DayZ creator Dean "Rocket" Hall has shared his reaction with Eurogamer over the DayZ Origins mod for Arma 2 and its "inspiration" from Rocket's original zombie-survival creation. Though calling the naming similarities between the two mods "a bit problematic," he commended the GamersPlatoon community for "some awesome ideas."
The War Z may have ended up a rushed mess of a game, but people looking for DayZ style zombie survival action (yet inexplicably unwilling to just play DayZ) could now have a new title to try. Despite the name, DayZ Origins has nothing to do with Dean "Rocket" Hall's original, but instead is an Arma 2 mod "inspired" by DayZ. It also claims to give an ultimate end goal to the game of running around an open world, trying not to be eaten by the dead.
Dean "Rocket" Hall has posted another development update on the status of the DayZ Standalone release, and by the sound of things, the team have been busy. "This is the first update when I have sat down and thought “where do I start?” There has been so much going on with the development this month that it is hard to fit it all in a post here."
Are hard-as-hell indie games enough to satiate our hunger for a challenge, or should mainstream developers quit trying to appease everyone and start really testing us? In this Face Off from our archives (originally published October 2012), Executive Editor Evan Lahti gives former Senior Editor Josh Augustine a hard time for his willingness to take it easy.
Bohemia Interactive developers Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar, both of who were detained and jailed in Greece for nearly four months on charges of espionage, have returned to the Czech Republic today after posting a €5,000 bail ($6,672).
Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar, the two Bohemia Interactive developers detained and imprisoned on suspicion of espionage during a holiday to Greece, have been freed on bail this morning. Once paid, the pair will be free to return to the Czech Republic.
The standalone release of DayZ was supposed to be out before the end of 2012. With 2013 now upon us, and no sight of the open-world survival horror, you'd be forgiven for thinking that zombies had pounced on it while it was trying to vault over the ArmA 2 engine. Not so, according to Dean "Rocket" Hall, who has updated the DayZ development blog with info on the status of the project.
If XCOM reminded us of the value of loss in 2012, DayZ was a valuable lesson in hardship. The Arma 2 mod was one of the least-forgiving and most intimidating games of the year. It was a shooter that you entered without a gun. Arma’s control scheme made actions such as inventory management a hassle; its 225km2 landscape asked you to run mini-marathons to get around, often without a map. Permadeath and persistency lent consequence to every action. And in its alpha state, DayZ was buggy and vulnerable to hackers.
1.3 million people played it.
On Monday, zombie survival shooter-MMO The War Z became available on Steam as a "Foundation Release." The same day, complaints began to arise that the game's page in the Steam store misrepresented and exaggerated its content by mentioning features that weren't yet integrated. This morning, Valve took the game off sale, admitting that a mistake was made in "prematurely" making The War Z available for purchase. Valve has extended an invitation to refund purchases through Steam Support, an exception to Valve's usually-rigid refund rules. Those who bought the game through Steam are still able to play it, and The War Z remains for sale on its website.
Following these events, I contacted executive producer Sergey Titov via email to ask about The War Z's troubled release on Steam, if he agrees with Valve's decision to take the game off sale, and what he expects the game's immediate future to be.
We've celebrated the realistic fake war-waging of Arma 2 community ShackTac in our Realism Theater posts this year. We admire ShackTac's "Serious Fun" approach to playing Arma 2: even outside the context of mil-simming, it's inspiring to watch a bunch of people invested in each others' fun and to see them express that through mods, missions, and videos they create themselves.
ShackTac founder and documenteur Dslyecxi has put up his annual "Year In Review" video, a six-minute cut that represents thousands of collective man-hours of organized Arma 2.
Games get a bad rap for being a solitary, violence-obsessed form of entertainment. But they can also be a collaborative, violence-obsessed form of entertainment. Just ask the close-knit PC Gamer team. Tom F Co-op based games teach us the value of teamwork better than any kitten based motivational poster, by showing us how many more of our enemies we can crush if we can just learn to work together.
Bohemia Interactive have today announced that they will be postponing the release of Arma 3 after what they, as kings of understatement, describe as "an eventful year".
They are, of course, referring to the arrest and detainment of Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar, Bohemia employees who were charged on suspicion of espionage while on holiday in Greece.
In a handwritten letter addressed to their supporters, Arma 3 Creative Director Ivan Buchta and artist Martin Pezlar say “we are treated well, but we feel we should rather be with our families rather than here.” This is the first public statement from the pair of Bohemia Interactive developers, who have been jailed in Greece for now 80 days after being charged with espionage in September.
The letter is dated November 22, and is printed in full within.
The end date for Greece's strike within its justice system has come and gone, but Bohemia Interactive developers Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar remain jailed in what the studio called "an unmitigated disaster" after both men were charged with espionage while on the Greek island of Lemnos. In a report by Czech news site Rozhlas, a Greek court dismissed Buchta and Pezlar's petition to appeal and denied bail, effectively sealing a required trial with a sentence up to 20 years for a guilty verdict.
Bohemia is hustling on the standalone version of DayZ, hoping to have an initial version of the game out by the end of the year. In the meanwhile, modders continue to tinker with the DayZ mod code, either by adding new maps, questionable gambling metagames, or wholesale mods within the mod. This practice of modception, for the record, is something we endorse.
DayZ 2017 is one of these, a work-in-progress from modder "shinkicker," aka Luke Hinds. Hinds hopes to reintroduce the feeling of item scarcity to the mod by eliminating military equipment, in a setting a half-decade after DayZ. "I went for ragged and worn, hobo-like survivors," says Hinds.
We mentioned earlier that modders were in the process of porting a snowy Arma 2 island called Namalsk into the DayZ. Last week, the map's creator published a pre-release version of Namalsk, which you can play by downloading it directly or through a utility like DayZ Commander. Fat with curiosity, I jumped into the chilly forest island to have a look around.
You knew that DayZ has custom maps, right? As Bohemia labors away on the standalone version of DayZ, modders have been busy porting user-made Arma 2 islands into the zombie survival mod. The varied biomes of Fallujah, Lingor Island, and Panthera are all playable on custom servers, and a click away from being installed through the handy, PCG-recommended DayZ Commander utility.
Joining these maps next could be Namalsk, an arctic forest covered in custom structures like reinforced defense towers.
It's been 36 days since Bohemia Interactive confirmed that two of its developers had been arrested during their trip to the Greek island of Lemnos. Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar face up to 20 years in prison for charges of spying, which they continue to deny. And now, a strike in Greece's judicial system is impeding any progress in their case.
To get an update on Ivan and Martin, I spoke with Jay Crowe, Creative Director at Bohemia, about the imprisonment of two of his friends and colleagues.
Arma's Real Virtuality engine is an underappreciated machinima canvas. What it lacks in physics is made up by scale and map detail, both of which are showcased in "The Beginning of Sorrows," a short released yesterday from BinaryOrchestra. The video mashes up Take On Helicopters' (another sim built on Real Virtuality) satellite-modeled, that's-where-the-houses-actually-are map of Seattle, Washington with Arma 2: Operation Arrowhead's military assets. The result is a grim and well-scripted spectacle of war in the American Northwest.