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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Dayz QandA with Rocket from Reddit

Max Planck on the official Dayz Forums posted this huge Q and A from rocket from the Reddit site. Thanks Max for compiling this for everyone in the community.  Some really great info inside here and I'm really looking forward to all this neat stuff Rocket is talking about for the game. Below is the Link to the original post, but I copy and pasted it over on WatchSurvival for the lazy. :D


Q: Any word on a quiver sort of thing for crossbow bolts? It's a pain when each bolt takes up a whole space in your inventory/backpack.

A: Quiver is planned

Q: If you had the ability to add one thing to the game, no limits, what would it be?

A: Underground construction using red-faction style damage mechanics for clearing out the subterranean world.

Q: How do you feel about the current situation with the hackers. And have BattlEye been co-operative with you? Can we see a step forward in stopping the hackers or is the release our real safety area.

A: hacking is an ongoing issue. ArmA2 was never designed for what DayZ is putting it through. With DayZ standalone we can address this issue without causing ArmA2 problems, so it can remain the product it is. It is something we
will always have to work on, you cannot completely stop hacking.

Q: What's your favorite gun in dayz?

A: makarov. Because it sounds awesome and its a desperate mans weapon.

Q: Do you plan on having the standalone game as a closed beta, with a prepurchase function where people will get access to the game? (Sortof like minecraft)

A: Alpha will be heavily discounted paid project. The project will never be a full retail priced title, and the alpha will be heavily discounted. No prepurchase. But there will be a premium type purchase that contains some extra collectors edition type stuff like concept art prints etc... for those who want to throw money at the project

Q: What is your best estimate for the standalone release date?
A: Before the end of the working year (2012)  

Q: Are you going to make weather more of a big deal come the stand alone game? so far the ONLY TIME ive ever gotten to the point of being sick in dayz was when i spent 2 hours swimming.

A: Absolutely. Redesigning that from scratch.

Q: gasoline rare, but vehicles common??

A: I like it :)

Q: How customizable will player skins be in the standalone? Will they work like they do now (full-body replacements) or will you be able to find different shirts/hats/etc?

A: Different clothing is on my list of design priorities

Q: I know you had originally said you were skipping and going straight to 1.7.3, what changed?

A: The attempts to fix artifacting were more important than the dog implementation, so I tried to fix that first.

Q: when will you fix female characters´skins? it is really anoying to not be able to wear ghillies and cammo. also, great job so far, rocket.

A: With the standalone release.

Q: Will the Stand-alone version run on the ARMA 2 or ARMA 3 engine?

A: It will run on its own branch of Real Virtuality

Q: which RV version is it closest to?

A: The most important element of DayZ will be its multiplayer code. The most tested multiplayer code is ArmA 1.62. We know this netcode, we know what we want to change. We will merge in what need from elsewhere but we won't be ambitious with the netcode. We will start with the current state as the base and work around that.

Q: Wildlife? such as bears, cougars, wolf packs, will they be added?

A: More wildlife absolutely. Horses would be cool too

Q: Any idea what price range the standalone version will be in?

A: I don't ever see DayZ costing more than 25 euro. Alpha will be heavily discounted from this.

Q: Would you ever consider a bounty hunting system?

A: I'd like to add methods that allow players to create their own systems for things, so if they wanted to create such a system they could

Q: Will hand combat be introduced?

A: Yes

Q: With the popularity of Lingor, somewhere down the road can we expect to see other maps officially supported aside from just Chernarus? If so, how would character selection work?

A: Absolutely. I think having the ability for the character to travel to other islands is my preferred one (e.g. by boat or air). If you character hasn't traveled then I would see it as creating a new one for that island.

Q: How many maximum players do you think/plan to have on a server for the standalone version of Day Z, do you think the game would benefit from a higher density of population? (I personally think it would but I'd like to hear your
opinion and know what the "netcode" could handle ect ect)

A: It is more design dependent than netcode dependent for the standalone. 100-200 is easily achievable. More would need a larger map.

Q: Can we expect improved performance for the standalone-game or should people with weaker computers who can barely play the mod start spending money on their pcs?

A: performance will be much better.

