Day Z Standalone: “Instanced” Building, More Chernarus

By Jim Rossignol on August 15th, 2012 at 12:30 pm.


I was just having a lovely chat with Dean Hall and Marek Spanel over at the BIS stand at GamesCom, and a couple of things emerged that I thought were interesting. Firstly, the Day Z standalone, which Hall anticipates arriving before the end of the year, could eventually have “instanced” building. Hall described how he saw the future of player-driven construction in the game consisting in underground bases that would be instanced from portals (“a grate in the ground”) across Chernarus. He described how players could dig it out, concrete it, building hydroponics, or even see it collapse on them. The second thing that was interesting is that Chernarus is being redone (“Chernarus Plus”) for the release with more enterable buildings, more detail, and even entirely new areas. New maps for the game will, apparently, be a major part of the plan for the standalone in the future.

Full interviews with Hall and Spanel coming up next week.

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72 Comments »

  1. hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

    Hope you can grow some DayZs in that hydroponics garden.

  2. Sweedums says:

    i certainly think dayz could do with some more “end game content”. It gets to the point right now where simply surviving is not difficult and it comes down to either looking for vehicles and setting up camps, neither of which are particularly stable right now. I think i’ve lost about 15 tents in the last 2 weeks, i don’t know why i keep putting them down!

    I still really enjoy the game, i think im on about day 45 now with my current character, but there isnt really much to do now. The idea of being able to build your own little base underground is quite cool if it is as difficult as it sounds like it ought to be. It would provide a goal for the players who have more or less figured out surviving

    • kyrieee says:

      Safe storage would be terrible for the game. Everyone could hoard guns and equipment endlessly and it would make death less meaningful.

      • DJ Madeira says:

        I guess it depends on how hard it is to build, but you’d have to guard it even when it’s built.

        • Sweedums says:

          oh yeah it would only really be good if it could still be raided, otherwise yes, it would just become an armoury

      • chhopsky says:

        Totally, but he’s not talking about storage safe from players, he’s talking about storage safe FROM THE GAME. I’m totally fine for someone to come and steal stuff from my tent because that’s part and parcel of the experience. What I’m not fine for is for my tent to randomly disappear and reappear, as it has been wont to do lately.

    • gunny1993 says:

      Try this, run through Electra with a bunch of other guys and kill literally everything you see. Very fun indeed.

  3. pakoito says:

    So finally the game will finally have a sustainable objective to go for. I haven’t played yet but that was my biggest concern design-wise: what’s the target endgame?

    • Unaco says:

      The game has always had a sustainable objective: Survival. I’m not sure it needs an ‘endgame’ target either… there shouldn’t really be an ‘end’, nothing to do to ‘complete’ the game. More content, sure, but I don’t think it should be aimed at an ‘end game’… just ‘game’.

    • Stochastic says:

      I’m with Unaco on this. Free form games like DayZ gain their power from the lack of explicit objectives. One of the things that’s so refreshing about DayZ (and Minecraft and EVE and others of that ilk) is that you can play it however you like; game mandated goals stand directly in the way of that.

      The players, not the game, should create their own objectives and infuse the world with purpose with their actions. The game merely need provide a consistent and predictable ruleset, a fun toolbox, and an interesting world to explore and interact with.

      • pakoito says:

        I understand that we need those targets to be created by us, but they have to be provided by the designer. Playing a survival game just for the sake of the survival…well, I can just sit behind a crate and survive, and it’d be as valid as running around the whole map gathering resources and avoiding players. Now if the designer adds an entrenchment, a helicopter and the possibility to start my own town…we’re talking. But those options have to be there.

        • Unaco says:

          “well, I can just sit behind a crate and survive, and it’d be as valid as running around the whole map gathering resources and avoiding players”

          And yet, nowhere near as much fun.

          • pakoito says:

            Crouch behind crate, tab to other game is more fun, that’s the point :)

          • Unaco says:

            What point? Playing another game is more fun than not playing DayZ? Yeah… that’s kinda obvious.

          • renadi says:

            If the only point is survival sitting behind a crate IS playing DayZ, and is in fact the only logical way to play.

            When the goal is survival you don’t go out searching for fun, you hunker down and hide.

        • PodX140 says:

          By all means, sit behind a crate and try. I’ve honestly tried to do exactly this for quite some time, and amassing enough food to feasibly survive a week is incredibly difficult, then you have to do it all over again once you’re out.

          It’s not as easy as you make it sound.

          • pakoito says:

            It’s not, I was exaggerating to point a design flaw in the game.

    • gunny1993 says:

      End game is a total misnomer for this concept, the excitement and risk of DayZ increases with the more gear you have. Most clans no go on raids against each other, there’s not really much reward other than some gear you probably don’t need (although now they are working on duping and ammo glitch that will change). But the main thing is that it is fun.

