, you have to have another location scouted out to move to. Then you need to make sure you have the people and resources to maintain it. Once that’s done, you still need to have enough support from your community to make the big move.

    In regards to fight or flight, this varies situationally per character. A coward might leave your community after the first zombie horde tries to break through the defenses. But the same coward might stay through thick or thin if you’ve managed to gain their friendship and trust.


    Q: Ramon: Do you need a health/Medical station to heal survivors? Or just medkits?

    A: What’s the saying? Time heals all wounds? There’s no instant med-kit healing. You can carry around Painkillers and use them to restore your Vitality on the fly. That’ll keep you from collapsing, but real damage that you take (which appears as a decrease in your max Vitality) requires recovery time. People can also get serious Injuries that take them out of commission, preventing them from contributing to the community in any meaningful way while they recover.

    What’s more, with serious wounds or injuries, there’s a chance that that instead of recuperating, someone will take a turn for the worse. This is where a well-stocked Infirmary, along with someone with Medical training (veterinarians count, by the way) comes into play. The better your medical facilities, the better the odds (and speed) of recovery.
     
  4. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    Resources

    Q: Creed: How will the food/water resource be used? Is the food in a stockpile that feeds everyone until it runs out?

    A: The food is in a general stockpile that people hit up as needed. If you have a Storage Room, you’ll find there’s a little less random pilfering. You can also cook Big Meals or -- if you have someone who really knows how to cook -- a Feast. These provide temporary statistical bonuses.


    Q: Creed: If I don't find enough food, can I choose who to feed first In a situation where I have 30 survivors and only 10 meals? Can you ration food out to the survivors you want to keep and let the lazy people go hungry?

    A: No, the survivors have minds of their own and would still feed themselves if you told them not to eat. On the plus side, if you’re really low on food, people won’t simply starve, either. They’ll take it upon themselves to go look for food. (Which may open them to extra risk if they’re doing it out of desperation, but it’s better than starving.)


    Q: Jesse: Will NPCs act on their own to gather supplies while you're offline [if supplies begin to run low]?

    A: Yes. While you are offline, they community will continue to try to function and maintain its current state.

    Remember that time does not pass offline at the same rate as it does while you are online, and in the case of prolonged absence, will all but stop. If you have to take an extended break from the game for any reason, you will NOT come back to find a picked clean world.


    Q: Dalendos: How are the food supplies counted (Kg per person, or some other unit of measurement)?

    A: Daily Rations. So one unit is enough food to feed one person for one day. We wanted to keep it simple.
     
  5. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    Zombies

    Q: WarPig, sebofthedead: We know that survivors do not becomes zombies if they get bitten. But if you die from a zombie attack, will you turn?

    A: You’ll probably get torn apart and eaten instead. (But see the next question.)


    Q: Robert, MAJOR WARPATH: If a member of your community commits suicide, will that person turn into a zombie (assuming their suicide method left their head intact)? What if they die in a fight with no head trauma? Could that possibly start a outbreak in you base?

    A: Violent deaths tend not to be the issue, since the zombies will rip apart the corpse and eat it if given half a chance.

    On the other hand, the threat of someone succumbing in their sleep (while you are offline), reanimating, and taking out half the population is one of the core concerns of every survivor group. If someone in your community becomes gravely ill or injured, you’ll have a real decision to make.


    Q: Mackenzie, Zombiepreacher: If you see a horde heading towards your home/base, can you tell your group to stay quiet until the horde passes by?

    A: Your survivors will generally follow the lead of whichever survivor you happen to be driving. So if you don’t shoot, they won’t shoot. You can tell individual survivors to stay quiet and sneak along when you’re out and about. As for a specific, community-wide “be quiet” command, the answer is no.


    Q: Gawkyhades: I have seen in the game plays on how zombies jog towards you when they either hear you or see you. But, does this also work when you are inside of a building? Do zombies continue to jog when they enter the building, or do they immediately stop and begin to walk?

    A: Each zombie type has two speeds. The faster speed is the one they use when you have attracted their attention. They slow down when they’ve lost you.
     
