From the Grave to the Graveyard Shift

I leave no tombstone unturned as I spill the Zom-beans on Graveyard Keeper’s latest DLC!

Stardew Valley, I wrote about it not too long ago. You all read it not too long ago too, right? Right? Of course, you did! *Stares off wistfully into sparkly unicorn land* Anyway, when I was playing Stardew Valley and then subsequently writing about it, I found myself constantly comparing it to another game called Graveyard Keeper.

Now, according to the developers, Graveyard Keeper was heavily influenced by Stardew Valley, so I would imagine that’s why my mind was always wandering in that direction. I played Graveyard Keeper first on kind of a whim so really I had nothing to compare it to.  Then in the not-too-distant future I was gifted Stardew Valley and thoroughly enjoyed my time with it…. but….it was no Graveyard Keeper.

To be fair, while both games are categorized in the same genre, they really are very different once you really get into the meat of the potatoes. Stardew Valley is an adorable little puppy that takes a little bit more extra work to keep happy and to cared for. Graveyard Keeper is like a baby that you thought would be just like the puppy, but Hoooo boy were you wrong. You will often find yourself looking at said baby and thinking “Well that was unexpected…and gross…”, but in the end you love it so much more. Especially as you become more familiar with the many quirks and nuances. But enough with the parenting metaphors, we’re here to talk about meat and potatoes…I mean games! Yeah, games! More specifically, Graveyard Keeper and the fancy new DLC/update that was a complete and utter game changer!

Taste the Brain-bow

Thankfully the lovely add-on was free, but unfortunately it has only been made available for the PC version thus far. There is supposed to be a Switch release in the very near future, but I don’t know, as of yet, if it will be the same as the other console versions or contain the “Breaking Dead” update. That’s what they called it, “Breaking Dead” …sweet amiright? I knew you’d agree; great minds think alike after all.

Take It With a Brain of Salt

Total…Game…Changer! This update or add-on or whatever they eventually want to decide to call it, fixed up a bunch of bugs that were nagging a lot of players. Although it apparently created a few more (I don’t know how many exactly, I didn’t encounter any), I feel that the ends justifies the means. Plus, the developers say they are far from finished with the game as well. They have been pretty good about updating fans about anything that gets worked on and what is coming next and that’s something that I personally find admirable when it comes to game companies.

Fans are still chomping at the bit for the Town area to be put into the game and many feel that should have been what was added first. I mean the game does make a huge deal about the Town and you can even work your butt off to buy a town pass, but once you try and use it…Bupkis. The guard still just blocks you off and no Town for you. You’ll still get to hear all about this wondrous and glorious Town from all the NPCs, including all of the problems that need fixing, and it tears away at your gaming soul! *Exaggerated sigh*

I guess we’ll just have to wait a bit longer though for that. Honestly, I loved the game enough that I would wholeheartedly replay it again if/when it does get added in. On the flip side …ZOMBIES! We were blessed with zombies in the Breaking Dead add-on as well. And these handy chaps are where my whole “total game changer” ramblings will really make sense.

The Zom-bee’s Knees

You progress in the game normally until you get to the point where you can open the basement gate for Snake, the nefarious criminal with major Daddy-issues. Once through the gate, where there was originally an empty prison cell, you’ll find a chained-up zombie housed inside, named Gunter. He is apparently special and was once the “head zombie” but now in his majorly decayed state, asks that you leave him be. He does want you to revive all his friends though and gives you some information and items to help you do just that. Sounds suspicious I know, but Gunter is fortunately on the up and up and just want his zom-buddies to help you out like they used to with the previous graveyard keeper.

You are given two free zombies at first to put to work and true to Graveyard Keeper style you are given absolutely no information on how to use them. Gunter tells you how to make new ones, but not what to do with them once you have them. This took a bit of exploring on my part and a bit of Googling as well. Finally, I found that you had to build stations for them in designated areas to perform various tasks. These tasks are usually things that would otherwise suck dry your time and resources if you were to do them yourself. Things like chopping wood, mining for stone and ores, or gardening. Now you have some handy dandy Zombies to do those repetitive tasks for you. Not only that, but you can build Porter stations, so the zombies can actually transport the materials back to you house for you. Jiminy Jillikers Batman! If that’s not the greatest thing ever I don’t know what is!

Pre-update you had to carry all that stuff long distances yourself…one…log…at…a …time…ZZZzzzzzzzz. It took forever and then some to get anything done. Now you can focus your time on the things that really matter like your graveyard and the rest of that mountain of side quests that get piled on you by the NPCs.

Zombie All You Can Be

I will say, I thought at first that I would be regularly replacing or having to upgrade my zombie workers, but even at only 10% efficiency they were plenty efficient for me. The highest efficiency percentage I had on any of my zombies was 22% and that was more than enough. Those suckers are fast, and I found myself overwhelmed with materials most of the time. My poor porter zombies were just carrying their loads back and forth waiting for me to clear them some space on the lumber racks or stone piles. The garden zombies were my personal favorites, with their cute little garden work stations. Churning out pumpkins and onions for my crate zombie to box up and then my crate porter to deliver to the merchant.

There’s even a zombie you can assign to write for you, stowed away down in the church basement. You can have him sitting there whipping up random quality stories or experience books if there is enough paper for him to keep going. Super handy!  Some of the work stations, like the alchemy benches, I found superfluous since it really wasn’t that grand of a task for me to make what I needed as I needed it, but that’s just personal preference.

No Need to Zombie’t Around the Bush

Trust me when I say it only sounds like most of your work gets done for you. Yep…there’s just that much to do in this game. I think when I played the original version on the Xbox I finished the game in about 400+ in-game days and this time around it was still 200+ days. Not bad for a replay I’d say. There is still an ever-mounting pile of things that you personally have to deal with, but the zombie workers allow you to be exponentially more efficient about it. I can’t wait for the next big update to roll out and I know my husband is already eyeballing the Switch version, so I think it’s safe to say I am far from finished with Graveyard Keeper. So, keep your brains peeled for more *fingers crossed* soon!


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