Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

Below, a thin crevice carved into the rock. Above, the stars. I wasn’t quite at the roof of the world but I was definitely in some sort of grim penthouse. The cold didn’t bother me anymore, frostbite having chewed the nerves out of my extremities, and the cold wouldn’t claim me. Nor would the wolves that seemed determined to keep me on the mountainside. I’d decided to die on my own terms. I stepped into the void.

That morning, I’d been reflecting on how grand life can be as I cooked freshly caught whitefish on a pot-bellied stove, snug inside a lonely cabin by a frozen lake. This wasn’t The Long Dark [official site], this was an escape from the rat race, and I was happily prepared for the challenge of Timberwolf Mountain, looming overhead.

… [visit site to read more]

Community Announcements - Hinterland_Studio
We've just hotfixed The Long Dark to v.393 to address the following bug:

* Fixed issue where Arrows would disappear upon save or scene transition.

###END OF CHANGELIST###
Community Announcements - hinterland_community
We've just hotfixed The Long Dark to v.392 -- changelist below.

The Long Dark Sandbox v.392 Changelist:

* Fixed crash that could occur when getting Frostbite
* Fixed uncommon crash related to leaving footprints
* Reduced glare cast from first person Flare and Torch
* Fixed issue with predators interrupting player sleep in invalid locations
* Fixed issue with too many Wolves spawning in Pleasant Valley
* Fixed issue with harvested Saplings sometimes providing Cured Branches
* Fixed issue with items falling through ice after a Struggle
* Fixed issue with wildlife sometimes not being able to pathfind to valid locations
* Fixed issue with screen sometimes not smoothly fading in when starting a new game
* Fixed issue with extra cancel button prompt sometimes showing up on Inventory UI (gamepad only)
* Fixed issues with getting stuck in Forlorn Muskeg and Jackrabbit Island
* Fixed issue with getting stuck when exiting the bed in the Quonset
* Fixed issue with Forlorn Muskeg Safe not working properly in Interloper
* Fixed issue with a container being destroyed in Forlorn Muskeg when breaking down a metal shelf
* Fixed issue with being able to use Forge before it's hot enough
* Fixed issue with First Aid Kits floating after breaking down furniture
* Fixed issue with Research button not being localized
* Fixed background blur when cancelling the delete of a save slot
* Fixed missing damage state art for some clothing items
* Assign non-zero weight bonus for fish at Ice Fishing Skill Level 4
* Assign non-zero reduction in fishing time at Ice Fishing Skill Level 2
* Fixed collision issues in some caves that could prevent picking up items
* Fixed issue with drawn Survival Bow movement speed retained after Wolf or Bear struggle
* Fixed issue with Arrows not animating properly in certain cases
* Fixed corpse loot issue on Timberwolf Mountain
* Fixed issue with Snares not being visible at moderate distance
* Updated copyright notice on main menu

### END OF CHANGELIST ###
Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

If I could, I’d attach their heads to spikes and mark out the perimeter of my territory with their blood. The frozen fields are already littered with carcasses, and I’m wrapped in a stinking hide, but it’s not enough to keep the wolves at bay. They are wary of me, but their hunger for my flesh is stronger than their fear.

I’ve been living at Pleasant Valley Farmstead for two weeks but it feels like a lifetime. These are my adventures in The Long Dark [official site], a game which has singlehandedly convinced me that the survival genre has a bright future.

… [visit site to read more]

Community Announcements - Hinterland_Studio
Hello community,

We've just hotfixed The Long Dark Sandbox to v.388, to fix a few bugs introduced (or discovered) after the release of our "Resolute Outfitter" update.

Changelist:

* Fixed delay after eating/drinking in inventory
* Fixed collision on shed in Forlorn Muskeg region
* Fixed minor clipping issues with objects in Forlorn Muskeg region
* Fixed area where player could exit the map in Forlorn Muskeg region
* Fixed bear getting stuck inside rail car in Forlorn Muskeg region
* Fixed broken stats for old save games

###END OF CHANGELIST###

A Note on Stats in v.386

We noticed that we accidentally included a bug with the stats, which shifted all of your stats down a field, so they appear in the wrong place. This hotfix should address the bug for all NEW games you start afterwards. However, it will not fix the issue for any games you started between v.386 and this version, v.388.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you!

A Note on Holiday Hours

The team has worked hard this year and will be taking a break between now and January, to rest up for the big push in 2017.

As a result, Community support will be available, but at a reduced intensity over the next two weeks. Please keep this in mind when asking for support, either in the forums, or by email.

If you find bugs and would like to log them, please do so in our public bug database. We will check them ASAP:

https://hinterlandgames.atlassian.net/projects/TLDP/

If you prefer to send us an email, please do so at: support(at)hinterlandgames(dot)com, or post issues in the Technical Issues section of the forum, located here: http://steamcommunity.com/app/305620/discussions/4/

As mentioned, please allow extra time -- up to 48 hours -- for us to respond.

