To start off this Status Report, we are going to let Stress Test #18 run over night, so have a good time. Today, Eugen is going to talk about the upcoming weeks as our Stress Test versions gain more and more stability. Peter gives an introduction to the conditions of our new Central Economy system and Adam explains the ongoing changes to the Balota airfield. We close with some of the most memorable highlights of our community. Let's dive into it!
As we are pushing a large amount of fixes into the current Stress Test Branch, our aim is to stabilize the build enough to launch an Experimental Branch that will be available on official Experimental severs, as well as community servers, as server owners will be able to switch over. We expect the 0.62 Stable to be played less often and we will move server resources to Experimental depending on the player interest.
We expect a couple more Stress Tests to be happening this week, aimed at least a couple fixes for crashes and locked character issues. We would like to confirm these fixes over the next couple of days and have the build available during the weekend for an extended Stress Test. This will be the version we will be launching for all the players interested in moving to experimental.
In the meantime, we have planned out the features that will be reviewed and connected to the new engine. This is done on the Internal branch of development and will move over to the Experimental in bundles. Last week we have moved to review/bug fixing of:
- Hidden stashes
- Chambering loop (Enabling weapon classes such as the Mosin in-game)
- Character - Unconsciousness
- UI - Main Menu Polished
- Sensors audibility/visibility (Infected)
- Sheep/animations, behavior
This week is dedicated to the implementation of :
- Environmental exposure
- Weapons - double barrel
- UI - Server Browser Polished
- Goat/animations, behaviour
When these features will hit experimental, soon after the Experimental release we expect to switch over and keep doing Stress Tests for the newer builds before they move on to Experimental. The process itself is focused on connecting these features to the new character as a lot of them have been under development for a long time now. Each week we aim to deliver the implementation and dedicate the second week to bug fixing. Switching these over to Experimental will be done depending on the feature review and the community feedback that might affect priorities.
- Eugen Harton / Lead Producer
The new Central Economy (CE) is in charge of the spawn and clean up of items, infected, animals, vehicles and dynamic events. It is easier to setup than the old CE and allows us to be more flexible with the categorization and areas of occurrence. A more precise placement can be achieved as well. After a series of internal tests during its implementation, we deployed it to DayZ 0.63. The CE is a complex system, as its behaviour develops over time and reacts to player interaction. Testing on our side was limited in scale and time.
To check how the new Central Economy is behaving on a mass scale in the wild, we gathered data during the 11th Stress Test. From 18.5. to 20.5. we saved the storage files every hour across all servers which were constantly under full load. Loading this data back into the game allowed us to reconstruct how the CE behaved over time.
From all the items spawned by the CE we picked the ones that are crucial for survival - food (beans, spaghetti, peaches, sardines, tuna), drinks (Cola, Pipsi, Spite, Kvass, water bottle) and firearms (Makarov, FNX45, Skorpion, IZH18, MP5, UMP45, AKM). The presented data is from the UK 0-8 server. The overview maps show where these items were spawned over time and similarly, the graphs show their overall quantity on the map over time (note that one dot means at least one item or more). To put things into context there is also a map of character spawn areas.
Areas of character spawns along the coast.
An animated occurrence of food across the map from Friday to Sunday.
Amounts of food across the map from Friday to Sunday.
Positions of food in the map at its lowest, Saturday 11:00.
Amounts of drinks across the map from Friday to Sunday.
Positions of drinks on the map at their lowest, Saturday 09:00.
Amounts of firearms across the map from Friday to Sunday.
Positions of firearms on their map at their lowest, Saturday 15:00.
From available data granularity, it can be seen that in general, there have been enough food and drinks across the map to survive, as well as firearms to provide empowerment of survivors. Interestingly, the sum of all initially spawned food in 0.62 is lower than the sum of all spawned food at their minimal quantity in 0.63 (when an item hits its minimum threshold it will start to respawn back to its initial value). It would be nice to see players adapting to a new mindset of getting prepared before starting their next trip by checking more houses and structures at their location.
