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Thursday, 27 December 2012

How to install Loki's Lost Key for DaiZy

Article last updated 22nd July 2013
July 22nd Changed installation method to use modfolders 

May 10th Added warning about CBA and 104648 beta patch
February 7th Changed instructions after CBA was updated

Loki's Lost Key is an addon for the ArmA 2 series of games. When it's used in conjunction with DaiZy (the single player mod of DayZ), it adds a bucket-load of features and cheats.

If you haven't installed DaiZy, then I've no idea why you're reading this. Head on over to this article first:

Before you install Loki's Lost Key, you're going to have to install the CBA addons. These are just a series of little addons that make it easier for other people to write other mods and addons. Loki's Lost Key uses them, so you're going to have to install them.

Go here and download the file (download link at the bottom of the page):

Once you've downloaded the file (it's very small), open it in whatever you use to open 7zip files (I'm using WinRar). There's one folder inside. Extract it to wherever you like.

Take that folder and copy it into your Operation Arrowhead program folder.

If you're using Steam, this is probably in:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\arma 2 operation arrowhead
If you're not using Steam, it's probably in:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Bohemia Interactive\Arma 2 operation arrowhead 

Once you've pasted those folders, you need to tell the game to use them. This is done by modifying the game shortcut to include the following:
Okay, so that's the CBA addons installed. You're now going to install Loki's Lost Key and I promise it'll be easy.

First of all, you need to download the Lost Key file. Go here to get it (download link at the bottom)

Open the loki_lost_key.7z file in your favourite archiver (I'm still using WinRar). Extract the folder inside to anywhere you like.

Inside you'll find two folders: addons and holomap. Quite honestly, you can ignore the holomap. It's a fancy useless map that you'll never use; it creates a 3D object inside the game and (very slowly) renders a holographic map on top of it.

Inside your Operation Arrowhead program folder, you should make a new folder and make another new folder inside that. Just as you made an @DaiZy folder when installing the single player mod in the first place, so you should make a new folder beside it called @LostKey and create a folder inside that called Addons.

That sounds a little complicated. It should look like this:
Where OA is your Operation Arrowhead program folder.

Take the loki_lost_key.pbo file and place it in that folder, just as it is in the screenshot above.

Now you need to modify your game shortcut to load Lost Key. Just as you added ;@CBA_CO to load the CBA addons, so you should add ;@LostKey to the shortcut. Make sure there is a semi-colon(;) between each item.

And that's it done. The nice thing about using this installation method (called modfolders) is that Lost Key is only loaded when called by the shortcut. When you play normal DayZ online, it won't load Lost Key, so you can be sure it won't cause any problems.

When you load DaiZy, you'll see in the centre of the screen some light blue text saying Lost Key. If you don't, that means you haven't installed it correctly. Now, assuming that you do, you can use the mousewheel menu to bring up the main Lost Key interface.

This is the main interface. Although there are a lot of headings on the left, the main ones you're going to want to use are under the section marked Work.

You'll be able to guess what a lot of the selections do just from the name. Note that the map shown is used for some of the features. You can drag the map around by holding down the right mouse button and zoom in and out with the mousewheel.

The Magick and Mischief sections contain settings related to god mode and healing. The way that DayZ and DaiZy handle health is different from most ArmA 2 mods, so many of them won't work or won't work in the way that you'd like.

This is the weapon selector. It will make available any weapon from ArmA 2 and Operation Arrowhead, not just the DayZ guns.

Loki's Lost Key has so many options and features that it's impossible to detail them all, so just explore and have fun.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

DayZ: A simple way to install Lingor Island

The first thing to say is that this is not as comprehensive as my article about the installation of the main DayZ mod. This is just documenting one simple method of installing the Lingor Island variant without much hassle.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

DayZ - Advanced playing tips FAQ

You've played a bit of DayZ, you've found a few weapons, you've killed a bunch of zombies and maybe even a player or two. But how can you get better at the game and how do you get hold of the best kit? Read on and I'll have you murdering bandits with the best of them. Well, maybe not, but I will share some hints and tips for being better at playing DayZ.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Olympics auction site confuses Korean flags (again)

After confusing the North and South Korean flags during a football match, you'd think the Olympics would have learned their lesson, but no.

