Thursday, 25 December 2014

Some Vocabulary 1/2 (A to I)

"7 Days to Die" has a lot of jargon, and it can be useful to know.

Index: Air supply drop, Biome, Bleeding, Buff, Central Wasteland City, Cross-River Biome, Debuff, Feral, Food Meter, Heat, Health (or Hit Points), Hydration Meter, Infection, Item repair.

Link to part 2 here.

Air supply drop
Many versions ago, air supply drops happened only in a particular intensive non-crafting game mode (which I've never played, and which seems to no longer be available as of 9.3), but then they were added to standard play, as a config option. At fixed intervals, an airplane will fly overhead, over the location of a randomly chosen player who's currently online. It might then drop a crate, with a parachute, or sometimes several crates. These crates drop down, trailing smoke which makes them easier to find, although the smoke sometimes cases, and it is suspected that this smoke cessation behaviour is not working 100% as the devs intend it.

These crates usually contain very valuable items, including gun parts, medical supplies (often Anti-Biotics) and Skill Books. It used to be that they could set to a hourly interval, such that if one were to choose, e.g., 75 or 21 hours, the air drops would "wander" through the clock, happening 3 hours later, or 3 hours earlier, each time, but now the unit of the interval appears to be days, meaning that on those days that the drops happen they will always happen at noon. As of v10.4, if an interval of 3 days is chosen, then the drops will occur on the 3rd, 6th, 9th and-so-forth days (which is different from previous behaviour).

One of almost a dozen distinctive enviroments found within the game world, both the random-generated game world (as of version alpha 9.0) and the fixed Navezgane map.

Biomes include Snowy Forest, Piny Forest, regular Forest, Burned Forest, and some non-very-forested ones including Plains/Grasslands (a Savannah-like biome that got is name changed recently, and also was changed to a more yellowish look) which can still contain a few Trees, Wasteland Biome, the so-called "Rural Area" used for some parts of the Navezgane map but AFAIK not used in random gen maps at all, and Desert (which actually hasn't got any growing Trees at all, but have Cacti and smaller gatherable plants). Since 9.0, the borders between Biomes in random gen maps have always been rivers with sandy Desert-like banks.

Biomes are divided into sub-Biomes, which aren't really visible to the player per se, but control what game world objects are more or less likely to appear. A particular kind of sub-Biome might be rich in Goldenrod Flowers, or perhaps Surface Boulders, or have a much lower-than-usual chance for any given voxel to contain a Trash Bag.

The Wasteland Biome is the most dangeorus, having a chance to spawn Dogs, Hornets and even Barfing Cops. Mostly you ant to avoid it. Going in with a friend, or even a small party, to mine I-Bars and gather Cinder Blocks, might be worthwhile, but generally random gen map Wasteland is a bad place. Navezgane Wasteland used to feel a lot safer, in earlier versions, but I'm not sure about the post-9.0 situation. It might have changed a lot.

Burned Forest used to also have a chance to spawn Dogs, making it a dangerous place, especially when you don't yet have any QCB weaponry, but with Dogs gone now it can be a very nice place, with lots of tiny ruins to loot (giving a fairly good chance of a Toilet for that all-important Short Iron Pipe, and 1 or sometimes 2 loot containers per ruin that may give you a Cooking Pot), and Bird's Nests are easy to see. Also lots of Small Stones if you need those, and you can gather Cinder Blocks around each ruin, to turn into Gravel.

Oh, and Burned Forest also contains Coal patches, a 1-voxel-thick layer of Coal that can be mined, and makes for an excellent fuel. With Dogs gone, Burned Forest is a much more attractive Biome, objectively.

Snowy Forest contains some special Zombies, more robust than average ones but not actually very dangerous. Visibility may be a bit poor, but the Blueberries are a nice source of food (and a little hydration) although a total pain in the butt to eat (I fear repetetive strain injury from all the RMB-clicking).

Desert has Aloe Plants for Bandages, and combining Yucca Plant with Empty Jar gives you Yucca Juice, to get some hydration. Destroying Cacti gives Yucca Fruits, which have some food value. You can pick up the lumps of dead wood (they used to be referred to as Peckerwood, because in earlier versions they had a distinctive shape) which is less labour-intensive than felling Trees, but ultimately seems to me to be a bad source if you need lots of Wood.

