DayZ - It All Started With a Mod
The Always-Online Zombie Survival Game
Where it All Began
Plenty of good things start as mods. Countless games earned their wings by starting as a creation from something else entirely.
DayZ is that kind of survival game. Its birth came from the ARMA II community. This mod-turned-full-video game always features online servers in an apocalyptic wasteland overrun by zombies. Real-life players feature as other survivors. Which proves more dangerous in this twist on classic PvP?
Always-On, Always a Threat
Survival is harsh. It's even harsher when there are people frequently scouting for precious resources, ones that you might have at camp. DayZ features a unique aspect of "always online servers." It doesn't matter if you log off; you might find your camp ransacked and your character a corpse when you log back in next.
Gather resources and avoid or kill zombies, all while managing interactions with other players in this survival PvP.
Gather resources and avoid or kill zombies, all while managing interactions with other players in this survival PvP. The concept's stable, as long as you're ok with potentially logging into an utterly wrecked haul and starting all over from scratch. It's a pretty specific kind of gamer that loves this grind, but it's executed well and earns a concept rating of 4/5.
Concept Rating: 4/5
Dated but Standard
DayZ originally launched as a standalone game in 2018, but its graphics come originally from Arma II, which is quite a bit older (think 2013). Unfortunately, it shows in the graphics. Framerates drop pretty regularly in heavy traffic areas, leaving big blocky pixels front and center on the screen.
Despite some hiccups in the graphics, they withstand the test of time solidly.
Something I always pay attention to in games, though, is the water. DayZ has some pretty great lakes and ponds. The surfaces shimmer serenely as you gather up nearby resources, staying alert via scanning the horizon, which also looks pretty good!
So, despite some hiccups in the graphics, they withstand the test of time solidly.
The audio isn't anything to write home about. The standard zombie groans and shuffles are all present. Guns ring out when shot, with the crackly pop-pop of powder lingering. Ambient sounds whistle through the background.
All in all, DayZ feels very apocalyptic in no short supply to its 4/5 graphics and audio.
Graphics & Audio Rating: 4/5
Extreme Survival Meets PvP
You're one of a few survivors in the harsh wilderness during a zombie apocalypse. Gather resources like food, water, and weapons using only your skills and wits. You can find other survivors, all of whom are player characters, and steal their stuff. On the opposite, you can choose to work together as a collective. There's no end to the possibilities of interactions you'll have with other players, including plenty of betrayal and death.
Death is only the beginning.
But death is only the beginning. If you die, you lose everything and start over as a new character from scratch. Watch out for zombies and survive alone, building or fortifying a base and exploring the newly dangerous world you inhabit.
It's an open-ended concept that lends itself to creativity from the player, as well as tons of community interaction. PvP-minded players will love the survival twist and all the turns that this 4/5 gameplay offers!
Gameplay Rating: 4/5
A Love Letter to Surviving PvP
DayZ may not explicitly say that it's PvP, but there is no way to play peacefully with other players. If you hop into a game, expect to face threats from both the living and the undead! Survive as long as you can in this apocalyptic MMO, enjoying the scenic views and hostile life at its finest.
Replay Value Rating: 4/5
In DayZ, players attempt to survive a PvP world where NPC zombies and PC survivors alike are out for blood.