A Preview of The Day Before

Ashley_Buckwell
edited December 2023 in Gaming

The Day Before appeared out of nowhere at the beginning of 2021. Developer Fntastic surprised gamers when it announced the upcoming title alongside gameplay footage that looked almost too good to be true for such a small indie game studio. Based on the premise of a zombie apocalypse, The Day Before is a survival MMO featuring an open world shooter gameplay experience. The game was originally scheduled for release in June 2022; however, after multiple delays, it is now slated for early access release on December 7, 2023. Although The Day Before has been highly anticipated for quite some time, popular opinion seems to have turned against the game and its developer. With long periods of silence and miscommunication from the developer regarding delays and other issues, trust in the project is paper thin. We’ve summarized all we know about this upcoming zombie title for you here. 

Development issues

Soon after it was first announced, The Day Before became the most wishlisted game on Steam. Its first “gameplay” trailer, released in 2021, showed the basic mechanics of the game, and its visuals looked impressive. With the number of fans quickly growing, excitement was building for this new zombie MMO. However, concerns immediately arose around the feasibility of such an ambitious open world and multiplayer project, and several gamers voiced their doubts about the authenticity of the release date trailer, claiming it was likely only a vertical slice of the game. Over the next few years, criticism for the game continued to grow due to an increasing number of problems related to release delays, nontransparent and misleading marketing by the developer, and increased skepticism about the developer’s ability to deliver.

The game’s first problem occurred with a delay that shifted its release date from June 2022 to March 2023, due to a planned switch from Unreal Engine 4 to Unreal Engine 5. This delay was considered reasonable by fans who were looking forward to the improvements Unreal Engine 5 could bring. Then, in January 2023, the game’s Steam page was suddenly delisted, and this is where the situation started to get strange.

Fntastic initially stated that their Steam delisting was due to a minor technical difficulty with Steam. However, on January 25, Fntastic then blamed the delisting on trademark issues surrounding the title of the game and further delayed its release to November 10, 2023 for these reasons. However, the studio’s founders later stated that this delay had already been planned prior to them learning of the trademark dispute. Not only was this contradictory information a cause for concern, but the details surrounding the trademark dispute itself were hard to believe. For example, Fntastic had failed to file a trademark for their game’s name when beginning development and had also failed to respond to a trademark dispute raised shortly after they filed for the trademark in June 2022.

At this point, many gamers were convinced they were in for another Blue Box or Abandoned scenario with a developer pretending it was making a game while kicking the release date further and further down the road. Amid speculation over the status of their game, Fntastic released new raw gameplay footage on February 2, 2023. Unfortunately, the new footage looked worse than the original footage from 2021 and revealed an overall lack of effort and progress in the game’s development.

In the 10-minute gameplay footage trailer, you can see two characters walking, looting, and shooting zombies. However, that’s all that happens. No one talks in the trailer, there’s no score, and the only sounds you hear in the city are the occasional bird chirp and zombie scream. The graphics are less detailed compared with what was shown in the 2021 trailer, and fewer things are going on in the environment. Several of the in-game assets appear to have been placed in the game unaltered from their original versions in the asset store. Furthermore, the introduction to the trailer contains scenes that look exactly the same as those from the Call of Duty Black Ops Cold War Zombies trailer, with similar framing, color, and camera positions. This method of copying from other games is mirrored in the way The Day Before’s title logo has identical font and framing as that used in The Last of Us, another postapocalyptic video game.

In November 2023, the latest delay to the game’s release date was announced, with the game now being slated for a Steam early access release on December 8, 2023.

Fntastic have defended against claims that their game is a scam, stating that they were being backed by publisher Mytona; evaluated on their progress regularly; and hadn’t taken any money from the public: no crowdfunding, no preorders, and no donations. Nevertheless, their unclear marketing messages and lack of transparency have damaged their already limited reputation.

The Day Before storyline

The Day Before relies on the tried-and-tested zombie postapocalypse trope. The United States has been hit by a pandemic that has turned almost all humans into violence-prone zombies, and players are placed right in the middle of the disaster. As a survivor, players travel the open world with a singular goal: to survive being eaten by zombies or shot by other survivors. To do this, players must go in search of food and resources, all while staying safe from zombies, avoiding enemy survivors who might try to steal their loot or worse, and ally themselves with others in safe colonies.

The Day Before gameplay mechanics

The Day Before is an open-world survival MMO sitting somewhere between The Division’s postdisaster narrative and the zombie-adjacent tale in The Last of Us. At first blush, The Day Before looks like a solid third-person shooter with a focus on stealth, crafting, and inventory management, not unlike the Stalker games. The various status meters in the game add to the survival gameplay element.

In the latest gameplay trailer shown above, several of the game’s features are shown in action, including scavenging for goods, facing off with other players in some “impromptu” PvP, and poking around a dimly lit office while evading ravenous zombies.