Plains/Grasslands/Savannah, or whatever it is it's now called, has some trees, and some nice hills sometimes with cliffsides that can be mined (if you see any exposed voxels, e.g. of Iron Ore or Coal, or Pot). Also, there is wild Corn growing. Not much, but you just need one unit, process it into Seeds, plant them, and off the exponential rocket goes! Supposed to have Pigs too. Bird's Nests are hard to see, in this Biome, because of all the Grass, but it can help a bit to jump up on a Surface Boulder, or one on some of the Bushes.

Regular Forest and Piny Forest lacks harvestable food sources. Many ask the devs to add berries of some kind, red berries perhaps, but the devs claim that the food source in these two Forest Biome types is meant to be meat, in the form of Pigs and Stags. There are some of those, but you have to cook their meat, whereas berries can be eaten as-is, as you travel. Plenty of Trees if you need Wood, but Trees can be found elsewhere too (Snowy in particular - Plans has rare but thick trees, whereas they're common but skinny in Burned Forest Biome) and can also be planted anywhere I think (for some Biomes you'll probably need to bring Dirt to plant them in). Regular Forest biome is rich in cliffsides, where you can find exposed voxels of Iron Ore, Coal, Pot, or even Lead and Gravel. Look particularly for tall cliffsides near lakes (and if necessary, use WoodFrames as scaffolding to get up to high Iron Ore voxels).

While Infection (further down) is the most annoying Debuff in general, Bleeding is probably the Debuff most dangerous to new players, because they're not aware of it and so end up dying without knowing why they die (since those deaths usually happen some seconds after combat is over). Bleeding is a time-limited Debuff, lasting a number of seconds, in which you lose Health (HP) per second. You end the Debuff by using a Simple Bandage or a healer Bandage on yourself (or a First Aid Kit), with the difference being that a healer Bandage will also give you a reverse effect so that you regain 1 Health per second for 30 seconds.

You make Simple Bandages out of Cloth Fragments, and need an Empty Jar, an Aloe Plant (those can't be farmed as of 10.4 - you find them in the Desert Biome) and a Cloth Fragment to make a healer Bandage. You can use a healer Bandage any time you desire its Regen Buff effect, not only during a Bleed Debuff. First Aid Kits give a front-loaded Health regain and a rapid Health Regen Buff, but are difficult to make, requiring Grain Alcohol (you may find a few as loot, but to make more you need the Beaker) and a Simple Bandage, and also a Blood Bag which you can find as loot sometimes but can also make via a Blood Draw Kit.

A "status effect" for your character, which is beneficial, and which lasts for some time, perhaps some minutes of realtime or some hours or days of in-game time. To see what the buff does, open the Inventory screen ("I" key) then hover your mouse cursor over the Buff's icon.

Central Wasteland City
In the random gen map, at coordinates 0,0, there is a large city, in a Wasteland type biome. Many players run right towards it, early game, but that's generally a bad idea, because it's very dangeorus, a sit's filled with dangerous Zombie types such as Dogs, Hornets and Barfing Cops.

Cross-River Biome
A quirk of the random map generation algorithms used in 9.* and 10.* (and which I have not heard will go away with 11.0) is that sometimes a Biome will slightly "spill over" across a Biome border river. For instance, there might be two neighbouring Biomes, one regular Forest and the other Burned Forest, but instead of the River border being right between them, it's actually "off" a bit, so that in one biome there is a tiny slice of the other one.

This is particularly useful when the tiny slice is a Burned Forest or Wasteland, because then you can exploit the opportunity to safely and easily gather BF or WL resources, especially Cinder Blocks, and also I-Bars if it's a Wasteland slice. Granted, now that Dogs no longer spawn in Burned Forest Biome, it's become rather less of an issue, but still, it can be nice to visit a Burned Forest without having to cross a river, so if you find such a Cross-River Biome, with an intersting Biome slice, and you're playing coop multiplayer, make sure to notify the other players.

(Snowy Fores and Desert can also be of value. A Snowy Forest slice might have Blueberries, which you can eat or process into Seeds, and a Desert slice might have Aloe Plant growing.)

A "status effect" that is detrimental. See Buff, above, for more.

If a Zombie, or a Horde is designated Feral, it means that it has a supernatural homing instincts towards player locations. You can hide from non-Feral Zombies, e.g. during the night, but the Feral Hordes that spawn every 7th day (on the evening of 7th, 14th, 21st and-so-forth days) must be dealt with in a more active fashion. They also become tougher, containing more dangerous Zombies, as time progresses.

