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Halloween Treats

And a many hauntings to you, our dear, lingering Survivors!

WARNING: This blog post contains images of amazing new game content coming to The Dead Linger, as well as information about some phenomenal new things. Be sure to absorb it all slowly so you don’t overdose on virtual eye-candy.

As you shamble the streets tonight begging for candy, we’d like to dish out some candy of our own, from cool surprises to information about the next few updates coming to The Dead Linger. Whether you be dead, alive, or somewhere in between, read on to find out what we have in store this Hallow’s Eve. Tonight is a night of spooky shenanigans and tasty treats! We are celebrating many things today.

The Dead Linger’s Anniversary

First and foremost, today, October 31st (Halloween!) is the anniversary of The Dead Linger’s first Alpha release, Build 001. It was a moment we will never forget, and a moment that taught us a lot. To celebrate this day, Parker has carved you a jack-o-lantern. It’s not the most conventional jack-o-lantern, but it does light up the night just the same.

The Anniversary Achievement

And on that same note, Hotfix 10h will be bringing the first achievement to The Dead Linger! If you play The Dead Linger when Hotfix 10h releases (and until the end of November 9th) you will be awarded an Anniversary achievement. All you have to do is run the game after Hotfix 10h is released and before November 9th has ended. Do that, and you’re golden. Or… Whatever color the achievement is.

Oh, it’s white. Look, there it is. The achievement is white. With some red on it.

This achievement can be obtained at the same time every year (October 31st to November 9th,) but you may want to pick it up as soon as possible or you’ll have to wait for quite a long time to get it again.

The Sandswept Store is now OPEN!

We now have a store where you can buy T-shirts and stuff.

This is something we (and by we, we mean Geoff) have been putting off for a long while now. The Sandswept Store is now open for all your merchandise pleasure!

“Merchandising, merchandising, where the real money from the game is made. The Dead Linger-the T-shirt, The Dead Linger-the Coloring Book, The Dead Linger-the Lunch box, The Dead Linger-the Breakfast Cereal, The Dead Linger-the Flame Thrower.* The kids love this one.”

*We may not actually have all that stuff. But go take a look and see what we do have!

Please mind the dust as we clean it up. It’s a bit ugly right now, but we’ll give it a nicer banner and background when we get the time. Note: The store is hosted by Spreadshirt, so please direct any support questions to them regarding purchases made, shipping, and so on.

Hotfix? More like Coldfix.

Okay, okay. So Hotfix 10h took a bit longer than anticipated. Such is the way of things. In the immortal words of Shigeru Miyamoto; “A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad.”

Fortunately for you guys, we’ve been working since our last release (October 4th) non-stop. We have quite literally worked 7 days a week since that time. Richard looks like an actual zombie at this point, but we assume it’s just a Halloween thing. We do try to check for breathing every once in awhile. Or at least poke him with a stick.

On the code side, we’ve overhauled the entire way we do network synchronization and deliver content between survivors in multiplayer. This is no simple undertaking, and given the nature of our massive, procedurally-generated world, no one should expect it to be.

In further good news, the artists are well into content. We have about 80% of the content finished for builds 11 through 13. There is a lot of stuff on the horizon. You want a small taste? Here you go.






Yeah. So all that (and a lot more!) is coming over the next 2 or 3 large builds. (Builds 11 through 13.)

Oh, and how are you guys digging the new logo? Let us know on the forums!

We also heard something about Steam Trading Cards coming soon… Hmm. Let’s ask the Zombull what he thinks about that.

“Moo.”

Well said, Zombull.

Bonus Candy – DETOUR is 50% off, forever! Again!

As a small gesture of our thanks for the years of support and fun times, our first and little-known title, DETOUR, is now super cheap on Steam — forever! You can pick up the regular game for $2.49, and the 4-pack for $7.49! You can learn more about DETOUR on the Steam store page, or by visiting the DETOUR page on our main site. You can also check out some of our old-school DETOUR dev vlogs on our YouTube channel.


That’s all for now. Be sure to post your comments on the new stuff (link below) and prepare yourselves for the bright and glorious future of The Dead Linger.

Trick-or-Treat, Survivors!

