Hey Ralph. Want to start off by saying I love this game to bits. I've been following it since early access, and I immediately bought the game on my PS4 when it was released. I also thoroughly enjoyed the REDUX of Episodes 1 & 2 of Wintermute. The gaming scene needs more developers like Hinterland, the fact that you guys listened to the community's feedback and actually went back to improve upon Wintermute was awesome. I have a list of questions, and I know it's quite a lot, so it's perfectly ok if your answers are brief or if you skip some:
1. I'm currently spending my time in Survival Mode in the Big Milton House in the Mountain Town region, on Voyageur difficulty. I'm in the process of curing wolf, rabbit, deer pelts and even a Bear pelt, which I obtained from a Bear stalking the Spruce Falls Bridge. I would love to find a moose so that I can make a Moose-hide Satchel, but I can't seem to find one. I know from previous runs of Survival Mode and from the Wiki page that a moose can spawn either in the little Birch Forest in the Milton Basin and to the North of the Region, near a small pond, a little south-east to the trailer. I've had no luck near the small pond, so recently I made my way to the Milton Basin birch forest, where I found 4 trees with clear moose markings, but no moose. I thought "alright, well it probably just de-spawned for the day". So I went over to the Hermit's Cabin with a bedroll and spent the night there, only to return the next morning to still find no moose. I repeated this process for 3 more days until I got impatient and returned to the Milton House. Have I misunderstood the game mechanics? Do moose markings on a tree not guarantee an actual moose spawn? I've also had no luck with moose spawns in the Forlorn Muskeg. Is my game possibly glitched/bugged? Are there some in Mystery Lake or Broken Railroad?
2. The Bear Spear was an awesome addition to the Episode 2 Redux, and I'm pretty sure you've hinted at adding it into Survival Mode in the future, and this sounds awesome! Some questions concerning its addition (i understand if you and the team haven't worked out all the mechanics, not asking for concrete answers):
- Will you be able to find it in the world? Or can it only be obtained through work at a forge?
- Will it lose condition in survival mode? In Wintermute ep. 2 it does not, and it also doesn't have weight. If so, will you be able to repair it, or will it be similar to a prybar? Around how much will it weigh?
- Will it be effective against moose and wolf charges? I've tried using it against a wolf in ep. 2 and they keep their distance and growl at me when i have it ready, but given the limited stamina, after dropping it they immidiately charged me. Is the spear working as intended, in the sense that it is only meant for bear engagements? I imagine if the answer is no, then the weight of the weapon would have to be relatively low, due to it being much more situational than something like the hunting rifle.
- Will it take as many stabs/succesful struggles as it does in ep. 2 to bring down a normal Black Bear?
3. Are there any plans to add more animals into the game? I've seen talks of you showing interest in the idea of a cougar, which is cool. Some ideas I have are; foxes (since it's the logo of Hinterland and the Pilgrim difficulty), racoons, skunks, beavers, Buffalo/prairie bison, lynx/bobcats and some sort of flying animal, such as an owl, which you could set a trap for and use it as another means of acquired feathers for arrow crafting?
4. Have you ever considered adding more firearms to the game? I understand that you wouldn't want to turn the game into a First Person Shooter, but I feel the game is sorta empty only having the hunting rifle (which is way too common on Voyageur btw), Survival Bow and the Distress Pistol (which is so rare i've only found it at Timberwolf Mountain). I'd be cool to have an old revolver in the game, possibly a break action? A shotgun would also be pretty cool, either an old Remington pump action or a Double barrel, break action shotgun. These wouldn't be used for hunting, mainly only for defense from wolves. A crossbow would be awesome too, although that may be pushing things. To address these, the "rifle firearm" perk could be renamed to "firearms"? The fact that you find Military coats, boots and combat pants could say that some of the residents of Great Bear were in the military, and when they came back they brought with them a firearm. Will even hints at Jeremiah about being in the Military in the redux of ep. 2 through a couple dialogue lines.
5. The Moose Hide Cloak is kind of underwhelming, and I dont see why anyone would chose to craft it instead of the Moose-hide satchel. Would you consider giving it a buff in the future? Also, every pelt in the game at the moment has 2 craftable items, except for the wolf pelts, which you can only use to craft a wolfskin coat. Will another craftable wolf-skin related item be added in the future?
Alright thats it. Thanks for taking the time to read all this. I hope you had a wonderful Winter Break and I'm looking forward to what 2019 has to offer in terms of new content for The Long Dark.