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7 Days to Die 'Alpha 19 Experimental' is out with HD Zombies

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The Fun Pimps are working towards another huge upgrade for the survival game 7 Days to Die, with a new experimental build out now to try.

It's a massive upgrade again to many areas of the game, and it does sound quite exciting. One of the best survival games available on Linux, easily. Alpha 19 can be tried out in the "latest_experimental" Beta branch on Steam. Keep in mind it will be unstable since it's not yet ready for everyone. With that in mind though, it's still fun to try. Some of what's new includes: Linear Color Space Lighting, Improved Gamepad Support, New Survival System & Critical Injuries, Interactive Loading Screen, Food and Water Bars in the UI and even HD Characters, like my friend pictured below while exploring myself earlier.

They've done some seriously good work on the updated models, which they said not only look better but will actually result in slightly better performance due to using less "draw calls". Certainly makes things more interesting and even a little bit scarier.

Other updates include a Dynamic Music System (not on Linux yet), Quest Improvements, a new system for improved on-screen directions to help you locate important items in the world, the hand-made Navezgane map was expanded and the random map generation was improved too, lots of new environment art and the list goes on.

I feel it's also important to note they've added in some data tracking with "Super Nimbus and GameSparks", which they say will continue from Alpha 19 until the "Gold" release. They're capturing things like how you die, XP earned and other gameplay but they've said no personal info is being captured. Doesn't appear to have an opt-out ability either.

Full list of changes here. You can pick it up on Humble Store and Steam.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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rcrit 30 Jun
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Quoting: runtimeerrorI can't play it because the loading screen won't go away for me.

See if you have any mods installed. I forgot to rename the Mods directory my first run and has similar problems.
Nanobang 30 Jun
Admittedly, I haven't been to Navezgane since v. 18, so things may be different now, but I've been playing since v.8 (I think) and I have a couple combat pointers you may find helpful in the early game:

Quoting: scainea) The starting bow seems mildly less useless. Still not great, but at least I was hitting with it more than not. That's a relief!

Since I love the bow, even the early one, I find it far from useless (or vise versa) but you gotta land --- often multiple --- headshots, two or three as I recall, fwip, fwip, thunk. You'll also have to learn to gauge the arc on the shot. The starter bow isn't very powerful, as is only proper, so aiming above the head is normal at range. Pay attention to the visual space between the tip of the arrow and the target's head. If you overshoot, reduce the space a bit, and if you undershoot, increase the space.


Quoting: scaineb) Melee feel chunkier. It was always a game that didn't quite "connect" before, and there's still that strange distance that you need to just experiment with to know when you can hit, but they can't. In the past, that felt a bit floaty, but now it feels more solid. Can't wait to get my sledgehammer to try it out more... directly.

It's true you gotta experiment with how close you need to be to hit the zombies, but it's not random, I don't think. It seems to equate with the length of the weapon in hand. In most cases, in the hurly-burly of a fight, if you're able to hit them, they're probs able to hit you. And the shorter the weapon, the more likely that is to happen. Rather than worry overly about that exact distance, I focus on quickly jumping in and out of striking distance and, or trying to get on their side or behind them. Jump forward (usually right after they take an unsuccessful swing) whomp 'em, then immediately jump back again. Rinse, repeat. :)
scaine 30 Jun
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Quoting: NanobangAdmittedly, I haven't been to Navezgane since v. 18, so things may be different now, but I've been playing since v.8 (I think) and I have a couple combat pointers you may find helpful in the early game:

Quoting: scainea) The starting bow seems mildly less useless. Still not great, but at least I was hitting with it more than not. That's a relief!

Since I love the bow, even the early one, I find it far from useless (or vise versa) but you gotta land --- often multiple --- headshots, two or three as I recall, fwip, fwip, thunk. You'll also have to learn to gauge the arc on the shot. The starter bow isn't very powerful, as is only proper, so aiming above the head is normal at range. Pay attention to the visual space between the tip of the arrow and the target's head. If you overshoot, reduce the space a bit, and if you undershoot, increase the space.


Quoting: scaineb) Melee feel chunkier. It was always a game that didn't quite "connect" before, and there's still that strange distance that you need to just experiment with to know when you can hit, but they can't. In the past, that felt a bit floaty, but now it feels more solid. Can't wait to get my sledgehammer to try it out more... directly.

It's true you gotta experiment with how close you need to be to hit the zombies, but it's not random, I don't think. It seems to equate with the length of the weapon in hand. In most cases, in the hurly-burly of a fight, if you're able to hit them, they're probs able to hit you. And the shorter the weapon, the more likely that is to happen. Rather than worry overly about that exact distance, I focus on quickly jumping in and out of striking distance and, or trying to get on their side or behind them. Jump forward (usually right after they take an unsuccessful swing) whomp 'em, then immediately jump back again. Rinse, repeat. :)

I'm sure others will find that useful, but with my 700+ hours in the game, you're preaching to the choir with me!

