DayZ Standalone Development Report: New Engine, Possible Delay and Console Port Discussion

With the current target release date still set for 2012, but with the game running on a new engine and with the servers now going into a MMO Client Model, Dean Hall, creator of the DayZ Mod has discussed some new development updates that could possibly lead to some delays.

The new engine has truly brought many new challenges for the team, but their one commitment, as it seems, is to release a product that is actually completed and working. Yet, the latest changes are scheduled to be done sometime this week. With these changes, the team is unsure just how much of an effect it’ll have on the overall title until they have tested it. This is where the title may possibly slip into next year. Hall told Joystiq:

“But the architectural changes are scheduled to be complete next week. These are still on track to be completed then. But we don’t entirely know what effect these changes will have, if any, on everything else. So there could be a massive amount of unforeseen work that comes out, we just don’t know until it’s done and we test.”

Let me make this very clear, our foundation release (targeted for this year), is simply the beginning. We are committed to a period of development of at least 12 months beyond that. Our aim is to make this foundation strong, and use that time to improve the mechanics not through hacks, but through sound and quality development. Our initial build will test that this base architecture works.

As noted from the Development Blog,

  • Most settings will be forced server-side, such as gameplay and graphical settings (view distance, shadow distance, etc…). The exact nature of this and specific settings is very much subject to change, but this will be a significant departure from how it is currently with the mod.
  • Release will be on steam, using many of steams key features such as delta patching, VAC, server browsing technology. Patches to steam can be deployed by the click of a button in our build pipeline thanks to new technology developed by Steam, that is making our process extremely easy and exciting. We are very pleased that Steam is working with us so actively to make DayZ a great game and supporting us with quality features. I met many at the team at Valve at PAX, and really want to get them playing the game and getting their feedback to help in development. I’m incredibly thankful to people like Chet Faliszek (creator of L4D) who has been very supportive and helpful to me.
  • In using Steam for authentication, distribution, server browsing, etc… we are able to tap into their awesome resources in terms of scalability. The only hardware we then need to manage is the central database, which we already have some experience managing thanks to the DayZ mod. This means we can work towards avoiding the usual launch problems, by relying on the experience of Steam.
  • The controls have been completely rethought, using inspiration and design lessons from games such as Minecraft to make the player more engaged with their environment
  • Animations are being cleaned up to feel more responsive. This means trimming some transitions, so that you get quicker feedback from pressing the key to action (removing he “clunkiness” or “sluggishness”)
  • Player clothing is being implemented including: headwear, jackets, trousers, footwear, etc..
  • Weapons and items are now “entities”. This means they are more object oriented in structure, allowing weapon customization, degradation – the possibilities become endless. This is a major, huge, shift in engine architecture.
  • The Server controls character actions, a player’s client sends its requests and the server decides if this is possible. Our lead programmer in the company, Ondrej Spanel, is working on this currently. I believe this is one of the most radical changes ever implemented in the engine since Operation Flashpoint was released, and turns DayZ from an FPS into a true MMO.
  • A full-time map designer has also started work on ChernarusPlus now, redeveloping the world, placing new assets and buildings, fixing bugs, and creating new areas. This is in addition to the work done by Ivan and Maxell and will continue for the remainder of DayZ development.
  • The UI has been completely reworked, focusing on simplicity. We have studied games that we believe are leaders in this area, such as Minecraft, and are focusing on providing functionality without fancy complexity in this regard.
  • We have some outstanding former community members working on the project as paid members of the team. I hope to showcase their work and interview them on here for you, in the coming weeks and months. We are actively searching for more to bring them onto the team.

Speaking about the console version of the game, we recently reported that it’ll all depend on how well the PC version does commercially. This still stands.

I personally think that, assuming we don’t majorly screw up, once the PC development has stabilized and sales have been good – a console port would be very likely. So, do I think a console port will happen? Yes. But after the PC is done. And by ‘done,’ I mean finished its creative process.

And we know how some have said in the past that the Arma 2 engine would simply not work on consoles, but remember the standalone version has been heavily modified. And although it looks the same, Dean Hall has said that “under the hood so much is being completely rewritten.”

  • Xbox version please!

    I would buy a copy of the PC version knowing I wouldn’t really play it just to help them get a console version out. I’d play on PC, but most of my friends are console gamers that don’t want to invest in gaming PCs.

    Xbox version please! I know with all of the lovefest for Steam going on there, odds are it would be PS3 only, just so they could keep it within the Steam system.

    • MikePembo951

      Steam doesn’t do ‘exclusivity’ deals like other major gaming platform organisations (*Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo).

      If a publisher decided to release a game on Steam then they are never ‘tied’ to Steam in the sense like: Halo is tied to Xbox and Xbox Live.
      The publisher is allowed to do whatever they want. Examples:
      -Release on another PC digital gaming service e.g. a competitor of Steam like Origin or Desura etc.
      -Release the game in physical retail form
      -Release the game standalone direct from dev/publisher’s website with it’s own DRM
      -Release the game on another platform (without any requirement of having Steam)

      The engine running dayz is really unoptimized and runs slow even on the best PCs.
      They’ll have to do a lot of optimization work to get it running smoothly on current gen consoles.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002367454310 Jonathan Stoffregen

      isn’t the 360 already getting its own zombie ‘dayz’ game? i can’t remember the name though

      • SubXero

        State of Decay (Formerly Class 3) and that game has been in development since 2009. I don’t think it’s really fair to say the 360 is “already getting it’s own zombie ‘dayz’ game”. Just sayin’.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002367454310 Jonathan Stoffregen

          well its open world and it has zombies…… ps3 has nothing :( hopefully dayz comes to it if it comes to consoles at all.