Q: Will the standalone game keep the realistic game mechanics of arma? and do you plan any changes to player & zombie movement? (This might be seen and two questions however game mechanics effect player movement so its kinda just one question)

A: Will keep the base mechanics, but change many things (such as UI and inventory completely replaced from scratch). Player animations likely to eventually (but not initially) have many changes).

Q: What exactly can we expect from "Dogs"? What functions will they perform and how is one supposed to interact with them.

A: Expect them to grow a lot from their initial implementation. Someone posted an excellent review on the code here on reddit, but i can't find the link. Basically expect them to track, to warn you of danger, and to follow you. And then get shot. And then you QQ.

Q: Is the Broken limb system working as desired right now? I find that sometimes getting hit one single time by a zombie while I'm at full health will break a limb. That seems a little excessive to me.

A: Not at all. It's barely acceptable now.

Q: Will dayz standalone support the oculus rift peripheral?

A: someone gave me a heads up about it, love it, I hope we could support that.

Q: Zeds walking indoors. whether this is a glitch or a feature, will it be kept for the beta/stand-alone?

A: Won't be kept. I can already effect this (changing a config value for each building). However, we will only make this change if pathing for zambies is fixed and their lifecycle is implemented.

Q: Will you be using a different map for the DayZ Stand alone, or will you keep the same Chernarus map?

A: We have been revising Chernarus for DayZ for some time now. The working name has been "Chernarus Plus". More will be announced about that on the tumblr. Eventually will will create entirely new maps and/or the community will
develop some.

Q: When the game reaches Stand-Alone point, and new maps and areas are available that are bound to happen, will there be more open buildings? Not necessarily lootable, but just there for covering areas? An example would be the
small schoolhouse like building next to the South Barracks at Northwest Airfield. Perfect covering a friend while he loots or something of the sort.

A: Absolutely. This was a key consideration in the development of Chernarus Plus (the map changes that come with DayZ standalone). More enter-able buildings, moving towards all buildings enter-able or visually being obvious that they cannot be entered.

Q: Will DayZ standalone allow mods?

A: Not initially.

Q: As you probably know, Lingor island has been very popular recently. Have you played it much if at all, and has it's design influenced your future plans for the standalone dayz release?

A: I havent played it (so crazy busy right now with all the wrong things), but I really want too. it looks fantastic. Something we will grow support for more with the mod over the coming weeks I think.

Q: How much freedom will you be given with the standalone release? (eg. Game mechanics, UI)

A: Absolute. Expect complete change. Change is good!

Q: What are the frustrating or negative aspects of having the mod popularised so quickly?

A: Development slows to a crawl, and it is easy to spend all your time doing interviews and no time developing and/or sleeping.

Q: With the standalone, you've said 100-200 players per server is a possibility. How are you going to tackle the density issue? Will the Chernarus in the stand-alone version be much bigger than the current iteration? Will we see a totally new map that's bigger?I'm just concerned about 200 players on one Chernarus-sized map. I feel that'd be more deathmatch than survival.

A: Make the maps bigger is the answer

Q: When standalone DayZ comes out, how much will it differ from DayZ current version?Lots of missing stuff or will there be added.

A: It will be a complete redevelopment of the same design, using mostly the same assets and some new, and some redesigned assets. Focus is on the engineering and architecture first.

Q: Will we be seeing different weapons/vehicles added into the mod?

A: Absolutely. We already have a few weapons in progress. Mainly to have more "find at home" style weapons. However content is largely secondary to getting the design right. Content is the easy part.

Q: Is any of the underground base idea going to be present in the standalone initially, or is this still ages off?

A: There will be "something" in the standalone, but it will only be the basic genesis of the idea. I need to ensure we have confidence in the direction of the project as a standalone before I can ask the mass commitment to such an ambitious feature.

Q: Will their be any major Hive updates coming out soon? At the moment stats and player location have been a bit of a mess...

A: Standalone will have an entirely new engine-sync'd system

Q: Any thoughts about combining DayZ and ACE? I've played it a while on lingor dayz and that was absoltely astonishing. It made me never ever want to play dayz without exhausting and wind systems.

