If you have been playing PC games for any length of time you have heard of “Dayz.” It doesn't matter if it was the “Arma 2” mod, the “Arma 3" epoch mod, or the standalone game, still in early access. “DayZ” was iconic for its intense gameplay. Players fighting endless hordes of zombies and countless hostile enemy players. Looting your defeated enemies or fallen comrades. Spending hours gathering gear, dodging hordes, and hiding from other players, just to die of a broken leg or lack of water. That is what “DayZ” was. It was an adventure. An escape from the real zombie-free world we live in.

Where is that game now?

Where is that game now? What do you think of when you think of “DayZ?" Most likely it's "Oh yuck ‘DayZ'!" or "That game was supposed to be out of early access years ago, I want a refund!" We wanted the “DayZ" standalone to be better than the mods and better than the hype, but alas, our hopes were crushed by false promises, deadlines that were never met, bug fixes that never happened, and features that never got added. This left us, the PC gaming community, feeling hurt and used. Sure, we had good times in the game with our friends but in the end, we just couldn't get past the bugs, the false promises, and bad net code, so we moved on to other games, but always kept a spark of hope for “DayZ” to be a functional game at its full release.

'DayZ' is dead

That hope is misplaced. “DayZ” is dead and gone but something else can take its place. This game has everything “DayZ” could have been. Epic PVP firefights, a dynamic in-depth loot system, gear collecting, hardcore PVE gameplay, and even a backpack section.

Escape From Tarkov” is the game I am referring to. Sure, there is no zombie AI running wild and messing up your day, but there is a crazy AI called scavengers and you can even play as one.

The reason “Tarkov” is comparable to “DayZ” is that “Tarkov” gives you that same hardcore feeling you kept wanting more of a feeling you could never get enough of in “DayZ.” “Tarkov” is not an open world game like “DayZ” but instead is a series of in-game maps that make up a world map, “Tarkov” uses a raid type system of play.

You are dropped into a map with a time window anywhere from 35 minutes to an hour.

You start your raid with a hatchet and slowly find ways to kill scavengers or another player. You gather gear for the raids and can only keep what you take out of the raid with. When you make it out of the raid you can sell what you don't need to them in game merchants and keep the rest. The hardest thing about “Tarkov” is, that whenever you die in a raid, you lose all the gear you had on you, so you do not want to take nice stuff into a raid. “Tarkov” will make your heart race and your hand's sweat, but must of all, it will fill a hole in your video game heart that was made by “DayZ."

If you are looking for the feelings that “DayZ” gave you, the experiences “DayZ” gave you, or you are looking for a fun new hardcore shooter, “Tarkov” can be that game for you.