Is BlackRock... lovable?


AdamvR

Is BlackRock ... lovable?  

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[this post is about survival only]
One of the things I like best in TLD is to discover a new region.
I have kept BlackRock unvisited until now, to savour what I was expecting to be a special area: probably challenging, but worthwhile.
I found the vest, repaired the radio tower,  found quite a few shortcuts, stumbled upon a (mostly empty) prepper's cache, noisemakers, and have also managed to get into the workshop using only the clues of the region itself: I think I have visited a very large part of the map already. And I cannot say I have fallen in love... It seemed to me like an exercise in cruelty: with so many timberwolves everywhere, dead ends, mazes, forced detours and crappy weather. There seems to be a lot of material available, but am not fully sure if I personally find it to be worth it. (for comparison: I love BI, really, happy to spend there weeks, even if there are less resources in comparison)
Maybe I've missed something? What do others think of this region? (you can also explain in more detail, than what options I put in the poll 😉 )

Edited by AdamvR
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I'm.not a fan of the place really, I'll make the first visit to grab the vest and a quick loot,including the prepper cache..  it's usually a while before I go back again..if the cache is full I might be tempted to go more often but not really that keen..  bricklayers is a nice little part of the map though and the moose is usually a regular spawn there for me.

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I, actually like it. Ive been living there for 100 days str8 one time on Interloper. I like the Bricklayers retreat base a lot. The place around it is so nice and food plentifull. There is a chance for a Moose on the pond, i always had a bear spawn in the cave nearby in all of the runs - the cave also serves well for Cabin Fever purpouse if needed. There are Timberwolves around which is a "fun" factor. You can get easily to the prison or mine from this location using the path behind the bear cave, then through the tunnel system to the power plant - the west part of the map if you want. Actually when you "get to know the map" better its very traverseble and easy to explore. There are some cool places on the map where you can stay for a couple of days like the broken cabin with the stove inside etc.  I like luring timberwolves near the Bricklayers enterancie/pier and mess with them there running around and shooting them while they try to catch me. Its 2 minutes away from the barn in cooks farm - i llike luring the pack that is there to the bridge where im safe and just kill them one by one and they cant get to me. There is another pack on the other side of that bridge as well so i always have a fire there and a stack of wolfmeat. The Vest is a bonus - i actually used it maybe once or twice in the entire game. I like to have it in my main base for display.. I also tend to make a base in the officers office and near the firebarrel and bus in the prison. Like to kill the normal wolves and the 2nd bear if he is on (total of 3 bears in this region if im correct). The milling machine there repairs all of the gear for one scrap metal you dont need to reforge in late game when you dont have any more wetstones in the world and if you take 20-30 arrowheads there it will be enough. Yeah i like living there. As a matter of fact im on my way there now on my current Super Interloper run but had a skirmish with a bear in PV and will have to recuperate for at least a week in his cave consuming him whole to be able to travel again...... yes regeneration from 10 to 100% will take me a week at least on this difficulty. 

Edited by James Hickok
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Thanks @James Hickok, that is a useful perspective. Maybe I need to give it some more time to feel more comfortable on the map. (I found a couple of shortcuts/safecuts, so knowing them better might enhance the experience I believe)
I have also found the bridge you are talking about, sounds like a great tactic:)

I haven't found a forge here though, if I'm reading you correct, I should not be looking further for it... 😉

Also, I found some mentions of a bear inside the prison fence before climbing into the warden's office - and going for the vest.
In my (stalker) run I had a lone blackwolf there, bringing me a meagre 3kgs of meat for dinner, but no bear. Does it not spawn all the time, or has it changed? Or was I looking for it in the wrong place?

Edited by AdamvR
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6 minutes ago, AdamvR said:

Thanks @James Hickok, that is a useful perspective. Maybe I need to give it some more time to feel more comfortable on the map. (I found a couple of shortcuts/safecuts, so knowing them better might enhance the experience I believe)
I have also found the bridge you are talking about, sounds like a great tactic:)

I haven't found a forge here though, if I'm reading you correct, I should not be looking further for it... 😉

Yeah mabe try to give it another try. Maybe You will change Your mind. 

PS. Yes no forge. 

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37 minutes ago, AdamvR said:

Thanks @James Hickok, that is a useful perspective. Maybe I need to give it some more time to feel more comfortable on the map. (I found a couple of shortcuts/safecuts, so knowing them better might enhance the experience I believe)
I have also found the bridge you are talking about, sounds like a great tactic:)

I haven't found a forge here though, if I'm reading you correct, I should not be looking further for it... 😉

Also, I found some mentions of a bear inside the prison fence before climbing into the warden's office - and going for the vest.
In my (stalker) run I had a lone blackwolf there, bringing me a meagre 3kgs of meat for dinner, but no bear. Does it not spawn all the time, or has it changed? Or was I looking for it in the wrong place?

