In Generation Zero players will walk a tightrope between several different compelling systems. Armed only with wits and whatever weaponry can be scavenged from destroyed enemies, survival itself is a victory when being pursued by killer machines.
Though the Swedish countryside may seem peaceful, players will need to be on their guard at all times. Ambushes can happen any time, and in order to be prepared for the challenge, familiarization with the game’s key systems is a necessity.
The primary method for dealing with your foes is through appropriate ranged weapons. Each enemy has a variety of weak points allowing for strategic planning in order to preserve ammunition and player health. Learning these weak points and attack patterns from each class of enemy is key to success when cornered by killing machines.
In addition, Generation Zero has a large amount of weapons for the player to discover, equip, and use. The weapon’s quality and thereby accuracy is indicated through a system which shows the craftsmanship of the gun. Each weapon needs to be inspected prior to use, which can be done by observing what quality tier the weapon is in through the inventory as well as visual indicators such as rust.
To offset some of the game’s difficulty, death is not the end for the player character. Upon dying, the player can use an adrenaline shot to get back up, or if they are without any they can respawn at a nearby safe house, ready to re-enter the fight.
With enemies roaming the world, hiding may often be the best option, especially when under-equipped, facing an unfamiliar foe, or when the player may be fighting on unfavorable terrain.
Nearby buildings, vegetation, or the landscape itself can be used to break line of sight and hide from unsuspecting enemies. In addition, distractions such as boomboxes can be deployed to cause foes to inspect areas where the player is not, allowing players to withdraw from the area or set an ambush.
As players progress throughout the game, skills will be unlocked allowing a degree of customization to the character. Some skills simply upgrade certain aspects of combat ability, such as reload speed or increase damage resistance. Other skills are dependent on equipment in order to activate, for example the Enemy Marking skill requires binoculars to be present in the players’ inventory.
By investing in the skill tree and planning the upgrade path, players can customize their characters to play the way they want. This customization means that players in co-op can specialize, allowing each player to complement each other’s skills and choices.
In Generation Zero, a friend can be brought along at any time. With seamless co-op integration, players can pop in or out of games at any time. Up to four players can team up to take down killer machines, working together to exploit weak points, AI behaviour, or by setting up traps.
Players will progress through the plot together if they are at similar points in the story, however, if a player is at a different point entirely, that progress will not carry over to their game.
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