A: It is hard enough getting DayZ and ArmA2 development in line, let alone introducing additional code dependencies onto other teams, such as ACE and ACRES. They are designed for specific objectives that may come into conflict with DayZ. They should be enjoyed for what they are. I think that DayZ could learn alot from many mods in ArmA2 and implement great stuff.

Q: What "Endgame" for lack of a better word do you plan to have for DayZ besides base building?

A: my plan is to have this developed in such a way so you make the plans

Q: Making all/most of the buildings enterable will cause the players to scatter around the map and reduce the chances of meeting other players, are you planning on making all buildings enterable? If yes how will you prevent the problem stated above?

A: yes, already done for the standalone.

Q: In the future, standalone perhaps, do you think that private-hive servers are better than going with the global one? Seeing it as people who alt+f4 would punish themselves by not being able to play for a while and "ghosting" (changing server to swap position in a firefight) would not be possible.

A: I think for the mod we open it up and see how it works. If people want to run private hives they can, but ideally we need a way to pool at least some statistics collectively.

Q: How does Rocket plan to look at alternatives to the current method of server hosting? Changing the way that the servers are organised (hive+server-side-map vs all server side) would change the game significantly, yet you cannot easily test this in alpha.

A: There is significant change planned to the "how" but the end result will feel much the same as it is now.

Q: on a scale from 1-10, what degree of customization in clothing of players will there be in the standalone game if it's currently rated at 3/10.

A: I would desire 10/10. Reality for the initial release is probably more like 5/10 and then it is something we work on.

Q: What do you think about modern megapolis map? And if "Yes", can we expect it in DayZ mod or in Standalone version?

A: I like the idea of exploring this, but I think there are performance issues and art timeline issues. It is something we could look at more for a new DayZ map, say next year.

Q: I believe you've recently introduced the first 'persistent' stat in the game between lives in terms of humanity. Does this represent a movement away from each life being its own separate entity?

A: yes, we want play style to be persistent across all characters to an extent. This adds some permanent consequence to player behavior.

Q: Zombies with rag doll physics? :D

A: I've got basic ragdoll high on the list.

Q: Are you guys planing adding more "story interactive environment" stuff? turning Green Mountain into a number station or adding a "ground zero" for the virus breakout?

A: Not story interactive stuff. But more narrative, such as virus background and the ability to interact and find out about the world.

Q: Any chance of putting in more vehicles? I have been playing for months now and so far i've found only 2 cars. One bus and one pickup. I really have started to dislike that the game is more of a running simulator than a survival game.

A: Yes, we are looking at how vehicles work for the standalone.

Q: Given that the Zeds quickly become fairly minor threats at present and are manageable even in large hordes are there any firm plans yet to make the zombies more lethal? Also, is there any plans for mechanics like weapon/gear degradation or breaking down/building up/customising weapons and gear from components?

A: You had me at weapon/gear degradation :) Yes, yes, and more yes. But don't expect these with the initial standalone, we need to get things working roughly as they are in a more polished state first.

Q: If you are going the route of weapon degradation please for the love of the gods PLEASE don't make it break guns after 100 or so shots. I always hated in fallout how fast shit broke down. Modern weapons can take thousands of
rounds before showing any signs of slowing down unless inappropriate ammo or poor weapon maintenance is involved.

A: Agreed. Weapons should JAM not BREAK

Q: Any plans to make more buildings accessible in the near future?

A: Yes. On initial release of the standalone. Confirmed and already in the current standalone build.

Q: What are you planning on adding to encourage people to teamup? What sort of community features are you planning on adding to help and/or balance cooperation in the game?

A: Group/community features are a key design consideration that will be closesly linked with construction. I.e. you build a base and the better it is the better options you have, such as storage and respawn etc...

Q: Rocket, implementing the 'new' humanity is in my opinion something that will make me play different ( less like a douche). Will it be finetuned ? Like when you kill zeds etc. Because now it's really hard to get rid of the score you gathered while not knowing it would count.

A: We will play with this concept (humanity) a lot, so that it plays better. Changes will be experimented a little in the mod over the coming weeks.

