Meat harvesting: knife+hatchet or knife vs hatchet


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AFAIK now the situation is so that character is automatically choosing one and "the best" tool for harvesting. It is the hunting knife now. It is OK because in general the knife is always better then the hatchet for the skin and guts. But for the meat the situation is ambiguous, so i think it is possible to make things more close to reality.

I would not argue that for the small carcass knife is generally better then the hatchet (i mean harvesting meat only). But for the big ones, especially frozen ones, the hatchet will do better because it is much faster and easier to chop off the leg or the other big part then to separate it with the knife. In real life having both the knife and the hatchet one can use them both for different kind of actions. IMHO, i never did it myself.

The suggestion is to make meat harvesting (at least for big carcasses) when the character is keeping in the inventory both knife and hatchet even more faster then only with the knife.

Another suggestion.

While the meat harvesting is time consuming, and if to harvest all the meat from the carcass, the timing is rather OK.

Though, maybe it will be good to give the player ability to take "unprocessed meat" (witch may be twice or so heavier and could not be cooked) if it is too cold outside and there is no wood to make the fire? For the big carcasses it may be half-time, for the small carcass may be taken whole as the "unprocessed small carcass or unprocessed meat, unprocessed hide/fur, unprocessed gut". And then to process them indoors.

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Completely gutting a carcass is always done in the field to avoid meat contamination, and skinning is common as well though not 100% necessary, but stripping the meat from the bones is usually done in camp rather than in field conditions, as it is a very time-consuming process, more so than the game requires, to be honest. So the game mechanic is kind of unrealistic to begin with, but is a reasonably good approximation for the game's purposes. Keep in mind that not all of an animal's meat need be harvested in one go, I often do bear kills in stages, the meat suffers little degradation as long as you get back to it fairly quickly.

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+1 to unprocessed meat harvesting, faster if having both knife and hatchet

I fear though this will need a lot of changes in the game. Ok, let's assume a unprocessed meat (a hind leg, some 7 kg). After 3 hours outside it would be frozen stiff. In the cabin it will be frozen stiff (it's minus zero Celsius at all times and I don't see building a fire thawing that meat any time the same day).

So unprocessed meat is frozen for all intents and purposes. That means harvesting the meat roughly around the bone to produce chunks for the frying pan. The rest would make prime ingredients for a broth...but that's been proposed long ago and I believe it is still not on the "to do" list.

If you can only harvest meat chunks, it would mean a waste of some 40% of the mass.

Some ask for fewer animals (well, dears and rabbits, anyway). If so, the deers should yield much more meat than a lean wolf. I mean, here in the Carpathians, our deer are big things, and I guess 20 kg of meat out of a small dear of 40kgs is realistic. The rarity of such a find and the sheer weight and time necessary to harvest all that meat would make necessary a sled to drag the carcass to camp (sled being another thing that's been asked a long, long time).

I believe harvesting the skin can only be done if unfrozen, and for the reason stated above, could only be done on a fresh kill

So, yeah, I'm all for it

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