Several of the game’s mechanics are as follows:

  • Exploration: Players can explore the open world of The Day Before, which is said to be one of the largest ever created for a video game.
  • Scavenging: This is essential for survival. Resources can be found in various places, such as abandoned buildings, vehicles, and corpses. Players need to scavenge for warm clothes, food, crafting materials, and ammunition.
  • Crafting: Players can craft various items using the resources they have gathered.
  • Combat: Players will encounter a variety of enemies, including infected humans, animals, and other survivors, who are forced to fight them because resources are scarce. Players will need to use their weapons and skills to defeat their enemies and survive.
  • Building: Players can build shelters to protect themselves from the elements and enemies.
  • Survival: Players fight off the hordes of zombies on their journey through the postapocalyptic United States, which, according to the developers, should function as “realistically” as possible. Zombies will not be inhumanly fast or spray fountains of poison.

The following features included in the game set it apart from other survival games:

  • Dynamic weather system: The Day Before features dynamic weather that creates an immersive and unpredictable environment. Clothing will be necessary to protect players from approaching cold and storms and thunderstorms that will make survival even more challenging.
  • Day and night cycle: A day and night cycle system will affect gameplay.
  • Open world: The open world is supposed to be more varied than, for example, that in the similar game The Division. Players explore forests, mountains, settlements, and rural areas next to the abandoned city.
  • Vehicle mechanics: Players can use vehicles to travel the vast open world more efficiently and strategically.
  • Nonlinear gameplay: A nonlinear gameplay experience means players have control over the path their journey takes.

Other players you encounter in the game can become allies or enemies. PvP is present everywhere in the world—that means players will compete for loot and can steal from each other. Details on the PvP mode are yet to be announced.

Graphics and design

The Day Before boasts impressive graphics that bring the postapocalyptic world to life. Expect detailed environments, realistic lighting effects, and dynamic weather conditions that set a new benchmark for the genre. The city that players will scour looks great, particularly its lighting. Puddles and leather backpacks all have a certain sheen that looks highly realistic.

Whether you are venturing alone in the desolate landscapes or teaming up with friends for a shared survival experience, The Day Before offers a captivating journey in gorgeous environments. There is no doubt that this game has the potential to leave an indelible mark in the gaming industry and the hearts of players worldwide. Whether it fulfills its potential remains an open question.

Update: This game is on track to be one of the worst games of 2023. The Game studio responsible for this game has officially been bankrupt and shut down. Servers for this game will close on Jan 22, 2024.

The Day Before release date 

The Day Before is set to launch in early access on December 7, 2023, for Windows PC via Steam; however, given the developer’s track record, we certainly won’t be surprised if another delay is announced. We also wouldn’t be surprised if after launch it were to remain in early access in perpetuity—time will tell. For other, awesome games, make sure to check out the lineup of games the Xbox Game Pass has on offer. Furthermore, with the purchase of a Windows 11 PC from Acer, you can enjoy one month free of Xbox Game Pass.

Nitro V 15 gaming laptop (ANV15-51)

In September, Acer launched a brand new gaming laptop: the Nitro V 15 (ANV15-51). Like other models in the Nitro series, the ANV15-51 features a black, plastic case with a smooth matte surface, RGB keyboard lighting, and colored stripes on the back of the case for added visual appeal. In general, the ​​Nitro series of laptops are machines that without costing a whole fortune have been configured with powerful AMD Ryzen™ or Intel Raptor™ or later CPU options and the latest NVIDIA RTX™ 4000 series video cards.

This latest model comes in a range of configurations, with its baseline version being powered by a 13th-gen Intel Core i5-13420H processor and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4050 graphics card with 6 GB of dedicated GDDR6 memory, and other versions can come with 13th-gen Intel Core i7 processors. Memory-wise, the laptop supports up to 32 GB of DDR5 memory. For storage, you can opt for up to 2 TB of M.2 PCIe solid-state storage, ensuring quick booting and fast loading within games. It impresses with a generous number of I/O ports (three USB Type-A ports, a USB Type-C Thunderbolt 4 port, an ethernet port, an HDMI port, a headset jack, and a DC-in jack). It also has a unique fan and exhaust system that works by drawing cool air in through the keyboard and expelling hot air through vents on the side and rear. It offers a 15.6-inch FHD IPS display for exceptional display quality and brightness, with a 144-Hz refresh rate and a quick 3-ms response time, for an 82% screen-to-body ratio.

Coming in at less than $1000 per machine, the Nitro V 15 (ANV15-51) can be considered a budget gaming laptop. However, it can easily run modern games and provide an immersive gaming experience. All of the Nitro series of gaming laptops contain high-quality components designed to last. Click here to find out more.

Here are the specs of the Acer Nitro V 15 ANV15-51 gaming laptop:

  • Processor: Intel Core i5-13420H 
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4050 (6 GB GDDR6) 
  • Display: 15.6-inch Full HD (1920 × 1080) IPS display with 144-Hz refresh rate 
  • RAM: 8 GB DDR5 (upgradable to 32GB) 
  • Storage: 512 GB SSD (PCIe Gen4, 16 Gb/s, NVMe) 
  • Operating System: Windows 11 Home 
  • Ports: 1 × USB 3.2 Gen 1 port with power-off charging, 2 × USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports, 1 × Gigabit Ethernet RJ-45 port, HDMI, and 1 × USB Type-C port (Thunderbolt) 
  • Battery: 57 Wh

Ashley is a technology writer who is interested in computers and software development. He is also a fintech researcher and is fascinated with emerging trends in DeFi, blockchain, and bitcoin. He has been writing, editing, and creating content for the ESL industry in Asia for eight years, with a special focus on interactive, digital learning.

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