SOE just officially revealed (sort of) H1Z1, the game John Smedley hinted at 2 months ago when he said:
“SWG PLAYERS – OUR NEXT GAME (not announced yet) IS DEDICATED TO YOU. Once we launch it… you can come home now.”
As a former / current SWG super-fan, I think I’m qualified to address how I feel after learning a bit about the game, as well as some of my initial thoughts and ramblings on why SOE is making H1Z1.
H1Z1 & SWG
I don’t get it. I see DayZ meets Rust in a massively multiplayer persistent world. Don’t get me wrong… that’s sounds like it can be a fantastic game, but that’s not SWG. SWG was about building a community and living your life in a galaxy far, far away. H1Z1 is about surviving, hiding in the shadows, and being afraid. I think, perhaps, the only trait the two will share is a sandbox nature and an involved crafting system.
Why a zombie survival game?
Simple. SOE is targeingt a completely different market. They were live streaming about Landmark at the exact same time they did this first-look at H1Z1 on someone’s live stream show. This isn’t for the fans who are hyped up about Landmark, EQ Next, or heck even Planetside. This isn’t for the people who go to fanfare (SOE Live) or post on message boards. H1Z1 from the moment they came out of the gate has been aimed directly that that L337 crowd of DayZ gamers – the “bros” of gaming.
I get why they are trying new things. SOE went for the kiddie market for a while, the F2P Eastern model for a bit, the shooter market, then heavily back to the Fantasy RPG crowd (their roots), and now they want a taste of the growing zombie survival scene.
There’s no accounting for taste
Personally, I’m not a big fan of post-apocalyptic settings. I’m also not big on zombies. I prefer elves, magic, swords, etc. I’m not interested in games where the aforementioned ‘bros’ run around circle strafing and looting your backpack. I’m not a big fan of FFA PvP, so I would probably play on a PvE server or a ruleset where I have to opt-in when I’m ready. I’m not big of dark and scary, and I really hate how most post-apoc games are all brown and gross terrain.
H1Z1 may not be the game for me, but I am intrigued by the scope of a game where Smedley claims people can build anything, burn anything, and drive or fly vehicles all over the place. Put that on a console (like they plan) and maybe this will be a great ‘sit back on the couch for a few hours’ kind of game.