  6. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    Misc.

    Q: screenamesuck: Seeing how we need to keep up with places we've scavenged, can you guys make a printable map, or an online interactive map you can customize?

    A: You’ll automatically note where you’ve been and what you’ve found on the map in game. We haven’t discussed the future possibility of a fully interactive map.


    Q: laijka: Do good things and people will think good of you. Makes sense. But what if I want to be a douche? I'd assume people will think less of me but what will the consequences be of that? Not as many survivors wanting to join and neighbours being less willing to trade with me I take as a given, but what of the community I'm already in?

    A: Depends on the people in it. Some won’t want to be a part a community like that. Most are just interested in survival and won’t care what your reputation is.


    Q: Survivor11: I wanted to know if there will be a lot of cussing in this. I'd like to play this amazing zombie game without cringing every time someone drops the f-bomb.

    A: There is cussing. How much depends on the character. Some of the people you’ll find in the game swear quite a bit. Others don’t swear at all.

    As you probably figured out, you’ll want to avoid Sam Hoffman if you don’t care for f-bombs.


    Q: Jesse: Will there be survivor random events or random world events? (I.e. Survivor Random Event: Suicide, disease etc.)

    A: Yes, but not entirely random. Everything that happens in State of Decay is a result of your previous choices and actions (or inaction). Survivors won’t commit suicide without dropping into a depression first, but a lot of things that happen, like an accidental shooting at home, do have some randomness to them. Our rule of thumb is to never do anything with fatal consequences without giving you fair warning.

    In terms of world events, the situation out there does change independent of your actions. How you adapt to it is up to you.


    Q: Jesse: Can you create booby traps?

    A: Yes. But bear in mind that you can't make anything that isn't on the predefined list of items. You can manufacture landmines and set up a chain of landmines, for example. You’ll probably enjoy finding creative ways to use the different objects in new, undocumented ways.


    Q: [Multiple] I have a question about playing as a lone wolf.

    A: We weren’t able to support going fully lone wolf, but you could try to get through the game with as small a community as possible and work with other communities as little as possible. You won’t be able to avoid having a Home, or someone communicating with you over the radio, and for a chunk of the game, you will have a few companions you can’t shake.
     
  7. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    That's it, y'all.

    The next thing I have in the queue for you is the skills article I mentioned, but Phinney quite sensibly wants me to hold on posting it until he's done building it.

    If any of the above answers need clarification, let me know!
     
  8. aramil248

    aramil248 Starting Off

    thanks for the info :)
     
  9. WOOOOOO! Great job you two!

    And Also, pumped for the skills article! If you know, could you maybe tell us what's left in the Dev Process? Your announcement about playtest feedback had me curious...
     
  10. Undead Sanya

    Undead Sanya Administrator

    "Making the game worth your money."
     
  11. This game is priceless Sanya, a true masterpiece. Keep it up, I'm gonna be waiting in my hobbit-hole till the next article is released.
     
  12. aramil248

    aramil248 Starting Off

    but zeds like hiding holes
     
  13. Mackenzie

    Mackenzie Starting Off

    I asked 2 questions. Both were answered :D Thanks Sanya!
     
  14. Welp . . . . . There goes my survival plan D:
     
  15. aclark

    aclark Starting Off

    This game just gets better and better everyday! Expectations are high, but there's not a doubt in my mind that you're pulling it off! Can't wait now, you've put so much detail into the gameplay, and that's what will make it such a fantastic game. Some say Zombie games are too common, but the first good and successful one is in still in production at Undead Labs.
     
  16. Thanks, i'm happy with these answers:D
     
  17. A fantastic Q&A. Can't wait to see the skills article now!
     
  18. Glorious Q&A! When are the results for music and shirts gonna be released? Or if they are already released where do i find them?
     
  19. e5futter

    e5futter Here To Help

    and yet another great read! even got my gf interested in SoD! (great..now i gotta another xbox D:)
     
  20. aclark

    aclark Starting Off

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