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Survivor Spotlight: BKDiesel


Hi Survivors!

I know, I know, it’s a Monday. So what am I doing posting a Survivor Spotlight on a day other than Friday? The only excuse I can give is that I’ve been frantic wrapping up my duties here at Sandswept and preparing for my new life abroad.

So without further ado, I am super excited to introduce our October Spotlight – Griffin McVicar. You would know this gentleman by his handle, BKDiesel. Not only does he like a bunch of cars I’ve never heard of (DeLorean? Kodiak?), but he’s also from Columbus, Ohio, where there are 32 seconds to a minute, 159 minutes to an hour, and Saturday is called “John Glenn Day”. Read on to learn more about BKDiesel!

FEMME: So how did you come up with your handle?
BKDIESEL: I don’t actually remember. I’ve been going by BKDiesel for years. Before that it was BlitzkriegPunk, so the BK probably came from that. As for the Diesel part, I was obsessed with the book The Road by Cormac McCarthy, and in the trailer they showed the cannibals driving this big, mean looking diesel truck. The Appalachian in me instantly fell in love with that truck. I think it’s like a Chevy Kodiak or a GMC Topkick or something.

Anyway, I really don’t like my username but I’m kind of known by it in some parts of the internet so its stuck now. I usually just go by BK nowadays

FEMME: How did you first hear about The Dead Linger?
BKDIESEL: I found out about Project Zomboid a few centuries ago and lurked on their forums a bit, mostly the suggestions forum. Then someone posted a thread about The Dead Linger, which I believe was met with mild suspicion and coffee shop-esque dismissal. I thought it looked pretty groovy though, so I stuck around a bit.

FEMME: What is your favorite way to play The Dead Linger?
BKDIESEL: Well the first thing I do when I log in is panic, especially if there are zombies around. Then I run in a panicked zig-zag to the nearest house to try and find a weapon. Once I have whatever terrible weapon was in the house, I head to the kitchen to find food, at which point glass breaks somewhere and I log out and throw my computer out of my window. It’s not a very cost-effective play style, I’ll admit that.

FEMME: What is your favorite zone in The Dead Linger?
BKDIESEL: I’d have to say the farms. Granted I’m mostly operating on version 009c info, but I loved always having the .22 rifle in the barn and a convenient sniper’s nest up in the silo. Once I was up there I was up there for life though, as I never could master the delicate art of climbing down ladders without falling to my death.

FEMME: Are you a supporter of PvP in The Dead Linger or do you prefer more cooperative play?
BKDIESEL: I’m heavily in favor of cooperation, in TDL or any game. That’s mostly because I’m horrible at PvP though. I just think the idea of creating something with other people, whether it’s a reliable group of Survivors or a plywood and 2×4 empire is much more of an achievement than “lol noscope 1337” or whatever kids say these days. I’d much rather be with a poorly equipped group of friends having fun, whether we’re doing well at the game or not, because that’s what is important. A lot of people see games as something that they have to try to be best at, and if you can have fun that way, then more power to you. But I’m just not that competitive.

FEMME: What has been your most memorable moment in The Dead Linger so far?
BKDIESEL: It’d have to be in one of the earlier builds where there were water towers everywhere. That just cracked me up, I don’t even know why. You could stand on a hill with zombies skating backwards all around you and see as many as 7 water towers from that one spot. It’s why my signature on the forums is what it is.

FEMME: I always wondered about your signature! So what do you think about The Dead Linger now that it’s on Steam? Do you believe the Big Engine Change was released “too early”?
BKDIESEL: Well it’s easier to install, that’s for sure. I love me some Steam, so being able to play TDL on there is nice. I’m still waiting to see if one of the upcoming fixes will fix my framerate issues, although they could already be fixed, I’ve been away from my computer for a few days.

As for the release of the BEC update and should it have been postponed, no. It wasn’t that long ago that it was unheard of for people to get their hands on the alpha versions of games, and I commend Sandswept and other devs for giving us consumers the opportunity to watch the process unfold. People are going to complain about the game either way, and this way those bugs and surprise game-breaking features get found easier.

