My Feature Wishlist (Locations, Gameplay, Items)


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As a long-time follower and player of The Long Dark, I would like to start by saying that this game is really something else. I love it so much, the way the art style, gameplay, and concepts blend to make a unique and fun experience that is just incredible. I made this list because Hinterland makes the game for their players, and with some of these improvements, can make the game even better, so without further ado, let's get into it. I've divided the wishlist into Gameplay features, map features, and items to be added, for convenience.

- Gameplay
Gameplay is a very broad term, so these items are mainly things that I feel are missing from the game, or could make it a better challenge (because in the end, that's what a game is... a challenge) I have highlighted my high-priority wishes for the game in italics, underlining and bold.

- Easier bow/arrow crafting - it takes far too much effort and time to make a bow and arrows. The effort required at the moment would be that of a higher quality bow, and good arrows, so maybe we need a feature which allows us to make dodgier bows/arrows.

- Better food consumption simulation - At the moment, you can let yourself starve for five days, then eat one steak, sleep, and the get outside and run a marathon. There needs to be long (or short) term effects for using this exploit. I'd also like an obese affliction, from eating too many fatty foods. Just to screw around with you even more :)

- Disease - The first aid system lacks in this quite a bit, as the only real disease-like afflictions you can get are food poisoning, hypothermia, and infection. I'd like the chance of getting fever, or a virus, or something of the like, with the fever making you weak, and the virus making you vomit and lose calories/get exhausted.

- Seasons - My god I want this so bad. I want to be able to use terms like stocking up for winter or fishing before the ice holes freeze up. I love the idea of the onsetting threat of winter as the final days of autumn draw to a close. A system with a season change every 30 days or so would be awesome, and could incorporate some help for newer players (having the option to start in summer in order to learn the ropes before winter sets in.) I also think this could be used with wildlife, to create a situation where animals like caribou and bison migrate across a tundra-like map, and you can follow them, picking off the sick and weak, or wait until the ground unthaws, so you can hunt voles and rabbits in their holes, which brings me onto my next point-

- Wildlife Diversity - Not as bad as a want as seasons, but certainly up there. I've always marveled at the Long Dark's ability to create a living, breathing landscape, which is why I was astounded to find that they were able to do it with only four animals (not including fish or crows) in order to create a diverse world full of realistic wildlife, I'd love to be able to see creatures like ptarmigans bursting into flight as I walk past unawares, or a majestic elk standing over a lake. I would also like to add animal behavior to this idea, so that we can have pack-hunting wolves that tear you limb from limb, and deer that move in a herd, or being able to watch a mother bear and her cubs walk together through the environment (from a safe distance).

- Sitting down - Anyone here live in a cold climate? There is nothing better than being able to sit in your armchair by the fire and watch the flames crackle. I'd love to be able to do this in the Long Dark, watching my fire crackle as the world falls apart around me. You could even add an affliction - content, giving the character improved sleep, similarly to the way cups of tea do.

- Advanced weapon behavior - To be honest, as an owner of a rather low-end computer I've never been able to run the Long Dark in it's full beauty, yet the wind is always noticeable. While I don't actually want more weapons ingame, I would like more realistic rifle handling. I'm not sure if wind and rifle quality attribute to muzzle velocity and bullet bend ingame at the moment, but if they don't, I would like them to. Also adding things like a manual rebolt, or a longer and more realistic reload time, yet your reload time and ability to operate the rifle improves over time with your "Rifle Skill." The ability to use the safety catch on the bolt would also be cool (similarly to how a Karabiner 98K would have a bolt safety catch.) Also the weapon can backfire, ruining the rifle, wasting the round, and giving you nasty burns or shrapnel all in you. Basically, it'd mess you up real bad.

- Burying snow - Items get buried by snow over time. Not much more to say

- Shelter - While I hate base building in survival games, I think that the Long Dark could do it's indie things and be creative in it's building ways. Nothing big, but I'd like the option to hack a snowhole or a quick lean-to beside a tree or in a hill, similar to how tribal people would, for those times when night is coming and you can't find shelter. I think the game could get really interesting if people tried to survive without the use of man-made shelters, and were geared more towards using nature as a friend, not as an enemy. I love the idea of huddling in your snowhole with your sleeping bag and fire blazing beside you, while a blizzard rages outside

- Longer Blizzards - Self-explanatory. Blizzards that really force you inside for longer periods of time.

