Sony is continuing its semi-crowdsourced campaign to help develop and promote its new zombie MMO H1Z1 with a series of compelling public-facing initiatives. Yesterday, the Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) team ran a 12-hour live-stream of gameplay from an early build on Twitch. It's still pretty rough around the edges, but you can watch some of the highlights in the video up top.
They also released a more polished-looking trailer for the game midway through the zombie-killing marathon:
But here's the part I'm really excited about. From his very first moments introducing the game to the public, SOE boss John Smedley has acknowledged that H1Z1 has a lot in common with the recent PC gaming sensation DayZ. Rather than dismiss these concerns, the SOE team seems to be inviting feedback from fans across gamer-friendly haunts like Twitch and Reddit to hear how they can make a zombie-killing experience that feels unique to H1Z1. Midway through the stream, for instance, SOE art director Mat Broome peeled away to tweak one of the zombie classes based on input from the Twitch audience. You can see him grossing up the zombie here:
This could all be an elaborately staged publicity stunt, of course. Or H1Z1 could just turn out to be not that much fun. But it's still nice to see a company as large as SOE take some cues from indie developers like DayZ creator Bohemia Interactive in trying to make a game that can stand out from the rest of the (very large) pack of undead-themed games.
Update 4/30/14: Now that the 12-hour live-streamed marathon is over, we've replaced the Twitch stream embedded yesterday with today's full YouTube videos so you can catch all the main gameplay shown off during the event.