Developer Indie Stone has tested a multiplayer update for Project Zomboid and it's a lot closer to reality than fans thought. The team realised no multiplayer was hurting its appeal to newcomers.
Currently there's no "maximum player count" as they continue to run tests, but 10-12 has run comfortably. Multiplayer is just to let us play single-player "with multiple people," that's it.
While someday there might be PvP gang warfare on the streets amidst the zombies, Indie Stone aren't focusing much on that beyond a more co-operative experience.
By default the new multiplayer will be set to co-op (PvE) as opposed to player versus player. NPCs within the game are still "very much in development." However the team could no longer ignore the pleas for multiplayer as it became "clearer and clearer not only that MP is of such massive demand, but that the lack of multiplayer has had a not insignificant effect on the ‘must-haveness’ of Zomboid to a large chunk of gamers out there," they said.
"We need to make clear that this in no way impacts the Indie Stone’s massive focus on single-player for this game. Remember that outside of game design, Will, one of the co-owners of Indie Stone, as well as PZ dev RingoD’s sole development responsibility on the game is single player story and NPC writing and scripting, so you can bet they will be given a ton of attention." Project Zomboid is not heading for DayZ territory.
"As a development team we vehemently uphold the principle that a game should not punish those who wish or have to play alone with less features and scope, and we are the first to complain when an RPG series we like goes all ‘MMO’ and more or less ends our interest and participation there and then."
"Our fondest hope is that once NPCs are added to the game, most people would choose to leave them enabled as part of a multiplayer server, so integral as they will feel to the dynamics of the game. In short, multiplayer will always remain just that: A way of playing the single player game with multiple people, and we’ll never rest on it as a crutch and let single player features slide," continued Indie Stone.
Check out their latest Project Zomboid "not far off."to learn more. The next update is