Central Oregon, Now Infested with Hordes of Video Game Zombies

A Bend-based game studio imagines a fate worse than gentrification.

By Marty Patail June 14, 2016

On Monday, June 13, Sony's hotly anticipated press event at E3 2016 laid out the near future for the Playstation 4. There was, as expected, lots of talk about the new VR headset, Kratos's new Norse beard, and more Star Wars news than you can throw a bucket of Legos at.

No one, however, expected Oregon to steal the show.

Bend Studio—a veteran game studio based in, yes, Bend, Oregon—revealed it's in production of a dazzling new post-apocalyptic adventure game called Days Gone, far more ambitious than any of its previous projects. The 23-year old company, until now primarily known for bringing Naughty Dog's universally-acclaimed Uncharted series to the PS Vita, showed off an open world game set in a stunning recreation of central Oregon, covered with pine forests, crystal-clear lakes, logging mills, and dams, and mountains that look a whole lot like the Three Sisters. 

Days gone screenshot ps4 bend studio sony 2 nrpn46

Image: Playstation

While the reveal trailer focused on the game's atmosphere and showcased the incredibly detailed environments, Sony returned to the game later, closing out the press event with a live gameplay demo, which hinted at some pretty frantic and bloody action sequences. Suffice to say, at no point will you be sipping on a pint at Crux after a nice day of hiking in the mountains.

It's too early to pass any judgement on the game, but the influences from Naughty Dog's 2013 hit The Last of Us are pretty obvious. If they can pull it off, that is not a bad thing. And the sheer number of zombies that launch themselves at the main character during the demo—literally waves upon waves—could provide an intriguing gameplay twist. 

Days gone screenshot ps4 bend studio sony 4 qwdpdt

Image: Playstation

Bend Studio has yet to reveal a release date, so don't expect Days Gone to hit stores until at least 2017. In the meantime, you can bask in the shade of this sweet Paul Bunyan statue. 

Days gone screenshot ps4 bend studio sony 5 syjarh

Image: Playstation

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