Day Z Survival Lessons

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Day Z Survival Lessons

I don’t know how many lives have been saved from my fuck ups in training. Training is super important and it is okay to fuck up. Here is a surprise. What if I told you there was a game that realistically could help you train for when SHTF?

It is called Day Z and it is built off the ARMA II engine and it is not fun. It isn’t HALO where you run around spastically, re-spawning like nothing happened, where someone 10 levels ahead of you wrecks your shit. People will wreck your shit if they have a gun and ammo for that gun and you don’t…

Day Z it is pretty much the tits. It is a survival game and most people will kill you for a can of beans. The game is as realistic as a game can get. Your load out depends on what server you are on and most reset every few hours to keep the lag down. Generally you start out with nothing. You have to scavenge for everything. You can find a 1911 but only have mags and ammo for an M9.

Day Z Survival – Land Navigation

If you are going to orient yourself in the world of Day Z you are going to need a map, compass, GPS, knowledge of the area, and knowledge of navigation by the stars. Typically you start out with nothing in the way of navigational aids. The aids you are given work like they are supposed to, although the lensatic compass has more utility than that in the game. It isn’t as precise as military land navigation but it is still the best I have seen in a game. Good luck trying to find a GPS btw.

Day Z Survival – Medical

You have Blood types… what is your blood type? You have to do a test to find out. The test works the same way real blood type tests work. Getting the wrong type of blood sends you into shock. You can only get blood from transfusions or waiting forever. Lose too much and you have the same physiological effects of blood loss. Lack of coordination, Lack of energy, lack of vision, and passing out.

Bandages can be improvised just as you would in real life. Gauze+Rags or cut up t shirts. You can use Epipens to treat severe allergic reactions. You can use Antibiotics to treat bacterial infections. There are pain killers and morphine to deal with pain. I am not sure if you can splint broken bones. I usually die when that happens.

Oh and cleanliness counts. Drink your water from a pond… get an infection. Do a blood transfusion without sterilized equipment… get an infection. kill a pig and don’t cook the meat… get an infection.

Day Z Survival – Human Behavior

There are heroes who go around helping noobs and there are bandits who go around killing them on site to raid their stuff. Having a gun equalizes somewhat so it will give bandits pause if there is a confrontation but mostly they will just snipe you.

Expect an ambush.

Now bandits because they are untrustworthy are in smaller groups. Thus it is tactically better to form a group by not being a bandit yourself. That is risky.

Day Z Survival – Tactical Movements

Most people move along linear danger areas. Especially along roads because their land nav skills suck. This is where using cover and concealment helps. Stay off the main roads.

Bounding is a skill lost to most people but I teach people as much as possible while playing. Basically I move from a place of cover or concealment to the next cover or concealment while my partner suppresses enemy fire. YES unlike most video games the is a difference between the two.

Another thing people do not get is the react to contact. If you take fire. You should react in the same way. I came across a dude who was a victim of a sniper. Only he didn’t die. He was just passing out a lot from lack of blood. This guy had a precision rifle. I did not. So my partner and I had to set up an L shaped ambush. I had to bound using 3 to 5 second rushes. The sniper died because he fell off the roof of his hide.

Day Z Survival – Tracking

Shoot someone and they will leave a trail of blood. Drive a car you kick up dust and leave trails. Tracking skills in this game can make the difference between hunter and hunted. It is important to know the difference. You will also leave garbage behind. Broken windows and trash let you know people have been through that area.

Day Z – Noise and light discipline

Noise and light will attract bad guys and zombies. So be careful. Shooting a zombie will bring more of his friends out of the wood work.

Day Z Survival – Sniping

One of the things that bugs me about most video games is that people think a complex skill like sniping is getting to a high vantage point and lining up the sights with the enemy… NO. Just because you are good with a sniper rifle on Halo doesn’t make you a sniper. Day Z uses realistic ballistics. So if you have a ghillie suit, a precision rifle. can range targets, can compensate for elevation and weather, are extremely patient, know how to set up a good hide, and can have the food and water to not start shaking… maybe you can be a sniper in Day Z.


The controls are not intuitive. It is more difficult than real life sometimes.

Having military experience helps in this game. It is not like laser tag. It is like playing with simmunitions. It is a force on force game that teaches you a lot.

The stand alone is currently in production so you can play the Alpha version. Or you can download ARMA II and ARMA II Operation Eagle and get the Day Z mod for free. Neither is really any cheaper.

This game is not a substitute for real training but it is a good addition to training.



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About David Black

Trained and Certified: National Registry EMT, Wilderness EMT, US Army 68W, Tactical Combat Causality Care (TCCC), Basic Life Support for Healthcare Workers, Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Pediatric Advanced Life Support, US Coast Guard Medical Person In-Charge, Pre-Hospital Trauma Life Support. International Trauma Life Support. HAM Radio Technician. Trained and Certified to Instruct: Combat Life Saver Instructor and Community Emergency Response Team Trainer. CPR, AED, First Aid.

15 thoughts on “Day Z Survival Lessons

  1. Im in Canada.. its a place much the same as any..we are weak due to firearms prohibitions but we have alot of land..many places to survive..these are vile times..with many things coming true..some of us deserve to be washed away..the question is wife is American..i am canadian..we are all the same but what do we call those who would see us all die?
    They are worms who have slithered beneath our feet as we all worked hard together.
    thank you for this made me feel
    As if there’s hope.

  2. well i just came across this website today. and well if you want something to help with training and tactics arma 2 with ace mod is the much better solution. there is also arma 3 out there with a decent set of mods with medical to it. and ballistics along with limited physics. both can and will offer a good environment to learn some things practical to real life

  3. Do you have any articles that you could contribute on evading thermal detection ? You would be amazed how many websites I have asked this question and none have replied. Thanks

    • I’ve asked twice for info that would help me decide what usCrow is, if it’s worth my trust and that’s your response! ? Lighten up!

      • Adm Ryan gets a little charged up over site content scrutiny. What questions do you have, and what region are you in? We can point you to the commander for your area.

        • Gentlemen, I understand. I got an email from usCrow out of the blue without much explanation. Just cautious about my situation and the present state of politics. I don’t need US marshalls at my door wanting to confiscate my firearms. I will investigate this group by reading your articles, which on the surface, looks well thought out and helpful. Thank you all for your fervor.

          • By all means feel free to do so. Our doctrine is one of national strength. Being a part of the CMF will make you a stronger force to be reckoned with. An attack on you, is an attack on the CMF which violates the ROE, and these guys have proven they are not willing to fire on or attack CMF personnel.

  4. definitely well have to check Day z out. Any thing that well aid in my training is worth a look!

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