Community Tips on DayZ
Due to the very helpful and large community this section is dedicated to community tips for surviving in DayZ
 Player versus Player (PvP) Survival
- Do not be afraid to pull the trigger. Most players are used to getting shot in the back by any unfamiliar survivors they attempt to team up with, and have given up on attempting friendly contact with anyone as a result. If you don't shoot them, they'll probably shoot you.
Remember though that a high level of humanity helps you run faster and is best increased by assisting other players. Sneaking up on someone and offering food or medical assistance while remaining hidden is a good way to relieve any mistrust. Bandits are clearly defined by their headscarf. Do not attempt this with bandits.
- An easier answer to other players is to avoid being seen by them at all. Hide if you can, shoot them if you can't. Gunfire attracts zombies and other players, so avoid shooting when practical.
- If you do shoot someone, make sure they're dead. A single torso hit from a 9x19 mm isn't necessarily fatal. Unless you're using a .50 caliber rifle, "one shot, one kill" is generally a poor assumption to make.
- If you see someone in a Ghillie Suit, it is almost always a good idea to run the other way. These players are frequently well-armed bandits who will have no qualms over shooting a fresh spawn. Most well-geared bandits specifically target fresh spawns to get their murder count up.
- If you receive fire, in particular long-range sniper fire (distinguishable by the crack coming a second or two after the bullet impact) the best course of action is to NOT go Prone. For snipers your best bet is to sprint to a tree line ( assuming the sniper is not there ) in a zig zag pattern. If the enemy is firing from a close range, try to take cover behind something and watch your flanks. When the enemy knows where you are, moving slowly does not help you. Get behind cover.
- Never, ever turn on your Flashlight during the night, especially if you are in a city like Chernogorsk, Elektrozavodsk or Stary Sobor, these are considered bandit activity hotspots, and your flashlight will stand out like a beacon from kilometers away announcing "I'm a noob! Come kill me!" to every sniper in the area. If it is absolutely necessary to see well at night, either find a Military Flashlight, which has a red light which cannot be seen from range, or adjust your Brightness and Gamma settings.
- If you are pinned down by a gunman at night, i.e. inside a house or behind cover, a good course of action is to NOT DO SOMETHING STUPID like throw a Road Flare, this will NOT distract your attacker for several seconds, and it will illuminate you and the area around you, especially since you cannot throw flares through doorways.
- Lose zombies by running into a bush or pine tree. Simply stand/sit in the bush or tree and wait. Zombies will attempt to hit you, get bored, and leave.
- Getting chased by a horde? Run indoors, where zombies are forced to walk slowly (this is due to their current pathing AI). "Walker" zombies tend to run in zig-zags outdoors, making them very difficult to hit, but indoors they're slow and easily picked off.
- Zombies dislike docks! Use them as temporary safe zones. Be aware that you'll be extremely visible to other players, however.
- Throw smoke grenades you picked up into zombie hordes that are chasing you just like you would throw a flare, zombies love the hissing noise the grenades make when they go off and will get distracted by it.
- Running from zombies will only serve as a temporary measure, they will not quit following you until you lose line of sight, or are at least 300 meters away. You can also escape running zombies by swimming (Not recommended, as the zombies may swim after you, and you have a chance of losing all your items), or running up a steep hill.
- You can buy time when running from zombies by:
- Swimming. However swimming is risky because you might lose your whole stuff in the water and/or catch a cold or an infection (due to the low temperature)
- Running up steep hills (If you sharply zigzag up a hill, you can lose zombies very quickly. This is because the zombies will run straight toward you, directly up the hill, slowing them down.) [Note: As of 1.7.2 this method will no longer work]
- Running indoors
- Climbing ladders (zombies can climb ladders, but takes a while sometimes. Be mindful that you can pass a zombie on a ladder but this may cause it to glitch and drop you from the ladder, often causing death or at least broken bones on landing)
- Running zigzag trough evergreen trees. When the zombies run trough the branches of the trees, they will start walking, just like they do inside of houses
- An efficient way to kill zombies or to control a horde is to run down from a hill, zombies following you. As such they will often break legs or die instantly because of the big fall. However, it might be considered as a bug exploit by some players because it's a bug in the AI script.
- Running straight towards a forest and then crouch rapidly in a big tree (such as a spruce tree). As such they will often run towards you and make the hit animation without hitting you, then walk randomly in the area, as if you lost their aggro. This is farly the best way to avoid pulling out the trigger in country or in small villages.