FEMME: What features are you most looking forward to in Build 011?
BKDIESEL: I’m looking forward to getting some of the features from 009 back, but bows and crossbows sound neato. I’m more of a sledgehammer person, but I’ll give them a go. Also I heard there’s a new building of some sort, so that will be cool.

FEMME: If you could have anything in The Dead Linger named after you (or name something in The Dead Linger yourself), what would it be and what would you name it?
BKDIESEL: A train. Trains are cool. Either that or a truck like the one I mentioned earlier from The Road. Those are if I used my username, BKDiesel, to name them. If I could just name an item anything, then I’d name an old bolt-action shotgun Rodentbane Destroyer of Vermin… or maybe just Ratkiller.

FEMME: What do you like most about The Dead Linger?
BKDIESEL: The open world, definitely. Zag promised no locked doors and that is what I’ve always wanted in a game. Go anywhere and do anything. The lack of special zombies and infected is great, too. Zombies are a metaphor for the slow inevitability of death, and speeding them up or changing them for the sake of high-speed zombie action and calling it a zombie game is like saying, “Yo, Romeo! Where you at dude?!” is a Shakespeare quote.

FEMME: Are you in a clan?
BKDIESEL: Oh… crap, yeah. I kinda forgot, thanks for reminding me. I’m in The Knights Templar, Trefleh’s RP clan. Not much going on now since the game isn’t really suitable for such shenanigans, but once the game gets going it’ll be great. And we are always recruiting, especially my subfaction.

FEMME: If you could give one piece of advice to the Sandswept devs, what would it be?
BKDIESEL: Live every week like it’s shark week. They seem to have a handle on everything. The game is still in really early alpha so it’s hard to judge if they’re going in the direction they want to go in as efficiently as they can. But I couldn’t have more faith in anyone when it comes to making this game the way it deserves to be made.

FEMME: Now, if you could give one piece of advice to the Sandswept community, what would it be?

BKDIESEL: Don’t do or say anything that you wouldn’t want said to you. Sometimes people recreate the same threads, and sometimes people have differing opinions. That doesn’t change the fact that those are people and should be treated with the same respect that you would want them to show you.

FEMME: What are some of your favorite video games?
BKDIESEL: I’ve been big on this one game called Shores of Hazeron, and Dwarf Fortress is always awesome. If you think TDL looks bad don’t play those games.

According to Steam I’ve logged 14.9 days of playing Mount & Blade: Warband, and I probably have a similar number on Crusader Kings II.

My all time favorite, though is Starcraft. The first one. I got that game when I was 8 after watching my cousin play it. My mom let me buy it despite my enthusiastic description about how the alien buildings bleed when you shoot them (why would I even) and I played that game constantly for years.

You may be thinking “Oh, Ol’ BK is great at strateg-” NO. I’m horrible at strategy and cheated my way through the campaign. I can type “power overwhelming” faster than anyone I know. I spent all that time with the campaign editor, making levels and fortresses and such. Later on I got Sim City 4 which worked way better for what I actually wanted to play. Still cheated though.

FEMME: Haha, that’s great! So what video game genre do you enjoy playing the most?
BKDIESEL: Anything with a character customization mechanic. I loved APB for that. Open worlds are second though. I love wandering around, sometimes stopping at stoplights and pulling over for the cops, who often shoot you anyway.

FEMME: What is your current rig?
BKDIESEL: This one’s embarrassing. It’s a prebuilt computer from Acer. It was actually really good for 2010 and a good value, but by today’s standers its rubbish. My computer before it though was held together with duct tape and zip ties so it was a definite upgrade.

FEMME: What are some of your hobbies outside of gaming?
BKDIESEL: Well, I wanted to get into doing Let’s Plays on YouTube before my mic broke, but I guess that still counts as gaming. I do music from time to time, nothing fancy. I’m just a hobbyist, but every once in a while I make something I share with people via Soundcloud. I’m also a terrible bass player and a bit of a handyman (I built said bass from a kit. I named her Helga). I’m also an aspiring indie game dev, though I just started like a month ago and I’m still figuring out Unity and learning through YouTube videos.

