Besides being a musician, I'm also an avid gamer. Here's some info on the latest games I'm currently playing.
The War Z Preview
Written: December 21st, 2012.
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
After a 12/17/2012 release on Steam, it was quickly removed from Steam on 12/19/2012 after numerous players complained of paying for an unfinished game full of false claims on the game's product page. Was that anger justified? Maybe...maybe not...let's find out.
War...War Z Always Changes
The War Z is basically a pay to play alpha version. In the five days I have played it, new features have been added and thankfully in the case of a pay to revive 4 hour wait period added on 12/18/2012, that was later remove on 12/20/2012, others have been removed.
Most games these days are always a work in progress as seen by the endless stream of DLC released for games so it's best to take the good with the bad sometimes in my opinion. Today's patch (12/21/2012) reduced the number of zombies while increasing gear and money drops. Earlier in the week the 100 player servers were released which reduced the number of bandits on a lot of the 50 player servers.
Pay To Survive?
The pay to win model definitely has a grip on this game, but I've been able to survive decently without the use of micro-transactions. Many of the marketplace items can be purchased or unlocked by in-game money drops and XP leveling. This allows a bit more character customization than DayZ. The only bad thing about buying items though is that when you die, they are lost forever...the same as losing your starting gear in Normal mode. Depending on your opinion of micro-transactions though this might be a deal breaker.
One of the main differences between DayZ and The War Z is the graphics. While the DayZ environment (including map mods) looks awesome, The War Z looks like a cartoon page with water damage. Textures have no detail and I honestly think the game's video settings do not make any difference in the quality of the environment. Character animations also leave a lot to be desired. I'm sure this helps keep lag down but hopefully this gets addressed in future patches for higher end machines with fast internet.
The War Z definitely is not DayZ so don't be fooled and spend more than the minimum price ($13.50-15.00 for the game with no in-game credits) in case you are still interested. Most people should probably pass on this or wait for a more finished release. That being said, the minimum game price will still give you a 1+/1 hour of play per dollar spent on the game ratio.