Hi Redditors,

 

My name is Thad David and I'm a former Recon Marine Sniper during the Iraq War. A couple years ago I was contracted to do security work of the cost of Africa, basically scaring away pirates. While I was living on one of the big cargo ships down there, I came up with an idea for a badass mobile video game.

 

Right after getting back to the states, I put together a team and started working day and night on it. I have completely bootstrapped the cost and development with a couple friends. Today we launched Zombie Company Crusade on the Apple app store and I couldn’t be more excited. And proud.

 

https://appsto.re/us/w26s2.i

 

Feel free to ask me anything... from my experience being a sniper in the Iraq War to moving away from a military career and starting a video game company and launching a game. I’m down to answer any of your questions and will be on Reddit all day today.

 

For the Redditors who need proof, I've added a picture of me with my recon buddies and also my paddle that I received when I left my Recon unit.

 

I did a previous AMA earlier this year and had a lot of fun and got a lot of great ideas. I thought this was a great time to do a follow up. Thanks for your support! This community is truly an inspiration.

http://www.zombiecompanycrusade.com

http://i.imgur.com/HsaRMpf.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/kMkqrmb.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/a2ykwC6.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/xhyRdmr.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/02alSKe.jpg

Comments: 270 • Responses: 100  • Date: 

herbhancock30 karma

Can you give a description of the game? And do you have any plans on porting it to Android?

Thad_David21 karma

It is a post-apocalyptic real time strategy game for iOS. Your goal is to rebuild civilization by harvesting or raiding for resources. You really have two choices build up your resource collectors and/or build an army raid other peoples bases. Zombies raid frequently so you have to defend yourself!

We have full troop controls so your armies are literally at your fingertips. A lot of games you have no control and we made sure you are always in command.

I am excited for you to check it out.

AlmostImperfect62 karma

The app store entry doesn't seem to contain actual in-game screenshots, but rather some poster-style advertisements.

I may be alone in this, but I really prefer a screenshot or two in order to get a sense of the game before downloading. Hope you'll consider it. And good luck with the launch! Sounds like quite a career-change!

Thad_David12 karma

We went for a very stylistic approach. We debated heavily about whether or not to show off some screenshots. We combined the screens in the background with the character artwork up front. We think it looks badass.

If we get enough feedback like this we are open to changing it.

Thanks for the kind words!

RabbleHouse37 karma

I personally hate the artsy stuff, especially when there aren't any screen shots. 1 or 2 stylistic shots, sure thing, but all of them...not so much.

Any screen shots you care to share?

Thad_David13 karma

Got it. This makes total sense that you want a preview before committing.

You can check out the short trailer on our website that has in game action: www.zombiecompanycrusade.com

RabbleHouse8 karma

Awesome, the trailer actually got me to download it to try it out. Not bad!

However, I hit a wall or found a small issue. I can't seem to scroll the descriptions. They seem to be cut-off...

http://imgur.com/RdBOku7 and http://imgur.com/TKDvmZI

Thad_David6 karma

Thanks for pointing that out! We did a lot of heavy testing but unfortunately we didn't have the budget to get a bunch of guys full time on it. It will be fixed in the next version.

RabbleHouse6 karma

Cool! No worries at all, I know indie games always have bug to squash! I love the concept tho, congrats on executing it quite well!

Thad_David6 karma

Thanks! I'm really excited about it all.

authentic0105 karma

I feel you should add an actual screenshot. That's how I choose my games, if there is no actual shot of game play I pass. I don't really care for drawings of characters in game descriptions just actual game shots.

I downloaded it because I saw this on reddit, but If I found this on the App Store I would have passed on it because of that reason, I don't really want to go searching for footage.

Thad_David3 karma

That's good advice. May I ask a little deeper, does the screen play in the background of the images not count?

I wanted to do a mixture of both. Show some gameplay in the background of the heroes from the game and I was hoping to cover this issue.

Thanks again for the feedback.

authentic0101 karma

It works and does look cool. But for me doesn't really show the actual battlefield itself. Maybe just add a screenshot of a base so people can see what they would actually be playing on/in and possible some of the menus that would be used.

Thad_David2 karma

I'm going to look into doing that. We had a few screenshots pulled for this reason pre launch but it was really tough to get a quality shot that wasn't blurry... The few that I got didn't show off our artwork. I am very happy with the graphics of this first launch and the screenshots I got of moving troops appeared blurry.

I also wanted to put a video in but getting a quality video made is also a tough task. I'm not saying it can't be done we were just prioritizing items. I'm going to look into getting some better gameplay images though, thank you!

