In 2015, H1Z1 was one of the many titles that prepared to profit from the survival hype. After a bumpy ride, the survival offshoot is history, and the battle royale version is barely hanging on.
But there is hope for the game’s many fans, as a server project called H1Emu is preparing to bring back the game from back in the day.
We talked to one of the project’s leaders and present it to you today:
The server project H1Emu
Focus on survival part
The name H1Emu actually describes quite well what the goal of the project is – namely to recreate the gaming experience from 2015 to 2016, that is, until the game was split into Just Survive and King of the Kill.
The small team has been working on this goal since 2020, using the game’s original engine.
However, this also means that the developers have to completely rewrite and rebuild all the systems that run on the server side.
This includes the animals, zombies and the loot system.
Recent updates include:
- World loot container
- Basebuilding system improvements
- Dynamic weather functions
- Group system
- Supply drops
- Experimental weapons
This was also made possible by another emulator called PSemu, which was created for Planetside 2.
Both games were developed by Daybreak Games and so parts of this emulator (especially the netcode) could be reused.
Currently, it is not uncommon for smaller and larger updates to be released several times a week, and a wipe for the servers takes place about once a month.
Also rebuilding KOTK
Besides the recreation of the survival part, there is also a small part of the team dedicated to the recreation of the battle royale version King of the Kill (KOTK).
The goal is to restore the state of the game just before its third season. That was the point when it had its greatest popularity and also many streamers and content creators were playing.
The plan is currently to use this version of the game only for events and at certain times.
How is H1emu financed?
The whole team of the project is not paid and does its work exclusively on a voluntary basis. There is a Patreon account, but it is only used to cover the hosting costs.
How to play
To play on the servers you need to own the game on Steam.
You can then join the servers via a launcher available from the project website and an account created there.
The exact steps can be found in the documentation on the website.
More information about the current state of the servers and answers to your questions can also be found on the Discord server of the project.
Brief look back at H1Z1
H1Z1 was first released in 2015 and wanted to emulate DayZ and the like. The launch was already bumpy and was marked by technical problems, but the sales figures were still good.
In the following year, the game was split into a survival and a battle royale title, and in mid-2017 there was a survival relaunch, separate from H1Z1.
However, stagnating development and several developer changes caused interest in the survival spin-off to steadily decline, with the result that Just Survive was completely shut down in mid-2018.