DayZ started off as a mod for a game called Arma II. It got so popular that the developers decided to release it as a standalone game. It wasn’t just a simple re-release though, even from the beginning there were huge differences, such as pretty much EVERY building being enterable. Unfortunately, some of it was a step back because they were establishing the foundations for a solid game (such as fewer weapons, less zombies, etc). The has since been improved dramatically.
As the game progressed, the developers realised that to make the game reach its full potential, significant changes needed to be made to the engine and the way the game runs. They completely scrapped the old code from Arma II and pretty much re-wrote everything from scratch. It’s running on a whole new engine/renderer, and the performance went from 20fps in cities to a solid 60. Nobody ever thought this would be possible in a game originating from the Arma series, but the developers proved everyone wrong. A fantastic improvement.
Sadly, development takes time. It seems that many fans do not realise this. Because the devs don’t want to release a half-baked game, fans get angry that the game seemingly has a slow development cycle. Whilst it is slow, it’s slow for a reason. They’ve basically re-done the game from scratch, twice, because they’re so passionate about it and want it to be the best it can be.
In the last few months there have been some HUGE improvements to the game:
- Fauna overhaul (forests, trees, grass, bushes. The environment looks totally different, it’s incredible. Far more realistic and varied.
- Complete audio overhaul. New sound effects such as wind blowing, ocean sounds, birds chirping, crickets, literally the entire environment sounds different for the better.
- Entirely new weapon sounds that sound different depending on how far away from you they are fired. They are much more beefy and realistic.
- Tons of weapons.
- Tons of clothes.
- Map overhaul (cities, towns, villages, military bases).
- Animals: Deers, chickens, cows, wolves (that attack you!).
- Diseases (one makes you literally turn crazy if you eat human flesh, you will start screaming every so often).
- And loads more.
- Beard growth.
- Dynamic object placement (being able to place tents exactly where you want them. You’ll see a translucent tent outline and then it will appear where you’re looking when you decide to place it).
- Aircraft: Helicopters and planes.
- Motorbikes and bicycles
- Animation overhaul (fluid animations, wounded animations, falling/landing animations, eating while moving in any direction, equipping weapons while moving in any direction, etc.
- A stamina system. You won’t be able to zig-zag around like an olympic athlete anymore.
- A player ‘soft-skills’ levelling system. The longer you stay alive, the more your player will adapt to the environment. Increased stamina, more accurate aiming, things like that.
- New textures (vines on buildings, enhanced road textures, dirt textures, and more).
- All of the above content has been discussed, and already showcased on the DayZ YouTube channel, and on their Trello (a site developers use to show content they’re working on).
Many people are waiting on 0.63, because of the animation overhaul, also known as the player controller. It’s going to be an absolute game changer. Arma/DayZ is known for its rather stiff animation system (which DayZ Standalone has already made significant progress on), but this new player controller will make everything completely fluid. From the way the character transitions between animations, the way they will grab their wounds when wounded making combat much more risky, everything about movement will be made more realistic and have more risk involved. Currently you have unlimited sprint, and you can zig-zag like an olympic athlete. This won’t be possible with the new system, but the soft levelling system will slowly improve your stamina over time allowing you to sprint for longer. I imagine you won’t be able to outrun zombies like you can now, meaning they will become far more of a threat.
To sum it all up:
Some fans are mad because development takes time and they have no concept of the dedication involved with developing a good game. The devs could have released the game already and called it complete, but they want it to be the best it can be.
If you buy this game, you won’t regret it. A little patience goes a long way. DayZ is one of the best games I’ve ever played.