Ekint7 karma

No screens = no download If its good dont be afraid to show it

Thad_David4 karma

I am getting a lot of that feedback. Thanks for mentioning it. For now people are enjoying the quick trailer at www.zombiecompanycrusade.com.

dylanx3004 karma

Oh I see it now! I think you should keep everything the way it is and simply add another screen (or a few) without the artwork (if at all possible, idk if there are limits on how many pics you can upload), just so that people who don't realize the game is in the background have an idea of the style of gameplay, and then possibly if they see one pictures of the game without the artwork they might recognize the UI as well as the art/style of the game and have the same "oh I see it now!" moment that I did.

Thad_David1 karma

Thanks for the feedback! Apple makes you upload the whole game again for review just to change the images, which takes about a week. We will do that for our next update. It is a little late for us to update now.

I_SHIT_A_BRICK3 karma

I got the email last night regarding the release! Signed up the first time I saw you mention it on here. Loving it so far!

Thad_David4 karma

That's great to hear, thank you for checking it out! Feel free to drop me an email if you find anything, suggestions, feedback, etc.

Thad_David2 karma

Im glad you like it! Im excited to fight you on the battlefield. Look for Thadiator.

Honestly, I am just so stoked to actually play the game with real people. We have been testing it so much but its just not the same as the real thing. I literally couldn't sleep last night I was so excited. I am starting off in the same spot as everyone one else with level 1 wooden hut buildings.

billygoat241 karma

So is this game kind of like Clash Of Clans?

Thad_David1 karma

Kind of. We brought some new features i to boost the genre up a little, or a lot. The biggest thing is full troop controls. Grab your troops and tell them where to go. Or leave them be and they will do their own thing. We added a platoon drop feature. Arena Mode has been a big part of this. It's a new battle mode that puts your troops vs another persons troops in real time... Their is a center objective and the rest is similar to a capture the flag style battle... Destroy their flag before they destory yours... That or destroy their troops and it also ends. A few other smaller things but those are the big ones.

MacAirt12 karma

Looking around online, I found the trailer for it. Looks pretty sick. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMyfr7Vf2Sg

Thad_David14 karma

Thanks MacAir! I appreicate you sharing the trailer!

RabbleHouse2 karma

Not a bad trailer at all! Downloading now to try out

Thad_David2 karma

Thanks Rabble. I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts

Empigee25 karma

To what extent did your military experiences influence the concept / design of the game?

Thad_David16 karma

Honestly it was quite a bit. Mainly in the art portion of the game. I wanted everything to look and feel REAL (aside from the zombie portion haha). There are still a few things im looking to adjust but all in all im very happy with the design of the game.

rishi1312 karma

Which is your favourate sniper rifle ?

Thad_David25 karma

I fell in love with my M40A1 that I used in the military. I didn't care for the different shape of the A3 that was replacing it. Maybe it was my older habits but I didn't care for its weight or the bi-pods on it. Also the Barrett was fun to shoot but not very practical for tactical shooting. It's a canon.

loolo781 karma

M40A1

My favourite gun in Battlefield 4. I'll never know what the real one feels like :(

Thad_David5 karma

It's basically a Remington 700 the marine corps just modded it up and moved some things around. That's basically it though. They run for around 700-1000 I believe... Just make sure it's tge 26 inch barrel not the 24.

grades0012 karma

I remember your previous AMA. Did feedback from that one help or change the final product in any way?

Also, is it only on iOS?

Thad_David10 karma

The feedback I got from the previous one was very helpful. I pushed forward with what we're we're building. We tried to make sure to really make the game fair not not something that people feel like they have to purchase something.

That was a huge question last time... Is it a pay to win. We wanted to hopefully make it not that way.

Thad_David12 karma

Currently it is only on IOS. Once at stable we will launch on Android, we did find a few bugs during our final testing yesterday so we have some work to do. It should be on Android in a few months.

Thac11 karma

Why are the photos on your app page so unrevealing?

Thad_David8 karma

We went for a very stylistic approach. We debated heavily about whether or not to show off some screenshots. We combined the screens in the background with the character artwork up front. We think it looks badass.

Thac15 karma

Yeah I could kinda tell what you're going for, but it's not compelling me to download the game. I feel users are wanting to see at least a few in game screenshots to justify downloading and not walk in blind. Showing some game play might be better. Or at least suggest having your trailer on the page as well unless that costs money or something. Give them that recon man.

Thad_David5 karma

Thanks for your feedback. We will update that in the next version. Apple makes you re-upload the whole game for review just to change the images.

Thac1 karma

UI text on i5 is really small, As well as supply display on building window, chat. ZCC novels are other examples, like my head hurts.

Tut. Feels kinda rushed, and under explanative. when it ended I was like uhh now what. Okay push buttons.

You're probibally going to have major defensive building and offensive unit balancing issues. Nests kinda seem like a bit of a joke, easily over ran.

It kinda sucks you loose surviving troops after Pvp, not financially, just time wise.

I think it's kinda strange I can redo campaign levels max collected from, I feel there could be a minor "busy work farming" activity provided there. Or se type of daily quest that allows you to revisit them for rewards or xp.