Q: How much days after the first effected will the stand alone game be

A: This will be confirmed with my brother (he is a virologist) as part of the base narrative development.

Q: Any idea on when 1.7.3 will release? I'm so excited for dogs! Also I know your planning on doing a mine craft model for the pay system of the standalone, can we expect to see a smaller price than CO? Like $15-$20? I'm going to buy it either way! Keep up the awesome work and you're doing a great job of keeping everyone informed!

A: I would never see DayZ being a full retail title. It does not need to be. And the alpha will be heavily discounted. 1.7.3 will release after Gamescom.

Q: Will there be some kind of a crafting system? Like building parts for crashed cars from other parts? Or cooking meals which will give u more stamina or something.

A: Yes, we have some awesome ideas for "crafting" system but it won't be traditional. It will be something that fits with the authenticity (not crafting sniper rifles from tin cans).

Q: I would like to know if the Dayz mod will continue to be updated after the new standalone is released or in the process of beta.

A: Yes, the mod will be much more open than it is now - allowing more projects like Lingor and more freedom for server administrators. The game development will draw ideas off this pool and develop a more standardized experience.

Q: For the dogs, if they spawn with you as a fresh player. Can you order them to go home or stay away? I really don't think I could handle having my wee pup get shot by some bastard if I find myself getting attached! Would bring back too many bad memories of losing pets

A: You will have to find the dogs and feed them to earn their trust (sound familiar?!?). They will get more obedient the longer they are in game wth you.

Q: So I see you're talking about 100-200 Players/Server, did you give up the idea to try something like EVE's server structure or is it still planned for later on?

A: Absolutely not given up. More than ever committed to this. BUT, we must walk before we can run :)

Q: Are there any plans on making zombies more frightening/scarier than they are now? Not in damage but in looks/sounds. I'm thinking of zombies jumping at you from a dark bush,zombies with open guts,bloodied zombies,.. They really aren't all that scary at the moment.

A: Absolutely. I would rate us as 1/10 for scariness at the moment. I want to go up to at least 7/10

Q: Do you plan to add any more guns to the game for standalone?

A: Absolutely, mainly focused on the "what you would find at home" type weapons.

Q: I love the game. Can't play it enough. But, one of the things I really dislike is the inventory system. Can you give us any specifics on how this might be made more user-friendly in the stand alone?

A: Completely redesigned from the ground up. No news yet, will post on tumblr when we do.

Q: Will the standalone (or mod in future) have any features allowing customisation of appearance? I'd love to be able to find various hats/clothing/accessories in houses and supermarkets, and then change my appearance to be as bad-ass as possible

A: Customization yes, including colors and face, and also by picking up items in the world. And looking badass.

Q: Do you plan to keep weapon switching like it is (Stop, slowly take out other weapon) or do you want to speed it up a little? Are you willing to add native support for holding a weapon in your backpack? What about headlamps?

A: We are reviewing hw this will work (weapon switching). Headlamps are on the list.

Q: Aside from base building, do you have any other game mechanics planned to increase the variety of play for late game characters?

A: I think group and faction mechanics will help there. Combined with construction I think we have lots of potential. Making it easier for players to make good videos will also help too.

Q: Have you ever considered implementing a proper trade menu system between your friends/other survivors? Right now its very awkward moving stuff out of each others backpacks and can sometimes result in items disappearing

A: Considering it, but want to be very careful with any mechanic so it doesnt feel forced or contrived.

Q: Have you thought of NPC territories? (Think Metro 2033 hubs in the tunnels) Personally I'd love there to be a corner of the map where survivor NPCs of remaining society don't shoot people with hero skins, but shoot everyone else on sight (having much better sight overall). This would allow a more risk/reward of being a bandit and also allow for multiple bandits to raid said settlement.Will DayZ itself be available to change via community addons? (similar to minecraft
and bukkit) Lastly... How much bug-testing will be put into work on the standalone?

A: NPC is both a performance issue and also a design issue. I think I want the game to focus as much as possible on supporting player interactions. Bug testing will be conducted mostly by the community.

Q: The Port safe point. Will this be kept?

A: No safe points if it can be avoided, but requires some pathing changes.