- Zombies may hit through walls and doors, and may in some cases pass through them completely.
- Crowd Control: When you have the ammo and at least a buddy turn the tide and control the horde. Luring them away from your target (house, other zombies) and gun them down together. Even a Zombie Rush is easy to handle when you have a pal at your side. Keep your surroundings and your weapon's noise in mind.
- Zombies will inspect thrown objects, such as tin cans. Use this to your advantage by distracting them when in tough places.
- Zombies react to sound. A good rule of thumb is that if something is making any sound, Zombies might hear it. This for example applies to opening soda cans.
- Do NOT Run through a big horde! A zombie is most likely to break your leg and his friends will enjoy their Christmas dinner!
- If you DO find yourself running from a horde in a town with little foliage, and inaccessible buildings, go at a dead run until they are all relatively behind you. Make 2 sharp turns around a house sized building, and slow to a crouched run around the 3rd side and away from the zombies.
- Like all sights in Arma 2 you have Zeroing. When you pick up a sniper, for example the CZ 550; the zeroing is set on 300, meaning any target 300m away or less will be hit wherever the centre of your crosshair is aimed. If you aim at something that is 450 meters away your shot will be too low (under the crosshair). Adjusting the zero to 400m will give you a better chance to hit your target. If you have higher zeroing you will shoot over the target(above the crosshair). By default, you adjust zeroing with page up/down, and can see your adjustments on the top right of the screen.
- Some sniper rifles do not have the Zeroing function and instead have "mildots" on the crosshairs, these are used to determine where to aim when firing at a distant target. The formula for using mildots is Player Height x 1000 / number of mildots the players height takes up in your scope. So the average height of a standing player is 1.8m, so 1.8m x 1000 = 1800, now lets assume the player takes up 3 mildots on your screen, crosshairs at his feet, one dot at his knees, one dot at his waist and one dot at the top of his head, 1800/3 = 600, so he is 600 metres away. Using the DMR as an example weapon in this scenario you would want to aim a tiny bit higher then the -2 mil dot. I know this sounds complicated but if you want to be a successful sniper and cannot Zero your weapon then its very useful information to know, you should also check online sources for what the range of each mildot is for each weapon, knowing your target it 600m away is useless if you don't know which mildot will reach 600m.
- Weapons have different sound when fired. It's a good idea to learn what different guns sound like, as you'll be able to make at least an educated guess at the type and position of any gunfire you hear.
- Grenade throws are silent, and therefore will not give away your position. A frag grenade will tell zombies and other survivors you're in the area, but it won't tell them your exact position.
- Smoke grenades and flares can be used to draw attention away from your location. (Smoke grenades attract zombies)
- While looting inside a town or city it is recommended you crouch or walk, and stay off of main roads. This will significantly reduce the amount of noise and visibility from zombies and players.
- Perhaps the best place to start looking for some serious weaponry is the town hall in Chernogorsk. At the entrance you can almost always find an assault rifle (such as an AKM). If you go around the building, on the corners opposite to the front side, you'll find rain pipes which you can climb on. On the rooftop, you can find all sorts from firearms and supplies, ranging from a simple, yet stylish M1911 to M4A3 CCO with flashlight. So far, AKM, AK-74, AKS-74U, M16A2, M4A1, M4A3 CCO, CZ 550, MP5A5, M4A1 CCO, M1014, and the Winchester 1866 have been known to spawn there. You can also find M107/M240 ammunition up there. Keep in mind you'll be a sitting duck to snipers, though.
- If you happen to kill another player and start to loot his equipment keep one thing in mind: SPEED! Quickly move to their body and retrieve their gear. Players spawn all over the coast, chances are that player is double timing it to his last known location, that or nearby players have heard the shot(s) and are investigating. Keep in mind once a player is killed, that status is globally announced so a smart player will be looking. You may also need to think over if their equipment is worth the risk.
- If you come across a bandit who is unaware of your presence, it's probably a good idea to set up an easy shot and take them out. Be careful, though: they might be part of a small group. Exercise extreme caution and make sure they're alone before you open fire.
