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Survival mode is the quickest way for players to begin their adventure. In the current version, the only available story is a default scenario placing the character in a random location in the town of Muldraugh or West Point in Knox County, Kentucky, USA. Survival mode zombies are not customizable, and their characteristics are predetermined. Players will be able to choose from a wider selection of stories in the future. If you die in this mode, you can still reload the map, but must create a new character to play.
The game world slowly changes. Zombie numbers slowly grow over 1-4 days, peaking on day 5. Water and power will shutoff eventually, depending on the game options selected; by then the player will need to rely on stockpiled water or find a well, and use up perishable food, since the refrigerators will no longer work.
While traversing the world, you will hear helicopters over head and gunshots from around the area. Currently, this is in place to facilitate the migration of zombie hordes. May change once NPC's are re-implemented into the game. You will also occasionally hear gunshots in around you. They currently have no use, but will be the beacon for NPC's in the future.
The player can choose from a selection of heads and skin tones, and a list of professions and traits. Negative traits give positive points while positive traits spend these points, so you must take negatives to obtain positives.
Zombie population can be selected as None, Low, Normal, High, Insane; distribution can be urban or uniform. In the future survivor populations can be altered. Day length can be between 30 minutes or 12 hours, or occur in real-time. Water and electricity shutoff can range from instantly to years, depending on the selection. Loot rarity options are Extremely Rare, Rare, Normal, Common, Abundant.
Zombie lore (characteristics) are alterable. Proper Zombies (the default) are italicized.
The Player Spawns in a house with two floors and crates of gear in the surrounding area. You then defend the house against incoming waves of zombies. Forest surrounds the area making it possible to simply run from the zombies into forest. However, the map is limited by an invisible wall at the very edges of the map.
Currently, Waves are time based rather than kill based.
[UPCOMING]In the next upcoming patch, there will be "challenges" added to Last Stand, as well as being able to create a character instead of the currently randomized character.
The first challenge of two so far. In this one, the horde forever comes after you with more and more zombies coming every minute.
The contents of the crates in and at the back of the house never change. Here's what they contain;
The contents of all other crates are randomized.
Challenge #2 This is the second of two challenges so far. This one has a bit more professional feel to it. Instead of an endless horde, it uses waves, which have time in between each wave to buy gear and permanent boosts. The amount of zombies for each round increase every round, so be prepared for it to get harder. Sometimes you will get lucky and zombies will spawn in the forest, so you will have some extra time to prepare and set-up your fort. There are now randomized gear in the crates which formally had preset tools. Instead, you can buy your gear by pressing 'o' using money which you gain by killing zombies. The gear and pricing are as follows:
You can also spend money to repair your items too. The cost varies from the usage of the tool.
Another aspect is to purchase a permanent boost. You can open the window by pressing 'p'. You can purchase skills and permanent bonus' here. Everything here costs xp, but luckily, xp is carried over from games, along with the permanent bonus'. the pricing of skills varies from the current level. The skills only change for Last Stand maps, not Survival or Sandbox. The pricing for the bonus' also vary from how many times upgraded.