Day 1 in Day Z – Alpha Test

Welcome to Chernarus. A 225 km2 open world post-soviet state and one of the areas hit by a new and presently unknown infection which has wiped out most of the world’s population. You are one of the few who have survived and now you must search this new wasteland in order to fight for your life against what is left of the indigenous population, now infected with the disease.

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DayZ is hard to describe. It’s a multiplayer open-world survival horror game, sure, but that just scratches the surface. Built as a mod from the game ARMA 2, DayZ has quickly become a cult phenomenon. Here at Gaming Gawd, we don’t discriminate against games or systems. When I’d first heard of DayZ and saw gameplay videos, I knew I would have to put it on GamingGawd.com. So without further ado, here’s my story of the first day in DayZ.

After a quick install of the game thanks to Valve’s incredible Steam software, I was met by the character creation screen.

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It was here I had to make my first major game decision, something that I felt a little bad having to think about. Should I make my character black or white? A part of me figured that making him black would placefa him more in the “shoot on sight” category, but I did it anyway. My president is black. Anyway, I proceeded to spawn in what I assume was the middle of nowhere. The ocean was behind me, so I knew my back was covered at least partially. As if on cue, it began to rain and I followed my first human impulse and that was to find shelter.

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Spying buildings dotting the horizon, I humped it north. Music was playing in my headphones and a faint voice could be heard in the distance. I took this as a sign of danger and kept looking back to see if I was getting stalked. I still felt a little uneasy with the controls, but I was able to move out of the field at a fast pace. I picked a warehouse among the buildings and took shelter, it was here that I became familiar with the controls. Keeping in mind that I could die at any second, I hastily memorized what little controls I could and began to rummage from building to building. 3 houses ransacked and nothing to be found. Meanwhile, my player kept complaining of thirst and hunger. The 4th time was a charm however because in the kitchen, I found my first piece of loot.

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After drinking what I assume was a refreshing drink, my thirst meter went away and I set off again in search of whatever. I decided to be brave and walk the main road in case someone were in one of the houses and found me. I wanted to interact, good or bad. I turns out my plan worked, I met my first person in DayZ. The only problem was, I didn’t know how to talk. I tried several buttons, checked my mic settings and tried to communicate again. No dice. However, I was able to wave at him to signify I meant no harm. He advised me to leave the area, there was nothing here and that I was boring him. I hit another house, came up short and decided to fix my mic. Talking seemed to be important in the game so it was best I figured out how to do it.

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Once I figured out how to talk, I went looking for my new wise friend and found him 3 deep with 2 other guys. He said they were the good guys and to watch for bandits. He said his name was Sanchez and introduced his other crew. He gave me a website url to visit for the DayZ map and an ip address to join them on Teamchat. I complained of being hungry and they gave me tuna to eat and some for the road. This was my lucky day, I thought, now I’m with heavily armed pals who were looking for a few good men like me to join their crew. Then… the server crashed.

Not only did I lose my new friends, I lost the ip address so I could contact them again. I was so close to belonging! After waiting for a while to see if they would come back, I decided they weren’t and headed west where Sanchez told me more civilization lie. After some more house searching, I came up with a backpack, shovel, an unloaded Mosin (gun) and better pants. I also encountered my first zombie. They’re surprisingly fast and react to sound. Having a fist fight with one is not recommended.

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After that eventful day, I decided to check back with DayZ later. My initial impression is to give this game time, I can see why it’s been so popular. I’ve already seen bugs like zombies chasing me through walls, but some of that adds to the charm of the game. Now that they’ve doubled the dev side, I’m curious to see what they’ll update and the world of DayZ will shape. Next time, I plan on including video and maybe get the stream running. Until then, the game is never over.