FEMME: Name 3 things you have on your bucket list.
BKDIESEL: I’d live to visit Scotland, the motherland. My family is big on heritage and stuff and I’e inherited that whole thing.

I’d also like to own a DeLorean someday. They still make them new using a bunch of old parts that were in a warehouse for forever, so a brand new 1981 one would be great. They’ll run out of parts someday though.

Third would be getting my game finished to the point that I’d get to watch someone play it on YouTube. That has to be the highlight of a career, seeing other people getting enjoyment out of something you created.

FEMME: Is there anyone you’d like to give a shoutout to?
BKDIESEL: Well at this point I’d just like to say that it’s been an honour to be not only the Spotlit Survivor for October, but also the last one interviewed by Dana. You’ll be missed by everyone here. I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again with my fancy but temporary soapbox: Good luck in Spainsville.

FEMME: Thanks for the well wishes and your support of Sandswept! It was a pleasure :)

If you would like to contact BKDiesel, you can send him a PM through our Forums.

Be sure to follow him on Twitter, listen to his music on Soundcloud, check out his Steam profile, and view his YouTube channel!

Linger on, Survivors.

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A Fond Farewell (And A New Hippo)

Hello Survivors!
We have two very unique announcements; we say hello to a new member of the Sandswept team, and we say goodbye to another.

We’ll start off by introducing a new, rather amphibious member of the Sandswept team. Joining our ranks is a man by the name of David Armond, known on the forums as Bloated Hippo. We chatted with him for a bit to see what he’s all about!

Hello David! Welcome to the Team!

DA: Thank you! Feels good to be here.

Great to have you! Tell us a little about yourself! Where do you hail from?

DA: The swamps of Africa; the hippo’s natural habitat. But then I moved to California, near San Francisco.

Fantastic! Always happy to have a hippo on the team, hungry or otherwise! Anything else we should know about you?

DA: I love video games! This year I’ve been traveling to a bunch of game conventions and expos, meeting and making friends with tons of developers. I’m the founder – the Head Hippo – of Bloated Hippo where I work on my own personal game development projects in my spare time.

What will you be doing at Sandswept, and how will this affect The Dead Linger?

DA: I’ll be in charge of consolidating bug reports and prioritizing them so that our programmers can go in and work their magic and fix them, as well as playtesting and finding bugs myself. Nobody likes bugs, so my duty is to help make The Dead Linger become as smooth as possible.

Well, it’s great to have you on board! We look forward to working alongside you to improve The Dead Linger! What should survivors know to help you do your job more effectively?

DA: Read the forum stickies before posting and check if an issue is already reported. If not, write it up and throw it my way! Don’t be afraid to report bugs! It’s Alpha!

Excellent! Thanks David!

You can follow David on twitter at @bloatedhippo, check out his personal site at bloatedhippo.com, and you’ll find him gathering bugs on the forums as Bloated Hippo. As usual, be sure to report all bugs in David’s domain: The Support & Bug Reporting forum!

——————————————————————————————————————-

Now for a somber farewell.

Here at Sandswept we treasure our time together, and we consider ourselves extremely lucky to spend every week (and often weekends) with great people and creative developers, striving to build the games we love. The creativity and care that we put into our projects is the same creativity and care that we put into the Sandswept community. With an attempt to match the same warmth and light that she brought within our community, today we’re giving a very fond farewell to Dana Churchill; our producer, community manager, and a very good friend.

Here’s a few words from Dana;

—————–
Hi everyone,

These past few years at Sandswept have been a wonderful experience, especially due to the support and love I’ve received from all of you. Although it has been an honor to work on a game that so many of you tell me you have been waiting years for, I have decided to pursue another career and leave my position here at Sandswept. In a few short weeks, I will be moving to Spain to start my new career as an English teacher. Though I am stepping down as producer and will no longer be involved in the development of TDL, I will still linger around the community as a Forum Moderator. I appreciate all of the support you have given me while at Sandswept.

Gracias por todos. ¡Te veré en España!
<3 Fem
-----------------

Dana will still remain part of Sandswept until her departure on October 18th. Thank you all for your support thus far, and we give our very special thanks to Dana for all her great work in the community. Please don't hesitate to give a warm welcome to David and leave your regards to Dana on the forums by clicking this link here.

