Last week I have wrote a song detailing how I think The Walking Dead needs a bigger and better presence in video games, given the show’s reach in print and on TV. While Telltale’s TWD story games are fantastic on their own, I don’t think the existence of the insanely terrible The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct means the series should ditch the shooter genre entirely.
I pitched my idea for an open-world style survival game that combined elements from Far Cry, Fallout, and The Last of Us that could connect with existing lore, while still allowing players to create their own story. I got so caught up in my own idea that I forgot to mention that there is in fact is a new Walking Dead game comes out, one from the developers Payday Overkill and Starbreeze.
To be fair, it’s pretty easy to forget the existence of the game, given that everything we’ve seen of it has been a insanely cryptic teaser with almost no other information to go on. That changed a bit this weekend at SXSW where Robert Kirkman spoke during a panel and briefly discussed the game.
He quickly shoots Survival Instinct, saying that his licensed games don’t just have “Daryl Dixon running around zombies, because you love Daryl Dixon,” and won’t be a rushed and crappy outing to coincide with the show, which is the problem with so many. other licensed games. If Telltale’s The Walking Dead is anything to go on, so far he’s been right, and hopefully that continues with this new Overkill / Starbreeze production.
While teasing larger announcements about the game “very soon,” Kirkman said, “I’m told this will be in a bigger world than what Payday currently encompasses. They are going to learn a lot from Payday that they will fit in. in The Walking Dead game. He also says that, like Payday, The Walking Dead game will feature online co-op.
So that’s all we got from him directly, but we can start extrapolating on that if he now says that yes, it will actually be an amplified version of Payday. It has always been a possibility, given the studios involved, but now it definitely is.
Even though it’s not the open world of my dreams, the hybrid Far Cry / Fallout game, I think there is a lot of potential here. Payday has players teaming up to perform heists using specific characters with different attributes and gear, with multiple ways to achieve the illegal end goal. Given the world of The Walking Dead, we can see how some of these concepts might be able to translate into this universe.
No one is going to rob banks in the post-apocalypse unless their priorities are seriously down, but there are a number of different scenarios that would lend themselves to this concept. Supply runs are the most obvious. Your team could sneak into a Walkers-infested grocery store to try and retrieve the rest of the food and water. Or you might have to invade a police station that has been taken over by bandits in order to secure a locked gun stash.
Beyond direct supplies, you can expand the concept to include rescuing hostages from a cannibal camp or assassinating the leader of a local group of bloodthirsty looters. All could employ a different variety of tactics and equipment to achieve their ends. While the Payday connection seems odd at first glance, I really do think it could perform fantastically if handled properly.
The stealthy dichotomy against guns is key here, too, as is often the case in many Payday missions. In the world of The Walking Dead, stealth is often more important than ever, because instead of setting off an alarm, you’ll attract an army of walkers if you start lighting up a place with machine gun fire. Although maybe in some circumstances it could be used as a different tactic to invade enemies.
The only disconnect I see is the lack of money in the equation. Payday, as the name suggests, structures missions and heists around getting paid and amassing a fortune. But how would that work in The Walking Dead? Would food and ammunition instead be used as accumulated currency? Going back to the dollar system in the world that no longer needs it would be odd, but something will have to be in place to purchase upgrades and better equipment.
Either way, I have high hopes for Overkill / Starbreeze’s Walking Dead game, even if it’s not my utopian ideal for a title set in the universe. There is a lot to work on there, and I can’t wait to find out more soon.
Watch below to see when Call of Duty could return to WWII: