When beginning a game of Project Zomboid, there is a choice of game mode: Story Mode and Sandbox mode.
Story mode currently consists of two options: (1) "Til Death Us Do Part", the story of Bob and Kate Smith, and (2) a filler for a community mod storyline.
Til Death Us Do Part
The player then begins the game with what was referred to up through v0.1.4c of the game as the 'tutorial', in which the player takes on the role of Bob Smith.
Sandbox mode consists of the player choosing for their character fore- and surname, skin color, hair style, traits and profession. In sandbox mode, the player's character loads in a random indoors location on the map.