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Tracking animals in this game is abysmal. There is snow all over the place. Fresh paw and hoof prints should also be all over the place as long as they haven't been snowed or drifted over. My character leaves well defined footprints all over the place, but the only noticeable track I've seen from an animal is a blood trail from wounded ones. The more I've thought about it, the more I realize it bugs me, heh.

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Pro:

- If they make the wildlife scarcer, your suggestion will receive higher priority.

- It would be nice to experience a "real" hunt, with tracking and following and sneaking, instead of just walk 100 meters than, oops my dinner is there.

There are already details in the game what suggest they are planning a really exciting environment for survivors (like the wind, scent).

Contra:

The game is in alpha, do not be bugged if not everything perfect.

There are plenty of animals everywhere, not a big deal to find food yet.

Pretty nice job with that blood trail though.

I like your suggestion, hopefully we will be there soon to take care of these "minor" things.

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hmm im pretty sure i have seen prints in the snow. they just arent as defined as the characters ones.

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Tracking in the winter in snow is rather easy. Tracks leave shadows, and depending on the time of day they can be rather long shadows. Prints are not tracks, do not confuse the two. Prints occur if you walk on top of the surface of something and leave a mark behind on the surface relative to your foot or whatever you are wearing on your foot. Tracks occur when you walk through something, like a snow bank. Deer can't move through snow without leaving tracks, they don't walk on top of the surface, their hooves break the surface and they walk through the snow. Wolves can walk over hard packed snow, but light, fresh powder, they too must walk into and through the snow, not glide on top. Mankind can walk on top of snow with proper footwear, those are called snowshoes and even they leave pretty defined tracks in their wake. Any other time, unless the snow is hard packed, we end up walking in and through the snow as well.

So again I'll restate, there are no tracks in the game at all. The player will leave footprints, however prints are not tracks. As for paw or hoof prints, I thought I saw some once, it was just a change in coloration of the surface however, because the color change didn't go away after a snow storm, and prints do.

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I agree we should be able to see tracks left by wildlife.

What I find interesting are the folks that say that the animals movement patterns are too predictable. In real life all the animals we have in the game do move in predictable ways (just over a larger area than the game shows).

In fact the best way to find White tail deer (what we are hunting in the game) is to find the track they take (they stick to the same paths as it's easier than breaking new tracks and they are lazy) and just wait. They will walk right past you.

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I've only seen wolf prints once in 400+ hours of play. They were so unusual I took a screenshot; in CH near the cabins on the water across the street from the garage.

screen_b34641a3-74b3-4eec-a40c-973ed8f95b02_zps7jzkvu3d.png

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Wow, thanks for that screenshot. I've never seen those at all, and I've spent some hours looking. Even so much as chasing them wolves that run from me with the coat on. Do you recall which difficulty setting you were playing on?

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Wow, thanks for that screenshot. I've never seen those at all, and I've spent some hours looking. Even so much as chasing them wolves that run from me with the coat on. Do you recall which difficulty setting you were playing on?

Probably Pilgrim, also wearing a wolfskin coat, I don't leave ML without one :) Those tracks were just a few seconds old, and soon disappeared. I've never seen them before, not even while following a blood trail.

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Wolves and deer (and probably rabbits and bears as well) leave prints just like the player does. Only difference is that they fade really quick, while the players prints stay much longer.

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thanks for this! It has been passed on to the development team for review/consideration :)

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Wow, thanks for that screenshot. I've never seen those at all, and I've spent some hours looking. Even so much as chasing them wolves that run from me with the coat on. Do you recall which difficulty setting you were playing on?

I have seen these footprints (pawprints?) only once on a strange occasion - I slept outside near a fire barrel (it was the "Three Brothers Farmstead" (or some similar name) in PV) and woke up to the growling of a wolf. However, no fight ensued, I got up, lit the lantern and saw those footprints right next to my bedroll, leading outside into the darkness (fire barrel was still burning). And somewhere out there I glimpsed the shape of a wolf running around. Man, that was creepy. :shock:

Interestingly, I have never seen the prints when a wolf runs off after a handfight...

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Aha! Lightbulb. I wonder if wolves are only leaving paw prints when they get scared and run off, either because of the Wolfskin coat, fire, or missed gunshot. This is something I'm going to pay attention to now.

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Injured several wolves again today, couldnt even track down one :(

God I'm slowly becoming annoyed!

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hmm im pretty sure i have seen prints in the snow. they just arent as defined as the characters ones.

They should up the contrast on these prints to make it easier to find them. Maybe even every eigth or tenth or twelfth print should stick through into the mud in low areas so we can see them easier.

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I would really like fewer deer / wolves / rabbits but with tracking to be a very important game aspect and have the wildlife render a lot more food....i.e. one deer would last a week. Tracking would then become a life and death struggle...not just...oh, I need to go here because there are always deer / rabbits, etc.... This would put the game right over the top for me!

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I would really like fewer deer / wolves / rabbits but with tracking to be a very important game aspect and have the wildlife render a lot more food....i.e. one deer would last a week. Tracking would then become a life and death struggle...not just...oh, I need to go here because there are always deer / rabbits, etc.... This would put the game right over the top for me!

I think tracking needs to be a highlighted item. You see a track and click on, going into a tracking mode. You character stays in tracking mode until they "run". This means your character has to walk slower as they are looking for spore. They could the game would then make the tracks stand out more, so they player could follow them. Tracking mode might allow faster travel with obvious spore (like a blood trail) but once the trail start to go cold, the mode would have to be turned back on.