  4. Gesadt says:

    for some reason i dont like instancing. i think it goes against the idea of a sandbox. but i guess it depends on actual implementation

    • Reapy says:

      I sort of agree with you, I haven’t really ventured in yet despite already having combined ops. I think the part I don’t like is persistence across all the servers, though I guess it makes sense if you couldn’t get into your favorite server, I just don’t like that if someone doesn’t like how things are playing out, they can just pop over somewhere else. Seems to remove the consequences.

      Maybe instancing instance a bad idea if anybody can go into the instance from any server. It might just be a way to get them outside the main map space onto something more stable that runs a bit better. I guess we’ll find out in the upcoming interview.

    • Torgen says:

      I have to agree as well. I’d rather them expand on the tents and make you scavenge wood, siding, cement and build a Quonset Hut-type building or something, with the noise from construction being heard by zeds and players alike. You shouldn’t be able to build an untouchable army base and stock it up in safety.

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      Instanced building sounds like an entirely terrible idea, for all the reasons mentioned here. I have no clue where he came up with that as a potential direction for DayZ.

      I mean, the only housing that has ever really been good in an online game world was Ultima Online’s, and that certainly wasn’t instanced.

      What DayZ needs is the ability for players to band together and build towns or forts, not further splinter up into cliques hiding in virtual reality underground bunkers.

  5. argzombies says:

    Since when did DayZ change from Attack of the Zombies to Rise of the Mole People

  6. Tei says:

    Well.. this may create the need to acquire oil to power electricity generators, I suppose.

    I am not a DayZ players myself, but based on what I have see, a standalone game sould include more and better animation for zombies, and better collision detections. I have seen zombies clip trough doors, or doing some trully horrible collision artifacts. Thats ok for a early alpha, but is gross even for a beta.

    • woodsey says:

      I just pretend they’re all former magicians.

    • gunny1993 says:

      The problem (at least from what i’ve heard) is that the arma engine simply isn’t built to support anything like zombies, it is reasonable to assume this game will be built on a version of arma engine (Hopefully 3) but it will be built so that zombies aren’t fing horrible.

      IMO zombies are the worst bit of the game right now (apart from pussy hackers)

  7. 2Ben says:

    Something I’m a bit worried about: I bought Arma CO *only* for DayZ. Will I, at the end, have to pay extra for the final, stable, supported, standalone DayZ or get stuck with an eternal Alpha Arma mod ?
    If you can ask this in incoming interview, that would be great.

    Thanks !

    • woodsey says:

      The mod will be updated alongside the new standalone, they said that back when they announced the standalone. Eventually the standalone will take the lead though, obviously. Presumably they’re using the ARMA III engine (I hope), so there’s gonna come a point where it gets much further ahead than the mod.

      And yes, obviously you’ll have to pay for the standalone version if you want it. In your head you may have paid for Day Z, but in reality you paid for CO and then played a free mod.

      • Triglav says:

        Should and shouldn’t.
        Should because they were already paid for it by everyone and their granny buying ARMA2 to play the mod.
        Shouldn’t, because…umm…it’s not the done thing?

        • woodsey says:

          By that logic you expect Assassin’s Creed 3 to be free for everyone who bought AC 1 and 2 because hey, they made the series popular.

          It’s discounted as they test it and the mod’s being updated too – that’s good enough. More than good enough. I suspect they’ll pick a suitable point in its development, round things off, and then go exclusively to the standalone. No matter how you spin it, it was still ultimately a free, proof of concept mod. Sure, it’d be exceptionally nice of them, but there comes a point when you’re just expecting stuff you have no real reason to expect.

      • 2Ben says:

        As Triglav said, there’s no doubt in anybody’s mind, including Bohemia, that I’m definitely not an isolated case, and that a huge part of recent Arma II sales is entirely due to DayZ. It’s not as if it was a minor mod or something.
        Anyway, if the mod is updated and on part with the standalone, that’s fine. A DayZ 2 based on Arma III engine is a different beast altogether.

        • stillunverified says:

          You did not buy DayZ, you bought ArmA2.
          1 person, 100,000 people, 1,000,000 people complaining does not change that one, simple fact.

        • Barnaby says:

          You, and plenty of other people, aren’t accounting for the fact that Rocket doesn’t make money off Arma 2 sales. What’s worse is how Bohemia capitalized on all the people wanting to play the mod by A) keeping the price much higher than it should and B) practically waiting til the end of the Steam sale to even discount the thing (pretty shitty discount at that).

          Rocket needs to be rewarded for his hard work in my opinion. DayZ, flaws and all, is a fantastic thing. I can’t wait for the opportunity to throw money at the standalone version of the game. Dean deserves it.

          • godwin says:

            What. Can somebody say Entitlement?

            It’s a mod. You never make a mod expecting compensation or renumeration. Be thankful that the base game even exists in the first place.

    • Donncha O Caoimh says:

      Use Google to find other Arma II mods as there are quite a few out there including other zombie mods. Arma II itself is a great game, definitely worth playing!

  8. woodsey says:

    Hm, does this mean we’ll be able to enter other lairs though, or not?

    • Mad Hamish says:

      From what I’ve heard from Rocket , yes. From what he has said they seem to be portals to the instanced underground layers separate to the map. I think he said something about them following you from server to server.

