DayZ Standalone now in closed alpha testing, paid public alpha still on track for June

Hoorah! Dean "Rocket" Hall's bandit-riddled, zombie-fleeing mod DayZ has been threatening to take on a life of its own the past few months, and that threat no longer lies dormant—Rocket revealed in an interview that some lucky fans are already playing the DayZ Standalone version.

Speaking to Gamasutra , Rocket spilled the beans on the first batch of testers: players who have been rewarded for their loyalty to the brutal ArmA 2 mod the past couple of years.

"So what we're doing at the moment is, we gave free keys as a gift to the forum moderators, the Reddit moderators, people who helped out with DayZ development, and stuff like that," Rocket explains. "I guess there's about 30-100 people involved with that."

"From here, once we've finished our server/client architecture—because we're moving it an MMO model—we're reviewing the situation of that in June, and then we do an alpha, just like Minecraft."

There's only one server in DayZ Standalone at the moment, but content updates are being delivered constantly. Like Minecraft, DayZ Standalone plans to charge a small amount to players during the public alpha, with the price increasing steadily as it nears completion. During alpha, Rocket plans to allow players access to either the latest stable build, or the experimental build on the developers' desktops.

Though the first proposed release date "sailed on by" while Rocket and friends worked to implement the MMO model, it's looking like DayZ standalone is still on target for a June alpha release.