frickoffanddie

Crows finding arrows for you

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Posted (edited)

Crows are used in-game in many different ways. These include signalling bad weather, alerting the player of a nearby bear, or circling above deceased animals to assist in their discovery.  

But after losing one too many arrows to hostile wildlife, I thought of a new kind of crow behavior that would result in them landing near broken and regular arrows, flying away when approached, but leaving the arrow behind. Of course, there'd have to be a way to somehow communicate to players that they can't be killed, like if you started aiming they'd immediately fly away. Crows are never seen on the ground, so you'd know that when they've landed, they've taken an interest in your long-lost crow-feathered arrow. They're incredibly intelligent creatures after all.

I view the loss of an arrow after shooting an animal as unintentional behaviour. In most cases, the arrow will stick cleanly into the animal, and in other cases, (especially if you go indoors), they'll just disappear. They're so thin and hard to see (I even have difficulty picking them up they're so damn invisible), I'm starting to think it's intentional behavour to make them easily lost. In any case, I think this type of a suggestion would really help long-term gameplay (all while maintaining the spirit of the game), especially on Interloper, where losing an arrow could be the difference between life or death. Thanks for reading.

Edited by frickoffanddie

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Posted (edited)

@frickoffanddie
The risk of lost arrows encourages survivors to get more proficient with the bow and less careless with their shots... having "help" finding arrows would feel kind of cheap (this is just my opinion).  I wouldn't want things like that to get easier, every action or mistake should come with meaningful cost/consequences.  There are already many ways that the game kind of helps you out already, and I would worry about there eventually being too many.

Even an arrow that strikes a target my get "thrown" as the animal flees, so when arrows occasionally go missing (especially when the our quarry runs out of our line of sight) I don't find it to be all that much of an issue.  I think it's a reasonably plausible outcome of that situation.

If you have ever been bow hunting... you may find that losing arrows can be not all that uncommon. :D 

---

Just as a quick question of internal game logic... what reason would a crow have for finding or being attracted to arrows?  Yes, granted they are reasonably intelligent and even clever birds... but arrows don't really make good nest material and are certainly not food, so generally birds don't have much interest in them.

In my mind, that would make as much sense as having a deer pick up an arrow and carry it around in its mouth while wandering back towards the player's position. :D 

(Addendum: I am only offering my point of view on the idea you put forward, and I offer it for consideration in contrast to yours.  I am not interested in getting into an argument about it - I am by no means attacking your point of view...  I just don't happen to agree with this idea, and I mean only to articulate why)

Edited by ManicManiac
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47 minutes ago, ManicManiac said:

 

Just as a quick question of internal game logic... what reason would a crow have for finding or being attracted to arrows?  Yes, granted they are reasonably intelligent and even clever birds... but arrows don't really make good nest material and are certainly not food, so generally birds don't have much interest in them.

 

In real life, crows (and ravens) are quite intelligent, and curious. Bright shiny objects... like pieces of jewelry, glass marbles, keys, car remotes with flashing lights( to help find them)... all found inside crow's nests over the years on our old property (our old farm). We learned quickly that if something "sparkly" was dropped outside, check the crows' nests we knew about the next day, if we did not find it quickly after we lost it. Keys in particular, they seemed to have a fondness for picking up and flying off with. It's possible the metal arrowhead(s) might attract their attention, and draw them in for a closer look. No scientific evidence for it, that I know of, just years of living on a farm, surrounded by woods, with lots of crows living around us. And many lost keys, lol. It's an interesting idea, but I can also see it becoming a confusing thing, to see crows or hear crows, and expect to find a carcass or corpse, and find only a broken arrow. And I would likely stop bothering to search for lost arrows, if I thought I could just wait for the crows to show me where it was. Neutral opinion on this, half " this is good", half "eh, not sure this is good". If Hinterland would make crows land to feed off of the carcasses they now only circle, I could see it.  But adding the mechanic and animations just to help find lost arrows seems like a bit too much.

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Posted (edited)

@ThePancakeLady
Yes, they do indeed have a preoccupation with shinny things that's true. :) 

But, I notice our arrowheads aren't shinny... they are more of a dull blackish color.  I do see what you are getting at, and if the arrowheads were shinny I would absolutely agree with each of your points.  Unfortunately, nothing about our found or crafted simple arrows is shinny (or otherwise reflective), which is why I question why they would be interested in them at all (at lest from an internal logic perspective I mean).

And I suppose I'm just not fond of them being beacons to lead us to missing arrows.  We already have "pointer trees" that always point us toward an area of interest... I would just prefer the game not slowly incorporate more functions that feel so much like hand holding.  I've always loved that one of the foundational  ideas of the game was that it wasn't going to "hold our hands."

These two reasons are why I'm not fond of the idea of crows acting as arrow beacons, but that is just my two cents.