- Better Stalker mode - A stalker mode which just doesn't feel like the only difference is tonnes of wolves. Get creative. Maybe animals mess you up more? Maybe bears are insta-kill? Maybe food has a much higher chance of poisoning you, just anything but spamming more wolves.

 

- Items
A much shorter list, yet still relevant, these are the items I would like to be usable in the Long Dark

- Human Flesh - Yes, it's grim, yes, it's horrible, but in a situation where you've no more to eat, that corpse in the corner begins to look mighty tasty, despite the chewy bits. I'm not sure about the legal implications of this, but if it is legal, I believe it should be a feature

- Dodgier-quality rounds - I'd quite like the ability to craft dodgier, handmade rounds using empty shells, empty bullet casings, and gunpowder. Yes, it's a little scrubby, but if the gunpowder was realistic to obtain, and you can pick up spent casings from your rifle shots, I'd say go ahead, make your own rounds.

 

- Maps
The northern Canadian Wilderness is our playground. These are the things I think could make the playground a little more interesting

- 100% Nature Maps - Forget all that crap about scrounging supplies from cabins. I want to grab my bow, my bearskin bag, and take Mother Nature on. This idea would work best with my other wishlist features of more diverse wildlife and the ability to dig snowholes and make lean-tos, as well as dynamic seasons. My idea would be one or two maps, one of which is hardcore deep forest, while the other could be full-blown icy Tundra, stretching on for miles, with little to no solace to be found from the blistering winds and shifting ice, leading me into my next point...

- Tundra - I want tundra to chase thundering herds of bison across, my rifle cracking all the way. This would work even better with the addition of a sled (drawn by huskies or something), although I think that might be stretching it a little too far. If this was used in conjunction with dynamic seasons, the whole thing could turn into a sea in the summer, making the entire valley impassable

- LYNX - I was suddenly hit by the idea in the wrong section. I want a Lynx animal to be introduced, another deadly creature that would pick you off when you are weak, or something to show the living world, as you have a pack of wolves chase down a Lynx with her cubs (Shelter 2 anyone?)

- Better transition zones - I like the idea of them, but they are far too hemmed in, and ruin the feeling of the entire expanse of Northern Canada being around you. Maybe if they were converted to really small maps, they could work better, but I don't know.

- Thick, thick forest - Working mostly as a summertime deal, I'd like a map which is forest, pure and simple, no man-made cabins (well... maybe one). Right at the opposite end of the spectrum from Tundra, this forest would act as a more advanced zone for players looking to really rough it.
 

Well, that's that for now. I might add more later, but I think that's enough for now. Thanks for reading, and I am eager to see what you will think of my thoughts in the comments. You might give me a few more things to add to the list. As an afterthought, I'd like to possibly have a Mosin-Nagant or Gewehr type rifle in game, as well as the current Lee-Enfield based one. Each type of bolt with it's own strengths and weaknesses. The reason this is an afterthought is because it is a feature I care so little about I didn't think it deserved to be on the list.

Edited by boshmi
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Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feedback! Some of your suggestions are things we're discussion/working on, or that have been mentioned in the past by the community. I can't go into detail on everything just now, but I can share some information on a few of those topics:

We've definitely had a long-standing discussion or two here in the forums revolving around hibernation, which is a broader topic that usually encompasses the starvation mechanic you've mentioned. While we feel calorie consumption is fairly well balanced at the moment, the overall hibernation exploit is certainly something we're looking at more closely. More on that (and diseases) in the future.

Seasons have actually been a part of our long-term plan since the Kickstarter phase, so good news there! Depending on the reception of season one of the game (which is clearly 'Winter'), we'd love to continue to build The Long Dark into additional seasons. In terms of storytelling, each additional season would be a standalone sequel (think of the Telltale game model). Environmentally, each season would be a new time of year (spring, summer, fall) with its own set of challenges. 

We've discussed - and continue to discuss - shelter building quite a bit. For now, you have a large amount of fully constructed shelters available on most of the maps, and those certainly offer more comforts and security than anything you could build yourself in a short amount of time. It could be useful in the future, but for now, there are other mechanics being worked on that we feel will add more meaning to your experience. It's definitely been noted that a few players have discussed this feature, so we won't forget the request!  

Cannibalism is one feature we have no plans to add to the game.

There are more differences in Stalker than just the wolf population. I'll leave it up to you to determine those, or for other community members to share their feedback if they choose to do so. =) 

I'd say Timberwolf Mountain is the closest thing we have to a "nature map" at the moment, with very limited options for man-made shelters. Have you made it there yet? 

