In anticipation of Sony Online Entertainment’s (NYSE:SNE) launch of zombie survival game “H1Z1” later this year, we spoke to game designer Adam Clegg and graphics programmer Ryan Favale about some of the open-world title’s features, which include a day-to-night cycle that strongly influences gameplay.
“Our day-and-night cycle has a huge impact on the game because, like real life, as it gets darker, players will need more light sources to survive. On the flip side, light sources mean players can’t hide as well and can be seen from further away,” Clegg told IBTimes. “One of the things I like to do in ‘H1Z1’ is go hunting at night, looking for campfires and tracking where people might have just been and where they are going.”
Though daylight has its advantages, Favale noted some advantages of playing during the game’s night cycle.
“For the crafter, the night can give players some peace, allowing them to craft in the dark when no one can see them. But I personally enjoy the scare of the night and its contrast in lighting,” Favale added. “Watching dusk fade away is like climbing up the roller coaster just before the 100-foot fall: You’re scared but have a lot of adrenaline pumping through your veins. When the morning comes, you can dry your tears and prepare for the next night.”
Along with the day-to-night cycle, the game will also feature dynamic weather patterns, meaning it could be sunny one day and rainy the next. “It’s possible to go inside your makeshift shack to craft during a sunny day and come out only to be greeted by a snow storm,” Clegg added.
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“H1Z1” is the name of a virus that has spread throughout the U.S., a disease that originally wasn’t taken seriously and infected people quickly, causing a zombie apocalypse scenario that devastates the entire country. In the title, players must collect objects, hunt animals, find food and water and (of course) avoid zombies.
Sony Online Entertainment wants to make the game as realistic as possible – what would you have to do to survive a real invasion of the undead? How would your environment and elements like weather, wildlife, time of day and other people influence your own choices and chances of survival?
Clegg and Favale said the game’s development is going well, but neither could discuss a specific release date.
“Development is moving along quickly and we are edging closer and closer to our Early Access milestone,” Clegg promised.