5 years into Early Access, DayZ hits beta ahead of a planned 1.0 release this year

To stave off feature creep, the DayZ team has frozen plans new features and content as it works on polishing the beta and build toward a 1.0 release.

The longtime Early Access game DayZ is close to emerging from the program as a full, 1.0 release. To that end, the development team has now launched a beta build on the game’s experimental server that, with some polish and bug fixing, will see the game get a full release before the end of 2018. On the development side, the team has also issued a feature and content freeze to instead focus on cleaning up that beta for a full release.

The team details exactly what these next few steps will look like in a detailed blog post on the DayZ site, offering fellow devs a Q&A that explores the game’s final months as an Early Access title. 

The push for a 1.0 release before year-end is something the development team says is for their own well being as well as that of DayZ. Dealing with feature creep is an issue many game developers have faced, but it’s something that can be exacerbated by the Early Access development model. 

In the post, lead producer Eugen Harton goes on to explain that the team could go on in Early Access and continue the trend of adding and polishing in tandem, but ultimately zeroing in on the goal of getting DayZ a stable, 1.0 build will be better for both the team and the future of the game itself.

“Making a new weapon on a game that crashes or stops shooting bullets every day due to low-level changes is not fun for us either,” explains Harton. “We know that this step is not only important for the game, but also for the team here. While we might have put on a version number 0.64 and just continue development as many of you have suggested, we have to start working with deadlines properly and be prepared to prioritize.”

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