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With hardcore survival sandbox title DayZ already available for Xbox Game Pass subscribers, this weekend, other players can wet their zombie-slaying, bandit-avoiding appetites by playing the game on PC for free.

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Bohemia Interactive announced that DayZ will be free for PC players on Steam beginning today, and ending at 10 AM PST on Monday, May 25th. All players need to do is navigate to the game’s Steam page and install the game.

Nov 09, 2018 10. H1Z1 Death on all sides Few games like DayZ get the mod’s formula just right. We’re glad to say H1Z1 aims to please. Like DayZ, H1Z1 is an MMO survival game set in a massive open-world infested with rotting, stinking undead. Think of it as The Walking Dead game that. DayZ allows players to build almost anything, even cars. DayZ is the original multiplayer survival shooter, even though it began as an Arma 2 mod. Nowadays, it plays like a survival looter shooter sandbox. The map, Chenarus, is huge and gritty, with an atmosphere akin to Escape from Tarkov. DayZ, one of the biggest open-world games, bears multiple similarities to Rust. From base-building and open-world looting to intense PvP encounters and survival mechanics, DayZ is a great option for Rust fans - especially when considering that DayZ has some great mods available. The main difference is that DayZ's PvE is much more. See full list on

The DayZ Free Weekend will also include discounts of up to 40% on Steam for those who purchase the base game. DayZ’s “Livonia” DLC will be available for a 20% discount.

PlayStation 4 players can also reap some benefits of the free weekend, coming in the form of the same discounted rates for the base game and DLC via the Extended Play Sale that runs through May 27th. Now through May 25th, Xbox One players can snag the DayZ base game with Deals with Gold for a 40% discount.

DayZ is an unforgiving survival sim set in an apocalyptic wasteland, in which players can gather resources as a group or by themselves and survive against hordes of the infected population and - likely worse - other players.

If you’ve ever wanted to check out DayZ, this is the weekend to do so, especially considering that the game comes highly recommended by TheGamer.

NEXT: No More Excuses: You Should Play DayZ On Game Pass Right Now

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Online sandbox survival games are currently quite popular. They let human players thrive in a digital playground where everyone can do what they want without the constraints placed by other genres. That sounds a lot more hopeful on paper, but in reality, it's 'Lord of the Flies' out there in online survival games. As expected, people frequently act on their primal instincts, albeit virtually.

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ARK: Survival Evolved is perhaps the most popular survival game on the market right now. However, if you're a bit burned out on dinos and crazy sci-fi island survival, you can always look to other games in the genre. We've expanded our original list to add a few more games that might be worth checking out, if survival is your thing.

Updated by Derek Draven, May 7th, 2020: As mentioned in the updated intro, we've inserted 5 more entries into this list. Each of these survival games offers something engaging and different for players to experience, especially if roughing it is your preferred style.

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15 Conan Exiles

Not only do you need to survive in this sandbox game, but you also need to crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentation of their women. Conan Exiles lets you do that and more. It's also quite sexy and mature, full frontal nudity is allowed and not dependent on an unofficial mod. The game lets you capture (by chaining and dragging them) other players or non-player characters (NPCs) if you defeat and catch them.

To that end, Conan Exiles is pretty hardcore and more graphic than most other survival games in this list. It still has the basics you expect in a survival game such as base building, weapons, armor, foraging, farming, exploration, and etc. What sets Conan Exiles apart is that it gives you the capability to perform ritual sacrifices to summon avatars of your chosen god in the game world to exact your wrath upon others. Give it a try. Who knows? You might learn what is best in life.


14 Subnautica

Underwater survival. That's pretty much Subnautica in a nutshell. It plunges your character deep into an alien underwater world, one which you must explore and survive. You could say that the setting is the biggest star in Subnautica. After all, not many games look to the deep sea for their core gameplay experience.

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As such, Subnautica's take on the survival genre keeps the gameplay quite fresh compared to most land-based survival games. The building and crafting are unique here since everything has to be tailor-made to make your life easier underwater. Apart from that, exploration in this game almost always has an incentive be it discovering new resources or getting rewarded with undersea eye-candy that would mesmerize even James Cameron.

13 Raft

Like Subnautica, Raft puts its own twist into the tried and tested (possibly oversaturated) survival genre. It also showcases a maritime locale, although only the surface level of oceans are explored. By no means does that make Raft shallow (ba-dum-tss) than Subnautica. It's actually quite competent and gives about the same level of fun and fulfillment.

That's because you get chased around by huge great white sharks. Hence, you're gonna need a bigger boat, and that's what you'll primarily be building and improving in Raft. When not improving your measly vessel, you can dive under the sea and look for anything that will aid in your survival. It's like Moana, except you're not an invincible Samoan and both you and your friends don't take the dangers of the ocean seriously.

12 Rust

Rust is a less brutal but more desperate Conan Exiles set in a modern era. Your character literally starts off naked and dangers lie in every corner of the map since Rust is highly populated, meaning you'll likely run into other players quickly, assuming you play in multiplayer. However, things are not as primordial in Rust compared to other survival games.

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You'll regularly see airplanes dropping valuable supplies (usually guns) and you'll have to rush those drop zones if you want to get ahead of the curve. As usual, guns make melee weapons obsolete as long as you have ammunition and that's what makes Rust more high-risk and high-reward than other survival games here. You either take a risk for a better chance of survival in the long run or stay safe while staying at the bottom of the food chain.

11 Dayz

Let's not forget the granddaddy of survival modern survival games, DayZ. What initially started off as a mod for ARMA 2 became quite a huge hit in the gaming community. DayZ was the first of its kind and was initially a zombie apocalypse survival game. In a similar fashion to the Walking Dead TV show, the zombies are simply the tip of the iceberg when it comes to threats. Other players are a lot more dangerous.