Linger on, Survivors.

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Build 10 – “The Big Engine Change”

Hello Survivors!
Build 10 is finally here! Below you can find all kinds of things, ranging from instructions to acquire the new update, to a fancy dev vlog, to known issues, to patch notes, to instructions on where to report bugs and issues you find in The Dead Linger alpha! Read on, read on – and watch the video! What are you waiting for?!

So, now you want to play, right? Follow the instructions below! You will either fall into categories A, B, or C.

A) If you already have a Steam version of The Dead Linger sitting in your Steam library, you’re all set. Just head to your Steam client, click on Library, and play The Dead Linger!

B) If you pre-ordered before Build 10, but never got a Steam key, please check this blog post and read it very thoroughly for instructions on how to unlock your Steam key.

C) If you have not bought The Dead Linger, you can now pick it up directly on Steam! Click here to go to the Steam store page!

I found a bug! What do I do?
If you find a bug or error, please report it on our Support & Bug Reporting forum. Please read the pinned topics (stickies) before you post, though!

Now, with all releases, even (especially?) releases on a new engine, we’ll have our share of bugs, crashes, faults, and other nasty shenanigans. Luckily for you, some of them we get to know about in advance and are on The List to get fixed. Those are listed below.

KNOWN ISSUES:

  • First and foremost, some things from 009c are MISSING. There are also brand new things you’ve never seen before! Rest assured, all features and polish from 009c WILL return over a short duration of time. We still have a big list of “stuff left to do” and we will be hotfixing them in, and rolling them into the big 011 update coming later on. (More on that later!)
  • IMPORTANT: Multiplayer is heavily untested as of this release. There may be lots of client-server sync issues. We can not promise anything in multiplayer will work exactly as intended, nor can we promise that multiplayer will function for a long duration of time. That said, you are welcome to try, and we’d love to hear your feedback, and please report all issues you find.
  • IMPORTANT: There are currently no dedicated servers. You will have to host a server on your client and others will be able to join that.
  • Many animations are not in place. If you’re holding a weapon funny, don’t sweat it. Report it, and we’ll make sure it gets fixed soon!
  • Some inventory items get squished. Please don’t make fun of them for it, they’re trying their best to be the correct shape.
  • Sometimes when traveling far, the game will decide to reject your egress like a scorned lover. Please be gentle to the game – she doesn’t mean it. She’s just going through some stuff right now.
  • The multiplayer chat box currently cuts off messages. Keep it short, people!
  • Abandon all hope, ye who enter here. If you are afraid of bugs, turn back now. You’ve been warned.
  • Zombies will sometimes just stop caring about you entirely. It’s not that they wouldn’t care if they could, it’s just that they’re zombies.
  • Zombies will sometimes do crazy acrobatics when trying to get through windows to eat your tasty flesh.
  • A lot of sound effects are missing right now. We didn’t have time to put them in. We don’t even have anything funny to say about this one.
  • Guns are a bit bipolar when it comes to operating. If you treat them right, they’ll be nice to you in return. And mean to zombies.
  • Ammunition boxes generally contain one round in them, or something. Again, guns and ammo are kind of strange right now.
  • There are no ironsights yet. You will simply zoom, without the visible ironsights. You can use the crosshair for now!
  • Sometimes the framerate just decides to stop rating frames, and instead does the opposite thing.
  • Sometimes when rejoining a world, there will be duplicate objects, such as doors. Or sometimes the terrain will appear where it really isn’t. Sometimes objects will float in the sky. Tree, come down. You are not a cloud, you are a tree.
  • Some stuff, in general, doesn’t feel quite like 009 yet. The survivor is a bit too tall, the camera bob is a bit too bobby, and the .. Well, you get the picture! Some things just aren’t the same, and that’s okay! We’re working on them, and they’ll be better than they’ve ever been before!
  • Sometimes when playing multiplayer, survivors will see different things from other survivors. This is normal – for Alpha, anyway.
  • ALL of these issues will be fixed sooner than later. Welcome to Alpha! Enjoy the ride, and don’t hesitate to leave bug reports and general feedback!

