Shovel, Sleigh, Sanity Meter and what to do with Corpses

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Posted (edited)

It seems we need these 3 things in the game (and make the title of the update as "Last Home");


Makeshift Shovel: allows you to dig snow to uncover buried objects or remove obstacles

    explanation: adds to immersion and exploration

    example uses:

        1. a door/entrance is blocked by snow, then dig the snow to remove blockage, so that you can enter a house or a cave (and some buried prepper's caches?)
        2. a carcass is half buried in snow and cannot be extracted easily
        3. want to build an igloo instead of a snow shelter (ideal in places where there is no cave or shelter, maybe make a new area that needs to utilize this?)
        4. would like to smack an attacking wolf with a shovel (highest chance of not being hurt during struggle because of it's reach)


        1. needs alot of materials to craft and repair
        2. if used in struggle; huge reduction in durability


Makeshift Sleigh: allows you to pull small to medium sized carcasses, can also place heavy objects that are hard to be carried individually

    explanation: more ways to move through the world

    example uses:

        1. would like to butcher carcasses inside home or near home (cannot carry Moose and Bear)
        2. would like to carry more items and let wood/quartered meat be placed in it
        3. if an animal attacks, can always abandon it and return at a later time
        4. would like to ride this going downhill (with risk of sprains and fractured bones if you collide or go down badly)


        1. more stamina is consumed if you are pulling it going uphill or running (both actions has sprain chance)
        2. can push it uphill with sprain chance
        3. needs alot of both materials and tools to craft and repair
        4. cannot be stored in inventory (so you need to pull it and only walk at compatible terrain with it)

Other reasons for the shovel and sleigh:

    1. carry corpses somewhere and bury them
    2. can add new challenges due to these items
    3. provides more approaches in playing the game


About Sanity Meter:

    1. affects recovery rate of fatigue stat when sleeping
    2. chocolate bars increase sanity and after a few hours; increased reduction of sanity (does not apply when sleeping, so that these limited items are important when recovering sanity meter before sleeping)
    3. higher value provides higher chance of not acquring serious injuries during struggles (bleeding, etc.)
    4. repairing items, crafting items, and eating; increase sanity
    5. reading books; increase sanity (there are alot of random books in the world used as fuel, why not make another use for them?)
    6. being too hungry for a long time; reduces sanity
    7. being chased/stalked by hostile wildlife; reduces sanity
    8. being seriously injured after a struggle; reduces sanity
    9. burying corpses recovers 100% sanity meter and does not reduce it for a week (1 week buff, all modes in sandbox, because corpses are few)

Edited by SpiritedAway

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Posted (edited)

Makeshift Shovel

Art already exists for a shovel in the game (kudos to ThePancakeLady for finding this one).

However, there's no current use for this item in the game. With the exception of one locked door in the game, all houses and basements are either unobstructed or simply external scenery without an actual room attached. The base map isn't designed to be modified as there's no actual 'snow' in the game, simply white ground. Carcasses aren't ever buried, merely frozen.

Adding this item would simply be creating a mechanical system of having high value loot locked by access to a relevant tool. We already have the prybar for this purpose.


Makeshift Sleigh

This has been suggested before, and before, and before, and before, and before, and...

Well, you get the idea.

This would be a nightmare to add to the game. First you'd need art resources for the sleigh, including assets for the items carried as cargo. Then it'd need to dynamically move along the terrain, avoiding such issues as clipping through trees and rocks, interacting with mobs like wolves and bears as they approach, and generally causing the developers incredible headaches.

Now, that's not to say that the Unity engine can't handle vehicles. But there's only so many development man-hours available, and at this stage, adding radically new content such as this is being done essentially free, since all updates are being added to the game at no additional cost. Right now, our character doesn't even have feet. I feel that a sleigh would be far too much extra content to consider feasible without costing development time from other, more pressing, areas of content.

In terms of mechanical systems, there's already an item that can be crafted to increase the amount of weight which can be carried. A sleigh is simply a repeat of this concept, and one which definitely would require far too many development resources to consider worth the investment.


Sanity Meter

This has been suggested before (more than once), and is noted as part of the roadmap of the game. The big issue boils down to how it would be implemented in a way that makes everyone happy. It's safe to say Hinterland has this one on their radar and have probably given it a lot of thought already, but your suggestions are good ones!

I'd recommend also using the search function on the forum to find other topics discussing your ideas.

Edited by Jimmy

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I like environmental challenges. Having to dig through snow to gain access to an otherwise blocked location, whether it be a lone building or an entire passage to a new area, would be fantastic! I think this could be added to every region in small quantities at random generation. Like one time the Trapper's Cabin might be snowed in, or the fishing cabins in Coastal Highway, or the Quonset Garage. Perhaps this can even be cumulative and progress over time. So after a blizzard, you'll have more snow to dig. Now since snow isn't dynamic, they'd have to have a small change to the actual region in order to do this. It would basically be adding a small bit of snow asset to an entire region, and reloading that new region with the existing metadata of the "old one" which would be everything looted, carcasses, dropped items outdoors, etc... I still think it should be a gameplay mechanic though. 