Q: Is it possible to add an extra gangs/factions into the game which will be AI controlled and could crop up at random times (like crashed helis) with a base and can be infiltrated for some higher quality loot, just to add to the end game
so people don't always have to turn to killing each other.

A: Group play and faction support is a key design consideration

Q: Is there another system planned to allow messages to be given to other players that aren't on, such as notes left in tents or cars or things to communicate information to offline players when they come back?

A: Yes, we have been looking at the mostly unfinished diary system already in arma for some ideas.

Q: i'd like to know if he actually plays his own mod actively o.o

A: Not nearly as much as I like, should. Most time is spent testing little changes (for example I spent the last week playing with dogs!)

Q: Will there be a possibility of having character slots when the stand alone comes? using more than a single character sounds like a must, right now i'm up at the airfield and i have absolutely no way of helping my friends that just began to play the game because i'll take a long time to travel down and i might die and lose everything just trying to help. Also, will there be a "party" system so you can see where your friends are with some sort of indicator?

A: Group play is very important one of the key design priorities. But we need to explore how this mechanic will work and not disrupt the disorientation that occurs on death.

Q: Did you also think about fixing the vehicles? They disappear on restart and it really gets annoying :)

A: yes :)

Q: n a post someone put a bunch of features they hoped for. One of them was the idea of a large wandering horde (100+). Would this be possible?

A: I've look at it and I seeing what options I can do for it.

Q: Will you\dayz be at PAX and if so to what extent? What about BI?  

A: I will be at PAX, attending a few panels and meeting people/discussing. Looking for a comic artist. BI won't be attending beyond my presence.

Q: Are there any plans to completely remove HUD from the game? I think it would definitely help set the atmosphere!

A: Absolutely agree. We will probably have something but it will be heavily cut down. most cues will be visual and audial.

Q: Did you also think of trading items or NPC Survivors?

A: No NPC survivors.

Q: Is it possible to implement a REAL melee system in ArmA 2 ? I mean, not a pistol reskinned as a hatchet/crowbar. It would be really cool to be able to charge and deal more damage, things like that.

A: Real as in a crowbar comes out of the screen and splits your head open? Probably not. Although that would solve a number of issues. But yes, we will look at improving the system beyond the crappy hack that is there now.

Q: I have to ask: Will there be a single player option with Day Z standalone? If so, will there be roving NPCs that function on a need->get kind of mentality to prevent them from starving to death?

A: Probably. But I am unlikely to work on that. Later once this is successful we might get a team to do that or we will open it up to the community.

Q: First, let me tell you that your game is fantastic and that I wish you the best of luck with all of your future projects! Anyways, just curious, but:
-When did you start coding?
-What was your motive to begin coding mods/games?
-How do you feel about releasing a standalone game?
-Any ideas for future games?

A: I started coding DayZ properly in december. I first started coding when I was maybe 12 back when my parents bought me an Amiga. I started because I wanted to make games that I wanted to play. I wasn't getting what i wanted from the games I was plying. Releasing DayZ standalone will be a dream come true. I want to make some tycoon style games that allow you to go into first person and actually do tasks. More realistic focus, like ports of call. And more
Eve style MMO's.

Q: Will there be more group functionality? Group leader can leave points on map for group to see, maybe see where squad members are?

A: Group functionality is a priority but we need to be careful not to remove the disorientation on death and from trying to find people, that is part of the disaster disorientation and fear.

Q: I'd like to know if he has any plans for the hacks that's corrupting the game, or does he not care because its just an alpha

A: It is something that we can deal with in the standalone. You'll never stop hacking completely, but we just keep vigilant with it and don't ignore it.

Q: This may sound a tad rude, but many people agree: ARMA II was poorly optimized which causes many of us to get poor FPS. Has this been addressed in the new engine for the standalone?

A: I wouldn't agree ArmA2 is poorly optimized. But yes, it is not optimized for the purposes of something like DayZ, and that is easy enough to address as a standalone.

Q: Do we have to pay for the standalone if we paid for ArmA II and Combined Operations? Not that its a problem, DayZ is awesome!

A: Yes, you will. But it will be very cheap !

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