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State of Decay 2: Juggernaut Edition

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In this little post I would like to share with you everything I know about State of Decay 2, an open world survival game that I played the most in 2020. I purchased the 1st part earlier that year during the winter sale and enjoyed it quite a lot despite of numerous bugs and obvious flaws. So when the summer sale kicked in, I picked up the sequel without a moment of hesitation. Turns out, it's one of the best survival games I've ever stepped into.


Skip to the short version >>>>




Originally released in 2018, State of Decay 2 got two major updates - Heartland and Daybreak DLCs (they come with Juggernaut Edition). In this game you rule the community of survivors who have to take the risk and explore the city overrun by zombies in order to find various resources and strengthen the base.


Fight against incoming hordes, build facilities, craft ammo and other useful items, in other words, do everything to survive in the post-apocalyptic world. The campaign doesn't have a real story, which is unfortunate, but has an ending. As soon as a member of your team earns enough XP you can promote them to Leader, and from there on, your progression will follow one of the four different ways. You will use the survival strategy that offers the leader, depending on their personal traits:


Trader (create a friendly relations with other survivors and trade goods with them)
Builder (expand your community and recruit as many people as possible)
Sheriff (restore the peace in the town by resolving conflicts between communities)
Warlord (arm your people and use the brutal force to secure the area)


But you're not forced to end the game. You might as well focus on completing bounties or side missions and see for how long you can keep your community alive. And here comes the major letdown: as soon as you discover the map and gather all possible items, there's nothing left to take. It makes sense though, as zombies don't usually leave the resources for you. To continue enjoying the game you can move to another map or start all over again.




In State of Decay 2 you can take the role of any member of your community. More than that, the game doesn't let you control one character for too long: with time they become tired and injured what drastically decreases their stamina and health. Everyone needs to rest and recover from traumas.


There are several skills that you level up when playing as a certain personage. They also can learn one special skill (gardening, mechanics, medicine, programming etc) to unlock new facilities, upgrades and useful features. To make your community the most efficient, you need to choose wisely your new recruits.


What makes the game more challenging is that each character has only one life. They don't re-spawn and you can't manually save the progression to roll back.




The outside world is filled with hungry for blood creatures that we can separate on normal, armored (stronger) zombies and freaks:


Bloater (explodes a toxic gas as you approach him)
Screamer (attracts all nearby zombies with his loud scream)
Feral (fast and highly dangerous freak that spots you even in the darkness)
Juggernaut (big and difficult to kill creature)


And there are also plague zombies and freaks who infect your survivors. Blood plague can only be healed with a special cure. It's rare and not so easy to be crafted, so you should better avoid the danger and watch your back.





In State of Decay 2 you can't craft weapons like in Dead Rising, Dead Island or Dying Light, for example, but you can find them almost at each location of the map. You're able, however, to produce an ammo and attachements, such as suppressor. Every tool breaks down with time so you have to change or repair it regularly. We can separate the weapons on several categories:


Close combat (used for takedowns)
Melee (blunt, bladed and heavy weapons)
Firearms (pistols, rifles, smg and shotguns)




You can find many items but there are only 5 main resources: food, medicine, ammo, materials and fuel. Money don't mean anything here, the only currency that's matter is influence. You gain it by killing zombies, completing missions and helping other survivors. Influence can be used for trading, claiming bases, using special abilities and a lot more.


Your base is the place where people eat, heal, craft and restore their forces before going back outside. To create the most safe and functional base you have to construct different facilities using the limited amount of slots. Map contains several buildings that you can turn into HQ, so you can select the one which suits you the most. Other constructions can serve as outposts, providing you with safe place and resources.


From time to time your base will be attacked by hordes of zombies. The more noise you make, the higher your risk is. Noise level depends on many factors and is hard to manage. Out of protection, you have to provide your people with things that can boost their morale. Too much infestations, low amount of food, lack of beds, conflicts will lead to negative consequences. 




Good news: you're not alone out there! Throughout your journey you'll meet other groups of survivors. Help them to stand against zombies and become allies or steal their supplies to make them your enemies. But remember that friendly relations give you a lot more advantage, even if confidence is hard to gain. You can trade with other communities, recruit them to your team and a lot more.





There are 4 maps in the main game, and you can move between them at any step of your progression. This option will allow you to continue your adventure when the current location becomes low on resources, if not totally empty. Each maps has unique bases so it's interesting to discover all of them.




You will definitely need the car to travel faster and carry more items. But you have to drive carefully, because vehicles create a lot of noise and attract nearby flesh eaters. They can even destroy your car, so don't allow the damage to hit the critical level.





Developers update the game frequently, adding new (and time limited) bounties. It's not required to complete them unless you want to obtain good cars, weapons and clothes. Bounties add a bit more challenge to the game and increase the playtime.



Heartland DLC


This DLC is basically a story mode which takes place on the re-visioned version of the map from the first State of Decay. If you haven't played it, do not worry. It won't spoil your experience, since there is just a little connection between two parts. The Heartland has several features which are not available in the campaign mode or can only be found on the highest difficulty. For example, all zombies are infected here... even freaks.



Daybreak DLC


Daybreak is a horde mode where you need to survive 7 waves alone or with 3 other players. While this DLC is repetitive, it allows you to unlock special weapons, explosives, facilities and highly trained recruits for the base game.


Steam | Website | Youtube

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State of Decay 2 is an open-world game with zombies, base and resources management.



- Beautiful soundtrack
- 4 different maps to visit (+1 in the Heartland DLC)
- Good base and resources management
- Has replayability value
- Customizable difficulty


- Might become repetitive
- Lacks of unique missions
- Co-op feature is not well integrated
- Requires Xbox Live account
- Doesn't have in-game chat



Is State of Decay 2 worth playing?
Yes, if you like survival games with resources and base management.


Do I need to play the first part of State of Decay before trying out State of Decay 2?
No, you can begin with SoD2. Only The Heartland DLC has a connection with SoD, but you will understand the story anyway.


Is State of Decay 2 difficult?
It might be challenging on the higher difficulty levels, and you can customize them to make the game harder or easier.


How long is State of Decay 2?
It depends on what you're doing. If you want to discover everything the game has to offer, you'll have more than 100 hours of gameplay for sure.



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