However, there are things which will be addressed down the road to improve the CE behaviour and its balance. It’s clear that some parts of the map are rather empty, especially in the bottom right corner. In such cases, areas for character spawns will be tweaked and more structures will be added where it makes sense. That goes hand in hand with lowering the safe radius around characters which prevents items to pop up, as in high traffic areas this can cause the lockout of entire cities.
Next, it’s the settings of the CE itself playing the decisive role. The randomisation of the lifetime of more common items has to be set in a greater range, as we noticed there were cleanups of large amounts at once causing noticeable dips. Moreover, the difference between nominal and minimal values of an item makes items spread across map even more unevenly. Most importantly, the short time frame we had to ‘boot up’ the new Central Economy and the truncated list of given items to spawn, led to a sub-optimal items categorization and defined tier zones. This is the area of the CE which will become crucial when more items start to flow back into the game and we really need to nail it.
With the new Central Economy we definitely have a great toolset to tune loot and its distribution as good as possible, but given the nature and complexity of it, it will take some time.
Let the looting begin... see you in Chernarus folks!
- Peter Nespesny / Lead Designer
As mentioned in our Status Report from April 25, we are re-designing Chernogorsk and its surroundings. If you have played on the 0.63 Stress Test Branch and visited this area, you may have seen where we are heading with this re-design. I should remind you that map changes, unlike other parts of the game, are something that is not receiving updates on the Stress Test Branch that often, because of the difficulties with the branching of map data. Anyway, I am happy to say that quite a lot of progress has been made over the past few weeks and we are nearing the final stages of polishing and optimizing the overall area.
If you have played the more recent versions of the 0.63 Stress Test Branch, you may have also noticed that we have decided to re-design the Balota airfield. This change was planned for a long time and originally set to be made at a later stage of development, but since the re-design of Chernogorsk is covering the area from Balota to Elektro, we have decided to include the Balota airfield re-design in it too. Balota is such an odd spot for any type of airfield to begin with, but we feel the need for a number of airfields across the Chernarus.
Now with the NWAF re-design close to being done, we have got a proper military airbase on the map and we feel like there is no need to have other military air bases. And so the airfield was completely de-militarised, the concrete runway was removed and the whole airfield was rotated a bit more facing inland (so the corridor is pointing away from inhabited areas). Given the relatively small and odd place, we have decided to transform this airfield into a local airstrip, maintained by a local flying club and have re-used NEAF buildings to support this idea (and if you ask, yes, we do have further plans for NEAF too, but not for 0.63). To give this newly re-designed airfield a backstory, it has been captured by the military forces, with most of its entrances sealed off by mostly improvised structures.
- Adam Franců / Map Designer
Let's check out what the community has for us after two weeks.
I need to start with something really sad. Our community lost one of its members and a great streamer. Jen, known as Poisonantler, died under unfortunate circumstances on 8th March. We decided among the dev team to commemorate her by placing a small cross and a bench in the place where she disconnected for the last time.
Our Brand Manager Martin Čulák accepted an invitation from our favourite Australian content creator Boydy and joined him in his podcast. Check it out, you can find interesting info in the video:
I didn't expect much from a video with just walkie-talkie recording. But I was really surprised by how entertaining the video is. This is a recording of a few people's conversations from The Village server which has a very interesting ending. I really recommend to check it out.
It is good to see that hand painting is not dead. This DayZ logo on a canvas made by danyuls0n's girlfriend makes us happy. We hope it is already hanging on the wall somewhere near a PC.
I know we didn't have a location riddle for a long time. Our Twitter is now overwhelmed, because of Stress Tests, so we need to identify the riddle tweets. Just tweet the location with #DayZriddleTime hashtag and I will find it!
Have a nice day(Z), Survivors!
- Baty / Community Manager
Header image by zombi.