It would be cool for the players to knee down and click to start tracking. The game avatar could then have a few choice words like, "bleeding pretty heavily" or "they were here just a moment ago". This could also let the players see some old spore but upon investigation the avatar says something about the spore being old or the trail is limited.

Given time the players tracking skill could increase, like that of repair or fire building. Letting the player see spore the untrained eye would miss outright.

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I could see Tracking becoming a new skill added to the game. I would still have issue though with prints instead of tracks through the snow. It just feels wrong to me that the character as well as all animals magically float across the snow and do not leave easily identifiable tracks, no matter the depth. It feels as though there is no point to snow falling, as there is no accumulation of that snow and just disappears when it hits the ground. Maybe that's it for me, that the snow does not seem to accumulate or have depth no matter how much it snows.

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I think tracking needs to be a highlighted item. You see a track and click on, going into a tracking mode. You character stays in tracking mode until they "run". This means your character has to walk slower as they are looking for spore. They could the game would then make the tracks stand out more, so they player could follow them. Tracking mode might allow faster travel with obvious spore (like a blood trail) but once the trail start to go cold, the mode would have to be turned back on.

This is an interesting idea, but I am not in favour--it's too much like the many other games where there's a 'special vision' mode. Tracking in TLD should be your own skill as a player seeing the tracks in game, without a special mode where the character sees the tracks for you.

This being said, I would very much like tracks to be made more visible and persistent, so that tracking is a possibility

@Willbonney -- With regards to tracks versus prints; while I agree with your points, this may be one of those realism sacrifices that needs to be made for gameplay. I just don't know if making realistic tracks in deep snow is doable--ie can it be done right and look good decent? prints--yes, tracks.... less sure.

Which would be more important-- having prints/tracks that could be used for tracking? or having accurate tracks in deep snow instead of prints?

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@Willbonney -- With regards to tracks versus prints; while I agree with your points, this may be one of those realism sacrifices that needs to be made for gameplay. I just don't know if making realistic tracks in deep snow is doable--ie can it be done right and look good decent? prints--yes, tracks.... less sure.

Which would be more important-- having prints/tracks that could be used for tracking? or having accurate tracks in deep snow instead of prints?

Not sure to be honest. It's just the one thing having been quite a bit an outdoorsman for so many years that has stood out in my mind as "being wrong." First with having wounded a wolf and having it run off, and seeing how much harder following that wounded wolf's path through the snow was in comparison to real life, it's a heck of a lot harder and that has nothing to do with my personal skill of tracking. Thus why I initially started the conversation, it's a part of the game that completely leaves the scope of reality in my mind. And as we've discussed it further, I believe I've been able to pinpoint that exact details of why it has such an effect.

Is it important? No clue, it's not my game. But it's my feedback of something that just feels wrong to me when playing.

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I think tracking needs to be a highlighted item. You see a track and click on, going into a tracking mode. You character stays in tracking mode until they "run". This means your character has to walk slower as they are looking for spore. They could the game would then make the tracks stand out more, so they player could follow them. Tracking mode might allow faster travel with obvious spore (like a blood trail) but once the trail start to go cold, the mode would have to be turned back on.

This is an interesting idea, but I am not in favour--it's too much like the many other games where there's a 'special vision' mode. Tracking in TLD should be your own skill as a player seeing the tracks in game, without a special mode where the character sees the tracks for you.

This being said, I would very much like tracks to be made more visible and persistent, so that tracking is a possibility

Tracking is not a passive skill. You actively have to look at your environment for spore: prints, broken branches, skat, etc. Following a blood trail seems like it would be easy, but it is not. Even if we are only talking about tracking large game, they can cover an incredible distance in a very short time fueled by fear and adrenalin. A wounded buck can run for miles and miles with a fatal wound, even if it is bleeding heavily. The player then has to contend with snow/sleet/rain covering up the easy marks of passage.

While I am not up for a Batman "investigation" mode for tracking game, I do think more needs to be done. Right now the only signs for an animals passage are blood. I have seen pics of other tracks, but I have followed a wolf and a dear visually... never seeing a single track left by either. Right now, the only marks of passage are through snow. More will have to be added to the environment that can be impacted by physics to take tracking to the level I believe we are discussing. Either that... or it becomes a mini game.

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I agree, tracking requires attention. My assertion is that we the player should have to pay attention as we play, rather than have a tracking mode that allows the character to track without the player paying as much attention. This relies, of course, on trackable animal sign...

On that topic, maybe we should let the devs tell us what can and cannot be done. Providing examples of what we think tracks should look like for the animals in game would be a good start I think.

As far as the physics go, I am hopeful that the devs could come up with an ingenious solution to this-- either to make tracks look decent without requiring physically modelled snow, or to make snow impactable.

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I agree, tracking requires attention. My assertion is that we the player should have to pay attention as we play, rather than have a tracking mode that allows the character to track without the player paying as much attention. This relies, of course, on trackable animal sign...

On that topic, maybe we should let the devs tell us what can and cannot be done. Providing examples of what we think tracks should look like for the animals in game would be a good start I think.

As far as the physics go, I am hopeful that the devs could come up with an ingenious solution to this-- either to make tracks look decent without requiring physically modelled snow, or to make snow impactable.

We will see what we can do and post a reply on this thread.

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