Days Gone isn’t technically a zombie game, according to new info shared by Bend Studio in a behind closed door session with the game. Zombies, by definition are dead creatures that have been brought back to life. Now this definition also eliminates a few other titles that are seen as zombie games, but we’re only being nitpicky to point out some other interesting things about the game, so please, hold the rant until the end.
Freakers, that’s what the zombie-like enemies in Days Gone are called. The fast moving creatures do appear to act like zombies in a lot of ways. They yearn for human flesh, they attack at the first sight or sound. And they mindlessly wander and shamble around. However, according to Bend Studio, Freakers are very much still alive.
Of course this makes them not zombies by definition, but their behavior still makes this a zombie game in a ton of different ways. It’s still fair to call it a zombie game, but what makes this an important thing to know is how this impacts the game itself. According to Bend the Freakers don’t act like zombies in a couple of key ways.
First off, since they are alive they still need to eat and drink. Zombies eat, often the flesh of poor video game characters, but they don’t drink. How this impacts the game is that Freaker behavior is very dynamic. The swarms seen in the two E3 demos so far apparently aren’t necessarily in those locations at those times. For smaller encounters, Freakers can be found wherever other living things can be found, such as near a stream trying to get some water.
So, while Days Gone and its Freaker foes might act very much like zombies in a lot of ways, there are some key things that separate them from their undead counterparts. Can you still call Days Gone a zombie game? Of course. I still call Left 4 Dead and The Last of Us zombie games even though their enemies are technically “infected”. But just remember that Freakers will have a few things that make them different, because it might save your life a few times.
Days Gone hits PS4 later this year.