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My day 1 feedback on A18


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So I started a fresh game in A18 yesterday. All settings default save visuals, which are at ultra, solo play, Navezgane map.


I have 437 total hours played in 7DtD.


I am on day 6, haven't had my horde night. D


I did NOT powerlevel or the like; tried to play it as 'fresh' as possible, completed tutorial first, largely stuck to the 'starter house' I spawned next to.


I spawned eastern edge of map, a bit south of median, in desert biome.


General feedback:


Performance was great. Tiny hitches when loading big chunks, no problem at all.


Spears are A+, likely a huge boon to new players, javelin mechanic hugely satisfying.


New melee performance also great. At least at stone/iron levels the tradeoff between range and speed of spears vs killing power of sledge feels like a good balance, I carried both and switched between them a lot.


Bows feel a bit better, geared more toward hunting at least at lower levels.


Animals were threatening but the running mechanic was good. Hunting feels like, well, hunting and not a variant of zombie fighting.


Stamina/early resource collection feels 100x better. Thank you so much for that.


Loot doesn't feel too numerous but does feel a bit high. Day 2 I had a looted T2 iron sledge, spear, I had an AK and a stun baton, 3 pieces of iron armor. I was level 2 at the time. Food, water, schematics, crafting materials all in a good place loot wise - just enough to scrape by but I'm building a stockpile of solid weapons by day 2. Haven't even used it, saving it for 7day horde.


POIs feel great. I died 2 times in POIs, once due to tight confines I got myself into, the second to not paying attention. If I'm super cautious and on my A game I can safely do a POI without feeling 'cheesy', otherwise it's a big risk. The smaller locations have a bit of risk so I'm paying attention but it's just a couple sleepers. I approve of the balance of this as you work out 'I can handle this one right now' or 'I'm coming back here in the morning'.


Zombies are in a good place. The jog mechanic was a surprise that almost got me but it means I can't just casually solo down daytime zombies with a stone axe. They're always a bit threatening but not damage sponges. At least at my current level (level 4, day 6) I'm very happy with zombie population and performance. They're always around but not too numerous and as I said, POIs feel good.


Nights are serious ♥♥♥♥. The only reason I didn't die on night 1 while doing some 'scouting' was diving in the river to bandage and then losing my pursuers getting up a cliff, then climbing a water tower and hiding. I absolutely did NOT go out nights 2-5, as it should be.


The need to make repair kits for iron tools is less than ideal as it requires me to constantly hunt for bones to make glue to be able to craft. It functionally breaks the 'craft/farm raw materials/repair/craft' cycle.


Progression feels wonky. I'm doing some fighting but mostly crafting, repairs, exploration. I'm about to hit night 7 and because I didn't actively power level I absolutely 100% know I'm going to get utterly rekt, lose everything and get killed. No question. If I'd power leveled and played all the tricks I know I'd have been fine but if I'm just playing the game like I don't know all the tricks then in no way, shape or form will I have a fraction of the skills I need to survive even the first zombie horde night. It feels like progression is geared toward very experienced players who know exactly what build they want and how to maximize gains and exactly what night 7 base design they're working toward and not for newer players who are going to misspend some early points and in so doing be absolutely screwed.


I'll come back and update this as I get further along.


Current verdict:


I really, really enjoy it. Progression feels plodding and even just maintenance of iron tier tools feels like a chore but everything else is lovely.


Progression doesn't feel good.

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Update -


7 day horde wasn't too too terrible. I died, but did so away from my base and sorta expected it. I'd rather not have to game mechanics like that (put my stuff in a chest and ran when it was clear I was gonna get rolled so I lost nothing really) but 7 day horde is always going to be hard to balance. I'd still say progression is pretty slow, especially early on.


RESOURCE VEINS FOR MINING - Okay, really liked these. Obvious, simple to use and in the desert where I'm at they're relatively common - but you've got to juggle the heat with being out and mining. Or, of course, mining at night.


LOCKPICKING - why is there not more on this? Love it far more than having to slowly smash locks.


I've moved into floor 3 of Disong Tower, by day I move up, clearing carefully. By night I disassemble and gather resources from lower floors and the areas I've cleared. This is some quality 7DtD gameplay and feels very zombie apocalypse. My goal is to clear it and make a primary base on the top floor, all but fill the bottom floor with cement and use a parkour to ladder entrance from the outside. There's a huge amount of resources in the tower as there should be. Risks in manageable chunks and a solid long term goal to work on. The construction site nearby is going to become my 7 Day Horde engagement area.


A18 is my favorite so far. I changed progression to 125% while keeping the difficulty where it's at and that's feeling like a good spot for me. I still progress dramatically faster killing zombies than crafting and scavenging but I'm okay with that as it's a risk/reward balance.

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I think the most important factor before the first horde (or any other) is being prepared. This includes having enough luck to find proper equipment or craft it yourself. Surely you have to prepare something for killing the Zs (if you aim for that) or eluding them in some way. If you got a good gun then surely it's a matter of making a good enough standing ground to shoot it from. If you don't have good weapons, focus on traps and barricading yourself in.


All in all, i find A18 way better in many aspects to A17. Definitely a good update (even though some bugs need lovin).

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