Dear group of anonymous looters, my name is ZiB and I have a problem. The reasons are deeply rooted in my childhood and of course my parents are to blame. Without consoles alone in front of the PC, I lacked any multiplayer socialization, and when the next generation learned to share with WoW, the ship had long since sailed for me. I was used to fighting my way through role-playing games alone, bagging everything worth grabbing to the payload limit without thinking, so the merchant in the village was more familiar to me than most monsters. I basically had too much money in my bank account and too little room in my inventory. My husband made fun of me for clicking the floor like a crazy person on our first vacation together, which we spent playing Diablo 2 on the laptop, of course. I’m ashamed of it, but can’t get away from it. So I took refuge in the solitude of single player modes, where I usually can’t harm anyone.

Currently, I’m playing Project Zomboid – a fact that really isn’t worth special mention in January 2022. Therefore, I’ll spare myself and you the explanation of what exactly it’s about. The only important thing is: you want to survive as long as possible in the zombie apocalypse, because not wanting to die is basically quite a healthy attitude.

In my first run, in which I didn’t have several zombie teeth stuck in my throat after a few steps and run to my death in a panic, I first carefully explored my neighborhood. The cottages were of manageable size and rather spartanly furnished, but my collecting instinct was immediately awakened. I took all the practical things with me: Can openers, bite-proof clothes, ammunition and all the firearms I could get my hands on. Heavily laden, I carried on, setting up temporary camps so that I could loot even more houses. It didn’t matter if I already owned something in umpteen copies – because who could know if and how fast they could break. Yes well, a wiki would have known that. But I had the ambition to explore the game myself, while sweating and dragging two fully packed garbage bags and a backpack behind me.

So I invested some time traveling east with my ever-growing survival supplies… until I got lost and perished in a vast wooded area out there. Just like that. It was actually very unspectacular and thus quite sad. I still saw my lifeless body rise to join a pack of undead who clearly had other priorities than accumulating things. Marie Kondō would be proud of them.

Whatever, one more time! I created a new character and found myself in a starting region that looked strangely familiar. A glance at the map told me that I had indeed been here the last time, too. How nice that the revealed map was carried over for my next game state. I started to look around in the first building, but only came across some canned soups that I couldn’t open, as well as some toothpaste that was rather disdainful in the survival business. So I headed for the next building. But what was that? The door was open? Inside, I was presented with a similarly bleak supply picture as in my starting house. And also in the next. Slowly I realized what I had done. I had looted all the useful items from this district myself, because in Project Zomboid the map doesn’t automatically reset after each death. The cans I had left behind due to their weight, I couldn’t get them open without a can opener (of which my first character had hoarded three…). And all the firearms in the area were in a distant patch of woods owned by a zombie carrying my name and two stuffed garbage bags. Oh damn. Why am I so greedy?

The development team at The Indie Stone has been working on Project Zomboid since 2011, but the title’s long Early Access stay shouldn’t be a deterrent. The scope is impressive, the survival fight is challenging, and you can even go on a zombie hunt together.

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