Should crafting arrows be this difficult?


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I also agree that the game is well balanced.

I do like the sound of having more crafting options too. Using the stones found in the game for crafting in some way is a decent idea.

Making stone arrowheads that are of a lower grade (ie. do less damage, break more easily) than metal sounds good to me. Would it really impact on balance that much?

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I'd say that introducing stone arrowheads becomes a slippery slope of feature creep.

Are stone arrowheads in the game? Well, aren't stone arrowheads usually made of flint? So the game has flint now? Why can't you combine flint and scrap metal to make a firestarter?

I personally feel the balance on crafting a bow and arrows is balanced enough as it stands. Yes, it requires an investment into finding a hammer and schlepping it out to a forge, but it's a good option to kill time while you're waiting for your saplings to cure anyhow.

Plus, you'll need to craft a knife for sapling carving anyway, if you're an Interloper. It's hardly much effort to bang out a few arrowheads afterwards. If you're not on Interloper, there's dozens of broken arrows near deer carcasses across the maps that you can harvest for arrowheads, not to mention the static arrow spawns in Pleasant Valley or Desolation Point, meaning you never need to forge in the first place.

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On 2/6/2020 at 3:07 AM, jhickie said:

I think the real issue that TLD suffers from is people expecting too much realism from it due to it being based in reality. Many games are based on sci-fi, fantasy, horror, etc. With these types of games, you never hear people complaining that things aren't realistic enough because there's nothing in reality to base it on. Nobody ever says, "Wow, this plasma rifle sure doesn't fire like the one I have at home!" With TLD, it's all based in reality, albeit with an apocalyptic twist. Every detail gets over analyzed against reality. "Hey, my feet aren't making a realistic sound when I walk on the snow!" It's a bit exhausting.

 

I have more insight on this.  Its not an issue of realism, so much as its a sharp change in difficulty.   Regardless of difficulty, the Survival modes is mainly about managing resources, logistics, and resource exhaustion.  I've only been playing a couple weeks on Voyager, and I already spot several places that are kind of obtuse in how they present a problem.  Crafting has to be the among worst parts of this, because the natural resources should offer greater renewability, but they don't. 

 

Clothes tend to work out better, because they have inherent trade offs, and you can harvest leather to repair it from hides. 

 

Food is also in a pretty good spot with cooking, but harvesting has a few major issues with how trade offs are handled.  Quartering should actually preserve meat longer, as this would enable one to set up food caches that you have to travel to, in order to access.  The way it works now, unless you're aware of the meat-meta (which I think also breaks the game mind set in a significant way), the faster decay, inherent smelliness, and inability to drop part of your haul as a decoy, breaks the presumed strategy on several levels. So its universally better to fillet everything on site (costing you time, but still cooking a chunk for the road), dropping it, and coming back for it in the morning when its safer.  In the amount of time it'd take you to haul a quarter home, it would had rotted more then the extra half to full day the fillet approach offers.  

That said.  Aside from cheesing the AI, there isn't that much wrong with the general mechanical concepts for hunting and scent for meat transport from a general game play perspective. Its just that a number of edges cases come up frequently, leading to a lot of unintuitive behavior within the scope of the game's own mechanics.  IE: letting meat rot is perfectly fine, because cooking still makes it safe enough to eat. 

But tools and weapons are where most of the problems exist.  Tools control the game's overall difficulty level, and its filled with arguably games breaking shifts and illogically steep requirements.  And its made a lot worse by how some tools create latches for performance, and the Devs are trying to balance around that in a really hamfisted way.   Secondly, they need a new strategy for how to balance Interloper difficulty, because that seems to be the biggest driving force for a lot of the obtuse balance decisions.  Like Arrow heads being super difficult to make, but makes hunting easier (or manageable in higher difficulty)... but the arrow heads are infinitely recyclable.  

This tells me the process to make them was done solely to offset the sheer power gain the bow creates with its (technically) infinite ammo.  And that its very likely this all stems from the idea that "losing arrow heads is serious" is a central design element for its existence.  This is both a recognition that cheaply crafted arrows are game breaking, and that the bow should be a major paradigm change in the play through......  but I think they fail to recognize that the bow might have value in the lower difficulties, despite the guns being an option.  In short... its entire purpose is solely for interloper; and they didn't expect anyone to care in lower difficulties since the guns are a better option.