Today on the official auction site (where you can buy items used during the Olympics) one can find both the North and South Korean flags from the opening ceremony for sale.

Click for full-size image
That's the North Korean flag, currently selling for a handsome £415 (not including delivery).

Click for full-size
And here's the uh... South Korean flag. Only £1 so far.

Just to remove any doubt (the official names of the Koreas can be confusing), the text refers to Yoon Kyung-Shin, the famous South Korean handball player.

So once again the Olympics have fucked up by confusing the Korean flags although it's the other way round this time, so maybe that balances it all out.

Update: They spotted the error (after I emailed them) and have now corrected it, but didn't acknowledge ever making the error in the first place. Hopefully the South Korean nationalist nutjobs will be all over them.

Monday, 6 August 2012

DayZ - Graphics comparison: ArmA 2 Free & ArmA 2 (full)

A lot of people ask me about the difference in graphics between using ArmA 2 Free and ArmA 2 (full) and it's hard to persuade people that there really isn't much difference. So I've taken some screenshots of the different versions in order to show the difference.

Now before I start, I should show you what my graphics settings are. I keep mine fairly low in order to keep a good framerate even on a dodgy server in the most heavily-populated, dense urban environments.

Now on to the screenshots. Note that I went out of my way to find the most stark examples that I could. For the most part, the differences aren't that marked. DayZ uses Operation Arrowhead for its game engine and most of its graphics, models and textures. ArmA 2 is mostly used for the level map (Chernarus) and a few models and textures. You can click each screenshot to see it at full size.

ArmA 2 (full)

ArmA 2 Free

Building textures look the same, roads look slightly better, wrecked (decorative) vehicles have better textures.

ArmA 2 (full)
ArmA 2 Free

Inside a red brick building. Wall textures slightly improved, debris texture much better, some (but not all) furniture has slightly better textures and the floor is a little nicer.

ArmA 2 (full)

ArmA 2 Free
Another interior from a red brick building. Wallpaper and door textures are much better, furniture and ceiling a bit better, outdoors largely unchanged.

ArmA 2 (full)

ArmA 2 Free
Inside a log cabin. Floor debris much better, furniture and fittings better, pictures on the wall oddly unchanged.

ArmA 2 (full)

ArmA 2 Free
Vegetation and barrier unaltered, road slightly better.

So there you have it. That's the difference between ArmA 2 Free and full. Most of the time you're going to be running through trees and undergrowth and won't see a bit of difference. The most obvious variance comes with the interiors of certain buildings and you're probably not going to be hanging around long enough to be admiring the d├ęcor.

The Addons folder from ArmA 2 Free is 1.54GB and the same folder from ArmA 2 (full) is 8.21GB. So that's six and a half gigabytes of extra disk space and fifteen pounds/dollars/euros of extra expense. Is it worth it?

Monday, 9 July 2012

Vi Hart explains the Higgs Boson

As regualr readers will know, I very much enjoy the work of Vi Hart. The recent discovery of the Higgs boson (probably) is something that has rather amused me. It's been quite hilarious listening to newsreaders desperately try to deal with the science despite clearly not having a clue what the frigging thing is.

So here to the rescue is Vi Hart with a rather clever little sonnet explaining the place of the Higgs in the whole scientific scheme of things.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Chinese pirate DVDs: Star Wars

Over in mainland China, DVD piracy is rife to the point where the pirates actually have their own shops. Far from offering shoddy service and poor quality as those childish anti-piracy adverts allege, the Chinese pirate DVD stores offer money-back guarantees and excellent service. However, the English on the packaging can leave a lot to be desired.

