Wednesday, September 2, 2009To kick off my contribution to the Zombie Challenge, I am going to share with everyone some free to play, online, browser based games that I once invested many hours into playing. It is rather strange that games that are relatively visually unstimulating and played on a grid map would be so addictive. But I suspect that anyone who has a good imagination and likes to develop characters and play with a community or perhaps once enjoyed good ol' text adventure games and the like could have an absolute ball with these.
Urban Dead was created four years ago by Kevan Davis. Enter the city of Malton where you will either exist as a human, struggling to survive the undead outbreak, or as one of the undead, hungering for the flesh of the living. One might strongly suspect that the NecroTech company is behind the unfortunate turn of events that has overcome Malton. You receive fifty action points over 25 hours with which to explore the city and to fight for your life (or to take the lives of others).
Citizens of Malton will find that, regardless of what their preferred status may be, there are going to be a number of occasions where you will die, nom on some brains, be revived by a living ally when you happen to shamble past a revive point moaning in undead misery, return to the living only at some point grow curious as to whether or not jumping out of a building window will really kill you. Splat. The whole cycle starts again.
Like Urban Dead, Christopher Wolf's Hell Rising takes place in a city that has been over run by the undead. Only in Hell Rising the stakes are raised by the inclusion of vampires to the list of what type of character you can play. In both games malls tend to be hot spots of activity. Humans huddle inside after using up all their action points after looting the shops for baseball bats, first aid kits, and alcohol while the vampires and zombie hoards tear at the barricades outside to get to the living within.
You can join a group of other players in both games. It is a good idea, especially for newer players, as a group can help you learn the ropes and increase your chances of living. When coordinating attacks, more seasoned human players might leave the kills for the newer players, while the experienced undead might volunteer to tear down the barricades so that their newly undead brethren might lead the charge inside and claim the EXP. Long time players will find that after maxing out their skills they can accumulate thousands of extra experience points while waiting for new skills to be released. Beware also of TKers (team killers). These devious murderers will turn on their own side without so much as a second thought. Indeed, you may encounter entire groups dedicated to killing their own kind as well as the bounty hunter groups who hunt them.
Both games also have detailed Wikis to help new players learn their way around the game. You will also find within these Wikis pages detailing the lives of significant characters, character diaries, group histories, and major attacks and battles that have taken place such as at Caiger Mall. Players will even create their own events, such as when the zombie hoarde takes off for a Mall Tour. Even player created businesses have a place. Raising a family in Malton? Take the kids down to McZeds for a Malty Meal complete with a free toy! At MickyZs they take great pride in serving only the freshest corpses to you and your family! In this way, the story of the game is very much written by the characters we add to it and what we have them do.
You can have multiple characters in both games, (or alts, as they tend to be called,) but are not allowed to have any of your characters working together. There are also no NPCs (non-player characters) in either game.
I don't play very often anymore but I've played with some great people and encountered some great characters in these games that they will always hold a special place in my little geeky heart. If you ever encounter in Urban Dead Scarlet Rowan, Ava Ridley, or find someone called Cheshire Kat chewing on your arm then that is me. By all means, say a friendly hello before taking a swing at me with your trusty fire axe. Likewise, if you ever find one Winter Devalos sipping on your blood as you wander Twilight City then I thank you in advance for the donation. ;-)