Stranger things have happened, but in the span of one week, two companies have announced board games based on The Walking Dead. Cryptozoic Entertainment will produce a game based around the television show, while Z-Man Games will create their own version based on the comic book series. The similarities don't end with the related source material, though. Both games are set to retail at $40 and will be released in the late summer, most likely September.
Little much else is known about either game besides a few short paragraphs and a promotional image from each publisher. From looking at the player counts, Cryptozoic supports 1-4 players while Z-Man supports 1-6. Both have only confirmed Rick, Shane, and Andrea as playable characters, but the important information here is the number 1. This likely means that both games will be co-op in nature since they can be played solo. This is especially important for Cryptozoic, which states:
Should you fall to the hungry horde of walkers, the game doesn't end. When a player dies and becomes a walker, they leave the world of the living behind and seek out the remaining survivors. Spring surprise attacks on the living, cause the walkers to frenzy, or contaminate the survivor’s supplies. Put the bite on your former friends and they’ll join you in your pursuit of the living.
Having players turn against each other in anything but a co-op game would be difficult to balance, otherwise zombified players would enter a kingmaker role.
As for other small details, the television version from Cryptozoic looks to be a roll-and-move game where players can visit all of the Atlanta-themed locales from the show, but no images of the Z-Man games version's board have been released. The Z-Man version is confirmed to be scenario-based and will play out favorite scenes from the comic books, so perhaps a modular board is in order?
The television version of this game may even prove to be a cathartic experience for fans of the comic book series, as they can take characters the show is dragging its feet on killing off and feed them to the zombies. We'll be following up with both companies to provide closer looks at these games here at MTV Geek, so stick around.