Review rewards on campaign. I saw no rewards on Singapore lvl 6, and Bangkok lvl 7 is very low. Also maybe change the names? Are these really in Australia? Maybe review names too :)

Thad_David3 karma

Thanks for all of the feedback. I actually cut and paste this to make sure I hit all of the points. Tweaking the buildig numbers is going to be an issue for awhile.

The tutorial has been a big thing, it's really tough. Some people love it and some hate it. It's interestjng trying to find that balance of what's just right. I will be changing it though. Id actually like to add a end tutorial button and a rewatch tutorial button.

I'm on those names now. Thank you! I had some last minute tweaks to the campaign map and that must have been overlooked.

Thac3 karma

Hey you bet. I can understand issues with campaign. Unfortunately you're going to have them because those "casuals" who don't really care for Pvp aspects. So you're gonna have to cater to them. Shit like dailies, and other type of quests to add replay value should help. I bet your main issue there may be not enough story line. Maybe like pop up cities to defend or assault?

However I think you're off to a pretty good start, I keep logging back in. So that's a good thing.

I also noticed barriers are kinda pointless unless you tightly build your buildings(or surround them individually), otherwise you can basically just drop any troops inside them. See level one on campaign.

Also you may wish to lock out zombie assault until x number of defensive structures are built, or x level. Or provide a warning that players can disable. Saying you will get wrecked with two nests and a sniper tower! lol won't be trying that again for a bit. But I can already see players crying about it on forums.

Thad_David5 karma

That's actuallt why I put that level in the campaign map. To teach the user that spread out walls won't stop people from dropping inside them. Also Platoons can be dropped anywhere but they can be shot down with anti air guns that come in at later levels.

The zombies don't actually take resources from you and they only give resources and rubies based on how well you defend them. So it should be strictly a wash or a reward during random zombie attacks. I'll look into correcting this though. At least making it easier to defend.

I've got some work to do on the campagin map... In general.

Thac1 karma

Ahh interesting okay, I thought that was some type of bug, or oversight. Explains the tightness with walls on levels 6 and 7. Sorry I've been in using campaign to kinda test "what ifs." Does this mean paratroopers can land on buildings then? Or just a novelty? Maybe I'm starting to hit combat tactics I can see just yet. Too early on

Thad_David2 karma

The paratroopers won't land on the building or wall but they can fly over those items to get to where they need to go. It's actually good your testing in those campagin maps. I tried to design them in a way that teaches what each troop does and doesn't do.

Labeasy8 karma

Have you ever seen Generation Kill? If so what are your thoughts on it?

Thad_David12 karma

I have. I was actually with 1st Recon at the time the book was written. Different company but I am pretty good friends with all of the main guys in the story. Evan did a good job of describing what happened and I felt the series wasn't to over done with drama. I didn't like some of the scenes... Some of the SGT Maj bitch outs etc... Those seemed to be a little over done. It was a great series though. Did you like it?

SgtButtface4 karma

Did your company also mourn the loss of J-Lo?

Thad_David7 karma

HAHA. Yes, plenty of rumors were flying around Britney was prego... Before she was actually prego... Good times over in the sand box

Labeasy3 karma

Oh I loved it. Gained a huge amount of respect for people who serve seeing what they have to go through. The show felt so real I'm glad it seemed to be true to reality.

Thad_David3 karma

That's good to hear. It was a Very real movie/series. I enjoy when they don't blow things out of proportion to much like Hollywood tends to do

BriSy332 karma

Wait 1st recon? BOONE IS IT TRULY YOU?

Thad_David2 karma

No Boone, just David.

BriSy331 karma

Not quite sure if you got the refrence. If not then i still love you.

Thad_David1 karma

Damn, Ok now I have to ask what's it referencing? I feel like I'm going to have a huge face palm in 3... 2...

BriSy331 karma

Fallout New Vegas. Boone is a companion that was in the NCR first recon unit. Also he is a god capable of headshotting a small bacteria cell from across contients

Thad_David1 karma

Ahhh, nice. Thanks. I didn't get into that series. I was always into CoD. I saw the sniper scene from Modern Warfare 1 shortly after I got out and I was hooked.

TzunSu1 karma

Try it out. It's going to eat you up for about 40 hours though.

Thad_David1 karma

I will check it out. I'm always looking for a new game. My girlfriend just beat and loved the last of us. I was thinking about jumping into that next as well.

NorbitGorbit7 karma

are pirates more boring a subject matter than zombies to you at this point?

Thad_David27 karma

The Pirates were honestly pretty boring overseas... Every group that we encountered saw our weapons and let us pass. I described it to a lot of people as robbing a car in a parking lot full of cars and 1 of those cars has 3 dudes with guns that will shoot if you touch that 1 car... You can rob any other just not that one.

99% of the time they just passed right on by when they saw are guns.

pengie1516 karma

What gave you the inspiration to make this game?

