The Unimaginary Landscape of Chernarus

Chernarus, setting for ArmA 2 and DayZ

Sometimes, imagined spaces are not as imagined as one might imagine. Chernarus (shown below; submitted by @jalkion) is a fictional post-Soviet country that serves as the setting of both the notoriously unforgiving military simulation game ArmA 2, and the notoriously unforgiving zombie mod that put it on the map (so to speak), DayZ. But Chernarus is only fictional within the confines of those games. ArmA 2 developer Bohemia Interactive is based in the Czech Republic, and has based the map on the area surrounding the Czech town of Povrly. (Chernarus’s coastline is the Labe River south of the Czech city of Decin — aka The Elbe.) It is said that one can navigate the real-world area quite well based on the game’s map, and indeed, Bohemia at one point published a paper collection of Chernarus maps. The setting is apparently so faithful a re-creation of the real place that buildings and even vegetation is recognizable. The interesting question here: Do the games take place in imaginary spaces or not? Or do they exist in someplace in between the real and the imagined? The unimaginary world?

Chernarus, setting for ArmA 2 and DayZ

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  • [...] sich so organisch anfühlt, dass die Landschaften im Spiel keine Künstlichkeit verströmen. Denn es gibt diese Landschaft wirklich. Es ist ein Landstrich in der Größe von 15 mal 15 Kilometern, der von den tschechischen [...]

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