“My parents only let us watch old movies,” says Ash, as we’re rummaging through an abandoned pharmacy, looking for medication for our sick friends. “I didn’t even realise they were old, I was so mad at them when I found out Judy Garland was already dead.” It’s a small little character moment, nothing really to write home about, apart from the fact that Ash is a randomly generated character. Just like pretty much everyone else in State of Decay 2.
One of the things that makes State of Decay stand out is that you’re not playing as a person, but a community. You collect these survivors as you go along, with most of them squatting in your customisable safehouse. If the character you’re playing as gets tired or injured you switch to another. Each one has randomised quirks and skills, like Demond, an ex shop assistant who loves music and had learned to hot-wire cars during a misspent youth.