State of Decay 2 developer Undead Labs says we shouldn’t expect to see a Battle Royale mode for the game as they feel the genre is already too crowded.
A few years ago, the survival genre was everywhere. Brought on by the popularity of Minecraft and DayZ, it seemed that Steam was awash with survival games. Out of that genre, with a desire to quicken the experience, we started to see Battle Royale build. It wasn’t long until PUBG and then Fortnite capitalized and took over the market in a way that is rarely seen. One game that firmly has its feet in the predecessor survival genre is State of Decay which is getting ready to release its sequel very soon.
With the direct throughline from the genres, it’s not unreasonable to think the game might look to get into Battle Royale. However, Unded Labs seem less convinced. Speaking to VG247, design director Richard Foge said that State of Decay 2 likely won’t push into the genre as there is just not enough new ideas there to plumb. He said:
I’ve been talking to a lot of journalists, and I’m asked often… ‘So, are you doing a battle royale game? Literally everyone else is. But it’s like there’s this field of wheat, right? And somebody built this perfect, glorious combine and went over that field of wheat. If somebody then comes up and asks you… ‘Would you also like to build a combine to go over this field of wheat?’ I’m like… there’s no wheat left!
These giant combines have been rolling through this space – there’s nothing left for us to harvest. I would much rather us focus on what we’re doing, trying to find something unique in the space to excite and inspire them. Some new thing as opposed to trying to follow what other folks are doing, trying to see what scraps I can get from that.
This analogy makes sense, and it is something I’ve been thinking about for a little while too. As companies clamour to get into the Battle Royale genre, I do begin to wonder if this space is already occupied by those that will continue to run it. Can a game become as big as PUBG or Fortnite? Maybe one, really inventive AAA game could fill a niche, but it is certainly looking crowded. It’s at least interesting that the State of Decay 2 team know what is best for them.
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