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Only Dean "Rocket" Hall would take a two-month sabbatical to climb Mount Everest

He's not LayZ.

What better way for DayZ creator Dean Hall to unwind than with a brisk march up Earth's highest mountain, Mount Everest.

That's where he is now, and will be for the next two months.

He's been overseeing DayZ Standalone development 5400 meters above sea level at Everest Base Camp, obviously, via satellite connection.

Thinks he's Santa Claus.

Climbing Everest is a lifelong dream of Hall's and he's shelled out something like $100,000 to do it! In other words, he's been planning it for a long time.

"I realise some people are upset at my departure from the project for two months to climb Mt Everest," he wrote on the DayZ blog, pre-empting the outcry, "but hopefully from this you can see the large team Bohemia have assembled behind the development that are continuing to innovate and develop DayZ Standalone in the direction of the game we all want."

By "from this" he means the latest devblog update, which details a lot of the work that will be done while Hall climbs to the top of the world, the maniac.

"This is going to take as long as it needs to," he added, talking about DayZ Standalone rather than his trek up an icy rock. "We want to release our initial alpha under the architecture it needs to avoid hacking and security issues - this is the only remaining task stopping us from releasing the alpha. But while this task is being completed, we can continue with other activities."

Activities like training in fixed lines and ladders? Oh no, silly, that's what Dean Hall's doing tomorrow at the Khumbu Icefall.

So there's still no kind of date on DayZ Standalone, which is currently in closed, very early testing. Seems like a long time ago Dean Hall first mentioned that ambitious end-of 2012 release date.

Nevertheless, good luck Dean Hall - come back in one piece!

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Robert Purchese

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Bertie is a synonym for Eurogamer. Writes, podcasts, looks after the Supporter Programme. Talks a lot.