Cray

Stretching resources - a thought experiment

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By now we know that theoretically the number of days you can survive is in the thousands. But what is the bare minimum resource consumption needed to survive?

FIRE: limitless, using the magnifying lens and sticks. The only resources you need are time and patience. 

FOOD: this is also limitless, since you can snare rabbits and use their guts to replace snares. Fending off starvation subsisting on rabbits alone is tough, but doable.

CLOTH: here it starts to get interesting. At a bare minimum, you may need to craft bandages, but otherwise you can live without it. Fur clothes will keep you going, but your head will suffer frostbite damage without a hat. From there it's just a question of how frequently you repair it.

METAL: living off rabbits harvested by hand means metal is only needed for making fish hooks with which to repair the hat and the furs. If you like you can save the nearly ruined hooks for a bit of bonus fishing. I don't think they perform any differently.

TOOLS: not strictly necessary, since you can gather what you need without them, but having no melee weapon is risky. I like the knife for that purpose since it weighs so little. I'd guess it loses 5-10% with each fight though, so really it depends how good you are at avoiding wolf struggles. The biggest drain on tools is probably crafting the furs in the first place, but after that they can be repaired just using the fish hook. Bow & arrow crafting also requires them, but you can kill rabbits with stones and get wolves to kill deer for you in a pinch.

AMMO: again, not strictly necessary, but saves a lot of time and energy. The best would be a bear kill, for 30kg or more of meat from 1 bullet or 1/3 or so of an arrow, if you are a good shot.

LIGHT: only really essential for traversing caves or mines. Technically renewable if you were to use oil from fish to fuel the lantern, or a mag lens fire to make a torch.

MEDS: definitely finite - even with cooking level 5 you theoretically could run out of antiseptic/omb and antibiotics/reishi, and succumb to a wolf bite infection. Nasty way to go. Painkillers/rosehips are not necessary despite how much you moan about that ankle.

Any thoughts? Anything I've missed? This is purely a thought experiment. Imagine you've lived 10,000 days and there's nothing left to loot. Could you survive when all your clothes have rotted away, you have no ammo, no tools... reduced to dashing naked through the snow to grab a snared rabbit and some sticks?

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The question is based on what game play mode? if all then each answer will be totally different.

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16 minutes ago, Cray said:

By now we know that theoretically the number of days you can survive is in the thousands. But what is the bare minimum resource consumption needed to survive?

Thousands? maybe Pilgrim mode, in survival play? Voyager/Interloper good luck on that?

Edited by nicko

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But you need reclaimed wood for snares, and magnifying lenses also wear out over time. So at some point you'll be walking around naked, throwing stones at rabbits and eating them raw. On pilgrim you could occasionally scare a wolf off a deer carcass to hijack some venison, but those are pretty much your options.

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Ok, to clarify: this is mostly "in theory", but I am thinking of Stalker or below. I don't have any Interloper experience. The difficulty of the game diminishes after the initial 50 or so days. I'm talking about the long term. I have made it 370 days in my Stalker run and I have enough stuff stockpiled to last me at least another 1000 days. So I'm wondering what the first thing I will run out of will be, and if I can cut down consumption any further. This is, as I say, just a thought experiment.

28 minutes ago, Hackfleisch said:

But you need reclaimed wood for snares, and magnifying lenses also wear out over time. So at some point you'll be walking around naked, throwing stones at rabbits and eating them raw. On pilgrim you could occasionally scare a wolf off a deer carcass to hijack some venison, but those are pretty much your options.

You can harvest the reclaimed wood from the ruined snares, so guts are all you need, and you can harvest them by hand. And no, the magnifying lens does not decay over time, at least in Stalker mode.

One thing I forgot to mention is cabin fever. For this your best bet is to make a snow shelter, which costs 5 cloth initially but can then be maintained with sticks alone. You can hide there while repairing, harvesting, even cooking if need be, in order to avoid cabin fever build up. In that case you only need to be indoors when it's too cold outside, even in the shelter, which should be enough to avoid it. I've found it's not an issue.

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I stand corrected then, I never used the lenses much myself (maybe once or twice) but since I found them in various states of decay I just assumed they broke down like any other item. And yeah I forgot ruined snares do give you back reclaimed wood, so those can last forever too. Oh well, then aside from a lack of clothing you could still survive pretty well, provided you could lay up a massive storage of rabbits.

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Absolutely, the more I thought about it the more I realised that it might be theoretically possible to live indefinitely. It surprised me since this didn't used to be the case, but as the game has developed it's become more possible. Still it's possible I'm overlooking something. Clothing seems to be the only definitely non-renewable resource as far as I can tell. And while you would need to catch 4-5 rabbits per day to subsist off them, you can get by on just one per day if you are really pushing the boundaries, since 1kg rabbit = 563 cal (cooking 5) = 9hrs recovery, more than enough most days, in Stalker mode anyway.

