NetEase has released its interesting, new update for Rules of Survival and we have mixed feelings about it. The most exciting part of this update was the zombie mode. With the right features a zombie mode would bring a unique experience to the competitive scene. Today we want to address whether the zombie mode fulfils the requirements from an eSports point of view.
When you enter the menu screen you have the option to choose 3 modes: Ranked, Custom, & Zombies. In the zombie mode you can either play Solo, Duo, or with a Squad. If you play Solo then some randomly selected players will start the game as zombies. Like all players, zombies can choose where to land and parachute accordingly. Once zombie players are on the ground they will immediately notice that they have unusual powers.
As a zombie you can jump extremely high and even reach the top of buildings. Your speed increases as a zombie and gives you a feeling that you own the battlefield. In addition, you can drive vehicles just as any human player can. However, you cannot equip weapons and you are limited to your claw only. Using your claw to attack human players means you will need to be in close range to them and that’s where your speed and jumping powers come into play. It takes you an average of 2 hits to kill a human player so as a zombie you will not have a problem dealing with armed humans if you know how to utilize your abilities. Another good feature about zombies is that health regenerates very quickly when you are damaged. It takes approximately 5 seconds to recover from 10% to full health.
In Solo you will eventually fight other zombies for survival. If you play as a Squad, the game might randomly select some of your squad members as zombies and as a team you will need to take advantage of each others abilities in order to play strategically.
This does sound like a fun mode but we believe NetEase could have brought a different element to the game. It would have been refreshing to see all players spawning as humans and where AI zombies are spawning on the map making it even more difficult for the human survivors to survive. Being randomly selected as a zombie does not give the player control of his skills when he does not know in what form he will spawn. Therefore, we do not believe the zombie mode, as it is now, to be viable for a true competitive tournament. On the other hand, it does bring an interesting element to the game and more diversity, if you will, to give a team the ability to coordinate based on the form they spawned in and the powers they have.
Finally, we do appreciate that the developers are introducing new content to the game constantly and we actually enjoyed the zombie mode. It is an extremely fun experience and we do not see any problem with it from a casual player’s point of view. We do, however, believe that the developers could have made it more challenging for players by introducing AI zombies to spawn on the map and make it harder for the human survivors to last. With such a mode, not only every player will need to fear other human players but the zombie element will make it harder for them to remain in hiding and renders Rules of Survival much more competitive than it already is.