 

So in order to move forward with the conversation, we have to first establish what the difficulty modes represent, how players interact with certain concepts, and use that to further inform how resources work. Its pretty obvious the Devs want tools to be a finite resource.  But tools govern too many hard barriers to survival, and difference in functional levels on the key ones are extremely steep for weird reasons.  And I think I can pretty closely pinpoint what the problem is......whats required for basic survival, and whats there to gate exploration.  And thats why Bow fits into this so weirdly.  Hunting is the only sustainable aspect of the game.  Meat for food, and hides for clothes.  Everything else is either explicitly finite to offset the lifetime of tools, or create a scarcity problem until you reach the "sustainable" stage of tools (IE crafted all the recyclable bits).

And therein lies what I think the "disconnect" is.  The whole early game is working up to sustainability.  But once there, all your left with is routine.  So, reasonably, they set it up so that you HAVE to keep moving around to advance your situation.  And because some tools (like the bow and guns) are such a huge difference in what you're capable of accessing, they made the Bow/Gun the dividing line between hunter and scavenger.  For interloper, thats a huge deal.   But once you can hunt....  you're way too sustainable in your own right.  And thats where this arrow head balance is getting tripped up hard.  You can find a few, and work with that.  But in order to encourage you to continue moving around, they needed a way to make you more confident to do so.  So to tackle the predator barrier, you can manufacture an abundance of ammo to overcome that.   Which is how I think we ended up with Timberwolves.... something that your current tools can't deal with.  And putting high value tools, like cartridge reloading, as a reward, is how they're trying to incentivize you to even attempt it.  And the alt tools needed is there to prevent existing "competent" players from just looting the place early on, because theres no reason to go back due to the danger. 

 

I partly agree that this is a power creep thing..... but I also recognize that baseline survival is too easily sustainable by camping a couple of regions, and the Devs need a way to fill that time with something the player actively tries to pursue.  So we've fallen into this trap where the only way to keep players engaged (which is not always entertaining), is by setting up artificial barriers they have to overcome to get the reward.  And unfortunately, the only enticing reward people are willing to accept now days, are things which increase their power, make existing things easier, or open up a new "progression" path for them to follow directly after.  Its literally unsustainable.....  but players have also come to view "fun" as a consumable concept.  Hence the need/demand for a steady stream of "new stuff" being added, and only values it if its somehow objectively superior to existing things (even when its still subjective in nature).  I've gone on hours long rants about this problem in the past; because its been permeating into every single player base, and poisoning acceptable design practices.  And I can easily empathize with the notion that they could had simply just kept most mechanics the same since game launch, and focused adding story chapters.... but thats not whats gonna keep the community involved in the game in the long run.  So updating survival mode, which can affect and/or benefit from mechanics applied to story mode, is their way of trying to keep the game fresh for the player base.

 

Case in point.... I got the Forrest back in early access. Played it for 2 weeks, ignored story stuff, and then stopped.  Now that its completed and released....... I have no interest in playing it again.  And thats a real possibility with this game as well.  Not because the game is bad, but because I might have gotten everything I want out of it, and no longer want to play it.  And with so many games trying to compete in the attention economy, its with a fair amount of self awareness and minor shame, that the games that I have the most hours spent in, are ones that are repetitive grind fests that drip feed new shineys on a regular basis.  And its only in the past couple year that I've finally broke free (and completely sworn off) Progression focused games, and ever advancing existential crisis of trying to make "meaningful choices" that don't immediately create a broken meta, and end up being "balanced" into mediocrity. 

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On 2/4/2020 at 4:20 PM, tinyfenix said:

. I intentionally went into this playthrough completely blind after over a year of not playing. That way I wouldn’t have the locations memorized and it would prevent me from “cheating” or meta gaming. I was going for a realistic experience...

Well, pick an easier difficulty😊I have one in my hut at TWM on the lake, I can lend it to you if you promise to bring it back. I'm not there, but the hut is open. Few drinks and some meat outside. Make yourself at home.(but don't forget you're a guest)

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I have actually made arrows in real life for the traditional style archery I do in medieval reenactment. I can tell you it is fairly difficult even with specialized tools and supplies for making the shafts and fletching. I've always felt that they made arrow and bow crafting too easy really. Just making a shift that's balances and won't shatter when shot. Same with the bow actually. The distance the in game bow can achieve while still having enough stopping power to kill a moose? That has to be damn near a 100# draw!

I could go on, but I know it's a game and I'm happy with TLD as it is. Just thought I'd throw in my 5 cents about arrow crafting.

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