Edited by Cray

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I think where you based up would play a part. You can harvest enough scrap metal to last for decades if you only use it to make fish hooks and knives and use them sparingly. The biggest challenge would be the trips to a forge for new knives I think. 

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Another big factor would be how diligent you were in the first few hundred days towards gathering things into one place, and whether you got skills up to max or not.  One big problem with this game is that several of the skills are self-exhausting. By the time you get mending and firearm and firestarting to max for the perks, you're close to being or completely out of sewing kits, bullets, matches etc. (depending on difficulty). Of course you can live without those things but it makes the skill perks pretty bittersweet. If you only repaired a hat, scarf and socks at the points to get the most for the material used, your cloth will last a long time. If you only start one fire a week and cook a weeks worth of food/water, a pack of cardboard matches lasts over  a third of a year.  The big question is how many resources did you expend through the gathering/exploring stage. How many hours did you give up wearing out hacksaws for metal and tearing down curtains? How many matches did you miss by trying to conserve lamp fuel? So many variables, there's no hard answers. Good discussion though. 

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16 hours ago, nicko said:

Thousands? maybe Pilgrim mode, in survival play? Voyager/Interloper good luck on that?

Thousands of days in Voyageur is easily possible, as several examples and number-crunching exercises have shown. Dying of boredom or carelessness are the biggest dangers.

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6 hours ago, JAFO said:

Thousands of days in Voyageur is easily possible, as several examples and number-crunching exercises have shown. Dying of boredom or carelessness are the biggest dangers.

I don't know that I have the patience to even get the 500 day achievement....

So yes, you could probably live thousands of days, which would equate to 5+ years of survival....but OMG, I think I would go INSANE looooooong before that....

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I think it was @JAFO or someone else who has been around here for a while, who talked theoretically with me, that it is possible to survive infinitedly, if you are crazy enough to try and patient enough to not fail. But it gets to a point that the game is such a routine you will probably sooner or later make a mistake and die anyways.

The key part to "long term survival" is beachcombing. In Coastal and in Desolation point (not sure about crumbling highway but also possibly) - there are items which periodically spawn on the ice. These include fish, cloth, scrap metal, saplings both maple and birch, clothing (though usually ruined), medical items, etc. So, if we put beachcombing into effect:
Clothing becomes infinite. Meaning "cloth" becomes infinite.
Medical items become infinite. (thought I dont remember finding anything but peroxide bottles on ice before, this was told to me)
Tools become infinite because scrap metal spawns constantly.
Bow and arrow resources become infinite because of scrap and sapling spawns.

EDIT: So, the only thing that is PROBABLY not infinite is the duration of Simple tools. Basically tools neccesary to repair your hammer from all the smithing. I wonder if you can still use workbench for these repairs like you used to in the past, but I dont think so.

So, if one lived at a Jackrabbits or fishing village, with a fortunate enough spawn that doesnt have wolves in that area, one could technically live infinitedly by going a very careful route to Forlorn Muskeg every now and then to craft new set of tools and arrowheads, and you could live off hunting big game and rockhunting rabbits (or trapping them if you are that lame you cant kill them with your hands). You would need to be able to hunt big game in long term to be able to maintain your crafted clothes, because even if clothing is renewable with the beachcombing, you would probably need to conserve it.
 

Edited by Mroz4k
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Good points, I'd forgotten beachcombing was a thing. In that case you really could live forever. I agree that it takes a special kind of player to even attempt it, I'm not even at 500 yet and I'm running out of steam. But it might be an interesting challenge to play as if you were going to live forever, and see how it goes. It would reduce the need to take risks to restock on supplies, etc. My main reason for exploring the maps was to recover clothing items before they all became ruined, but I am still finding stuff after 300 days, so there's no real rush. Still, there's nothing quite as annoying as finding a top tier clothing item at 0%!

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1 hour ago, Cray said:

Good points, I'd forgotten beachcombing was a thing. In that case you really could live forever. I agree that it takes a special kind of player to even attempt it, I'm not even at 500 yet and I'm running out of steam. But it might be an interesting challenge to play as if you were going to live forever, and see how it goes. It would reduce the need to take risks to restock on supplies, etc. My main reason for exploring the maps was to recover clothing items before they all became ruined, but I am still finding stuff after 300 days, so there's no real rush. Still, there's nothing quite as annoying as finding a top tier clothing item at 0%!

About that... I have several 200+ days experience in a pre-Cartographer, so I think I know a bit how these spawns work... 
I believe when game is generated, some items are "placed" in the rooms and outside, and those placed items start losing condition from day 1. That means, after a day 180, you will be finding tons of ruined cans and clothes lying around... but the funny thing is that the containers dont seem to have a "pre-spawned" loot in them. Meaning that before you open them, the items inside dont degrade. So, even after tons of days, you should be able to find some pristine items in the containers. But I am not sure how that works... I also assume that as long as you visit that particular location, the containers in it start to spoil... that may be a thing. Not sure about that.