Thad_David6 karma

Honestly I really enjoy the current mobile games in this genre but I felt they were lacking in a lot of places. Troop controls being the main thing I wanted to see. I hate dropping troops in battle and watching them roam around like mindless zombies on the battle field. Being able to grab them and order them makes me feel like I have more control in the battle...

Also I prefer a more realistic style battle

Blackpixels5 karma

Finally, a zombie-themed game that's RTS! Would an Android version be in the works anytime soon, dear sir?

How do you usually operate as a sniper on the field? By providing covering fire alone, in a pair as your unit advances? Or is your team larger?

Thad_David4 karma

We are going to push to droid hopefully very soon. I just want to get everything squared away with the IOS launch.

As a sniper in a Recon Team you basically described all the ways i was used. It was really mission specific. What the unit needed from me. I've don't missions with just my 6 man team as well as a 2 man team just me and a spotter provided over watch for entire units doing raids etc

RoboIsLegend5 karma

Thanks for your service and his AMA, and congrats on the launch. I'm a Poolee and am waiting to ship out in December and love hearing about other USMC experiences. What was the hardest part of Recon training?

Thad_David7 karma

Nice, congrats on your new adventure. It's going to change your life in the best of ways. The hardest part for me was no sleep. Staying awake for days on end and being expected to perform basic tasks gets very difficult. Whats your plan in the military?

Buffalo__Buffalo5 karma

What do you think about the vast amounts of money used to try and prevent piracy on the African coast which could have gone towards improving the conditions that cause piracy by providing other opportunities for people in underdeveloped countries to support their needs?

How do you feel about the way that hazardous, toxic, and nuclear waste has been dumped off the coast of Somalia by western countries by providing material and financial support of warlords who "sell" dumping rights and thereby make these companies complicit in the destabilization of the political landscape of Somalia? Do you think that the Somalians living on coastal regions who have found that a staple of their subsistence — namely local fish stocks — have been negatively impacted on by improper dumping of this hazardous waste? How do you feel about the fact that some Somalian pirates felt that they needed to protect their lives and their coastline from these companies that are dumping waste by using their only means of political representation, which is the use of force and piracy?

Thad_David4 karma

Some great questions in here. As far as money going toward improving the infastructure... Africa is a rough place. It wouldn't be an over night change.

I agree with where I think your point is going, that piracy is caused from the source of people trying to fight piracy.

That said when is it ever ok to kill another person for food or money? That's what piracy is... How it was caused or why doesn't make it OK to take someone's life over it. So I protected ships and the people on those ships that were also just trying to make a living.

DMZ_Dragon5 karma

Did you go through the month training course for the elite MFR snipers where it's every day you get a target at a random range and have 2 shots max to hit it? I forget the name of the course, but it's bloody hard to actually complete.

Opinions on the M24 and its variations, if any(my favourite rifle, especially the pre-SWS models)?

And I presume not, but how was your experience in ghillie suits, if any? I imagine you Recons don't use them too much, needing to be mobile at all times.

Thad_David3 karma

I didn't go through that course. I'm going to have to go check it out though. I had a nice ghillie suit all made up but you are correct, it wasn't used very often in my line up. Especially in Iraq. Lots of urban shooting which changes everything up. Sorry but I don't have a large opinion/knowledge of the M24 to give any feedback that would be helpful.

DMZ_Dragon2 karma

Any adjustments that you made to your rifle that were specific to you? Also, a better picture of said rifle(your picture with buddies is far too small to make anything out)?

The course in question may be TFR, not MFR. It's a program for the top snipers, and the ones who pass tend to end up in the most dangerous missions, last I heard.

And another question, when and if you have time, opinions on Chris Kyle and Carlos Hathcock?

Thad_David3 karma

I believe the one of me standing shows the best image of what I had to work with rifle wise. No adjustments. The biggest thing I added was the old ISO mat check pad which most people are familiar with.

The images are rough... My last tour was in 2004... Digital cameras were really just coming out back then. most of my photos were taken on the old school cameras and scanned to computer

DMZ_Dragon1 karma

Honest answer: What was the longest time for you to lug around a loaded M40 before you had to fire it?

I remember the SWAT guys and some of the other Iraq war vets faux-complaining that they at some point lugged around rifles of the M24/M40/M700 models, loaded with a single round, for hours (SWAT waiting to take a shot) or even days for the military, and the weapons worked fine even after going through dirt and sand with a loaded round(the faux-complaint being that the rifles were so low maintenance). Hence the question about your own experience with this.

Thad_David3 karma

Honestly I don't remember the exact timeframe but this is a very true and real thing. A lot of days in combat zones don't have any combat at all. I think this is where the whole complacency kills comes from... It's easy to get complacent in these times and it's alwaysjust before something big pops up out of no where

DMZ_Dragon1 karma

Last one, I promise: Any specific reason you skipped the Kyle/Hathcock question?