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Posted (edited)


1. Makeshift Shovel - I currently do not see a need for this, so it's a NO from me, sorry. Well okay maybe there is a need, but only if we could Bury Dead Bodies with it. 

2. Makeshift Sleigh - Now this is something I would like to see! I do believe I have mentioned wanting this before, many others have mentioned it as well. 

3. Sanity Meter - I hope they NEVER add this, as someone who struggles with Mental Health Issues and plays Video Games to escape them... I don't want it to be in my face that my character now is suffering with the same issues. Yes I know suffering through The Long Dark has to be hard on Will or Astrid - I get it, but it should not be forced in the Game - If anything it should be added as an extra through paid DLC. There's another Game I tried before it was supposed to be a "Survival" Game, it had a Sanity Meter, and the Screen would go wonky, and I think your Character would Hallucinate / Hear Voices, that REALLY bothered me so I never touched that Game again. I guess I just don't understand why anyone would want this sort of thing in a Game, I know first-hand what it's like to suffer these things, and trust me it isn't FUN. In fact this is the sort of thing (no offense to anyone) that would keep me from Updating or continuing to play The Long Dark. I didn't buy this Game to play a Mental Health Issue Simulator, so I pray it NEVER turns into that. 


I don't think Hinterland minds if these things are Re-Posted necessarily. As for HL having the Sanity Meter on the radar, I hope not! 

Edited by kristaok

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Not a bad collection of ideas. I would agree with @Fuarian, if there were some small enviromental changes for the game, I think it would make the game much more interesting. To expand on that - some of the region transitions could be blocked off, and would require shovel to clear a passage through to access other regions. Of course, this would have to be the case only for certain transitions which allow an alternative way in, say for example the tunnel in Ravine transition between Mystery lake and Coastal highway. There could be more rubble fallen in, and you would have to climb that rubble, and by the top clear a passage through with a shovel to be able to crawl in through it. If you possesed no shovel - tough luck, but you can always walk around through Pleasant Valley, it would simply be a very long detour.

I doubt we will see igloo, though. The shovel already exists in the game files, in the code, and was likely intended to be a tool that made building of snow shelter faster, like a knife with carcasses. I would like to see some more durable player-made shelters, but I doubt we will get that option. Look at the current show shelter. It is fairly quick-to-build, but takes a lot of rare cloth, and once it is build, it will degrade very fast. Considering that, I doubt they will allow us to make more "durable" shelters, even at cost of needing a tool and more time to build them.

@Jimmy there is much more then just artwork for them, they exist as unused files within the game´s code. If you dig through old forum posts, you might find the actual person who discovered them. Until recently, Revolver was one of these files. Other objects include ball cutters and fire axe, and others. Ball cuters were later used in the predux version of the Wintermute. It is possible that shovel is, like Revolver, an item currently in development, or rather it was at one point in development, but was postponed for later. If you used the unofficial mods for TLD in the past, there was a game file editor that was quite popular, which listed these items and even allowed the player to place them into the game (or so I have heard, I never used any TLD mods myself).

For sleight idea - Im not going to get much into that, I have posted my opinion on this on the 100 other topics of this sort. I dont think this is particularly neccesary. First, it makes quartering kinda pointless option for the smaller animals. Then there is the issue with smelliness level. By quartering and picking up the quarters, you are basically alerting every predator in half the region to your presence. Putting the smelly items on your sleight, what happens? Are they attracted to the sleight? Or are you just ignoring it? Also, do the predators then go and "eat" the cargo from your sleight if it's smelly? How would it work with pulling? How would it work when pulling it up-hill, and how would the gravity affect it when going downhill? There is a lot of questions to be asked about the specifics of the sleight.

Consider this now: With the satchel and well-fed bonus, you can already carry about 60 kg of items, although very slowly. If you instead loaded the 40 kg of equipment onto a sleight, and carried 20kg of equipment on yourself, would you move faster? Maybe, on a flat terrain. Might be worth it for Forlorn Muskeg. But for hilled areas, dragging it uphill would probably make you slower... keeping in mind that most of the game has varied terrain, I doubt there would be very notable difference in loading up sled, or just carrying it yourself. For the idea to "ride it downhill" - I guess that would be one possible use for it... but is it neccesary? You would then need to drag it up another hill to make a use of it, which would slow you down in ascension... so whats the point? 

I am not against it, I just think the countless hours of development that would go towards this could be better spent on other ideas.

For the sanity idea - made a pretty lenghty post here on similar subject: 


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