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SOE president on H1Z1

by William Schwartz

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There has been much talk about H1Z1, the recently announced post-apocalyptic MMO that is based after a widespread zombie outbreak. Some of that talk has been about the similarities in design between H1Z1 and DayZ, the popular Arma 2 mod that has since spawned its own standalone game, and Rust. Conducting an AMA on Reddit, SOE president John Smedley talked about the similarities between the two games, saying that he and “most of the people on [SOE are] fans and contributors [to DayZ].”

However, that doesn’t mean that H1Z1 will be a clone of DayZ like the much maligned War Z, now called Infestation: Survivor Stories. According to Smedley, “We’re making the game we’re making. Long term we plan on making this about a persistent world with a big landscape with thousands of players. The way we would like to see this roll out is much more like players building small enclaves or pockets of territory and hold out against a legitimate zombie threat that’s ever present while others go it alone taking their chances.. These player built structures, forts and towns are one of the ways the players try to carve out some small space in a dangerous world.”

He also talked about the in-game crafting system, saying “We also want to make sure we have a deep in-game economy that is heavily dependent on crafting. Players will be able to become manufacturers.. sell bullets, arrows.. etc. The in-game economy will be entirely player driven.”

Finally, Smedley claimed that SOE’s goal for H1Z1 was to develop a game that is “fun, accessible, hard core and super, super deep.” SOE plans to release H1Z1 on Steam Early Access for $19.99 in the upcoming weeks, and eventually switch the game to Free-to-Play. It is set to release on PC first, followed by the PlayStation 4.

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