Thad_David2 karma

I love the questions feel free to ask as many as you want. If I skipped one it wasn't intential. There is a Kyle/hathcock question I missed?

Thad_David4 karma

Got it, sorry I have been reading these things quickly.

I've got a lot of respect for Hathcock but I don't know him and only know of him... Kyle on the other hand im. I'm crazy about. It seemed very strange to me that he posted a book boasting about his own accomplishments etc... "I'm the greatest" etc... This just isn't very common for spec ops units. The most dangerous men I have ever met are also the quietest. Very humble people in general. I've always said the loudest person in the room is the weakest and Kyle was pretty loud.

That said I don't know the guy so this is just speculation

What do you think of him?

alchemyandscience5 karma

As a Sniper I feel you may be partial to making your Sniper OP, can you verify that the Sniper is indeed tuned to the rest of them? :D

Thad_David10 karma

Hahaha yes he should be. Actually funny story, just before the launch i had to change the range of the sniper because he was able to kill everything without getting touched because he had the longest range of everything... I had to adjust it to keep it realistic and fair... But you and I know it's never fair when a sniper is involved : )

divergent214 karma

Did your job get easier or more difficult emotionally over time?

Thad_David5 karma

It has stayed the same for me. I had some great instructors and Alex really harped on the effects of taking another persons life. How to prepare for it and how to make sure you don't do anything you will regret.

A great book on this topic is "On Killing". Highly recommend the read. It's got some great facts on the subject

madcaplarks4 karma

What would be more dangerous, 100 zombie sized ducks or 1 duck sized zombie?

Rapscallian6661 karma

Holy links batman.

Thad_David1 karma

<link>

rishi134 karma

Have you ever engaged in live firing ? can you share some of your experiences ?

Thad_David6 karma

Tons of live fire exercises. Those are a blast. My favorite time was up near Bridgeport in CA. One trip we took they gave my 6 man team an entire crate of ammo and said have fun... We did live fires day and night... IA drills, you name it... It was one of the only times I got a blister on my trigger finger from firing so much.

Spiffinz1 karma

Aw not fair haha

Thad_David3 karma

Haha it was a blast. I wish I could say we finished it all but we couldn't. It was so much ammo.

decaffeinatedmoose3 karma

Any thoughts of bringing it to other platforms, if successful?

Thad_David5 karma

Yes, I have ever intention of bringing it to droid as soon as im satisfied with this current version being stable

______maybe______1 karma

Letting you know "droid" and "android" refer to different things. You probably mean android.

Thad_David2 karma

Yes I mean android. I have been getting a lot of questions and typed that one fast. Thanks!

redworm3 karma

yut?

Thad_David3 karma

YUT!

Cyborg_Bill_Cosby3 karma

Force recon or Recon as in 1st Recon ?

Thad_David5 karma

I was at 1st Recon Bn from 01-05... I went to ARS in 02 and sniper school in 04.

brzcory3 karma

What's more useful, a compass or a pace beads?

Thad_David2 karma

I never go anywhere without a compass. For me it is one of the most useful things you can possibly have. With a compass and a knife you can do just about anything... IMO. Which do you prefer?

Nik_tortor2 karma

U.S. Army Infantry veteran here. How do I go scare pirates off the coast of Africa?

Thad_David4 karma

I got in through the good ole boy network. Id search around for companies. Id recommend my old one but he shorted me 10K after I left and won't pay me so I don't recommend them.

The pay has gone down quite a bit. It used to be 1,000 per day and I've heard it's down to around 300 per day now. Still good money just not what it used to be

on_the_nightshift2 karma

It seems to me that shorting a former USMC recon sniper a bunch of money probably isn't the best idea, but what do I know?

Thad_David2 karma

This is the number 1 response I get... I'm not very good in a court room and im not going to jail over this guy. We will see though.

hobnobbinbobthegob2 karma

How many times have you paddle ass/had your ass paddled with that paddle?

Thad_David4 karma

Never... Id probably shoot someone for swinging it... That thing means the world to me. It was a great paddle party though when I got out

superduperspam2 karma

What's the hardest thing from transitioning from military life to civilian life (albeit with pirates)?

And good luck with the app. Will get it on Android when it comes

Thad_David2 karma

Thanks! The transformation wasn't to bad for me. A bunch of my buddies talked about this the other day. We all got out at the same time and all lived together... I think this really helped us ease back into it.

entomojames2 karma

Did you ever shoot anyone through the brainstem?

Thad_David2 karma

Yes I did, only 1 time though. I can say that confidently because of how close the shot was... 80 yards. Most of my other shots were pretty long range and tough to tell where it hits

entomojames2 karma

Interesting, is taking a life such a big deal as its made out to be in the movies or is it simply more like going through the motions and doing you job so you dont feel remorse. Do you mind if I ask how many times you fired your weapon at a human target and what model of rifle you used?

