Jeff is going to be talking SOD2 and more over at the XBox Twitch channel TODAY at 11 AM PDT/2 PM EDT/1900 UTC. (Brant will be in the background driving YOSE. See if you can make him break his concentration.) Be sure to tune in for tidbits and a few laughs.
Are you going to be in Seattle for PAX West, or are you close enough to Seattle to make a day trip out of it on September 2, 2016?
Are you at least 18?
Are you a member of the human race?
If you can answer yes to all three of those things, YOU are hereby invited to enter the Get Your Head in the Game Contest!
Two teams walk onto the field, only one makes it out alive…
Welcome to the second annual Bowl of Decay! You thought that the race to the Superbowl was brutal… If this year is anything like last, we’re in for a show!
Matt Heiniger is one of our Tech Artists, and he’s here today to walk us through some really kick-ass tech we’re using right now. If you’ve followed us on Instagram, you’ve seen some of the images. Next week we’ll be posting a contest where people in Seattle for PAX West can enter and win the chance to be scanned into our world. Meanwhile, check out this fascinating technology. — Sanya
One of the biggest compliments we get on State of Decay is the diversity of the cast. It features characters with a wide variety of ages, ethnicities, abilities, and sexual preferences. This is no accident. State of Decay is first and foremost designed to simulate the survival fantasy for everyday people. Sure, the game features lots of Zeds that are terrifying, gooey, exciting, and just plain fun. But it’s really a game about people.
We want you to live out your own personal survival fantasy. Part of that is giving you a character that is relatable to you. But by “you”, we mean all of you, not just those of you who are muscular, dark haired white dudes that look like you were ripped from a Calvin Klein advertisement.
But in order to pull this off, we need to make a lot of characters. More specifically, a lot of faces. But here’s the thing: Making human faces is hard. Like, really hard. As social creatures, our brains are hard-wired to analyze tiny details of human faces in micro seconds in order to assess another human’s intent. Because of this function of our brains, any unrealistic feature of a digital face just looks wrong. The viewer may not even be aware of why it looks wrong, just that it does. This phenomenon is known as the uncanny valley. Historically, this has been a concern within the film industry. But as video games continue to increase in fidelity, we too are entering the uncanny valley. As such, we must put an increasing focus on getting facial features just right. Either that, or go highly stylized. But that’s a whole different direction.
Something interesting to note about Hugh Chees is not his name, although it’s memorable and when I first heard it, I thought someone was exclaiming “hoochies” and that alone is comic gold. No, the interesting thing about Hugh is that he’s a best-selling author.
Not under his own name, of course. Hugh’s nomme de plume is really Amelia Rosewylde, the best-selling romance writer. He writes some of the wittiest, blush-worthy, romance novels this librarian has ever read. It’s a shame that the stuff written under his real name didn’t take off like he’d have hoped for. It was all interesting, but it didn’t have the sparkle that his Amelia stories have.
While Hugh has lived in Marshall for five years now, he was what we lovingly call a recluse. It’s unfortunate that it took the zombie apocalypse to bring him out of his house and his shell, but as a community, we’re glad that he’s with us. Not only is he happy to haul stuff around, but he tells a really good zinger of a tale to boot. Here’s one of them.