          • tluudt888

            State of Decay is being released an Xbox Arcade. I think the “open world”-ness of it is being -vastly- overstated. Pokemon was an “open world” game to some, and it was pretty damn simple. SoD looks great, but it certainly isn’t Day Z… at all. PS3 has Dead Island, that’s open world and has zombies.

            I hope Day Z comes to next gen first and foremost, and is multi-console if that happens. I never understood the platform exclusivity amongst consoles for reasons other than corporate gain, why do players care that something is exclusive to their console?

            • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002367454310 Jonathan Stoffregen

              oh i didn’t know that still hope every console gets it

            • SubXero

              Dead Island is less “open world” than State of Decay. Dead Island has open “areas” while SoD, regardless of how small the world ends up being, is actually open.

              I posted my original comment five months ago and at this point, while I’m still excited for SoD, I’m extremely disappointed in the combat aspects of the game. From everything up until they actually started showing pieces of the game, SoD looked (read: sounded) like it was going to be a “realistic” post-apocalyptic zombie survival game. The combat and to some degree the zombies themselves have ruined that.

  • Nemesis_96

    I want this on consooolleeeee!!!!!

  • http://twitter.com/BLYFACTOR BLY

    NO CONSOLE!

  • Wout Dekoster

    I wonder how they want to make this type of game work for consoles, since the nature of how the game works (complex controls etc.) just isn’t suited for a gamepad.

    • Tludt888

      I play with an Xbox controller just fine. If I could map the lean and g keys to one of the five or so unused buttons… I’d be 100%. The controls aren’t that complex, most is done off of menus anyhow

  • http://twitter.com/K3ViiNES Kevin Melendez

    WHAT I TOLD YALL THE DAY Z DEVELOPERS WERE GOING TO SAY SOMETHING!!!

    • dj

      The pc community is so annoying its not even funny. Grow up kids honestly

      • Hodgez

        I play on Pc and the ps3 and I find that most of the people that need to grow up are on the PS3. But there are a handful on pc.

        • http://twitter.com/paulinacio91 Paul George Inacio J

          Then you dont play much on ps3 because the majoarity of kids play on xbox and I know this because I played a lot of COD back in the day on xbox and the whole match you hear nothing but crie babbies. I dont agree about there being more on PC but PC players o need to settle down saying ” PC rocks and Consoles are shit” Everybody knows consoles are falling behind in the sense of graghics but are great none the less

      • http://twitter.com/K3ViiNES Kevin Melendez

        WTF are you talking about bro?

      • 3DArtist

        Don’t want to start the flamewar, but to be honest i find it really hard to talk with console community on a mature level. Console communty”most of them” always refuse the fact that consoles are way too outdated and because of that the whole gaming world has been held back by watered down games, even if wite huge amount of arguments to support my thought, console communty always refuses to admit ot and then starts platforms flamewar, in the i end up being accused as an idiot of the world and what ever not. On MP1st like 90% of the people are console players. All of my 3D collegs who uses console admit that i’m right and some of the are building PC, it might be abit expansive in the begining, but other time it’s gettong way cheaper, also pc part that has been released 6 months / 1year ago are selling now for 50% off their original price. Just my 2 cents.

        • FearMyHeadshot

          Dude, i can’t stand the way you talk. You ramble on so much in all your posts and everything you say makes no sense at all. You sound like a 5th grader trying to make a speech. My post has nothing to do with this game, i just couldn’t take much more of holding back from saying something to this kid.

          • 3DArtist

            To you it might sound no sense, to others who’s aware of what i’m talking about is more than enough to understand me.

        • http://twitter.com/paulinacio91 Paul George Inacio J

          LOL You say there immature but you start a war against PC and Consoles??? LMFAO consoles gamers are o consoles to play games and not to talk about how PC surpasses consoles, I think everybody knows PC surpasses consoles in the graphics department but what PC lacks is a overall great experience because of all the hackers. The day PC’s are hack free for games then I might buy a gaming PC but until then I will stick with PS3 and XBOX

          • 3DArtist

            There are hackers, but not as much as you might think. And if you meet one, then it wont take long before he get ban from admin.

          • http://twitter.com/Xtcent Andris

            What war? You do realise there are hackers on consoles? And in most cases on consoles, you can’t do anything about them.

          • http://twitter.com/Xtcent Andris

            What war? You do realise there are hackers on consoles? And in most cases on consoles, you can’t do anything about them.

  • HighBob

    Lol at these “Want this for xbox/ps3/wii u. Would you rather play 16 person game with a huge but empty world and minimum graphics or have a 50+ players/server game handled by mid end 400$ PC ? Consoles are too much behind now, deal with it.

  • Jason

    I think they should wait till next Gen Consoles to port it, then we console players would get the full experience! Just my two cents, though I’m sure PC Gamers would agree!

  • truthbringr

    Yeah port it to the kiddie consoles, theres a sure fire way to ruin a game.

    • RyGuy

      The ignorance is strong with this one.

  • Pingback: DayZ Standalone dev believes console port will happen | VG247()

  • http://twitter.com/hutchesgreatest Cillian Greene

    Just buy a PC, you can get one that runs dayz on medium for 200$
    Stop complying that it’s too expensive.

  • Gnungo

    State of decay but its not multiplayer and it SUCKS for a simple reason: you can be bitten without dying (not realistic/less tactical and stealthy) when it should be ones your bitten your done.

  • Pingback: DayZ Creator Explains Delay of Standalone Game, Closed Testing Imminent - MP1st()

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