My point about the starter bow is that the A18 starter bow is too inaccurate for it to instil any joy. Sure, you could practice and compensate a bit, but it felt like a chore. Whereas the A19 bow feels more reliable and useful.

My point about melee is that the act of landing a blow feels "heavier" now, in a good way. I can only assume they've tweaked the hitboxes, and I seem to notice more stuns from even the starting club, so early melee doesn't feel as grindy.

I'm loving the changes so far. Hopefully get some time to play a little more towards the end of the week. I love what they've done with the crawlers too. Very creepy!
Solitary 30 Jun
Quoting: AllocSeems to really depend on the GPU/driver combination, some play without issues (and obviously better performance than GLCore) for hours, some crash all the time.

Well that's unfortunate, but it gives me hope that it just might be something about my setup. Even though A18 manage to run with Vulkan for me (only tested it for a moment), because once I joined a game with friends and it crashed/froze immediately on spawn (and even deleted the tutorial quest) I havent try it again since. Now it just crashes back to desktop once I try to start a session, menu works fine though.

Quoting: rcritI played for an hour using Vulkan and it looked and performed fine for me on nVidia 440.82.
I am running the newest 440.100, which you probably also have queued up looking you are also running Fedora. But the fact you manage to run it gives me hope its just something with my setup.


Last edited by Solitary on 30 June 2020 at 6:00 pm UTC
foobrew 30 Jun
I really hope the performance improves and doesn't get any worse with the graphical updates. I've only played A18 and even with a GFX 2070 Ultra the FPS is only passable, not amazing. Contrast that with Conan Exiles which I've been (obsessively) playing through Proton 5.0 and getting outstanding FPS with nearly every graphical feature maxed.
gabber 30 Jun
still not managing to setup a server on 18.04..

did follow this guide https://onovia.com/2019/11/08/7-days-to-die-alpha-18-linux-dedicated-server/

did disable EasyAntiCheat

server is up and running all be it complaining about "[S_API FAIL] SteamAPI_Init() failed; SteamAPI_IsSteamRunning() failed."
server shows up on the client
logging in.. hangs

when i try again i get kicked because of "duplicate player name"

any ideas?
razing32 30 Jun
I played this a while back with friends.
Kinda lost intrest when an update made progression more grindy.(to skills)
Is it sitll the case ?
Ehvis 30 Jun
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Quoting: razing32I played this a while back with friends.
Kinda lost intrest when an update made progression more grindy.(to skills)
Is it sitll the case ?

That depends on whether or not you know what you're doing. Currently in a game around day 165, but haven't die since day 12. By day 50 we were pretty much OP. So it might seem grindy if you're also trying to figure things out, but if you do progression is fairly quick.
scaine 30 Jun
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Quoting: razing32I played this a while back with friends.
Kinda lost intrest when an update made progression more grindy.(to skills)
Is it sitll the case ?

It's always been grindy, so I'm not sure what you mean. In the pre-A14 days, the grind related to what you did. So if you did a lot of mining, you got better at mining. That makes sense, but they dropped that because lots of the other skills didn't - you don't get better armour by bumping into cacti, but that's what the game gave you if you did it enough. It was also very difficult to progress the science skills, because you needed certain items (forges, beakers, etc), but for balance, they needed to level-gate those items, or people would have ended up riding around in gyrocopters by day 10.

So it's now xp based. You gain xp from killing zeds, obviously, but also from looting, mining, and building - especially building, and especially upgrading blocks from wood, to cobble, to cement, to reinforced. After a certain amount of xp, you gain a level, and that gives you a point to put into anything you like.

So, yeah. Still very grindy, just a different grind now. And still a fun grind, in my opinion, given the hours I've put in.
razing32 2 Jul
Quoting: scaine
Quoting: razing32I played this a while back with friends.
Kinda lost intrest when an update made progression more grindy.(to skills)
Is it sitll the case ?

It's always been grindy, so I'm not sure what you mean. In the pre-A14 days, the grind related to what you did. So if you did a lot of mining, you got better at mining. That makes sense, but they dropped that because lots of the other skills didn't - you don't get better armour by bumping into cacti, but that's what the game gave you if you did it enough. It was also very difficult to progress the science skills, because you needed certain items (forges, beakers, etc), but for balance, they needed to level-gate those items, or people would have ended up riding around in gyrocopters by day 10.

So it's now xp based. You gain xp from killing zeds, obviously, but also from looting, mining, and building - especially building, and especially upgrading blocks from wood, to cobble, to cement, to reinforced. After a certain amount of xp, you gain a level, and that gives you a point to put into anything you like.

So, yeah. Still very grindy, just a different grind now. And still a fun grind, in my opinion, given the hours I've put in.

Hmm , might need to give it another go then.
I remember i liked the old system for crafting/mining
Science was annoying to level up but it made finding a chemical workbench VERY exciting.
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