The end of 2012 was anything but kind to Hammerpoint Interactive and their zombie survival game The War Z. After a pretty dramatic few weeks, Hammerpoint was feeling the angst of the community in a fiasco that culminated in the removal of the game from Steam.
It was at that point that we decided to take a calculated step backwards from covering The War Z. Well, it's been a few months now so we decided it's high time we take a look at what Hammerpoint has been doing in 2013 when it comes to The War Z and how the game is faring after all that negative press.
The biggest news, perhaps, is the re-launching of The War Z on Steam. On February 26th, Hammerpoint re-released the game on Steam to very little fanfare. No major press releases went out and the forum announcement contained little more than a paragraph and a link to the games Steam page. Noticeably, the game had an updated information section that was more accurate to the content of the actual game than the original listing.
It seems like the major focus these past months has been anti-cheat and dealing with hackers. The War Z became a place riddled with hackers, but this is not unique to the game. Anytime a game gets a decent following, you get a group of hackers that come out of the woodwork to do their level best to ruin the game for everyone else.
There is a special circle in hell for these players.
Hammerpoint has been cracking down on them, bringing in new anti-cheat measures and issuing permanent bans to anyone found hacking or cheating. Unfortunately, the hacking community in The War Z is pretty adamant and we'd be remiss in our duties if we didn't tell you that the game is pretty rife with scams and hackers. It has even gotten to the point, now, where phishing scams and virus downloads have become present in the War Z community and websites have surfaced that attempt to steal your account information.
The last big update comes in the form of server rentals. The feature was disabled temporarily as The War Z had actually reached capacity for private servers. Hammerpoint went ahead and brought more servers online and is continuing to rent those out again.
Gameplay-wise, this is still The War Z. There have been tweaks and changes here and there, but the core gameplay is the same as it was four months ago. Whether or not that's a good thing is dependent entirely on what you felt when you first played the game last year.
Our advice is simple; if you already bought The War Z, give it another shot. There have been changes and Hammerpoint is working on the hacking situation. If you haven't picked it up yet...unfortunately, we can't recommend doing so at this time. Unless you've got money burning a hole in your pocket, you'd be better of waiting until the standalone version of DayZ is available in the coming months.