These are the first three Star Wars movies as obtained from a Beijing pirate DVD store (thank you, Ally!). Click the images to read the text properly. It seems like someone has cut and pasted them in there with little regard for what the English actually says.

Monday, 18 June 2012

F1 Rejects - the best of the worst

There's a number of Formula 1 websites that I read, but a warm favourite is F1 Rejects. This is a site where they have a special interest in the least successful drivers in Formula 1 history. It's a true affection though and they don't mock the drivers, as they say themselves:
"...we know that even the worst driver on our site has bucketloads more skill than we could ever hope to have, and represent the best of the best in the international motor racing scene.
Let us take this opportunity to state that this site is about F1's least successful drivers - not those whom we consider to be its least talented. There is a BIG difference."
I've got a real soft spot for several drivers who have never troubled a podium, such as Takuma Sato and Eppie Wietzes so it's great that F1 Rejects caters to the fans of the bottom runs and provide profiles, articles and insights into these unsung heroes of F1.

As well as a lively forum, the guys who run the site do a semi-regular podcast which is a terrific antidote to all the very serious coverage out there.

The main site is here:

The forum is here:

The podcast link is here:

Friday, 15 June 2012

Alnwick Olympic Flame Day 2

Day two of the Olympic flame in Alnwick and it was early in the morning and raining quite hard. But the older generation were more than happy (well, one of them was) to carry the torch.

PC Awesome and the Alnwick Olympic Torch

The Olympic Torch visited Alnwick yesterday and passed directly outside my house. There were a lot of vehicles, cyclists, PR people oh and some guy carrying the torch itself. I didn't think much of any of them to be honest, but there was one guy who I simply loved and that's PC Awesome, the world's best motorcycle cop.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

The Moscow Metro is really beautiful

The London Underground isn't so pretty - genuine sign I found at Bank station
You may have heard about how pretty the Moscow Metro system is, you may have seen a couple of photographs, but I finally managed to find a decent set that really shows what it's like.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

DayZ - How to fix a helicopter, the easy way

If you've been playing DayZ for while now, you're probably keen to get your hands on a helicopter. It seems like a pretty daunting task as there's a huge number of parts you need. You need several panes of windscreen glass, scrap metal, a rotor assembly and about thirty(!) jerry cans of fuel. So when you find a helicopter, how on earth can you get all that stuff to the chopper before some toolboy pops up and shoots you in the head?

DayZ crashed helicopter
It was like that when I got here. Honest.
The first problem you have is actually finding a helicopter. It seems that some servers don't spawn vehicles, no matter what, due to some kind of bug. But if you can get on a server where vehicles do spawn, you can possibly find them in some of the locations listed on the wiki. Vehicles don't necessarily spawn at all those locations all the time, but you've maybe got a better chance of finding them there than just wandering around hoping to bump into one.

DayZ wrecked helicopter

There are two helicopter types that can be found and only one of them is fixable. Check the rotor blades. The grey helicopter in the picture above has bent rotors and can never be fixed. You need the green kind with intact rotor blades.

I found this video, made by a Cockney* zombie that explains the easy way of fixing a helicopter. You can actually fix a chopper with only a few parts that can all fit in a single backpack. This method won't restore a helicopter to full showroom condition, but it will get it patched up enough for you to fly it out of there to a safer location where you can then take your time completing it.

* Zombie only sounds Cockney if you're from America or have a serious head injury

Monday, 11 June 2012

My Day Z Story

Today's post was written by Lex, a long-time online game partner of mine and a jolly good chum too. And let me tell you, you do not want to be in his gunsights...

I hear gunshots.  I think to myself “fuck”.  I’m in a terrible place and am horribly exposed.  The shots come closer and closer and then I see him, a lone gunman being chased by a horde of zombies.  All he can do is fire wildly into them hoping to take as many of them down as he can.  As I’m looking at him through my sniper rifles’ scope I can see that he’s bleeding massively.  This brave Survivor sees me and turns to run for his life.  I pull the trigger.