Microsoft talks State of Decay 3, envisions 'much bigger' persistent online game

State of Decay 2 is a magical, addictive, flawed zombie simulation game, where you are in control of a group of desperate survivors attempting to stay alive in a pervasive undead apocalypse. Manage your supplies, bash zombie skulls in, upgrade your base, and ultimately, survive.

State of Decay 2 wasn't the big, bold sequel many fans were expecting coming in from the first game. Although the simulation was much deeper and many of its core systems were expanded upon in huge ways, the overall game was still quite rough, and only featured drop-in client-hosted multiplayer, which is notoriously laggy across long distances.

Fast forward to E3 2018, where Microsoft announced it was acquiring the studio in full. Working as an independent entity prevented Undead Labs and Microsoft from collaborating more closely when it came to resources, budgeting, hiring, and so on, but under the same roof, Undead Labs should have the resources it needs to build the State of Decay fans have been dreaming of. And today, Microsoft confirmed interest in building State of Decay 3.

State of Decay

State of Decay (Image credit: Microsoft)

Speaking to EggPlante, Microsoft Studios lead Matt Booty discussed Undead Labs' acquisition, confirming some details about the next iteration in this hugely promising franchise.

"When we first started working on State of Decay, we had a much bigger game, a much more persistent online game, and I know that Undead Labs will get there eventually, but by bringing them into the Microsoft family, I think we're able to accelerate that and get us there sooner which is great.""In the case of Undead Labs, we absolutely want to go make State of Decay 3. That is a clear goal. That studio will have some other incubation, they'll work on some things, but this is a State of Decay 3 team."

State of Decay 2 will pick up at least two major content expansions as part of the game's season pass, as long as on-going tweaks to improve its performance and multiplayer latency. After that, I think it's fair to expect a far grander State of Decay title, which leverages full use of Microsoft's dedicated servers, as well as Redmond's technological expertise and resources.

You can grab State of Decay 2 from the Microsoft Store for $29.99, complete with cross-platform play between PC and Xbox, and Xbox Play Anywhere support. It's also available as part of Xbox Game Pass for $9.99 per month. (opens in new tab)

See at Microsoft Store (opens in new tab)

Jez Corden
Managing Editor

Jez Corden is the Managing Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!

  • I would love it if SoD3 had some sort of a story, at least for those of us who play solo.
  • Absolutely. I would also love to see WMR support. That would be a truly amazing experience.
  • XBOX Central....... Ovaload today🙄🙄🙄
  • Yeah cos new news came about for Xbox my god get off of it already.
  • "Get off it already" 😆
  • Well yeah because of E3
  • I am so hooked to State of Decay 2 . Wish it had more polish. Happy that Microsoft purchased the studio and will have grand projects for us Xbox fans in the future
  • #2 Just came out and they're already talking about moving onto the next one. If they want a "bigger" I online game, they should sell the game on Steam. A slim minority actually uses the Microsoft store on PC to buy and play games. Especially with it's unfriendly UX design. It's a shame Microsoft's games division is turning into EA/Activision. It's almost like Microsoft didn't pay attention to the lesson gamers had to give these companies with their last big releases. Especially with Battlefront.
  • Buy once play everywhere won't work with steam. Accept that.
  • So it's because people are tight arses that it's not on Steam.
  • I don't think Microsoft understands how a game is supposed to maintain an online presence.
  • To think they didn't have the resources for sod2 is just ridiculous.
  • I was really hoping for a brand new IP for their next game... State of Decay 1, and State of Decay 2... Were all pretty much the exact same game... Graphics... Gameplay... Story-line... State of Decay 3 needs almost a complete refresh if that's the next title they are working on with an increase of staff between 100-150 to actually make the game work at launch and be polished.
  • Well they'll have much more money now
  • Add more realistic graphics(at the very least, Dead Rising 3/4 level) with less micromanaging, better animation and controls and I'll be a happy camper. Or have the option to play with or without the micro-managing aspect of the game, sort of like an arcade mode but with a story.
  • Please, Don't make it become to always online game because it's sucks.
    I just want to enjoy SoD3 single player without force Internet connection.
  • "we absolutely want to go make State of Decay 3"
    So much for letting studios have creative freedom... Coalition makes Gears sequels, 343i makes Halo sequels, Turn10 makes Forza sequels.
    I guess now Undead Labs makes State of Decay sequels...
  • Hopefully, they are great games and I would hate to see the series end.