Heavy Rain: DayZ Shows Off New DX11 Renderer

One big milestone DayZ [official site] has headed for on its hike through the boglands of Early Access has been a new renderer [the bit of a game engine which turns numbers into pictures -‘Technical’ ed.]. Developers Bohemia Interactive have been working on a new DirectX 11 renderer which should bring far better performance to the open-world survival game, and maybe tart it up a little too. This has, of course, taken far longer than they’d planned (and said), but it is coming along. Check out this new video showing off the DX11 renderer and some dangerously heavy rain.

DayZ lead producer Brian Hick fired up his VCR to record this video comparing the DX9 and DX11 renderers, saying that the new version is running 30-40% faster:

The perpetual rain is caused by a bug with their new weather system, by the way, but it’s impressive it’s still that much faster. I do also like how distant zombies are indistinct lumps cloaked by sheets of rain. Have fun picking players out in that! The rain does look a bit weird and glassy, but it’s compressed down to a YouTube video so I suspect it’ll look different in the game itself.

This is still a “very early work-in-progress” version, mind, and there’s no firm date for when the new renderer will hit even the opt-in ‘experimental’ branch of DayZ, let alone the main version. The plan was to start by making the new renderer look the same as the old, simply running faster, before moving onto additions like new particle effects and improved lighting. With the new weather, it seems DayZ’s already surpassing the old version.


  1. wishforanuclearwinter says:

    Is Technical Ed a new hire or has he been more of a behind-the-scenes guy until now?

  2. Alfius says:

    “… it seems DayZ’s already surpassing the old version.”

    Not sure if sarcasm. I want to love DayZ, but it’s been four years. Those of us who played the original back in 2012 moved on to modded private hives, then to Sahrani, Lingor and Namalsk servers, then to Breaking Point, then got a bit bored of zombies, then played vanilla Arma 3 for a bit, got back into zombie, played a bit more Breaking Point, probably poured a few hours into the buggy standalone beta, got bored of zombies again, harboured a Wargame addiction for around 18 months, resubbed to Eve Online after a decade and eventually forgot all about DayZ and zombies and Dean ‘Rocket’ Hall.

    • BobbyDylan says:


    • Morte66 says:

      Is this really news?

      DX12 would be news, DX11 is “how was it not at that stage years ago?”

      Perhaps it’s a RPS news item about how late it is, but the wording failed to put that angle across?

      • TacticalNuclearPenguin says:

        Speaking of technical advancements, rain occlusion is sort of standard nowadays inside buildings.

      • Alice O'Connor says:

        What a sunny bunch we are this morning!

      • InFlux64 says:

        I very much enjoyed playing Operation Flashpoint through DX7, and this is the first I’ve heard of it. So I’d say this is excellent news!

    • Masser says:

      Wow man , you have described , perfectly, what me and my buddies have been doing since we played Standalone when it released lol I mean so shockingly accurate that I thought for sure, it had to be one of their posts. Everything from Breaking Point to a Wargame ( World of Warships) addiction. Even the completely far fetched re-sub to Eve Online that I somehow convinced them to actually play was spot on. Hilariously creepy , highly accurate post dude. Now stop watching me :)

  3. Vastial says:

    I can’t wait to experience the delights of zombies clipping through doors in glorious DX11.

    • DeusExMachina says:

      You have won the Internet today Sir.

    • int says:

      So Arma’s engine still has clipping problems? I remember way way back in Operation Flashpoint there were always issues when you went indoors, and weird clipping through doors and windows. Actually most static objects would interact weirdly with players if you ran into them.

  4. LimaBravo says:

    Okay cool it has rain. Does it have zombies yet?

  5. Mr Wonderstuff says:

    Looks worse. I’ve given up hope DayZ will come to anything.

    • Sakkura says:

      I removed it from my Steam wish list just last week. Mostly because I was in there to check what I might want to buy in the sale, and noticed this old relic I’d been giving time to mature.

      Yay DX11. It’s almost updating as fast as Microsoft is releasing new DX versions. At this rate it might get DX12 before Microsoft releases DX14!

      • InFlux64 says:

        Who cares what version it is, as long as its prettier and runs better everyone’s a winner.

  6. Don Reba says:

    2009 just called. Said it wants its DirectX back.

    • Bone says:

      Too late, too little? Probably, but hey I still would like to see a good performing Arma/Bohemia game with all the possibilities of a large scale sim. We just have to accept that Early Access can mean access to something that’s 90% different in code from what’s being worked on for 3+ years after we first played. VERY early access in this case.

  7. sapien82 says:

    that rain looks awful , rain doesnt distort the shape of buildings in the distance , it actually makes it looks worse

    • fish99 says:

      Yeah, it’s a cool effect, but rain just doesn’t look like that. It should be less visible in the distance not more. It is WIP though.

    • Pantalaimon says:

      Honestly ‘rain effects’ is somewhere on the pointless game PR bingo sheet. I don’t think they ever look impressive or like real rain, just more ways to make graphics cards work too hard which everyone turns off almost instantly.

