Author: Trever McKenzie
In a world ravaged by the zombie apocalypse, two survivors forge ahead, doing everything they can to stay together and ride out the end of their lives without trouble. But unfortunately, this quickly comes to a head as they journey into a city they’ve never seen before. There, they are brutally attacked by the citizens and subsequently captured. Now, they must work together to stay alive in a city full of people ready to kill them on a moment’s notice, including the city’s ruthless, violent leader. Will they escape the city, die trying, or join the survivors? Will they choose to stay together, or will a wedge be driven between them?
- Play as a male, female, or non-binary person.*
- Survive alongside your significant other, Mike or Cheryl.
- Escape the city, join the survivors, or die trying.
- Manage your relationship with your significant other and the leader. Will you get rid of your S.O. or keep them by your side? Will you trust the leader or put your defenses up?
- Your choices won’t be forgotten. Cross someone and they will never forget.
- Fight hostile citizens, ravenous zombies, and relationship drama - at the same time!
- Vulgarity and cursing.
- Moderate violence.
A note about non-binary
Currently, the game does not have a non-binary option despite being advertised as having it. The reason the option is not there currently is because it requires me to add several variables to ensure correct sentence structure when using they/them/their pronouns, which is a lot of work. In order to speed up the development process, I will be adding these variables and the non-binary option once the game is completely done. This will allow me to focus entirely on the story and will allow me to simply edit the text as necessary once it’s finished. A non-binary option will be added once the story is complete and the full version of the game will not be released without the option available.
Click here to play Chapter 1!
Please feel free to leave any feedback and criticism below! Also, if you notice any mistakes or things that sound/look odd, let me know so I can fix them! Likewise, if you like a further explanation of the note about non-binary, please ask and I will expound further on why I’m waiting until completion to add the choice in and edit the text.
As a person that just completed a project including non-binary characters, I would warn you that writing the complete story and going back and editing in a non-binary PoV character presents a few dangers. Do you have sources or advisors or some resources that can help you recognize divergent and often unique story issues for the non-binary?
If you are not careful, you also run the risk of the editing in of the non-binary PoV characters to seem like something it isn’t intended to be.
I’m a binary person so my unease at your plan to go back and edit in the non-binary character might or might not be shared by those in this community who are non-binary. I did ask a non-binary friend’s thoughts on this and they expressed thankfulness at the representation but also expressed concerns that good intentions may not be executed well.
With all that said, welcome to the community and I hope this project turns out the way you envision it.
Thank you for the feedback!
Would you mind expanding on the unique/divergent story issues you forsee? Nothing I’ve planned so far explicitly focuses on gender in such a way that it would necessarily present something I’d consider divergent or unique for a non-binary PC. The story is being written so that the PC’s gender is simply there for player choice and not as a plot point As far as relationship issues go, the PC being non-binary will not be an issue brought up.
I thank you for your concern about the point-of-view changes, but it shouldn’t be an issue as I don’t plan to change the point-of-view, just the pronoun references of the main character. The story itself won’t change just because of the gender choice.
Suggestion for the CDs at the beginning: 90s Rock.
More to come.
She rolls over the top of the truck and falls off the side. “Holy shit! Holy shit, that worked!” Cheryl exclaims. “Keep going!”
“That’s the plan!”
Haha! Gotta love the interactions here, man. Good demo, so far. I liked how it display both my health and my partner’s. I would look at mine and be like, “Okay,” and then I would look at Cheryl’s and be like, “…Yeah, I’mma restart.”
Just saying, it seems to add a lot of immersion, surprisingly. I legit cared if my partner’s was high or not. More so than my own. Your writing is smooth, the choices presented made sense, and the dialogue was really believable. I already hate Val and you made me legitimately think, several times I might add, about my decision to surrender peacefully. A very well done first bit indeed.
It’s reallu interesting I hope it gose far
This eases a bit of my unease. With the way the relationships between characters and the various factors involving relations affecting the story (ie betrayal) in major ways as described above, the worry that different MC characters would be treated differently due to choices made including gender.
The divergence and unique aspects of story development really depend on your views of character casting. One view, which I subscribe to, is that each character cast in a story is unique and different than the others and they have traits and such that make them who they are. A writer develops the characters for each story and for specific purposes and reasons and therefore they can not be substitutable easily.
Another view, sees the entire cast of characters as swappable and interchangeable, setting permitted. It appears you hold this latter view of character development, so execution willing, there should be not as much a worry. I really don’t understand this viewpoint as well as I do the other, so I can’t really go into details as I would if you held the former.
PS - Another friend (enby as they call themselves) has been trying to educate or teach me the character development view that you both seem to share so, if I seem a bit scattered, it is because I’m pushing outside my core and trying to embrace this alternate way of character development as a legitimate possibility as well.
At one point Mike starts referring my female character as a “he” when they are getting interrogated by Val. Also, Val never introduced herself, and yet her name appears after she wakes Mike…
That is most likely a variable error. I’ll look through that scene. And thank you for catching the missing intro!
EDIT: Apparently I wrote her introduction in one of the choices you get when you first meet her, and then subsequently forgot to write it for the rest of the choices in that particular branch. xD It’s fixed now. Still working on variable errors.
@Eiwynn I totally understand your concerns. I specifically knew when I set out to write this story that treating the characters different based on gender (at least in a negative way, like having it influence potential betrayal) would be a big no-no. The only real differences character-wise between Mike and Cheryl is that Mike leads with his heart and Cheryl leads with her head (which I will exacerbate far more in the finalized version of the game). The PC, however, is the same insofar as the way they are treated and the way they behave outside of player’s choices.
One other option I would like to see is to be able to explain your actions if you surrender to Cheryl. I ran over the one woman, so my character obviously has little problem taking out people who are trying to take us out. I only surrendered because I thought they wouldn’t hurt her as much, and guess what, Cheryl? I was right.
This is already coded into the game. The only reason you wouldn’t get it is if your relationship with the S.O. is low. If your relationship is high, they don’t mind the choice you made. (I will probably change this lololol)
EDIT: @VioletHikari where did your S.O. start calling you he? I haven’t found any variable errors in the interrogation scene.
@trevers17 After I told Val not to hurt Mike.
The issue was that I was using the variable for the S.O.'s “he/she” instead of the player’s. I never noticed this because I always play as a same-sex couple xD Fixed.
Oooh I love the concept going on. I got really into it! And I’m loving the character interactions. Looking forward to seeing this be made into an actual game!
I’m not usually a fan of having a preset SO, but Mike certainly seems nice.
My main problem thus far is that when Mike first said we should turn back, I agreed and… we just kept driving forwards anyway without any explanation…
(Also wondering why we left the “nice” city. I’m assuming that’ll get expanded on later, but for now it seems like a weird detail.)
I guess I could have made it more obvious, but basically, you were looking for a place to turn around because all the streets were barricaded off. I might fix up that section a bit to make that clearer. And yes, I will explain that detail, no worries!
Wait… if we are to have a relationship with the leader, Val, does that mean we are going to cheat on our spouse?
Guess you’ll just have to find out, won’t ya?
Unless the spouse dies… I do have a question for @trevers17; aside from the spouse and Val, do we get other RO in the game?
I’m kinda confused here. It seems like the game thinks I did the exact opposite of the things I actually did. Like, Val complaints that I was taking my time to leave, injured a soldier, and did a lot of damage. All of these things seem to indicate potential results of choices, but I specifically tried to leave as soon as things got dangers, avoided hurting the woman in the street, and stopped instead of ramming the barricade.