Thad_David4 karma

It's definitly something you think about often. I do think the movies over play it. A great book on this topic is "On Killing". They interview a lot of vets and go through their experiences.

I don't have count of how many times I've fired my rifle at a target. I've been in quite a few firefights and honestly I've lost count.

My favorite sniper rifle is the M40A1

entomojames1 karma

Cool thanks for your input, I kinda always had an image of modern theatres where infantry do hardly any work and its all done by air/navy/artillery.

Thad_David3 karma

Air, Navy, and artillery do a ton of work in battle and I have a ton of respect for them but at the end of the day troops have to go in and clear it out. It's definitly a huge team effort.

realged132 karma

I've always had a love for snipers. When I would play Halo, I always wanted the sniper rifle.

Do you have any good suggestions on good sniper books to read?

Also, does your game have sniper rifles I can just use?

Thad_David3 karma

The game has a sniper in it but his rifle is fixed and can't be changed unfortunalty... That is a good idea though. I may have to upgrade to that, as you upgrade the troop the rifle upgrades and changes.

As far as sniper specific books that is a great question. I'm going to have to think on it. Off the top of my head I can't think of one but we were required to watch enemy at the gates in sniper school and also read a book called "On Killing". Great book that really jumps into the psychology of killing in wartime

marine99692 karma

What made you get into cargo ship security and any advice for someone looking to move to that field?

Thad_David2 karma

Honestly it was good money and it wasn't going back to the desert. Id say if you go into that field make sure you get with a good company. A bad company and you won't get paid often or on time... Also if they hire just anyone then that's the people guarding your six... Just anyone

rishi132 karma

What is the difference in the shooting range for sniper in day and in night ?

Thad_David2 karma

I would ask how far can you see? How far is the target? Is the target under a light at 900 yards? As long as I can see the target and get a range, I can hit it.

rishi132 karma

How do you calculate wind speed while sniping ?

Thad_David3 karma

We were trained to look at various things in the environment around us. Bushes and dust moving, flags, clothes and even the haze you can see through your scope when looking off in the distance. Over time you can look at it an judge where you think it's at.

Wind comes more into play with longer shots. The short ones it's not a huge factor... 5-600 yards and lower being shorter... Once you get out past that it really matters

rishi132 karma

Which is more better night vision optical sight or thermal optical sight ?

Thad_David4 karma

That's a great question that I would say is mission specific. I'm not a huge fan of night vision so I would go with thermals if I had to choose off the top of my head.

kansashick2 karma

What was the best shot you have ever taken?

Thad_David4 karma

1360 yards is my furthest shot ever.

kansashick2 karma

Thats incredible! Live combat or a drill??

Thad_David4 karma

That was in school actually... It was an Unknown distance shot meaning I had to mil it out but I was still able to get it which was cool.

Furthest in combat was 970 yards

MsNewKicks2 karma

Could the military deal with a zombie apocalypse?

Thad_David6 karma

What type of Zombies? Walking Dead slow guys... Easy day. World War Z runners... That would be tough.

Personally I prefer the quicker ones the slow ones just don't seem like a threat to me.

MsNewKicks2 karma

Mix of the two. Sheer number/waves like World War Z, some runners and some slow plodder slike Walking Dead.

You'd have to set up safe zones like Two Weeks Later, right? Prevent one zombie turning a group into 100 zombies.

Thad_David6 karma

That would be a scary thing to try to defend. Sheer numbers alone in the fast ones would be almost impossible to stop. With a proper set up you could do it.

A quick safe zone, if it were me, Id move everyone into prisons. These are pre built fortresses. They would be somewhat easy to defend with a few units inside guarding it.

Kupoo2 karma

Thank you for your service! Any plans for an android version?

Thad_David2 karma

Thank you! The Android version should be coming in a few months. I wanted to make sure everything was stable on IOS first. It's a lot more work to go on Android but we will get there.

iphoneluver2 karma

How did you become a sniper? I've always had an interest in snipers and IMO its more art than warfare. What was the most emotional moment for you in combat?

Thad_David6 karma

My first team leader was a sniper and he got me a slot in sniper school. The most emotional moment has to be the first person i shot. It was in the middle of a big firefight so it was a long moment but it was in a way emotional.

avaseyrockz1 karma

Zombies does not exist in the real world it is only in virtual world. Isn't it?

Thad_David2 karma

Depends on who you ask. : ). There is a certain any that buts a different bug and turns it literally into a zombiefied bug... Pretty crazy if you google it it will pop up

Metalworks131 karma

Do you want to hear my actual question or smart ass hippie question?

Thad_David1 karma

Can I say both?

mkh310971 karma

about the app , for someone who doesn't do programming and everything. how do you make sure the people you hire don't screw you over?

