It’s really disheartening when an enterprising indie developer with a great idea faces a major setback—particularly when it’s due to game code and equipment having been burgled. Several months ago, developer The Indie Stone suffered just such a theft-related setback, relating to the upcoming zombie-apocalypse-survival simulator, Project Zomboid. After some relatively quick damage control, the intrepid developer is once again hard at work finishing the game. Their latest (publicly shared) milestone comes in the form of a brand new lighting engine for the game, and a trailer to prove it.
The update isn’t simply cosmetic, either. Sure, the softer edges look great, but the new lighting scheme also allows the developers to more easily implement light-based gameplay mechanics as well. For example, some sort of light source is required to be able to see where you’re going, whether its a street lamp, or a flashlight with limited battery power. The game’s official development blog notes that portable light sources and batteries will be “prized commodities, especially when we flick off the switch at the local power plant!”
Furthermore, zombies are attracted to light, but being in the dark for too long might make your character depressed–something likely to affect interactions with NPCs via the also-recently-added conversation wheel (highlighted in more detail on IndieGames.com).
Project Zomboid grants immediate early access to those who pre-order the game for PC, Mac, or Linux, which can be done via Desura or Google Checkout for $7.99.