During the winter sale on Steam, a friend of mine bought me DayZ (quite a generous move considering it wasn't even on sale). My net-speed had been capped at the time but with the shift of the month and indeed the new year (happy new year by the way) I got a chance to download the new and improved DayZ experience.
I'll explain my thoughts and ideas about the current state of the game as well as my experience with the buddy who bought me the game.
DayZ has come a long way since I first launched the mod. I still remember my first experience in the game. It was probably better than most and I was very optimistic.
I had gotten some decent loot, plenty of food, an AK-47 with ammo and had managed to avoid all zombies thus far. Things changed when I ran into another player. He said he was friendly, he asked for directions and as I pointed North I turned my back on him. The last thing I remember hearing was a gun-shot like noise as his axe impacted with my back.
That is the harsh reality of DayZ. Bandits are common and you should trust no one. Play with friends if you want to trust someone.
The Stand-Alone release of DayZ. Let's start by saying that it's still and alpha. Many aspects will and should be changed. The current performance of the game is poor, acceptable if you have played the mod but poor by any other standard.
Gameplay is functional though feedback from how your character experiences and interacts with the world is still limited.
On my first run in the stand-alone I was all on my own and spawned in Novy Sobor. I headed towards the airfield and got some decent loot. I crammed by backpack full and set off to new adventures.
Unfortunately my character died of starvation before an hour had even passed. This was not the mod where you could carry as much loot as your backpack can carry and still run for kilometers without eating or resting.
My second run started pretty much exactly the same way. I once again spawned in Novy Sobor and headed up to the airfield. That's where things went differently though. At the airfield, many things had gone down since I had been there thirty minutes ago. I found a dead survivor, completely kitted out with guns and magazines. All his magazines were empty though and he had clearly been looted by whoever killed him.
I picked up most of his gear but was more selective this time about what I could carry. Luck had it though that the moment I went into the ATC, I found an entire box full of ammo, ammo compatible with my M4A1 and magazines. Upon loading the gun with ammo I set out feeling confident and quite lucky.
The very next day I met up with Roaches in Gorka, the friend who bought me the game. This is our story. Me and my friend Roaches had been teaming up surviving for three days in a row now. We had been looting smaller villages and towns further in-land. After a successful run through Berezino (a town by the coast) we decided to keep heading south along the coastal line.
It was mainly an uneventful trip, Roaches and I were both decently kitted out. He had a good stockpile of food and a pistol. I had my previously mentioned M4A1 assault rifle.
We found a bleeding man along the way sitting in the middle of the road. Though I kept my weapon fixed on him all the time we decided to help him out and Roaches gave him some bandages.
The man did not pick it up and after a short while we decided to leave him to his fate.
We continued south, it was mid day and the sun was glaring in our eyes as we headed further up-hill.
When we arrived at the small village of Kamyshovo, we discovered a dead body lying in a house, stripped of all possessions. As I looked outside I only just observed another person disappearing among the houses. I pointed out to Roaches we had better be careful. We searched two houses at the edge of the village with me keeping a watchful eye towards the coast then decided to leave the rest of the town alone.
We proceeded further along the coast, towards the town nicknamed "Elektro". I expected there would be players there so we stayed away from the main road leading into the town. Instead we took another way, around the "Elektro-hill" and down past the fire-station.
Looking through all the houses we could find no sign of proper loot. It was clear we weren't going to find anything in the outskirts.
As we headed further into the town I heard some shots. Then we heard them again. I rounded a house cautiously and immediately saw the body of a dead player in the middle of the road. We went into an apartment building, both completely on edge, sharpening our nerves of steel.
Upon exiting the building we heard another couple of shots. In a move of foolishness or call it bravery, I set out towards the place where I thought I had heard the sound. Roaches followed behind me.
I could not quite pin-point where the shots where coming from but then I got a brief glimpse of the gunman. He had a white clown-mask on and an assault rifle. He had the high-ground but I had the drop on him. I instinctively raised my gun and fired a suppressive burst. He ran. I pointed Roaches in the direction of where he had been.
Instead of running after him, which meant going down the hill and losing the high-ground I had won by my initial burst, I decided the best move would be to flank around going further up and around the hill.
Roaches and I searched the hill but could not find him. Upon coming back though from the far end of the shrubbery I spotted the gunman atop the hill, ready to fire. I alerted Roaches to his presence as I fired another burst towards his chest. He opened fire as well and bullets were flying past my ears as I ducked left towards some bushes. In a desperate move I turned around and fired my gun at full auto, I could hear Roaches firing his pistol, the gunman fell.
Miraculously I had not been hit a single time and neither had Roaches.
This was the time to get some gear. I told Roaches to loot the body, to take all he could carry while we still could. I nervously danced around, looking right, looking left. Guarding the loot. Another survivor appeared, he had a red motorcycle helmet and appeared armed though had not readied his fire-arm. He was cautiously approaching us, I raised my weapon and took aim. I told him to back off. He said he would do so but sounded untrustworthy. As Roaches finished looting the corpse of the bandit we had shot earlier, I went back to take a look myself.
Roaches took watch. The bandit had a ton of ammunition, some food and plenty of other good loot. I took what I could. At that point Roaches pointed out the guy in the motorcycle helmet was back. He did the same thing I did, told him to back away. This time he didn't seem very convinced though and instead of backing away he slowly started moving towards us. Roaches told me to stop looting, worried the motor-cycle helmet man may attack. I concurred and suggested we hide the body and leave.
We went back up the hill, we had seen enough of Elektro. But on the road leading out of the town bullets started hitting the ground at our feet, we were once again under fire! Luckily this gunman was not very accurate either and we broke into a sprint along the road. Then I saw him running among the trees, the man with the motor-cycle helmet. Knowing it was him who had fired the shots I raised my gun and in a single burst shot him dead, he fell to the ground.
Once again the looting game began. As Roaches sat exposed looting the corpse I nervously kept watch. I did not bother looting this person myself and Roaches and I moved off. Elektro was not a hospitable place.
Unfortunately at this point our luck ran out. Another bandit was hiding in the bushes and shot my friend right in the gut at point blank range. Roaches bravely fought him off and killed him where he was lying on the ground. Then Roaches fell. I was not sure if he was alive or dead. Was he breathing? He was unconscious. I bandaged his wounds knowing it would be practically impossible for him to recover from his wounds. As he collapsed before me, I ran off, scouting the area for more bandits, this was not a great place to be incapacitated in, on the Elektro hill by the side of the road. Then he spoke to me.
He had suffered great a loss of blood and his vision was blurred. I headed back but heard gunshots. My friend not being in a state to realize what had happened, had been gunned down by two ruthless bandits. As I approached my friends corpse, I saw one of the bandits running away among the trees.
What would I do now? I had lost my friend, my companion. The two bandits who killed him were still around, I could go after them. But I decided against it, revenge would have to wait. There is only so much one man can do so I turned around and ran, I ran as fast as I could away from Elektro and the Elektro hill. I ran away from the bandits, the loot and away from Roaches' dead body.
That is how the DayZ standalone is. Currently it is a mess of banditry, beginners and lag.
Would I recommend you buy the game? Not as such no, though if you're a long-time DayZ player you may enjoy the simplicity of the current state of the game. It goes back to the early days of the mod and maybe it will make you feel somewhat nostalgic.
That's it for this blog. I may post some more DayZ stories at another time. Have a nice day!
Listen to this while reading, hopefully some of you will get the reference: