Bohemia Interactive is celebrating the one-year anniversary of Arma 3 tomorrow with a livestream featuring an Arma 3 Zeus multiplayer session. As is only appropriate for any proper birthday celebration, there will also be cake, and a few gifts, too.
Ah, DayZ. In many respects it's the architect for modern survival gaming, and, in many other respects, we still have no idea what its final form will even be. Neither the Arma 2 mod nor the standalone early access release are in a finished state, and that's led to some concern within its community. Brian Hicks, producer for DayZ, recently addressed these concerns in a forum thread titled, "has anyone else lost faith in DayZ?"
This weekend's Steam sale is all about the Call of Duty. If you're looking for a shooter that's deeper, more complex, more unforgiving and more glitchy, you'd be better off going to Bohemia Interactive's store. There you can pick up the excellent Arma 3 for a 50% discount.
Arma 3 is good at many things. Bohemia Interactive’s military sim is a huge, open-world playground where action dramas unfold, but its greatest strengths show when it dwarfs you with scale. Being a lone sniper in three miles of sprawling mountain wilderness or driving with a vanguard of advancing tanks will strike awe into the heart of the most jaded gamer. Whatever it’s doing, Arma paints these experiences in broad strokes you can’t find anywhere else in gaming.
On the other hand, Take On Helicopters, Bohemia’s 2011 helicopter simulator, was great at a single, specific thing: modeling helicopter flight physics. Beyond the high-definition cockpit, its world was a blocky and lifeless version of Seattle. Seattle wasn’t the point, though: the inside of that cockpit was the point. All the love in that game went straight into those dials.
Development on DayZ may be undergoing an overhaul thanks to the confirmed PlayStation 4 edition, but Bohemia Interactive continues to roll out weekly updates to the Early Access edition. This week you may encounter two villages that weren't there before, as well as a new World War II monument in Severograd, which is pleasant.
There were few PC-relevant announcements at Sony's Gamescom press conference last night, but one familiar face did appear for a surprise reveal. Dean Hall emerged on stage to announce a Playstation 4 version of DayZ. More than that, Hall took time to explain how the console port of the popular survival game would also enhance the existing PC version.
What does it take to rattle 80-some veteran players of Earth’s most hardcore military sim? ShackTac bossman Dslyecxi pointed me to this insane firefight and extraction attempt in one of his recent videos. Short on ammo, shorter on men, and their backs literally against a wall that may or may not be indestructible, Dslyecxi leads the survivors of a trapped infantry unit as they improvise an escape plan.
July 30th, I dub thee International Patch Notes Day. We've already basked in the size and rigour of Elite: Dangerous's beta update change list, and now we get to do the same with another early access game. DayZ, the popular purveyor of zombies and internet jerks, has received a new stable update, adding a variety of features, items and animations. The big change is the introduction of persistent item support... or, at least, the promise of persistent item support. Currently the feature is disabled pending a hotfix due next week.
As DayZ slowly winds its way through alpha, we're finally beginning to see more updates to the early access zombie survival game, with new items and features being regularly added. Mechanics for hunting, fishing, crafting, and cooking means there are now new ways to thrive and survive in the post-apocalyptic landscape of Chernarus besides simply scrounging around in buildings for canned food or shooting and looting other players.
I thought I'd try surviving using some of these new tools. Instead of guns, I'd try to use a crossbow to take down some deer. Instead of peeling open canned tuna I'd try to pluck fish from ponds. No more cold beans: I'll cook my food over a roaring fire or gas-powered stove. Essentially, I'm going camping. Strap on a backpack and come along.
The Arma series is famous for its massive multiplayer battles, but there’s still fun to be had on the war-torn islands of Stratis and Altis by yourself. These missions can all be played solo, with a focus on small squads, infantry, or infiltration. They’ve all been created by Arma players using the game’s powerful built-in editing tools, and some are as impressive as anything in Bohemia’s own campaign.
For those not familiar with its particular brand of simulation, Arma 3 can be a daunting thing to approach. Don't let our recent, barely competent shenanigans fool you; there's a deep vein of realism at the heart of Bohemia's shooter and, with it, a level of complexity that can be difficult to parse. Hope comes in the form of the just released Bootcamp update. More than just a tutorial, it's designed to teach you the underlying principles powering the game. And all without R. Lee Ermey screaming in your face.
This afternoon, PC Gamer will be at the mercy of a vengeful, Scottish god. We'll be playing Zeus, ArmA III's on-the-fly adventure mode, where we'll be subjected to the trials and tribulations of our own Andy Kelly. The action kicks off at 2.30pm BST—check here for local times—and will run until we've experienced the full scope of Andy's twisted design.
GameSpy recently announced its surrender from the world of digital matchmaking, and, as with any wide-ranging defeat, there are bound to be casualties. Not Arma 2: Operation Arrowhead, though. Bohemia have airlifted their expansion to the safety of Steam. And clinging desperately to it is the DayZ Mod, which, as a dependent of Arma 2: OA, has also been secured.
You thought it was funny that Arma 3 now has kart racing, didn’t you? Well pull yourself together, because the April Fools gag-cum-actual feature has managed to raise a million Czech koruna for the country’s Red Cross. That’s nearly US$50 grand.
As promised in May, Bohemia Interactive will release a substantial Arma 3 update imminently. The Bootcamp update will introduce a range of modes and features designed to ease new players into the notoriously complicated military sim, and to prove that “Arma is far from impenetrable”. These include a Bootcamp campaign, a special Bootcamp multiplayer mode, Virtual Training and a Virtual Arsenal.
It's been a while since we last caught up with DayZ. Let's see how it's doing, and hope it's not one of those awkward meetings where we stand around and make small talk because nothing's really happened. Huh, well, it turns out the game does have some news. Its makers are in the process of moving it to a new engine, and, through that, fix many of the quirks and oddities of the current alpha build.
"I guess the big news that we’ve been telling here at E3 is that we’re actually moving to a new engine," Dean Hall explained during a Reddit AMA. "It is called [Enfusion]. So that is going to allow us to do DirectX 10 and 11. It is going to allow us to do dynamic lighting, which means no more flashlights going through walls, proper dynamic shadows, stuff like that."
While it offers an experience altogether different from the zombie violence of its sister-title DayZ, Arma 3 also looks to have struck a chord in the hearts and minds of PC gamers since its release last year. The military sim has sold one million copies, according to an announcement this week by Bohemia Interactive head Marek Spanel.
Arma 3 Karts began life as an April Fools' joke, but as sometimes happens, fans thought it was actually a pretty cool idea. So Bohemia Interactive decided to run with it, and the result is Arma 3 Karts, released today as an honest-to-goodness DLC pack for the famed military shooter, with a portion of sales going to charity.
Videogame war is fun. Real war is hell. It's a distinction that Arma 3 studio Bohemia Interactive seems anxious to make with the addition of a new and unique prize to its "Make Arma, Not War" content creation contest: the company will send a lucky winner to a conflict zone on a humanitarian mission providing aid to people displaced or harmed by the ravages of war.
Since its December release, the most complex and frightening encounters I've had in the DayZ Standalone have involved other human beings, not the survival sim's undead population. But with the recent expansion of its development team, the DayZ designers at Bohemia Interactive are now laying out a plan for a better-behaved zombie antagonist, according to a new post on the game's official dev blog.