For the transition zones, I'm not exactly sure what you mean. Each transition zone we currently have is technically a smaller map (as you mentioned), and each certainly has a decent amount of unique terrain to explore. 

Lastly, I see you're fairly new to the forums. Welcome, and thanks for joining us! 

 

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Currently restoring condition is extremely easy and hyperfast compared to extremely slow loss from everything else. One good night sleep and player is back on his feet in perfect health, even if got mauled by wolves 3 times a day be4 and havent eaten for couple of days. Thats absurd. Player should take care of his condition, since its the last line of defense between life and death.

Adding season would require pretty much fully redrawing all maps, for each seasonal change. And generally remaking whole game, starting with water mechanics and ending with items. Its like making a whole new game in terms of effort and time.

While id like to see a lot of various presets, there is one particular map that interest me the most.

http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/intothelongdark/images/4/45/Ld_airplane.jpg

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4 hours ago, Bethany Williams said:

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feedback! Some of your suggestions are things we're discussion/working on, or that have been mentioned in the past by the community. I can't go into detail on everything just now, but I can share some information on a few of those topics:

We've definitely had a long-standing discussion or two here in the forums revolving around hibernation, which is a broader topic that usually encompasses the starvation mechanic you've mentioned. While we feel calorie consumption is fairly well balanced at the moment, the overall hibernation exploit is certainly something we're looking at more closely. More on that (and diseases) in the future.

Seasons have actually been a part of our long-term plan since the Kickstarter phase, so good news there! Depending on the reception of season one of the game (which is clearly 'Winter'), we'd love to continue to build The Long Dark into additional seasons. In terms of storytelling, each additional season would be a standalone sequel (think of the Telltale game model). Environmentally, each season would be a new time of year (spring, summer, fall) with its own set of challenges. 

We've discussed - and continue to discuss - shelter building quite a bit. For now, you have a large amount of fully constructed shelters available on most of the maps, and those certainly offer more comforts and security than anything you could build yourself in a short amount of time. It could be useful in the future, but for now, there are other mechanics being worked on that we feel will add more meaning to your experience. It's definitely been noted that a few players have discussed this feature, so we won't forget the request!  

Cannibalism is one feature we have no plans to add to the game.

There are more differences in Stalker than just the wolf population. I'll leave it up to you to determine those, or for other community members to share their feedback if they choose to do so. =) 

I'd say Timberwolf Mountain is the closest thing we have to a "nature map" at the moment, with very limited options for man-made shelters. Have you made it there yet? 

For the transition zones, I'm not exactly sure what you mean. Each transition zone we currently have is technically a smaller map (as you mentioned), and each certainly has a decent amount of unique terrain to explore. 

Lastly, I see you're fairly new to the forums. Welcome, and thanks for joining us! 

 

Sorry for the stupid long quote, but...

Firstly, thank you for replying, I appreciate it greatly when you guys take the time to listen and respond. It's just great.

I have made it to Timberwolf mountain, several times, and scaled it a few as well. My issue with Timberwolf is that we have this giant mountain taking up most of the space. I'd like a dense forest or Tundra map with FULL environmental exposure. Meaning no man-made stuff whatsoever.

Seasons, just to clarify, I knew would be coming to story mode, but I meant more as a feature for sandbox. Will this be something that could be added with the sequel story seasons? Meaning that in sandbox the seasons rotate and change the world around you.

Shelters, please keep it to very simple snow caves and homemade shelters. I meant that if you did add larger, full-on nature maps, that these would come in handy, but don't extend it to constructing anything remotely near the size of the Trapper's homestead, because it falls into the survival games trap of people building their giant d*ck structures everywhere, and it can ruin the game.

Transition zones, I just felt were a bit hemmed in. Places like; mystery lake -> coastal highway give you a very clear set path to follow. (Also, just out of interest, was that transition zone changed with the Timberwolf Mountain update? I remember it being a bit different back in Desolation Point and even Deep Forest.)

It's good that you guys are looking into the hibernation exploit, because I believe that is a major issue.

Any news on wildlife behavior and diversity?

Lastly, thank you for replying, keep up the good work, and hopefully turn this into an even cooler game than it is. Literally and metaphorically. (Bad joke)

 

Edited by boshmi
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I kinda fail to see benefits of full nature map, with no man-made stuff. Currently scavenging is a major part of the game. With full nature map there is only hunting available. Something that is plentiful on any other map. Unless they nerf, for example, deer spawns on other maps, proportionally to abundance of human-made changes, to make hunting harder, having nature map would be a waster of space and time.