But I know for a fact it is possible to find a can of milk with 80% condition on it at Day 200 if it was discovered during looting in a container. But a similar can resting on a kitchen desk will be already ruined. 
This goes double for things that are "outside" - meaning cans and clothes inside of a car, for example. Those are most likely to be ruined.

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2 hours ago, Mroz4k said:

About that... I have several 200+ days experience in a pre-Cartographer, so I think I know a bit how these spawns work... 
I believe when game is generated, some items are "placed" in the rooms and outside, and those placed items start losing condition from day 1. That means, after a day 180, you will be finding tons of ruined cans and clothes lying around... but the funny thing is that the containers dont seem to have a "pre-spawned" loot in them. Meaning that before you open them, the items inside dont degrade. So, even after tons of days, you should be able to find some pristine items in the containers. But I am not sure how that works... I also assume that as long as you visit that particular location, the containers in it start to spoil... that may be a thing. Not sure about that.

But I know for a fact it is possible to find a can of milk with 80% condition on it at Day 200 if it was discovered during looting in a container. But a similar can resting on a kitchen desk will be already ruined. 
This goes double for things that are "outside" - meaning cans and clothes inside of a car, for example. Those are most likely to be ruined.

This is accurate, and I have observed the same....

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Yep, that fits with my experience, however I did find a fisherman's sweater at 90% on day 200+ which blew my mind. It's just a really slow decaying item. I tested and it takes about 80 days of constant wear for it to lose 20%, and stored indoors about 1/10th of that, so lying on a bed in a house it would lose maybe 2-3% in 100 days. Still, it must have been very high condition on day one. Sadly I found some wool ear wraps in a similar scenario but they were ruined, but then they seem to decay by 20% in 10 days, so a random container spawn is the only chance I have of finding another of those.

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18 hours ago, JAFO said:

Thousands of days in Voyageur is easily possible, as several examples and number-crunching exercises have shown. Dying of boredom or carelessness are the biggest dangers.

My record is 92 days.

92 days and I threw myself off a mountain in Mystery Lake. A wolf saw me, my mostly-ruined clothing, and all my broken limbs and thought I would be easy prey but I still managed to kill the wolf before I set up a bedroll and fire and bled to death on the side of the ice. Waiting for yourself to die in this game like that is probably the most painful thing.

I didn't find out until about a week later that apparently 100 days was an achievement and well... still haven't managed to survive that long again yet.

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6 hours ago, Cray said:

however I did find a fisherman's sweater at 90% on day 200+ which blew my mind. It's just a really slow decaying item. I tested and it takes about 80 days of constant wear for it to lose 20%, and stored indoors about 1/10th of that, so lying on a bed in a house it would lose maybe 2-3% in 100 days

Sweaters are amongst the slowest decaying clothing in the game when stored. The Cowichan sweater deteriorates even slower than the Fisherman's sweater (When stored, the Fisherman's sweater loses 1% condition every 25 days).

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16 hours ago, Anorax_Xarona said:

Waiting for yourself to die in this game like that is probably the most painful thing.

Hi. Sorry if this sounds rude, but I hope you took a lesson from that situation, and that lesson is:
Never give up. Dont you ever give up, saying there is no chance to survive that situation. 
Lying down and sacrificing your run is the easiest thing in the world, but there are almost always some solutions you can try to survive, even at a cost of losing some very rare, even one-of-a-kind items. Your life in game is the most precious thing in the whole TLD, no sacrifice is too great for it. If you didnt have a bandage, you could have tried crafting one. Or attempted to get into the nearest shelter and try your luck at finding one. Or (courtesy to JAFO for mentioning to me this rather obvious thing) you could have harvested some of your ruined clothes to get a cloth, then crafted that bandage... and you could have lived.

Trust me when I say, next time you are in such a hopeless situation, fight against dying with all you have. Maybe you will fail, but at least you will feel better knowing that you tried your best to turn the tides. But maybe, just maybe you will make it, only barely... your reward will be quite possibly the best feeling you can experience in this game altogether - the feeling of surviving against impossible odds, the most rewarding moment of entire game.

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25 minutes ago, Mroz4k said:

Trust me when I say, next time you are in such a hopeless situation, fight against dying with all you have.

100% agree!

I've seen so many people (myself included) who've managed to pull back up from being down to just a few % of condition left.. even from just 1% in a couple of cases.. Don't stop fighting to live, until you're dead.

