7.5
Our overall verdict "Good"
Look: 7/10
Feel: 9/10
Narrative: 6/10
Replayability: 8/10
Originality: 7/10

H1Z1: Just Survive is a zombie survival MMO, where players can thrive together or survive alone in a desolate open world, set in the rural United States. Daybreak has created a world where it can be tough to tell friend from foe by allowing players the freedom to see the world through their own eyes. Whether you enjoy being part of a mutualistic, friendly community or a rogue, kill-on-site band of mercenaries, there’s plenty of crafting, looting and building for all.

Daybreak recently announced that H1Z1 was being split in to two separate games – H1Z1: Just Survive and H1Z1: King of the Kill, which pretty much represent the two previous modes Survival and Battle Royale. 

h1z1: just survive

I’ve put a fair few hours in to Survival mode in the past, eventually hitting a ceiling where nothing that could be achieved felt fun. My friends and I had a base, a car, guns and enough ammo to keep us going – but what to do with it all? That’s when I moved to Battle Royale, the fast-paced version where everyone has guns and the zombies are non-existent. I’ve been waiting for Just Survive to be released in order to give the game a go from scratch, seeing what’s changed and how smooth it is now. A lot of people compare H1Z1 to DayZ and rightly so – they are very similar. H1Z1 is smoother in my opinion and a lot more forgiving than its super-serious competition. Battle Royale was the game mode that vastly separated the two games in my opinion, so now the two modes have been split, I wonder about the future of Just Survive.

h1z1 lighting system

The New H1:Z1 Lighting System

H1Z1: Just Survive- First Impressions

Upon first launch of H1Z1: Just Survive, I noticed a gorgeous home screen which got me pretty excited for what I was about to witness. I chose my server and loaded in, spending the first ten minutes just wandering around exploring. The most noticeable thing about Just Survive was the new lighting system that was updated in May last year – it made the entire world much better looking, both in cities and the woodlands. It shouldn’t have made much of a difference but it really did feel more immersive. As well as this, the new Comfort body stat has been introduced, which required me to look up what it was and how I improve it! Basically your character will enjoy eating different foods, sitting by campfires and wearing more clothes- a cool feature that once again adds to the immersion of the game. I also noticed a few new melee weapons lying around, including baseball bats and wrenches (I know Katana’s are out there, I just don’t know where!). I much enjoyed finding my first Titanium Baseball Bat and turning it on to a nearby zombie.

h1z1:just survive zombie kill

Zombieland Rule #2 – Double Tap

H1Z1: Just Survive – First Human Encounter

Of course, in true open world fashion, the second I started swinging my weapon around at this zombie a fellow player shows up. I noticed the second of two zombies fell, was bleeding and required bandaging. Then Zivo approached. He showed no sign of recognition as he wandered in to the church between us and I decided it was a good time to try being friendly and playing the game as it was meant to be. Zivo seemed a little skittish, maybe because he’d just seen me brutally murder a zombie with my shiny new bat, or maybe he didn’t care at all. He mainly grunted and kept his replies short: maybe I was insignificant to him, armed only with a melee weapon with no gear of note. We soon went our separate ways after looting the church together and I saw the encounter as a mild success. He didn’t try to kill me after all.

This raised my confidence in my fellow players a little and after half an hour of wandering through the wilderness trying to survive, I found my way to a tiny hamlet and gas station. I saw two guys at the same time they saw me I think, and what happened next can only be described as feral. They charged at me with strange looking spears and it wasn’t long before I was dead; my life, my bat and basic food provisions all gone.

H1Z1: Just Survive – Playing With Friends

I logged back in an hour or so later with a couple of friends, Jim and Badger. Back in the day we’d spend the first while trying to find each other, force respawning until we were close enough to guess our way across one another’s path. This time, though, I wanted the full experience and taking my first spawn near the main city, Pleasant Valley, I looted my way in to the particular direction of my teammates. I found this much more enjoyable, picking up a shotgun, a few shells, and enough basic provisions to feel pretty set. As I was doing this, Badger was killed three times by other players for no apparent reason and we never did actually get together. Jim, taking the same approach as me in terms of getting geared up before meeting up a little to the south of the town, found himself in a similar well set position. Badger soon rage quit, and I heard him in the background of our Teamspeak channel cursing the wasted hour of his life as Jim and I decided to head to the Military Base (in B5, if you’ve never heard of it.)

The base had changed a lot since we’d last been there and we found a lot of loot, including Kevlar, Ghillie suits and Military Backpack’s. Jim had found a couple of locker keys, too, which can be used at the Hospital (B2 on the map) to get some potentially good gear. We made the trip there despite less than fond memories of the place where we were once brutally killed by a group camping just outside, losing all our hard-earned equipment in the process. Once inside, we found the corresponding lockers to our key’s and got…well, nothing much. It wasn’t long after then that I started to feel a little sick, which can be caused by video games sometimes and is similar to motion sickness. I’ve had this before in H1Z1, so I logged out after an enjoyable couple of hours.

h1z1 just survive kurama hospital

Kurama Hospital- Bad Memories

H1Z1: Just Survive – Final Thoughts

The Just Survive game hasn’t really had many changes made since it was called Survival, so I assume the splitting of the games was just that for now. I looked online and saw two theories as to why the games were split and what that could mean for the future of H1Z1. One theory was that the game would approach full release at a faster rate, with a dedicated team behind it, while the other stated that perhaps Daybreak wanted to focus on the King of the Kill mode, which potentially makes more money. Personally, I hope the first theory is closer to the truth because the game does have promise despite its rough edges.

I’ll leave you with a great screenshot of me and some friends having a great time cruising round in a car, feeling on top of the world. Let me know what you think of H1Z1 and the recent split in to Just Survive and King of the Kill in the comments below. Should I do a bit of a Let’s Play series of the game? If you’re interested in getting your own copy of the game but aren’t sure about the price, try out here at G2A, where it might be a little bit cheaper.

h1z1 vehicle fun

Cruisin’ for a bruisin’

Summary
Review Date
Reviewed Item
H1Z1: Just Survive
Author Rating
4