With the last thought you mention, we are both in agreement about that.  :) 

41 minutes ago, ThePancakeLady said:

But adding the mechanic and animations just to help find lost arrows seems like a bit too much.

 

Edited by ManicManiac
Edited for clarity...
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What about adding some sort of a timer until crows show up over a lost arrow? That way, you can't rely on them as a simple arrow beacon that shows up within a loading screen, but rather something that would assist in their recovery many weeks later. Something like, say, 10-50 days. If you miss that shot, yeah, you're not gonna have that arrow for awhile, but you can count on crows eventually leading you right back to it.

I think this is less of an issue of the details of my particular suggestion, but rather the idea that you could recover a lost arrow (which you view as making the game easier), which is absurd to me; why wouldn't you want something vital to your survival? Do you like to suffer? I worked for these goddamn arrowheads and I'll be damned before I allow some fluffy canine bastard to take it from me because I decided to stay indoors to pass time while he bled out.

This game is becoming more accessible. By extension, it's becoming easier. I think a suggestion like this would help newer players recover arrows after toying with the bow (which is already punishing enough), and veteran players to survive a couple more hundred days. There's punishing in a good way (getting food poisoning after eating bad food as an example; a direct consequence of a poor decision), then there's punishing in a bad, slightly buggy way (losing your arrow to a wolf after phasing through a loading screen and not knowing at ALL where he lost the arrow). There are NO systems in place to recover a lost item. That, to me, is a feature sorely lacking in an inventory management game.

Maybe arrowheads recovered by crow sightings would be of a lower condition? There's no way for them to degrade otherwise, so new bow users who keep losing their arrows would eventually have them destroyed forever as a result of their carelessness (since you guys love to punish people).

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I think I would prefer they just make painting the feathers or arrow shaft with a bright paint part of the crafting process.  They could then just place a can of such paint by each forge and, perhaps, one can in a major location in each zone (so that we could also paint new arrows we build from broken arrows.  That way, arrows would just generally be more visible and we could find them more easily ourselves.  Much simpler than reprogramming crows... and it would still work during a blizzard when the crows are not flying about.

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If you know where you aimed the arrow at, it's actually pretty easy to find them - like 99% of the times. Takes a bit of walking around, but if you know which spot exactly to search, then it's easy to find them.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, UpUpAway95 said:

I think I would prefer they just make painting the feathers or arrow shaft with a bright paint part of the crafting process.  They could then just place a can of such paint by each forge and, perhaps, one can in a major location in each zone (so that we could also paint new arrows we build from broken arrows.  That way, arrows would just generally be more visible and we could find them more easily ourselves.  Much simpler than reprogramming crows... and it would still work during a blizzard when the crows are not flying about.

Painting our arrows? I mean, if it'll help find the blasted things, I'm all for it, but there's gotta be a better way.

Crows wouldn't be reprogrammed, they'd just have a new behavior attached to them. You go through a loading screen and they'd "pop up" around the site of a lost arrow, you'd never see them physically landing around it, only flying away when you get close.

Edited by frickoffanddie

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Posted (edited)
44 minutes ago, frickoffanddie said:

Painting our arrows? I mean, if it'll help find the blasted things, I'm all for it, but there's gotta be a better way.

Crows wouldn't be reprogrammed, they'd just have a new behavior attached to them. You go through a loading screen and they'd "pop up" around the site of a lost arrow, you'd never see them physically landing around it, only flying away when you get close.

Some reprogramming would be required.  For example, you shoot a bear, say, three times and he runs off bleeding out.  Somewhere along the blood trail, he drops two of your arrows and eventually collapses dead.  What do the crows set as their prioty... showing you where your two arrows wound up in the snow or showing you where the bear itself fell dead?   Example two, you're trying to shoot an animal just prior to the game hitting you with a weather change... so, do the crows flying off warning you about the oncoming blizzard or stick around to show you where your arrows landed?  I think painted arrows with a bright color is the easier solution.

As others have said, it's not normally too hard to locate arrows anyways once you become proficient with the bow.  There are a few instances where it can get a little dicey... one I've mentioned already is the case where a wounded animal drops an arrow along its blood trail.  Another is when the player only glances the animal and the wound is not sufficient to cause the animal to fall dead.  Another is when the player goes indoors before the animal dies and the animal resets and doesn't actually die (this is a bug).  Finally, a more recent trouble has been arrows pathing right through the snow or ice and essentially disappearing or sometimes they were even visible beneath the ice but unretrievable by the player.  This one is also a bug and Hinterlands has indicated that they have since patched it.  I haven't played around with a bow since that patch though, so I cannot say for sure whether that issue has indeed been fixed.

Edited by UpUpAway95

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23 minutes ago, UpUpAway95 said:

Some reprogramming would be required.  For example, you shoot a bear, say, three times and he runs off bleeding out.  Somewhere along the blood trail, he drops two of your arrows and eventually collapses dead.  What do the crows set as their prioty... showing you where your two arrows wound up in the snow or showing you where the bear itself fell dead?   Example two, you're trying to shoot an animal just prior to the game hitting you with a weather change... so, do the crows flying off warning you about the oncoming blizzard or stick around to show you where your arrows landed?  I think painted arrows with a bright color is the easier solution.

