State of Decay 2’s world will be three times bigger than the first game

And not just that, but it also spans three separate maps so it’s about proportions and diversity, developer Undead Labs has revealed. Each map is apparently about the same size as the original game world, and features “slightly different environments, definitely different landmarks and locations, different layouts lending themselves to different strategies, unique home sites, and even different mission types”. And, you know, different places to go and die, because it’s a zombie apocalypse and nobody gets out alive. I know, because I watch The Walking Dead.

“Why’d we do it that way? Well, primarily, because it makes the game more fun. It really feels like you’re moving from one small town to another, and creates a tremendous sense of immersion. And perhaps counter-intuitively, it makes the world feel even bigger,” explains community manager Sanya Weathers in an update on the studio’s blog. “You know how on one map (even one three times the size as the original game’s) the longer you play, the more you start feeling deju vu with every mission? That’s less of an issue with separate maps. And see above about strategies and missions. Oh, and one more detail – the multiple map set up makes it easy to expand the world down the line, if you know what I mean.”

I think she means expansions, you guys.

The first State of Decay was one of those unexpected indie megahits that might’ve been a bit over-ambitious and perhaps too difficult in parts, but delivered something legitimately innovative and unique in its genre. My only real problem with it was the very conspicuous absence of multiplayer – but the sequel is making up for that with four-player co-op support. Or maybe it’s deliberately complicating things.

“Playing with your friends should be more fun, and you should be able to do more things,” Undead Labs boss Jeff Strain told Gamespot in a recent interview. “All of those entropy rules are still there. Eventually, mistakes will still be just as costly, and now you have more people to possibly make mistakes.”

State of Decay 2 is shambling out on PC and Xbox One sometime in 2017.