7 Days to Die

Before we get started here let us clear one thing up; this is a preview of 7 Days to Die (7DTD) and not a review.  I have decided to approach this game this way as I currently feel that I have not put enough time into the game to fully experience everything that it has to offer.  Another reasons is that I feel it is quite broken in the current state and I would like to give the developer some time to sort a few of the bugs out.

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7 Days to Die is the first game to be published under Telltale Publishing and has come across a lot of criticism leading up to the release.  If you head over to Steam you will find that 7 Days to Die is still currently in Alpha build.  This would be know as an early access game where the players contribute to making the game better.  On the Xbox One there is a Preview Program in which this would sit for a year until full release but you would never expect to see an Alpha build released as a full retail game.  However though, this is exactly what has happened.  The console version of 7 Days to Die is a direct port of the current state it is in on the PC.

Before I discuss the technical details, I little back ground to what the game is all about is needed.  7DTD is a survival crafting game in which the player has to survive for as long as possible in a random generated world.  This is achieved by collecting resources and building objects that will make you survival easier.  Any tool that you use will degrade over time so you will always need to have a back up plan for when something breaks.  To add to the already difficult aspect of surviving, you must also protect yourself from Zombies that inhabit your world.  The game operates on a day and night cycle which sees the Zombies weak during the day and a lot more aggressive at night.  If you get caught by a horde you will find yourself dying very quickly.  All wounds can be healed through crafted items and by eating.  If you do not eat though, there is a possibility that you could starve to death.

7DTD is basically Minecraft for adults mixed with Don’t Starve & The Walking Dead.

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So now you have the foundations of what the game is about, let us talk about some of the real issues here.  The first thing to stand out are the PS2 graphics.  This is something I can expect as the game is built using Unity and even though there has been some great examples of gorgeous looking game, there also has been a far share of muddy graphics like these.  To be honest though, if you are interested in 7 Days to Die then graphics will always be the last thing on your mind.

The overall performance of the game can been seen as rather bad.  There are a lot of frame drops at inconvenient times and multiplayer servers are just as bad.  There is a lot of lag present with servers disconnecting at random intervals.  The combat is very clunky and feels like it has been taking straight out of a British comedy.  You know the ones, running around to silly music, chasing someone whilst moving your arm backwards and forwards.

With this in mind though, you may find yourself dying a lot at first whilst you get use to the physic in play during combat.  Personally, I aim for the middle of the head.  Get a few good hits in there and the zombies will soon die.

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Out of everything I have tried, I really enjoyed the crafting side of the game.  I feel that everything you craft has logical reasoning and this helps create a realistic world.  There are you basic survival items that you can create from items you find scattered around the world but the more advanced items will require a little looting to achieve.

If you head over to the official support forums there pages of players having issues with the game but it looks like the developers are listening.  There are a lot of known issues at the moment but nothing has yet to be fixed – hopefully a large update is on the horizon.  Funnily enough, whilst looking through some known issues I stumbled across no POIs or towns spawn during random generations.  I honestly thought that towns were suppose to be very fare and few as I found myself walking for hours on end (in game) until I found some where to loot.  It looks like it may be a bug after all.

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7 Days to Die has a lot of good ideas in place but I do find it hard to believe that a game that is in Early Access of the PC has made it’s way across to the consoles as a full release.    My current views of the game are quite negative as I have been running into a lot of technically issues that have just sucked all the fun out of the experience.
Admittedly, I have not put a huge amount of time into the game yet as I felt it tough to play with the above issues but I am planning on doing so once I return from my holiday.  At the time of writing a new update has been released and hopefully my view will change on the game then.

I know that I am going to be opening myself up to a lot of criticism here as we have had a lot big AAA games released in the past year that have been filled with bugs but I find it to be a bad choice to bring an Early Access game to the consoles as a full release.  Heck, this game may never get finished!  It has happened before and it will happen again.

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Des Mayer

Mad Scientist with a passion for gaming!