Undead Labs, the development team behind the smash Xbox Live Arcade zombie-apocalypse simulator State of Decay, has detailed what to expect when Breakdown hits Trumbull Valley later this month. Breakdown is Labs’ first offering of downloadable content and the answer to a growing plea from the State of Decay community for a real challenge – having presumably perfected every number of zombie-dispensing stratagems – by cranking the difficulty dial up to the limit, and snapping it off at the base.
To get the desired effect, Breakdown will alter some of the fundamentals with every successive iteration of the campaign, meaning every replay will tweak the game in new and exciting ways… that will eventually kill you and everyone you care about. For starters, you’re going to become more vulnerable on your second, third, fourth, etc. helping of Trumbull Valley, while zombies actually become hardier, requiring more of that precious stamina that’s always in short supply.
Then there are the zombies themselves, which by default are your standard lumbering corpses with a few sprinters thrown in for good measure. In Breakdown, as difficulty rises, you’re going to find more and more speedsters barreling toward you until State of Decay resembles less, The Walking Dead, and more 28 Days Later. And lest we forget about those soul-cleaving mutants that lunge from the bushes or concave your car with immovable girth; they’re going to be better represented in Breakdown to truly cement Trumbull Valley as the waking-nightmare hellscape of contagion it should be.
While you’re fending off these increasingly diverse gangs of roaming abominations, you’ll have to do it with less, because Breakdown will systematically reduce the amount of resources to scavenge throughout the valley. It’ll never be completely barren – after all, where’s the fun in that – but resources will continue to diminish to a point, while the undead continue to soak up more and more punishment. Oh, that goes for the all-powerful iron chariots of Trumbull Valley, too. As Undead Labs’ designer Geoffery Card puts it, “the number of available vehicles drops like a rock.”
Breakdown is currently in pre-certification testing at Microsoft, and assuming all goes well should enter official certification by the end of next week, confirmed Undead Labs’ founder Jeff Strain. “Assuming no catastrophes,” Strain revealed, “we plan on getting Breakdown into your hands by the end of October.”