Food Meter
Also called the hunger meter, this basically measures whether you're hungry or full. Back in earlier versions of the game, Food Meter served as the cap for your HP regain, so if you were injured, having suffered HP loss, you had to keep your Food Meter high in order to heal up. Also back then, you could eat as much as you wanted, but any Food Meter adding in excess of 100% was lost. That's changed. Now HP regain is capped by Wellness, so instead of having to eat a lot of small meals many times a day, you can just eat a few large meals, each consisting of several items, a few times per day. Also, having very low Food Meter won't cause any harm. Not until you hit the hunger Debuffs, especially the 2nd tier one (see Wellness, below). Finally, you can now over-eat, to fill your Food Meter to beyond 100%. This isn't shown, but is kept track of by the game. But you can only do this once. You're unable to eat any more after your Food Meter is at or above 100%.

This is a new game mechanicin v10.0, which means that many player charater activities, especially running Camp Fires and Forges (with Forges apparently counting for much more), will cause a "heat tally" for the local area to increase. When this reache certain threshold values, a triad of Spider Zombies will drop by to scout, and if they notice anything that they (according to their AI) find interesting, they will make noises to call a larger Horde of Zombies. Heat apparently dissipates slowly, so that for instance if one were to take a 3 or 4 day long break from Forging, at a base, that might amount to something.

Health (or Hit Points)
Your character's life meter. This goes down when you're damaged, i.e. by fire, attacks (including Zombie claws and bites) and from falls (note that falls can also cause Leg Injuries!). It used to also drop when you were hugry or thirsty, but no more (see Wellness) You regain your HP very slowly due to natural healing, and can regain a very few points by eating certain foodstuffs (2 or 3 points, usually, out of a starting maximum of 100), but your main source of HP regain is from medical items such as Painkiller, healer Bandages and First Aid Kits.

Hydration Meter
sometimes called thirst meter, this measures how thirsty your character is or isn't. It used to cap Stamina regain maximum, but now that's been moved to Wellness, so your only real concern is to avoid Hydration dropping to zero, as that gives you the Thirsty Debuff (hurting Wellness) and eventually the tier 2 Thirsty Debuff (hurting Wellness even faster). As much as possible, you want to drink Goldenrod Tea to slowly improve your Wellness, but otherwise, see the Food Meter entry above.

One of the worst Debuffs in the game, you have a chance of getting it when attacked by Zombies, with some having a higher chnce than others I think. Dogs in particular are nasty (Dogs are nasty in a lot of ways). Infection has multiple stages. Stage 1 lasts 3 game days and nerfs your Stamina regeneration. Stage 2 also lasts 3 game days and nerfs it harder. I think when stage 2 ends you just die, immediately or rapidly.

To cure Infection, you need to eat an Anti-Biotic pill. Doing so (currently) cures the Infection entirely, and furthermore enders you Immune to Infection for a period of 1 game day. Some players have talked about wanting to have Anti-Biotics just remove one stage of Infection, so that if you'r at stage 2 you'll need 1 pill to drop to the less bad stage 1 and then 1 more pill to remove stage 1, and only then if you eat another pill, a 3rd, will you become Immune. There may be a game mod that does that, and it's possible that the devs will implement something like that in a later official release.

You used to have a chance of finding Anti-Biotics (and Beakers) on Nurses, but I think that's gone now, as of 10.4 or 10.3. Instead, your best chance is in the Medicine Cabinets found in many homes (most homes have one), and in the Pharmacy POI which presumably has lots of nifty stuff. If you find the Beaker, you can also bake your own Anti-Biotics, on a Camp Fire, using 1 Moldy Bread and 1 Potassium Nitrate Powder. You used to be able to get small quantities of Pot from Surface Boulders, but now you'll have to mine to get it. That's a serious bitch on the Navezgane map (that map is generally increasingly nerfed - it's also non-trivial to get Clay there), but in random gen map you can usually fairly easily find some exposed Pot voxels in a cliffside, in a Forest or Grasslands Biome.

Item Repair
Back in earlier versions, you repaied items (tools and weapons) by combining them, e.g. if you had two worn-down Pick Axes, one with Durability 90/300 and the other with Durability 100/300, you could use the Crafting Canvas to combine tem into a single Pick Axe with Durability 190/300. Now, instead, you use various repair supplies. Many tools are repaired simply with Metal Strips, as are some melee weapons. Firearms are repaired with Weapon Repair Kits (made from 1 Metal Strip, 1 Flask of Oil and 1 Cloth Fragment). Some other items require Cloth Fragments or Leather Strips. Be careful to manually calculate how many repair supplies is required to fully or almost fully repair the item you want to repair, because the game will sometimes (not always - the behaviour is inconsistent) use the entire stack that you add to the repair process instead of using only what s needed.

Peter Knutsen

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