- Buildings in general, once they have been cleared entirely of loot, will automatically respawn new loot after 10 minutes only if there are no players within 120 meters of the building in question. So, if you feel as though you are tailing another player and missing all of the loot, just pick everything up and go hide somewhere for 10 minutes, dropping all of the bad items off to the side somewhere (reconnecting or somehow teleporting to within 30 meters of the building will not trigger loot spawns). Keep in mind, though, that this 10-minute timer will be reset if another player ever bothers to go within 120 meters of the building in question.
 Good Sportsmanship
- Do not disconnect from a server to get out of a tough situation. It's unfair to other players and is usually considered cheating by the community. If someone shoots at you or you get swarmed by zombies, you're morally obligated to see the situation through to its fair end. Disconnecting is something you should do when you want to stop playing (or wish to switch servers for a legitimate reason, like playing with a friend) and when you are somewhere out of the way, such as a rarely-traveled area in a forest.
- Don't use server disconnection and re-connection to "teleport" into hard-to-reach or well-guarded locations. Again, this is widely held as cheating.
 Assorted tips
- It is often a lot safer to shoot enemy players on sight, (especially if they're armed!). This will stop you from getting shot in the back / followed to your camp and murdered.
- At night Never run with a flare or light source in your hands! To better hide yourself at night just suck it up and run in the dark! Please make sure you are doing this in a safe area such as the beach or a well known location!
- If you have to light a flare in a town look up and hold the mouse button to throw the flare farther! Once you throw you will light up and entire path to where the flare falls. This method will also hide your position from any other hostile players in the area!
- Think before you pull the trigger. That should be your main consideration. Gunshots draw in hostile players and zombie hordes.
- During night if you see another light coming your way with your flare/flashlight on, turn it off. When the person approaches you try not to be uncovered by his light and ask him if he's friendly or foe, hold him at gunpoint until you evaluate his intentions.
- If by any chance you were spotted walking at night with a light source and at the same time were shot at, drop on the ground, turn off your light source and roll. Be on a lookout for the shooter's muzzle flash.
- If you've come up to a city sign, and can't read Cyrillic, try to describe the letters to other players, who knows there might be someone on the server who actually knows it.
- In case you find yourself staring at the road sign with text like russian text, it might be a good idea to view the Chernarus Map and compare the Cyrillic/Latin spellings of geographical names. It helps in case you are totally incapable of reading Cyrillic letters. Alternatively have a DayZ map open in your web browser and Alt+Tab out of the game for a second to check it, most online DayZ maps show city names in both Cyrillic and English.
- Lakes, ponds, and water pumps can be used to refill empty water bottles. The ocean cannot.
- Prolonged running into a wall can break bones.
- Servers differ in difficulty level. Regular difficulty allows a third-person viewpoint, has a crosshair, and allows you to see other players' nameplates. Veteran servers generally do not permit any of these things.
- Zombies only spawn when players are near. Take a minute to observe towns, cities or camps from afar (using binoculars, a scope, or a rangefinder) before approaching. If zombies are spawning extremely far away from you, it means there's another player present.
- If you spot a helicopter crash site or any other point of interest, and only then, (that isn't already really obvious!) do your part to make the server better by marking it on your map. You can place a server marker by double shift-clicking a spot on the map.
- If you have good loot and want to avoid getting crosshairs looking over you while looting somewhere like Elektro, scout the tree line for snipers, but remember, keep your head down!!
- Do NOT assume that you are alone just because you're in the middle of nowhere that you are alone; keep your head on a pivot and keep an eye out for anything that may alert you to the presence of another player (especially zombies spawning too far away from you, peripheral dots, or unnatural colors like bright white on sleeves)
- If you are going to search a town for weapons or loot, do it fast and move on. You don't want to stay in one place for too long. Also make sure to stick to the trees so you can scout out where all the buildings and zombies are until you know it is safe. If you see a player in the town, stay hidden until he leaves.
- Just because a player disconnects, doesn't mean that they are going to reconnect a minute later in the same server.
- Zombies see very badly at night, use this to your advantage. Note that many players use high gamma/brightness to see almost as normal at night, you are not safe from view in the darkness.
- Don't forget your Waypoints! If you open your in-game map and hold Left Shift then click somewhere you will mark a waypoint which will appear on your HUD so you can run straight to a desired destination without trying to use your compass to direct you there. This is also very useful for determining the distance to a target if you don't have a range finder, set a waypoint roughly where your target is on the map and you'll get an instant distance displayed on your HUD, now Zero your weapon accordingly.
This list has been made possible by various members of the community. If you wish to add more, feel free!