The bear is in the other part of the prison where you must go to get inside for the vest. You have to go outside via the gates near the bus and firebarrel and carry on left to get to the other part of the prison. Be wary there are a couple of black volves outside the fence. And yes the bear is not always ON. 

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7 minutes ago, James Hickok said:

The bear is in the other part of the prison where you must go to get inside for the vest. You have to go outside via the gates near the bus and firebarrel and carry on left to get to the other part of the prison. Be wary there are a couple of black volves outside the fence. And yes the bear is not always ON.

I think I was at the right place then, also found the black wolves. (nice trick of HL to include those as well;-)) thanks!

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I haven't seen the bear in the prison for quite a while..the last time I did I shot it and left it to bleed out,when I got back outside it had disappeared and been replaced by a wolf.  

 

The prepper cache at least is not somewhere ridiculous to get to ,(unlike ash in my opinion)actually it might be too easy to find.. but handy if it's full.

 

 

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I find it like any other region really, not much more difficult or easier. Of course, unless you spawn there or are bored there's not really that much reason to visit any of it. It's just general loot. Anyway, it has nice atmosphere.

Edited by Mistral
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I like attempting one-zone challenge runs (50 days in a single zone) on various difficulty levels (not saying I'm very successful at going the full 50 days on the higher difficulties, but I do find them fun).  Black rock is, perhaps, one of the zones with the most to offer in the way of potential for variety in such a run, so for that I love it - it's brutal, but that's what a challenge run is all about.

PS:  I absolutely hate T-wolves, though.😀

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I am literally avoiding it right now, to the extent that it's probably where I need to go next so I'm avoiding even loading up my run!

I'm not interested in the vest, but when I do go there I will probably loot as much as I can, maybe kill the bear at Bear's Bend (because the log bridge over the road makes it irresistable) and try to hang around to get a better familiarity with the place. Still not looking forward to it though!

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Of course, Blackrock is lovable.

I find that regions that I at one time found daunting, if I just spend time and kind of push myself to "get to know them" better... I've always found that I grow to love them.  I'll give examples.

When Pleasant Valley first appeared... I didn't like it very much and for the most part either avoided it, or just got in and out as quickly as I could.  However, after challenging myself to dwell there for a substantial length of time, I grew to love it.

It was the same type of story for Hushed River Valley, Timberwolf Moutain, and Bleak Inlet... 
In the case of Timberwolf Mountain, it became my favorite region to live in.

:coffee::fire::coffee:
Point is, that when I push outside of my comfort zone into regions that seem daunting and deadly, I find that I surprise myself in how quickly one can adapt.  I really do enjoy the struggle (at least in TLD, that is).

Edited by ManicManiac
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Update: In the meantime, after having spent some more time in BRK I am feeling more comfortable there.
Still not my favorite, but even revisited it multiple times: nice to have another milling machine/ammo forge in the northern part of the map as well.
Bonus: after having spent quite some time there, other regions feel like "oh, these are just black wolves.. nothing to worry about" 😉 

Around the 3rd/4th time when I revisited the prison, I've heard (and checked and saw through the fence) the bear in the last section - which was only a black wolf for me before. It does not appear to have been permanently replaced by a wolf... I'm suspecting that it was a wolf when i first went there, as I killed a bear or two not long before going there, and the game somehow tried to balance it - as opposed to the latest time, when I just sneaked in without much interaction with wildlife. But that is just a guess..., maybe it is total RND. Just wanted to mention, that the bear can still be there, so be careful when going for the warden's office...:)

Edited by AdamvR
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I dislike it quite a bit indeed. It does not feel like most of the other regions, like it's just kind of a place that you happen to try to survive in, but a very linear, curated compendium of specific challenges. It's like an arcade. There's some specific reason for everything and it feels really blunt and obvious.

The bear in the prison yard area sums this up perfectly in my opinion. Why is it there? It doesn't even have a den, it just kind of... exists. It wouldn't have reasonable access to prey. Just wanders around there for the sole purpose of providing a "boss fight" before you get to the warden's office. It feels set up and unnatural. Many of the maze-like parts feel like they've been turned into a maze just for the sake of there being a maze.

To me the whole place just oozes that feel of developers trying to design a series of challenges, rather than an environment.

So these are not really gameplay aspects for me, more of a meta situation, I just don't like its design very much.

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