Last Night Session


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Wow. This one was a significant update. Great work guys.


1)The interface asset updates you made are really nice and welcome. Minimal, but clean. Seeing item 3d models and descriptions are great. Gives weight to the world.

2)Being able to select a female to play was very welcome. Hearing her voice brings warmth to the cold. Thanks!

3)There seems to be a disconnect between the voice and player status though. The struggle that is inferred by the severity of starvation, exhaustion, dehydration, etc. isn't matched by the voice acting. I also feel the voice could have different levels of despair for how severe the conditions are.

4)The player condition % is throwing me off. I wonder if a value is the best UI element to explain the player condition? Does it need to be a literal thing or can it be inferred? I go back to the game Amnesia and how the level of fear and psychosis would affect what the player saw. That effect was pretty extreme but if you treat it more subtly it could be super effective without stats.

5)I still struggle with the lantern interaction. I really love the hold to light and extinguish, but its not immediately clear how to unequip it.

6)I also struggle with hydration. I found 1 bottle of water and a bunch of cola in my session but was still dehydrated. I wanted to just go out and get some snow and melt it (there's a stove, and a pot and I have fire) to clean or eat it, but I couldn't. It feels like there needs to be an action to harvest water - you are surrounded by it and presumably if you're smart enough to survive you are smart enough to know how to extract water from the snow. Not sure if this is a game mechanic thing or UI thing ...

7)When indoors the light projections from windows or light sources slow the game down significantly.

8)It's really dark inside. More ambient light please.

9)Cabin to cabin look is very similar. In layout and with the items you can pickup in them. More variety.

Game Session

My session lasted 1day 19hours and change. From the beginning I knew it was going to be dire because I wasn't finding water and struggled to remember how to make water. It had been a month since my last session.

I managed my inventory pretty good by dropping heavy items, to reduce caloric burn, and consuming to keep my status in the green. I knew the map already so finding my way was intuitive. I did explore out a bit and that cost me warmth and calories. I came upon the dam when I was in a really bad way. Literally red in all aspects. I knew what I could expect to encounter in the dam but also knew the shelter would be welcome.

I spent my last moment searching, finding and harvesting items when the light of my lantern went out. The voice said "I don't know if I'm going to make it". I was at 3%, had no bedroll, no food or water in complete darkness but I continued to sew. I passed from starvation and exhaustion as I sat there repairing my wool sweater.

That was heavy.

Post-Game Session Thoughts

1)I wish there was an option to journal your session experience and observations. I could see this as something to inform the players game loop and help improve their performance if not excellent for emotional retrospective. What I'm finding is because of the perma-death component the narrative of a session is really important and has a weight that isn't too commonly found in games. See it as respect for the loss of life and the experiences discovered.

2)To me the central UI element in the game is the status and backpack panels. I'm constantly going back and forth to them but I'm struggling with navigating them over time. There are subtle ways to optimize the flow in and out of the panels and the way the player interacts with them.

3)Backpack - The drop menu control for item categories should be icons much the way you handle pivoting to other panels like harvesting, gather wood, etc - it's a primary action on this screen and the categories are fixed. Sort can remain a drop as this is a secondary action.

There's more but I'm yammering now. Thanks for reading!

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