Microsoft has debuted State of Decay 2, its latest zombie-themed survival game, with some deeper systems under its revamped gameplay. Capitalizing on the franchise's strengths, the successor debuts some promising prospects while driving a heavier emphasis on developing a sustainable community.

One of State of Decay 2's largest components is its base building, providing players with the ability to shape handcrafted settlements reflected in the game's world. But packing deeper mechanics than the original, for some, there may be a lot to learn.

State of Decay 2 beginner's guide: Exploration, base building, and survival

Getting started with bases in State of Decay 2

Establishing, growing and maintaining a base is key to survival in State of Decay 2, providing a home to your digital society. Inside a base, you can accommodate people's needs, gather resources and advance the group's available technology.

In the game's opening hours, you'll be guided through the steps of establishing your first outpost and fostering a community within. Going forward new opportunities to expand your settlement will surface, through the "facilities" system.

After establishing a successful base, you're not stuck there forever either. Over time new locations can be unlocked, which can change in layout and size.

State of Decay 2 facilities explained

Facilities are a modular backbone to State of Decay 2 construction, which add increased functionality to your base. Installed facilities can be further developed through optional upgrades, granting additional alterations or improvements. Facilities can also be damaged by zombies and must be maintained through costly repairs.

However, managing facilities doesn't come cheap - building, upgrades, and repairs all require resources or the game's main currency, "Influence." Many of these are also subject to build times, and since offline progression has been retired, these are tracked through real-time in-game.

Facilities are managed by visiting a dedicated menu, which employs an abstracted view of your base. A modular card system is used for viewing and upgrading facilities, with a cursor to reveal potential actions for a selected area. New upgrades can be placed on empty spaces, while occupied spaces can be upgrades or cleared.

List of all State of Decay 2 facilities

After getting hands-on, we had the chance to check out every facility available in pre-release versions of the State of Decay 2. Below are all known facility types so far and their in-game descriptions.

Crafting & building

  • Workshop: Craft explosives, fix weapons. Also lets us salvage weapons for parts.
  • Kitchen: Craft stamina items. Also lets us ration food. Cooking skills let us prepare feasts.
  • Staging Area: Speed up build times. Also reduces facility maintenance costs to zero.
  • Forge: Craft melee weapons, materials, parts. Metalworking skills unlock fearsome weapons and the ability to convert materials to parts. Construction skills unlock the ability to convert parts to materials.
  • Auto Shop: Craft vehicle upgrades. Also improved vehicle durability.

Health & sleep

  • Sheltered beds: Two beds.
  • Outdoor beds: Two beds, morale penalty. Outdoor beds always have a morale penalty.
  • Infirmary: Treat blood plague, craft cure. Crafts bandages. Also crafts herbal remedies, if we have water access.
  • Barracks: Four beds.

Resource production

  • Garden: Provides 1 food/day.
  • Still: Craft fuel, provides base-wide water. Also slightly boosts morale if we have water access.
  • Farm: Provides 2 food/day.
  • Hydroponics: +3 food/day. Needs water and power to function.

Morale & training

  • Fighting gym: Train fighting, +20 health. Also increases rate of fighting improvement.
  • Shooting range: Train shooting, +20 stamina. Also increases rate of shooting improvement.
  • Latrine: Boosts morale.
  • Lounge: One bed, many morale boosts. Different ways to use available labor to boost morale.

Defense & utilities

  • Watchtower: Enables armed guard. Requires ammo and at least one armed survivor to function.
  • Rain collector: Provides base-wide water. While we have access to drinking water, morale will be boosted.
  • Generator: Provides base-wide power. Needs fuel to function. While we have access to electric light via power, morale will be boosted.
  • Solar array: Provides free, silent base-wide power. Also gives the kitchen a bonus via hot water.

Leader projects

  • Armory: Crafts ammunition, military explosives. Any ammo type, and top-tier explodables.
  • Sniper tower: Radio unlock: Sniper cover. Requires ammo and at least one armed survivor to function (or two for full effect).
  • Field hospital: Heal all injuries and sickness. Enables passive recovery of health, and removal of trauma, injuries, and infection. Treats blood plague. Crafts plague cure and many other medical items.
  • Trade depot: Summons traders, free influence. Summon any trader you want over the radio.

Updated May 20, 2018: Updated following the launch of State of Decay 2.