We last checked in with DayZ Origins (opens in new tab) - that's the unofficial spin-off to DayZ (opens in new tab) , remember - back in March (opens in new tab) , and it seems the mod's mod has come on a long way since then. There's a ton of new content in Update 1.7.7 (opens in new tab) , but the gist is that it adds a new island (inspired by Will Smith-and-his-dog vehicle I Am Legend, no less), along with a new race of mutants , the power to create player-made towns, and the possibility of people you've killed coming back as vengeful spirits. Wait, what?
Novistrana is the name of the new island, which has been added to the Taviana map and been inspired by scenes and locations from Will Smith's hit movie
Hitch I Am Legend. It's 265 km2 - about as big as Cherno - and according to GamersPlatoon's George Edward (via email), "it is the only map designed from scratch for DayZ in a post-apocalyptic setup", in contrast to the militarily designed structures present in the base mod (obviously because DayZ is based an Arma 2). You can see an image of it below, with bonus corpses.
Interestingly, update 1.7.7 aims to supply a fresh injection of fear to the game by, as Edward puts it, "moving into the spiritual world". Sadly this doesn't involve peering at blobs of residue in tea cups or enduring Derek Acorah, but it does mean that "bandits who receive death injuries" will "start getting hunted by the visions of their victims". Crikey.
There's also some business about a Doctor Vlad and his experiments (another reference to I Am Legend, I expect), which have had the side-effect of creating a bunch of mutants, creatures that will prove a danger to both the living and the undead, apparently. Also in the update: survivor-made villages/towns, house-building and mining, a tribal system, strongholds and much, much more, in what must be the most densely packed press release I've ever seen. Head here for more info (opens in new tab) , and here for a giant list (opens in new tab) of everything that's been added and changed.
Extraordinary. The update wouldn't be complete without a trailer, of course, so here's an incredibly slow ten-minute sneak peek:
You can download DayZ Origins here (opens in new tab) .