Walking Dead: Our World was published by Next Games in July 2018. It's one of the more visible LBGs, and is based on the hugely popular AMC TV show and the lesser known comic books. After a brief surge of popularity when it first came out, interest in WD:OW seemed to wane rapidly. These days online communities around the game seem pretty dead. However, according to at least one site it still managed to make $17 million in 2019. Solidly profitable if not a huge hit. Next week I will be discussing one final GPS game I have been playing a lot of, the 16 bit RPG inspired Orna.
Walking Dead: Our World
What do you do? The main thing you do is walk around looking for encounters filled with zombies and other NPC opponents to fight. Fights reward random cards to gain new or upgrade existing equipment, NPC allies or perks. All of these come in different rarities: gold > purple > blue > gray. Gold allies and weapons are quite rare and powerful, but difficult to upgrade. At the other extreme, gray weapons and allies are dead common and quite easy to max out. There is a real trade-off here. For example, in some weapon categories the best I have is only blue because the purple and gold ones I own haven't been upgraded as much.
|The main reason you do encounters is to get random cards for upgrading your weapons, allies and perks (character abilities). This draw has a lot of strong cards and came from one of the boards I am working together with my team to clear.|
If you are a fan of the show or the comics, you will probably quickly acquire at least a blue or purple version of most characters you care about. As you get better gear, better NPC helpers and better perks the strength of encounters you are able to handle goes up. You have levels, those determine the maximum level of encounter you are able to attempt to clear. There are a lot of different types of encounters, but they all boil down quick fights where you tap your screen to shoot (it's more fun than it sounds like!). There are one-off encounters to rescue NPCs you can take to a base (below), one-off zombie fights for really feeble loot, fights with humans for better rewards, and multi-stage fights that have the best rewards. The strategy of the game comes primarily in deciding what gear and NPCs to invest your limited resources into, and what bases to invest in. Solo you can likely keep two out of the four base types going at a time.
Asynchronous interactions: The primary way you affect the world for other players is setting up bases. There are four different kinds you can set up, and a higher level base grants a decent chance at strong cards when you drop off rescued individuals. If there isn't already one near you, it's advisable to build an armory that grants weapon upgrade cards when you first start playing. Once you drop off enough rescued people for a base to go up one level, it will maintain itself for anywhere from nine days to several weeks depending on level. However, if you don't level it up again before that timer runs down, eventually zombies will swarm it and destroy it. Anyone that is playing can drop off NPCs at a base that you set up. Eventually I will probably have at least two imaginary buildings in my yard for me and other players to use. If you join a team, you can also work together with other players to clear a board that gives all of you really nice rewards.
How do you interact with other players? The main way is by joining a team. It's a lot like a typical MMO guild with different ranks and a chat channel. Teams can hold up to 25 players, and getting into an active one is pretty essential to enjoying the game long term. The main thing you do is work together to clear boards. There are global rankings where different teams compete to clear boards as quickly as possible. It feels a lot like Conquest in SWTOR. The boards also grant very nice loot to everyone on the team as you clear them. Each space on the board has a random requirement, like "drop off 70 survivors at an armory." Everything done by team members contributes to the total. You can also send up a flare that allows anyone on your team to teleport to your location, anywhere. If there is a way to group up and fight together directly, I have not figured it out yet.
|I have been playing less than a week, and I already have a lot of characters I recognize from the show. My wife is also a fan of the comics and says that these portraits resemble both the actors in the show and the comic book character designs.|