      • Torgen says:

        But then, how do you handle two groups using the same steam tunnel grate as an entrance on different servers?

  9. Ovno says:

    We’ll build shops and hospitals and barracks right under their noses – right under their
    feet!

    Everything we need – banks, prisons and schools…

    We’ll send scouting parties to
    collect books and stuff, and men like you’ll teach the kids.

    Not poems and rubbish – science, so we can get everything working.

    We’ll build villages and towns and… and…we’ll play each other at cricket!

    source: http://www.lyricsondemand.com/soundtracks/w/waroftheworldslyrics/bravenewworldlyrics.html

    We’ll start all over again……….

    • wu wei says:

      +1 would get high and listen to album again

    • oceanview says:

      funny, to me it seems the world would benefit most from the destruction of all of that except hospitals and poems.

      • Ovno says:

        1) What no World of the Worlds….?

        2) Without science we wouldn’t have PCs, without PCs we wouldn’t have PC games and without PC games we wouldn’t have RPS 0_0

  10. BluElement says:

    Waiting to announce the stand alone version about 12 hours after the Arma 2 sale on steam was a dick move, so I’ll just wait for The War Z instead.

    • gunny1993 says:

      You get arma 2 out of that deal, literally the opposite of a dick move (and it was on sale)

    • sexyresults says:

      Could you be any more entitled?

  11. derbefrier says:

    Sounds awesome but if this doesn’t come out on the ARMA 3 engine i’ll be heartbroken. hopefully we get a solid answer to that in your interview.

    • gamerab says:

      Although the engine hasn’t been confirmed, it sounds like its going to be Arma2.5, engine-wise.

      If theyr’e predicting an alpha release this year, this doesn’t give them much time to play with an engine so I’m suprised its not EITHER arma2 (engine) OR arma3 (engine). We await statements on the engine…

  12. gamerab says:

    Chernarus+ Ok so the standalone, low price, alpha map will be recognisable AND be with us this year (fingers crossed). I’m a little dissapointed its not a new map (IE Limnos). Ok, so we’ll have to wait for new maps.

  13. Premium User Badge

    VelvetFistIronGlove says:

    New, improved Chernarus map? As a player, that sounds great! But as the developer of [shameless plug alert] the Bean Coast app (coming soon), it means work, work, work.

    I don’t at all like the idea of instanced fortifications. I think the game should instead allow players to clear (small) areas of zombies, and fortify them. Like the factory between Polana and Orlovets, or Devil’s Castle, or Green Mountain.

    • derbefrier says:

      yep i agree having an instanced safe zone seems to go against the spirit of the game. Allow players to build safezones on the map accessible to everyone i say. I mean could you imagine player made little mini cities, like multiple safezones built around each other by players agreeing to help protect them from bandits and zombies, that would be awesome. I could just imagine all the cool stories that would come with trying to run and maintain a safezone especially once bandits find it and decide they want that stash of ammo and food you and your buddies have been saving for the past week.

    • oceanview says:

      agreed. instance is a dirty word.

      Also I’d love to see something different than chernarus plus.. pretty tired of that map by now.

  14. JohnnyMaverik says:

    Is that a screenshot of the game? O.o

    Never seen that many zombies acting like that in Day Z….

  15. hosndosn says:

    >He described how players could dig it out, concrete it, building hydroponics, or even see it collapse on them.

    Today in “least expected features for DayZ updates”…

  16. Amun says:

    The more I see Rocket do with DayZ, the less I think he’s up to the challenge of designing a game that’s “tight” in the way we all want them to be. He seems like he’s just waving his hands in the air and shouting buzzwords, while occasionally introducing more game-breaking bugs and new features that don’t make any sense (eg turning off the respawn button).

    I enjoyed playing DayZ, but I can’t enjoy it any more. The hackers and the incompetent man at the helm have ruined it.

    • xaphoo says:

      sadly, I agree with you. Since I started playing a week or two after that first RPS story, there hasn’t been much positive change in the game — and a lot of negative. It’s held my rapt attention for a while but it’s fading for the reasons you said.

      I’m also distressed at these new features he mentions. Before underground bases, there are many, many things that would improve the game more dramatically. To list four: roving hordes, radios that pick up voice broadcasts from Green Mountain, a functioning disconnect timer, and mechanics for identifying friends at close range.

    • chhopsky says:

      I will agree that hackers have made it all seem futile and made me stop clinging to the life and gear I so dearly protected. You basically can’t play at the moment without expecting to, at any time, be teleported 200m in the air or killed instantly.

      I don’t think this is entirely rocket’s fault. ArmA2 was an enthusiast niche game that was incredibly unforgiving. It’s designed to let people script up their own missions and to undo the scripting capabilities requires a lot of hacking into ArmA2 itself. There’s not a lot you can do from the outside.

      Taking it off the ArmA2 platform is going to be the end of hacking as we know it as it puts a lot more control back on the servers.

  17. alilsneaky says:

    Open world game : instance stuff!
    Brilliant idea…