Thad_David3 karma

Great question. When you use sites like Elance the people you hire only get paid if they provide the product... So you ore-pay the site your agreed amount then the site releases the funds after you approve the work.

Outside of those sites it's a lot of trust.

I've had a lot of success so far with it. I've met some great people. Most of them are actually looking to do work and not steal. The music in the game I created was put together by an awesome guy. I think he did an excellent job.

mkh310971 karma

Very nice thanks :D I wish you the best with your app!

Thad_David2 karma

Thank you!

shaggyzon41 karma

Congrats!

I think that many people have ideas for an app (whether it's a game or something else entirely), but they just don't know how to proceed. Can you give us some details on how you pulled this off?

What's your specific role? What did you bring to the table, other than the idea? (Did you help w/ development?)

How did you find others to help? How did you sell them on the idea?

Thad_David2 karma

Starting from ground 0 like I did I would explore what the scope of your app is and see what it takes to build. I love elance.com... It's a great site and you can find some really talented people there.

My role is all over the place. I designed the entire game, concepts etc. I do daily testing on all things in the game. My roll has really evolved over time. In the beginning it was more design and features and now it's a lot of testing.

Early on it was really tough to sell the "idea". I had a few close friends that jumped on board and without them it wouldn't have happened. Once the game started coming together the game sold itself and other people now ask to jump on board.

I would say a big thing is to draw up every little screen of yor app and everything you want on it. Then go from there. If you tell someone a helicopter they may think small helo that isn't what you are thinking. Being very clear about everything realy helps

shaggyzon41 karma

So, to be clear, you don't actually code? Your role was more more about story-boarding the concepts and QA testing?

Thad_David2 karma

That is correct. I looked really heavily into learning to code but the game of this scope... Learning to code this sort of thing would have taken me 2.5 years in itself. Once this is complete im planning to jump into a serious coding course.

Do you code?

shaggyzon41 karma

I'm in IT and I know the basics of making apps, but building a game from scratch is beyond my current ability. I'm very interested in the process of creation, though, of seeing an idea all the way through the development phase and bringing a substantive product to market.

Thad_David2 karma

It's been a ton of work. A lot of stuff I didn't even know was out there. I've considered putting together a short free eBook on my process and how it all worked out for me personally. People seem pretty interested in the process and im happy to help. Id love to see more people putting games etc together

hooraah1 karma

Besides making zombie games, what is the job market like for ex-special forces guys? I see you went to work for an anti-piracy security company. How common is it to work security after you get out vs working a 'normal' job back home?

On that note, how is it different from being in the military? Are you still treated as the elite units, or do you feel more like a regular employee?

Thad_David4 karma

It's tough adjusting. I don't normally put my military background on resumes etc. It would t do any good... Sniper doesn't exactly transfer over. My current boss knows about it though and he loves it. He always jokes with guys about seeing a red dot on their chest when they mess up.

hooraah2 karma

I've always had an interest in super wealthy people that go around the world on their private yachts and hire an ex-SEAL, Ranger, Recon, etc to keep themselves and the ship safe.

The few ultra-wealthy people I know have an 'I do what I want, whenever I want' attitude, and the most violent act they've seen in their lifetimes is someone yelling at the wait-staff at the country club. I find it really interesting how those polar opposites in life experiences would work together on a boat in some of the most dangerous waterways on the far side of the world.

Thad_David2 karma

I never got to work with some of those ultra wealthy people. My old company was looking into doing some things like that though. He wanted to push the security and diving side sense most of us are dive qual'ed as well.

I think it would be interesting to get a glance at that lifestyle... And possible see if one of them wants to invest in a video game. : )

Poo_Juice1 karma

I've heard that Marine snipers have to basically live in a nasty smelling bog for about a month of training. Can you shed some light if this is true and if so; why and what drills they had you running?

Thad_David4 karma

A month wasn't realisitc for what we did but they did put us through the ringer with some smelly uncomfortably stuff. The idea i believe it to see which guys can stay comfortable in very uncomfortable situations. If you can focus in the worst of times you'll be able to focus in the best times

dabisnit1 karma

I remember seeing your AMA a year or so ago (I just happened to be scrolling through the page today), and the response was a lot more negative then. What are some of the things that you took from the AMA to make the game better?

Edit: I swear it was longer than 8 months ago, it seems like forever

Also, I am considering joining the Marines (probably next year). I can do the pullups and situps and pushups fine, but what about training for all the jogging with gear? FYI, I am considering something infantry

Thad_David4 karma

I really tried to make sure we don't push the pay to win aspect that people hate with these games. I tried to come up with down new things to help users get around it. That seemed to be the biggest concern in the last post.

For your training I would say lots of jogging. You'll do some hikes with. A heavy pack but no ruck runs. I would personelly work on getting your long distance running down. Endurance will save you ass during a lot of bad times.