      In the case of Day Z it’s just a bit sad really. The graphics are not important and they never were. The Arma 2 of 2012 already looked absolutely fantastic if you cranked up the settings, so I’m sure whatever nth engine iteration they’re on looks and runs better than that, and should have done for a few years. Why are they still concerned with talking about graphics? They’re not the selling point and they never will be.

      I’m more than happy that Rocket got out of there while the going was good. I think he obviously has potential to be a great designer, and not just in the Molyneux-esque hype man role that he occupied at the nether end of Day Z (although he’s also bloody good at that).

  8. Eldritch says:

    Looks very atmospheric. Also, we are still within the timeframe they gave back around the Early Access release, so I’m still happy to wait. Very much looking forward to it.

  9. FLoJ says:

    So basically if you want an advantage in PvP then don’t use DX11

    • InFlux64 says:

      That was my initial concern, although I’d imagine there’ll be an option to turn off certain parts of the PP, the same as there is at the moment in Arma 3. They would only ever force it if it was possible on both renderers.

  10. Dudeist says:

    I have no idea how they can back this title prestige. I was big fan and I loved Dayz mod, but I can’t imagine now that I will play it again.

  11. w0bbl3r says:

    So the DX9 one is the crappy few ugly spots of rain?
    And the DX11 is the horribly ugly sheet of wavery glass textures that look like a terrible graphics bug?

    Haven’t played this for a couple of years now, since I played for a short while after buying it. Glad to see it’s moving….. nowhere good after all this time.
    Wtf are these guys doing with all this time and huge amount of cash they are making? Because it certainly isn’t being spent making a game.

  12. SMGreer says:

    I really like DayZ and still play it often. I’m happy with the progress they’ve made and look forward to seeing what’s to come. This video is promising.

  13. theirongiant says:

    DayZ is the ultimate zombie game – it passed away years ago but keeps shambling along, twitching and groaning, never quite getting the sweet release of death.

  14. Tartrazine says:

    I rate Dayz SA, it’s on my best ever games list, but even I have succumbed to the ‘alpha release because they wanted to make money before the zombie fad passed’ point of view.

    Still, as I never tire of saying I got my moneys worth when you divide cost by hours played.

  15. jaguar skills says:

    Looking forward to the finished version of this game, after it has 9 engine changes and several entire project restarts all the way up until 2031 when Randy Pitchford takes over and plops it out to a 50% Metacritic ranking.

    Or I could just play Rust.

  16. IonTichy says:

    720p video to show off improvements in graphics
    sounds reasonable

    • herschel says:

      It´s like listening to Justin Bieber on mobilephone speakers.

      There, I did it. I made a Justin Bieber joke.

  17. LokiHavok says:

    Four years and this is all this pathetic team has done?

    This is why I’ve moved on to Miscreated…

    • InFlux64 says:

      Hurry along then…

      • LokiHavok says:

        You mad bruh?

        • Press X to Gary Busey says:

          You got that the wrong way around. That should’ve been InFlux64’s reply if that exchange was ever going to work.
          Your return should then have been something about overused memetics and the third reply in this very spot should be replaced with a comeback containing a birds-and-bees inference relating to a female primogenitor.

  18. CloneWarrior85 says:

    So, instead of fixing the zombies and whatnot, they added dx11, which could had been avoided if they choosed to use the new engine when arma3 came out, instead of sticking with the old one, for the standalone release.

    From all the early access, this game was the one that made me really regreat getting…

    I beleive that Robert’s going to be able to finnish star cirizen 2 (yep, a second game), before these guys get out of early acess on dayz.

    • NeoArmageddon says:

      Keep in mind that a software engineer specialized on graphics/renderer is probably not the best choice to be assigned to AI and animations. I am sure there are specialized people already working on other parts of the game alongside the renderer change.

      Also DX12 was not meant to replace DX12 but provide a different API for a different scope of engine design. MS and other developers said that a few times now.

  19. Sinjun says:

    Are they fucking serious? Bad rain effects and DX11? Welcome to 2011.

  20. racccoon says:

    This is kind of lame, they need more than that to show off! One factor that may of made this video more worthy of their time & efforts which seem outdated & long winded, would be too place pool effects as water just does not vanish into the ground! Heavy rain like the one they are showing would cause rivers of water & floods.

    I would of done this kind of research before publishing anything link to youtube.com

  21. herschel says:

    Well, I was always in favor of DayZ and supported the development where I was able to. But it got beyond a point of crazy now. They were talking about the new renderer for over a year now, raising expectations just by pushing information bits more and more down the timeline. The whole of the community is eagerly waiting to see any footage to get a motivation boost to continue to support the game.

    Now this. Dated, buggy, awful effects in a choppy and pixelated 720p video. Plus pointlessly announcing to “ring the dinner bell in Cherno”… and then fighting 20-25 zombies by semi-amingly throwing bad sounds at them. I did that 2 years ago in DayZMod with 40+ zombies and a pounding heart, cornered in, clawing for what is left to my virtual life.

    Did they learn nothing from all the communication disasters they had? Pathetic.

    • herschel says:

      Plus the DayZ website is down for how long now? 3 weeks? I have a bad feeling about this.

    • NeoArmageddon says:

      Maybe they are relocating all staff to A3:Apex :D