As others have said, it's not normally too hard to locate arrows anyways once you become proficient with the bow.  There are a few instances where it can get a little dicey... one I've mentioned already is the case where a wounded animal drops an arrow along its blood trail.  Another is when the player only glances the animal and the wound is not sufficient to cause the animal to fall dead.  Another is when the player goes indoors before the animal dies and the animal resets and doesn't actually die (this is a bug).  Finally, a more recent trouble has been arrows pathing right through the snow or ice and essentially disappearing or sometimes they were even visible beneath the ice but unretrievable by the player.  This one is also a bug and Hinterlands has indicated that they have since patched it.  I haven't played around with a bow since that patch though, so I cannot say for sure whether that issue has indeed been fixed.

The crows don't set anything as a priority because they have no AI. You can actually see multiple flocks of crows circling above carcasses within a close vicinity; they aren't persistent like wolves and deer are.

But to answer your question, the crows would prioritize circling above the bear first (as they are the most immediate food source for them, and you need to be able to show to players where your kill is before it decays after 3 days), then several weeks later you might find a flock grounded near one of your lost arrows, then perhaps another week later you see another flock near your last arrow.

If the weather picks up while you're outside, any grounded crows would fly off and return when the weather is clear again. An incoming blizzard is more important to communicate to players than a lost arrow.

 

If this type of change is too much to ask, then what about something like a metal detector that only works during an Aurora? That way, we have a reason to explore during an Aurora, might find an arrow or bullet hidden in the snow somewhere. Perhaps you could toggle the metal detector in Custom Settings so you could have a game with or without it if you think it'd make gameplay too easy.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, frickoffanddie said:

The crows don't set anything as a priority because they have no AI. You can actually see multiple flocks of crows circling above carcasses within a close vicinity; they aren't persistent like wolves and deer are.

But to answer your question, the crows would prioritize circling above the bear first (as they are the most immediate food source for them, and you need to be able to show to players where your kill is before it decays after 3 days), then several weeks later you might find a flock grounded near one of your lost arrows, then perhaps another week later you see another flock near your last arrow.

If the weather picks up while you're outside, any grounded crows would fly off and return when the weather is clear again. An incoming blizzard is more important to communicate to players than a lost arrow.

 

If this type of change is too much to ask, then what about something like a metal detector that only works during an Aurora? That way, we have a reason to explore during an Aurora, might find an arrow or bullet hidden in the snow somewhere. Perhaps you could toggle the metal detector in Custom Settings so you could have a game with or without it if you think it'd make gameplay too easy.

All I'm saying if they would have to change their programming of the crows... that's all.  I think painting the arrow shaft is a simpler fix and it would make the arrow more visible.  They could even make the paint slightly reflective.  I never suggested it would make the game too easy.  I do think adding in a metal detector would be a more complex solution and be less desireable based on the weight of such an item alone.  Chances are, you're not going to have one on you whenever you're out hunting and you probably wouldn't even necessarily have one nearby whenever an aurora hits when you're near an area where you've recently be hunting.  If they want, they can add.  I'm not stopping them.  I just know it'll be like the flashlight... another item I don't tend to use up carry weight to bother with... at best, for me, it would be another item that could be harvested for scrap metal to keep my hatcksaw or heavy hammer in great repair or to make more arrowheads.

Edited by UpUpAway95

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4 hours ago, frickoffanddie said:

If this type of change is too much to ask, then what about something like a metal detector that only works during an Aurora? That way, we have a reason to explore during an Aurora, might find an arrow or bullet hidden in the snow somewhere. Perhaps you could toggle the metal detector in Custom Settings so you could have a game with or without it if you think it'd make gameplay too easy.

But why would there be metal detectors on Great Bear in the first place? They would need to add lore involving a rumor of buried treasure r something to make that even semi-plausible. No sandy tourist beaches or old battlefields on the island, so why would anyone there have one, let alone there being more than one on the island, still in working condition? Metal detectors are a bit too out of character with the current game lore and "plot", IMHO.  Flashlights make sense, but I just can't wrap my head around why loggers, miners, and preppers would have metal detectors. And with the Story Mode and the "outsiders" lore, I can't imagine a treasure hunter showing up and digging up random spots would thrill the locals too much... though it could explain some of the bodies we keep finding.  ;)

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13 hours ago, ThePancakeLady said:

But why would there be metal detectors on Great Bear in the first place?

maxresdefault.thumb.jpg.c0eabe1c028a1a5e5f7ee02d9481bea2.jpg

You never know what you may find on an icy shore.

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Realistic or not, I think this is actually an elegant solution to a problem as old as the game itself.

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