NEW STUFF!:

  • We said we wouldn’t have patch notes, but we decided that it’s just too good to pass up some of the good news! This list covers most of the new things we’ve added that weren’t present in 009c.
  • There is a new “drop” icon over items when they are eligible to be dropped from the inventory.
  • There is a brand new console! Press ~ and behold! There are many new features, such as copy/paste and using the arrow keys to scroll through previous commands. The FPS counter and your current world seed is also shown along the top of this window. We will add more commands and functionality to this window as time goes on.
  • There is a new console command for server hosts. It is called timerate. It works as such: “timerate ” For example, you would type “timerate 60 60″ and press enter. This will make 60 second days and 60 second nights. (That is the minimum seconds allowed as well.)
  • There are now blinds on windows, and houses have taller windows.
  • Improved day-night cycle and lighting
  • New status bars in the inventory (hunger, infection risk, etc.) They look a bit crazy, but we’ll fix that up in a bit.
  • Voronoi regions are now 512 meters (on average), down from 1024 meters.
  • The sun now produces sun shafts.
  • Steep cliffs now have a cool rocky texture.
  • Vastly improved Server Browser. (And many more improvements to come!)
  • Vastly improved key bindings menu.
  • Much better control over graphical settings. Not as many or as detailed as we would like just yet, but it’s getting there! We do NOT recommend running on the lowest settings available – things get a little trippy.
  • A lot of other minor improvements have been made to certain systems, and much, much more to come!

That’s all for now! Stay tuned to our Twitter for news on hotfixes. We predict we will be hotfixing through the weekend before beginning development on Build 011. Keep an ear close, and keep throwing us feedback! We’ve just started a new chapter with The Dead Linger releasing on Steam. Thank you all for your support on Greenlight, and your continued support as we develop. Be sure to spread the word to your friends, and maybe even a few enemies. We’ll let the dead sort the living.

Linger on Survivors!

Click here to report a bug!
And click here to comment on this blog post!

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Pre-Orders: Get Your Steam Codes Here!

Hello Survivors!
We assume you’ve heard the news regarding The Dead Linger’s (Alpha) September 27th Early Access release on Steam! If you haven’t, check out our blog post and video!

If you’ve pre-ordered or otherwise owned The Dead Linger before our Steam release, you are eligible for a free copy of the game on the Steam platform. We want to give these codes out in advance so you’re ready to go when the game is live on the 27th. Read on for instructions on how to get your code!

There are three groups of people this blog post does not apply to just yet;
a) If you pre-ordered the game very recently (~24 hours) you may not have a code available yet. We will be adding your new purchase to the database soon. Check back periodically!
b) If you do not own The Dead Linger, there is no Steam code available for you. You can still pre-order it through this page, or wait for the release and buy it through Steam on the 27th.
c) If you already have a unique Steam code from us, such as our dev team or other internal testers, you can just ignore this entirely.

INSTRUCTIONS TO REDEEM YOUR CODE:
1) Log in to Sandswept.net, via the forum log in. This is the same log in as your game account.
2) Once you are logged in, go to THE STEAM CODE PAGE and your Steam code will be provided for you. Voila! [If it says you don't have a code when you already own the game, email us and let us know!]
3) You will require a Steam account to redeem and play The Dead Linger Alpha – Build 10 and onwards.
4) You first must download the Steam client and run it. Log in with your Steam account.
5) Along the top of the Steam client, click “Games” then click “Activate A Product On Steam…”
6) In the Product Activation window click “Next”
7) Click “I Agree”
8) Put your code in the Product Code field – either by copying and pasting, or entering it by hand.
9) You should be shown a section that says “Activation Successful!” at the top. Click “Next”
10) You will be shown a section with the amount of disk space TDL will take to install. Verify that you have enough disk space, then click “Next.”
11) The Dead Linger is now in your Steam library! It will unlock for download and play on the 27th. The game will not be playable until the official release on the 27th.

All future updates will be downloaded via Steam.

Thanks for your patience as we work towards our Steam release, and we look forward to seeing you on the 27th!

The Dead Linger Steam Store Page

Linger on, Survivors!

Click here to comment!

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