HansBrixOhNo1 karma

I just played this game last night, have you been working with Craig? Thanks for your service man.

Thad_David2 karma

Yep, Craig is a really good friend of mine. Thanks!

HansBrixOhNo1 karma

Haha, cool. Good luck with the game guys, it's fun.

Thad_David4 karma

Glad you like it!

Manfredjinsinjin1 karma

Why no jump wings or dive bubble on your paddle?

Thad_David3 karma

Never went to jump or dive unfortunalty. I graduated ARS and basically went straight to Iraq, came back and got sent to Sniper and SERE, back to iraq again and then because I was getting out I didn't get anymore schools. I was happy with sniper though. : )

Manfredjinsinjin1 karma

Thanks for the reply. I've been out for 18 years now, but I always though that jump and dive school with requirements. TIL. Was it unusual to see recon Marines without jump or dive schools?

Thanks for the game, btw!

Thad_David5 karma

Yeah, especially when I was in. Getting Schooled up always came after Basic Recon Course. For me and in my platoon we had a Jump Team, a Dive Team, and a Mobile team. During work ups we all went to the schools we need to fill the spots. For the older guys that already had schools they need they got t go to extras...

It just got tough because the turn around for deployments was so fast. It was hard to get all of your schools in. If I stayed in I would have gotten them but my unit was going right back so if I would have stayed in i would have done my 3rd tour right away, then I could have gotten some schools.

Manfredjinsinjin2 karma

You made the right choice. The green weenie always gets theirs...

As I thought more about it, there probably weren't a whole lot of airborne or amphib ops going down in Iraq right around then, anyhoo.

Thad_David1 karma

Haha the green weenie always wins. So true. I remember the Army did a jump into northern Iraq early on but thays all I heard about. Sniper school was the best thing for me, while I was in and after I got out.

SgtButtface1 karma

"Your engineers work your you." ?

Thad_David5 karma

Yeah. Double them down or put as many as you want on 1 project to decrease the amount of time it takes to build it.

One current issue I have with other similar titles is a have 5 builders or engineers and I can only upgrade 1 thing at a time and it takes weeks...

In ZCC you can add multiple engineers to 1 project if they aren't busy and it cuts the time of building by quite a bit.

eqian1 karma

Are there any misconceptions about snipers that video games have created? Was your career similar to the kind depicted in games?

Thad_David7 karma

Very much so, there are a lot. My favorite is the no scoping aspect of most games. Guys shooting people at great distances without looking through the scope. Or even the most basic, a lot of video games will allow someone to shoot the Barrett 50cal sniper rifle from the standing... This would knock someone on their butt.

BrAnDeN881 karma

Would you like to have known Chris Kyle , like interviewed him or heard his real story from himself ? He seems like a good person and his death was unnecessary. Greetings from Johannesburg, South Africa. Believe it or not...

Thad_David3 karma

I think it would be cool to have met him and to ask him a few questions to see what he is really like. I'm not sure what to think of him because of the book he wrote about himself. It would be nice to hear it from him. It was really unfortunate that he died though especially how he died. That's awesome your from SA. Id love to visit there some day. I've only been in North West Africa.

Reginald_Dean1 karma

So what sets your game above the already crowded zombie genre market?

Thad_David1 karma

If I may answer this with an email I got today from a random user of the game. He basically said he loves the direction the game is taking this mobile genre. That the troop controls and platoon features make this closer to the PC games of this nature and he felt it's going to pull a lot more PC users into it.

This game also has a book series that tags along with it which I don't think to many Zombie Games have... Maybe a book or a game but not both. Search Amazon for "Divide Then Conquer" it's doing pretty well also.

okeysiri1291 karma

do you support donald trumps plan for us using the iraqi oil fields?

Thad_David2 karma

I honestly stay out of the political side of things. And I don't mean that because I don't want to offend anyone... I genuinely just stay away from the BS the news shoves down our throats nightly.

HerrHoopla-1 karma

Head shots only?

Edit: This pertains to the game. Although it does peak my interest in your military experience.... Heads must be hard to hit from distance.

Thad_David2 karma

The game is more of an overhead view of the battlefield so you can see individual head shots etc. Not like the FPS games out today.

HerrHoopla2 karma

Ah, gotcha. I like the new take. Thanks!

Thad_David1 karma

Thanks!

ridersofrohan64-2 karma

Ever done a headshot and seen their head explode like a watermelon?

Thad_David9 karma

This is somewhat of a myth. Typically when taking a shot your recoil on the rifle moves the scope off target during the shot. My spotter got to see some cool things though.

fede01_8-3 karma

Are you a murdering psychopath like your fellow sniper Chris Kyle?

Thad_David2 karma

I really didn't like his book or his movie... I felt it was a made for Hollywood script

vikeysngh-7 karma

How many innocent people did u kill in Iraq?

Thad_David3 karma

Zero. I would never do this sort of thing.