Dean ‘Rocket’ Hall really can’t put a foot wrong. After managing to get DayZ as a concept to become wildly popular, he’s managed to get DayZ to move from mod to standalone project, with Bohemia handling the development side. And now he’s following through on his ‘community involvement’ promise and eliciting ideas from the DayZ Reddit community in a way that’s smart, fast and already coming up with a few brilliant concepts.
The idea is that it’s one idea per post, and just a quick paragraph to outline it. Good ideas get voted up, and that lets Rocket filter through the chaff to find the good stuff. So far ideas like non-lethal takedowns and writing implements are riding highest, both of which will add a hell of a lot to creating a more civilised, but potentially more brutal, society forming within the game.
Pen and paper, in particular, would be an incredible addition, allowing people to leave their final words after being savaged by zombies or shot by a bandit. Or just providing warnings or information for other travellers. After seeing how well that kind of environmental storytelling works in a game like Left 4 Dead, harnessing the players to generate that kind of atmosphere is only going to make DayZ an even more impressive proposition.
There’s even a professional concept artist throwing his hat into the ring, demonstrating what early morning fog banks would look like in the game, as well as an instanced inventory/shop (above). More atmosphere, more emergence, and more systemic mechanics seem to be the call of the day. And that all sounds pretty fine to me.
If you’ve got an idea, add it to the discussion and it may well find its way into the game in the next few months/years.