There would be no incentive to go there. Nothing to loot, no housings and hunting aspect is the same as on any other map. Unless that map would have something useful and specific to that area, there is just no point.

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Without knowing how the story mode is going to affect the game, I've been cautious in thinking up "improvements" to the game, or even endorsing any that have been suggested.

The question for me is: What is the purpose of the game?

Is it long-term survival as the lone human in a post-electronic age?

Is it finding other survivors and connecting with them (or not), and possibly re-establishing civilization, starting with fixing that old dam in Mystery Lake?

Or is it finding a specific person that matters?

The answer should dictate, to me, the kind of elements and environments we are going to see in the game. I, for one, would not be interested in a tundra map if my purpose in Story Mode is to find another person. I'm not likely to find another person out there in the Tundra Map, so why should I go there? For that matter, why should the devs spend their limited, valuable, more-precious-than-coffee time on it? I'd rather see them tweaking the already excellent characteristics of the current set up. 

Now if the goal is to establish long term survival as a lone human, with no rescue and no other people to spend time or to fight with, then I might be interested in exploring a Tundra Map or a Deep Forest Map. In that case, the ability to build a shelter, even a temporary one, would be invaluable. Otherwise, given the current maps (as of v. 3.0.2), there is no need for that unless you are caught out in a blizzard.

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I kinda just wanted a nature map for the thrill that it would bring, not the incentive.

In each and every one of my games so far, when I get into the mind of my character, I realize that, with no other alternatives, wandering the frozen wilderness forever is just something I'm going to do, in solitude. If I can't find anyone else out here, I want to go alone, and I think a nature map might develop that feeling. It could also provide a good way to watch seasons change, or just witness the everlasting beauty and power of nature. Originally, back in those early days, when there was no real conformation from the devs about a global phenomenon apocalypse-type thing, there was a long time where I thought The Long Dark was about embracing nature. The idea that eventually everything man can give you will run out, and the only way to survive that, is to work with nature. I love the serenetic feel that this game gives me, and the incredible sunrises and sunsets, as well as the powerful snowstorms or even the aura borealis (sometimes). I think applying that to a place where man has never touched, incorporates a really great aspect, and develops an idea this game has given me since day 1.
Maybe that doesn't really make sense and you all think I'm a little nuts, but the fact of the matter is; I think it would be cool, and surviving just off fishing, hunting, and foraging in a shelter of your would be a very interesting gameplay aspect, in terms of sandbox in it's current state.

As I said, these are improvements I think could make the game better, meaning it may not be in the interest of the devs or the community, but maybe I'm just being stubborn.

Edited by boshmi
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  • 3 months later...
On 3/30/2016 at 9:05 AM, boshmi said:

- Better food consumption simulation - At the moment, you can let yourself starve for five days, then eat one steak, sleep, and the get outside and run a marathon. There needs to be long (or short) term effects for using this exploit. I'd also like an obese affliction, from eating too many fatty foods. Just to screw around with you even more :)

Malnutrition affliction maybe the good idea to fix that hibernation thing!

 

On 3/30/2016 at 9:05 AM, boshmi said:

- Disease - The first aid system lacks in this quite a bit, as the only real disease-like afflictions you can get are food poisoning, hypothermia, and infection. I'd like the chance of getting fever, or a virus, or something of the like, with the fever making you weak, and the virus making you vomit and lose calories/get exhausted.

+1

On 3/30/2016 at 9:05 AM, boshmi said:

- Wildlife Diversity - Not as bad as a want as seasons, but certainly up there. I've always marveled at the Long Dark's ability to create a living, breathing landscape, which is why I was astounded to find that they were able to do it with only four animals (not including fish or crows) in order to create a diverse world full of realistic wildlife, I'd love to be able to see creatures like ptarmigans bursting into flight as I walk past unawares, or a majestic elk standing over a lake. I would also like to add animal behavior to this idea, so that we can have pack-hunting wolves that tear you limb from limb, and deer that move in a herd, or being able to watch a mother bear and her cubs walk together through the environment (from a safe distance).

+1

On 3/30/2016 at 9:05 AM, boshmi said:

- Burying snow - Items get buried by snow over time. Not much more to say

Strongly agree!!! Now you can even lay an figure from the feathers/sticks to mark the point. It is useful, but totally unrealistic. Sticks should be buried after the next snow/blizzard,  feathers to be blown by the wind in 10 minutes or so!

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