Game Review: DayZ

IT HAD TO BE DONE! Don’t look at me like that with those judging eyes. DayZmod has been around for a while now– shit, I started playing it nearly a year ago — but, I decided to review it because of this: DayZ Standalone and this.

I’ll be reviewing the mod, as I have not received my personal invitation to test Standalone Alpha in June 😉

So I was reluctant to get this at first, because I’m not a fan of the whole first-person shooter.

  • Number 1) I don’t like having to memorize a ton of guns with obscure names with different types of ammo. What a waste of brain space. Gimme something called Dragonwrath any day.
  • Number 2) I fall in to the pathetic category of “Gets nauseous when camera moves too much“.  I admit. It’s not my finest ‘gamer’ quality.

But several friends were having a blast with it. They were so freaking serious about how shit-scary it was that I had to try it.

What’s up: Arma 2 is a war game. Guns, knives, vehicles, aircraft, survival. DayZ is the added mod where the inhabitants of Chernarus are sporting new lesions and missing limbs AKA zombies or… running from them! So not only are you fighting each other, but you’re heading off Zombies rummaging through cities and homes. Okay… who turns down killing fucking zombies?! No one. No. One.

Why do I love it: It REALLY is scary. But not for the reason you imagine. Zombie-killing? Been there, done that. Who hasn’t slaughtered zombies, amiright? But the game does realistic VERY well. It’s scary and friends of mine have proposed that this MIGHT just be Big Brother training the masses for a war. To which I shrug and say.. awesome. Brinng it.

If professional organizations are not running stats and data on this game, they’re missing out on quite possibly the best simulation to human survival thus far when it comes to psychology. People are FREAKING crazy. You know right away: who in the group is going to be careless, who deserves a real-life Darwin award, and who has what it takes to use their brain and survive.

No, the graphics don’t make it scary. The starting off with no weapons or map and having to navigate the continent using shadows while learning true directional sense is scary.
No, having a health pool isn’t scary. The bandages, pain killers, morphine, blood bags, water and food indicators to keep you at an optimal temperature when in the rain, after being shot or having your legs broken from jumping too far is scary.
No, the zombies aren’t scary. The other human beings who could use you, snipe you from a hill 300 feet away that you never saw was there, or the nut job drawing the entire city worth of zombies with a flare is scary.
No, the fact it’s just a game and your fictional player could die doesn’t make it scary. Starting all over again with nothing is scary.

Day and Night come and go. Weather changes. Vehicles are rare and need repair before you can use them. You have to hunt and cook food, or steal from an abandoned grocery store. And STILL.. it’s the humans who scare you the most. Knowing you could be watched by other players at any moment scares the living pants out of you. Seriously. No name tags or markers. Nothing. Real freakin camo in grass and shadows of trees and shit.

Are you any good at it?: I’m not half-bad. I usually die, because we have a ‘faulty’ player in our group that likes to stir things up, which typically concludes with 20 zombies chomping at our rear ends up building roofs.

Cost: To play the mod, I bought Arma 2: Operation Arrowhead from Steam, and then downloaded the free DayZ mod and DayZ commander to manage it.

Standalone: Bohemia Interactive has been working on this gem, primary testing the shit out of it. It has been discussed widely about their MMO model of approaching the game and I couldn’t be happier. Fingers crossed that when released, I’m just as happy about it as the mod.

 

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