H1Z1 is a two-part set of massive multiplayer online games developed by Daybreak Game Company. It is split into two separate titles; Just Survive, an open world survival based game. And King of the Kill, a massive battle royale between individual players or teams. Released on Steam as an early access title on January 15, 2015, H1Z1 has since improved its gameplay and grown as a community.
H1Z1: Just Survive is a survival sandbox of servers filled with numerous other online players desperate to survive. The game is set in rural United States during a zombie apocalypse, caused by the mutation of the influenza virus H1N1. The players goal is to survive while exposed to the elements, wild animals, swarms of flesh-eating zombies and hundreds of potentially hostile online players. It is essential to explore this apocalyptic world and scavenge for resources that will help with crafting, the construction of shelter and ultimately, the extension of survival.
Animals: Currently within the game there are wolves, bears, deer and rabbits. All can be killed for food and skinned for their pelts that help as a crafting resource, however the predatory animals will also attempt to hunt both humans and zombies. Pets are a potential upcoming feature for H1Z1; players will be able to domesticate some animals and utilise their strengths for transportation, defence and livestock. Speculated species include: sheep, cows, dogs, horses, rainbow trout, ravens and chickens.
Airdrops: Players who have an airdrop ticket can call in an airdrop whenever they want in the core game, given that the server allows airdrops. A player will receive one of ten drops, each containing a different set of specific items. However caution is advised as every crate, upon landing, explodes and spawns several zombies.
Base Building: There are two ways that a player can set up a base. The first is barricading; if a player decides that constantly keeping on the move is key to survival, then building temporary defences around an abandoned house for the night is their best bet. Any building can be used as a shelter, which a player can reinforce with resources from the environment. Crafting wooden barricades, placing traps outside and blocking up windows could potentially keep a player safe once the sun has set. However barricades can be damaged and destroyed by both player and undead.
The second choice is to construct a player-build base. Players are able to place down foundations, and have the ability to customise their own abode by adding walls, rooms, watchtowers and much more. This will provide a more permanent and secure home where one can rest and store resources. However, building a house is a lot more resource-consuming, and it doesn’t mean zombies and players won’t still attack.
Items & Crafting
Players will have to search the world for supplies, from the essentials of food and water, to weapons for defence and clothing for armour and warmth. Players can find items in realistic locations, such as: food in the supermarket, weapons and ammo in the police station and metals in cars.
A players best chance at survival comes from scavenging and using everything at their disposal. The resources collected will allow a player to craft critical items like campfires, food and bandages. Once basic survival has been covered, attention can be turned to the construction of more intricate items like weapons, bases and even explosives.
“Crafting involves discovering the ingredients required to make the item, and then combining one or multiple ingredients to produce that item. Recipes that are learnt will persist across death unless a specific server’s ruleset prevents it.”
Don’t Just Hide, Fight Back!
Weapons: H1Z1 provides the player with a variety of weapons that can be used for hunting and combat against zombies and players. Many traditional and basic weapons can be scavenged from around the map or off the bodies of a fallen foes, however improvisation is sometimes necessary and a player will have to craft a weapon from scratch. Weapons do have a durability that will go down with each use; fortunately repairs can be made with either a weapon repair kit or a gun repair kit. If a weapon’s durability reaches zero, it will break down and will turn into a broken metal item.
Melee weapons are silent and don’t require ammo, some examples are: lead pipes, hatchets, machetes and even baseball bats.
Ranged weapons require ammunition and are able to damage target from a distance. These weapons come in many variations including: spears, longbows, handguns and rifles.
Vehicles: Although they are highly visible and require fuel and constant maintenance, vehicles provide the player with a means of transportation. They allow the transit of cargo from place to place and can get a player across the map at great speeds. Vehicles can be found scattered around the world in various states of disrepair. It’s the players job to find the correct parts and get the vehicle working again.