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On 9/6/2017 at 5:05 AM, Mroz4k said:

The key part to "long term survival" is beachcombing. In Coastal and in Desolation point (not sure about crumbling highway but also possibly) - there are items which periodically spawn on the ice. These include fish, cloth, scrap metal, saplings both maple and birch, clothing (though usually ruined), medical items, etc. So, if we put beachcombing into effect:
Clothing becomes infinite. Meaning "cloth" becomes infinite.
Medical items become infinite. (thought I dont remember finding anything but peroxide bottles on ice before, this was told to me)
Tools become infinite because scrap metal spawns constantly.
Bow and arrow resources become infinite because of scrap and sapling spawns.

I tested this in DP on Interloper (I lost this sandbox to the Faithful Cartographer save wipe).  I started in TWM, made it to DP around day 5 and survived another 130 days in DP.  No fishing ever during this sandbox, btw, just hunting and beach combing.  At wipe (day 135) I had 50 kg of meat, 50 scrap metal, 600 sticks, 200 coal, and more than 100 matches stockpiled.  Also loads of meds, saplings, hides, etc.  If not for the save wipe (or mischance) I feel sure I could have gone on nearly indefinitely this way.

  • Crumbling Highway has beach combing too, but less shoreline than DP or CH so fewer items
  • Reclaimed wood is a quite common from beach combing
  • Tools can be repaired with scrap metal!  Given scrap metal from beach combing, I consider them to be infinite.
  • I got enough of everything from beach combing + hunting to stay ahead of my needs, although I had to be careful with cloth
  • Two critical things I never saw from beach combing on Interloper:  Antibotics/reishi and useable clothing (all were 0% condition).  
  • Less critical - no antiseptic, but lots of OMB.  Loads of painkillers turned up.  No bullets or arrows or tools either, but those do turn up on other difficulties.

My belief is that the only truly limited items in the game are antibiotics/reishi and hats.  Other clothing slots can be filled with crafted clothing, but not the head slot.  So I try to get to cooking 5 asap to reduce the need for antibiotics, and maintain a reserve of hats.

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7 hours ago, Ruruwawa said:

I tested this in DP on Interloper (I lost this sandbox to the Faithful Cartographer save wipe).  I started in TWM, made it to DP around day 5 and survived another 130 days in DP.  No fishing ever during this sandbox, btw, just hunting and beach combing.  At wipe (day 135) I had 50 kg of meat, 50 scrap metal, 600 sticks, 200 coal, and more than 100 matches stockpiled.  Also loads of meds, saplings, hides, etc.  If not for the save wipe (or mischance) I feel sure I could have gone on nearly indefinitely this way.

  • Crumbling Highway has beach combing too, but less shoreline than DP or CH so fewer items
  • Reclaimed wood is a quite common from beach combing
  • Tools can be repaired with scrap metal!  Given scrap metal from beach combing, I consider them to be infinite.
  • I got enough of everything from beach combing + hunting to stay ahead of my needs, although I had to be careful with cloth
  • Two critical things I never saw from beach combing on Interloper:  Antibotics/reishi and useable clothing (all were 0% condition).  
  • Less critical - no antiseptic, but lots of OMB.  Loads of painkillers turned up.  No bullets or arrows or tools either, but those do turn up on other difficulties.

My belief is that the only truly limited items in the game are antibiotics/reishi and hats.  Other clothing slots can be filled with crafted clothing, but not the head slot.  So I try to get to cooking 5 asap to reduce the need for antibiotics, and maintain a reserve of hats.

I'm really hoping crafting in general is not "as is" and is being fleshed out. At least add a damn hat. But clothes crafting especially seems very unfinished. Like you should be able to craft items for all slots either with cloth or hide, and the hide clothing should have several different animal hide variants.

If you want to see copious crafting in an early access game, check out Subnautica when you need a "The Long Dark break"....

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19 hours ago, Ruruwawa said:

Two critical things I never saw from beach combing on Interloper:  Antibotics/reishi and useable clothing (all were 0% condition).

This is a nice little nugget of info!

Considering all of the beach combing you have done, do you have any particular strategy for picking up the items while avoiding falling into the water?

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 Remove your clothing before going out onto the ice. Fall through, get dressed, all good. :)

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25 minutes ago, Timber Wolf said:

Considering all of the beach combing you have done, do you have any particular strategy for picking up the items while avoiding falling into the water?

I just sprint to the item, grab exactly one item and sprint out.  I'm careful to look behind me first so I know what I'm sprinting toward on the return leg.  Probably goes without saying, but I'm not encumbered (usually a few kilos under, so I don't get encumbered after I pick items up), winded or tired when I do it.

18 minutes ago, Carbon said:

Remove your clothing before going out onto the ice. Fall through, get dressed, all good. :)

I never do this, but then I've done the majority of my beach combing on interloper.  I prefer not to get frostbite risk, or fall in and get hypothermia.  :D 

Edited by Ruruwawa
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