DayZ loves to remind you that there are no rules. You loot stuff, find guns, see other players, you tell them you mean no harm, and then they kill you for your guns. The beauty of DayZ is that you don't even need a microphone in order to communicate with other players. You can show them your intentions with sign language (you can flip them off) or communicate with them directly by pumping their face full of lead; whichever is more effective.

10 Life Is Feudal: Your Own

Ever wanted to know what it feels like to be a lowly peasant in a medieval world? Of course not, back in those days everyone wanted to be a knight or a noble. However, you have to start somewhere and Life is Feudal: Your Own gives you that chance. You start off as a lone adventurer on a random medieval plot of land and must survive the cruel feudal rules.

As expected of a sandbox survival game, you can build, kill, craft, and level-up your character. Along the way, you can team up with other players to increase your chances of survival and keeping any loot or items you have. If you want to just farm and go about your own peasantry, you can do so, but nothing will stop others from raiding your crops and taking everything you worked hard for, so you might as well become a bandit.

9 Osiris: New Dawn

If you've seen The Martian and want a piece of what Matt Damon experienced on the red planet but in game form, then Osiris: New Dawn might scratch that itch. The futuristic survival game takes place on a weird alien planet (which isn't Mars) in the year 2078. It's not just one planet too, you'll be exploring the solar system of Gliese 581 aliens and all as well as exposing yourself to the dangers of space travel.

Think of the game as a more serious and more visceral No Man's Sky. It also features space vessels, base building, exploration, and focuses more on combat. For a survival game, it also sports one of the most astounding graphics engines ever. The downside is that it's quite demanding and requires a decent mid-range computer to run smoothly. Which shouldn't be a problem if you're coming from ARK: Survival Evolved.

8 Subsistence

Subsistence puts the 'survival' in survival games. As such, it can be more unforgiving and difficult than most on this list. It's quite similar to Rust except it puts more emphasis on wildlife and nature, meaning it incorporates animals and a better animal artificial intelligence A.I. to remind you that humans are useless without their tools.

RELATED: Minecraft: Top 10 Survival Games Servers

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Don't go in looking for a casual and fun stroll as Subsistence is not for the faint of heart. You'll need to use your head a lot to avoid the embarrassment of defeat. Thankfully, teaming up is also a thing here so you have a better chance at withstanding the forces of nature. At the moment, the game is in dire need of content but given it's an early access title, that's to be expected.

7 Scum

Like Subsistence, SCUM is no easy pleasant game. It's actually the most realistic survival game on this list. By realistic, we mean taking care of your character's every need. That includes proper nutrition (protein, fat, sugar, sodium, vitamins, minerals, etc.), pooping, peeing, and diseases. Of course, that's difficult since you can't even keep track of and address those things in real life, let alone in a game!

Don't let that dissuade you from trying out SCUM, though. Despite the uber-realism, the gameplay is quite fun due to the presence of zombies (called 'puppets' in-game), giant mechs, and wild animals. You also don't need to grind too much since the building aspect of SCUM is less demanding. It's still in early access but the potential for SCUM is already apparent.

6 The Forest

Survival for the sake of survival can get pretty old and pointless fast, even in a game like ARK: Survival Evolved. That's why a story or overarching plot is sometimes needed to keep things spicy; The Forest adds plenty of that spice in a co-op horror survival game. You assume the role of a dad whose plane crash-landed on a remote island with his son. You wake up to find your son missing in an island full of the creepiest cannibals ever.

Being a good parent, you'll have to search for your son while improving your odds of surviving the cold and harsh wilderness of the island. Once you think you've seen it all and are feeling safe, you'll find that there are terrors beyond your comprehension lurking in the darkest crevasses and caves. Rescuing your son often becomes an afterthought.

5 Green Hell

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The Forest has some new competition coming its way with Creepy Jar's Green Hell, a different take on the survival/crafting formula. This game is set in the Amazon rainforest, with a heavy focus on the psychological effects of being marooned and forced to fight for survival.

In addition to the hostile natives, the player must contend with sickness, wild animals and a host of other terrors that need to be conquered. Early response to the game has been well received.

4 Savage Lands

Savage Lands seems to have split its voter base directly down the middle between love and hate, but it's worth a try, if for no other reason than the experience it offers. While not far removed from other survival games of this type, Savage Lands does have its impressive visuals going for it.

The terrifying creature designs of the game are worth the price of admission all by themselves. The classic terror element plays out well.

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3 7 Days To Die

With so many post-apocalyptic survival/crafting games out there, it can be hard to differentiate between them, especially when many have the word 'days' in the title.

7 Days To Die has been well received by its audience, making it one of the most appreciated zombie-based survival games around. The mixture of addictive gameplay and reliable multiplayer spells good fortune for the game's future.

2 Astroneer

Astroneer has been getting a ton of love since its release, thanks in part to strong support by the developers. This quirky survival game takes the cute route by making exploration and survival fun and positive.

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The endearing visual style is enough to give the game a go, but there's far more to Astroneer than that. It's one of the most unique video games around, especially within the survival/crafting sphere.

1 Orion: Prelude

Ark may take the crown when it comes to dinosaur survival/crafting games, but Orion: Prelude did it first. Its mixture of frantic FPS action, dinosaur mayhem and survival elements arguably set the groundwork for what Ark would later become.

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It's also available for a single buck on Steam (yes, you read right), with an ultimate edition setting you back a whole $11 dollars. That's more than enough reason to give it a shot.

NEXT: The 10 Best Items In Ark: Survival Evolved (And 5 WORST!)

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