In general, the best support for the community tends to be the community itself, so feel free to ask for help if you are stuck, need game help or advice, are having technical issues, or just want to share your story. Our community is fantastic and we all look out for each other. Please remember to be kind to each other, mind our Community Guidelines, and enjoy a safe and happy holiday season.

2017 is going to be a very big year for The Long Dark. Thank you for being on this journey with us.

- The Hinterland Team

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alice O'Connor)

It seems only fitting that icy survival sandbox The Long Dark [official site] should launch its biggest update of the year two days before the solstice. Days round my way are now below seven hours and mercy me, I’m so excited to reach the longest dark and pass on through. The ‘Resolute Outfitter’ update has added a new world area, a desolate land of ice and dead trees, and hugely overhauled the game’s clothing. Every garment’s art has been redesigned and rebuilt, they way clothes work is hugely overhauled, and there’s a tidy paper doll to show what you’re wearing. Go on you scamps, wrap up warm then slip out in the night. … [visit site to read more]

Community Announcements - Hinterland_Studio
Dear Community,

It’s time to talk about Story Mode again. Since this is the last community update I’ll be posting in 2016, this is also a good time to reflect on the last year of development on The Long Dark. The two stories are connected.

2016 has been a challenging year for me, and for Hinterland. We opened the year with the plan of launching Story Mode this past Spring, but I just didn’t feel good about where things were at, given the compromises I felt we were making to do that. I wanted to push further, do more, with the game, knowing that after all this time of you waiting for Story Mode, it would have to be something truly groundbreaking to really live up to your expectations. And to live up to our expectations.

It’s been a constant balancing act between keeping our Sandbox players engaged and happy with updates, and also having the majority of the team working away on Story mode. Since it’s difficult to share Story progress without spoiling it, people sometimes feel as though we’re not working on it, which is frustrating for them, and for us. We deal with this by trying to stay focused on our launch and remember Miyamoto’s adage: “A delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad.” We appreciate all of you who continue to support us patiently.

https://youtu.be/uizRfzcFaxo

Caption: A sample of the 2D style we’re using for cinematic moments.

One of the areas we’ve tackled this year is character realization. Prior to our Spring delay, our plan was to present all our characters in 2D motion-graphics sequences. We’re still using that presentation style for specific parts of our narrative, but I really wanted to push more of the storytelling directly into the gameplay space and I wasn’t happy with the idea that all our storytelling and character interaction would happen through 2D cinematic scenes. Despite the fact that our cinematic style is beautiful, I felt that we were somehow selling ourselves -- and the game...and our community -- short, by not trying to get more of this interaction into the gameplay space itself. This has been an aspiration of mine ever since I started working in games -- inspired by Half Life and Half Life 2, and their progeny -- an aspiration that has remained unfulfilled in all the games I’ve shipped to date. I guess I’m stubborn that way.

I don’t know that we’ll get to Half Life quality interactive narrative in the first iteration, but getting more of our characters living and breathing in the world is still our target, and we’ve spent a lot of this year working on achieving that goal. But taking on 3D characters ended up being a much bigger undertaking than we expected. The whole 3D character pipeline was entirely new for this team, game, and engine -- we hadn’t made any of these characters, really, apart from a test (which you saw in our April Story Mode update -- the man near the fire; his name is Methuselah and we’ll have more to say about him in the future) and wildlife, which have very different requirements. It took us several months to work through the kinks in our content pipeline, get the tech working well, and in the end the initial results were not satisfactory.

We’re continuing to iterate on what we have, and still struggling a bit with the tech and the content, but we’re getting closer. In the end, we’ll present our storytelling content through a combination of 2D motion-graphics scenes, and some in-game 3D moments, choosing the presentation style that best supports the creative goals of each particular moment. It’ll just have taken much longer than expected, to get there. On the good side, the possibility of having limited 3D character content in the world does open up some useful creative doors to other systems that would be hard to pull off without 3D NPCs, including better ways to reflect how your survival decisions as a player may affect other people you encounter, which is one of the key ways we want Story Mode to build on what Sandbox already offers. In Sandbox, you focus exclusively on how your choices affect your own survival -- a very ego-centric experience. In Story, we want you to think beyond yourself, and consider how your choices affect others.

https://youtu.be/AGsiY2DpTr8

Caption: In Story Mode, you’ll finally get to see how the Aurora affects the world around you, introducing new hazards...and new possibilities.

With the Sandbox update we just released -- Resolute Outfitter -- we’ve added the last major core gameplay system that remains before we launch Story Mode. We have two or three additional major systems we’re working on that we’ll be launching *with* Story Mode -- and these are pretty significant in how they change the way the game feels -- it’s likely that both these systems will also find their way into Sandbox, but we’re still working out those details.

That’s been a theme this year -- the gameplay relationship between Sandbox and Story mode. My original premise for The Long Dark was that Sandbox would be the proving ground for systems, and Story would add the narrative layer. In general, this is how most open-world games function. That said, most open world games build their narrative layer in conjunction with their systems layer and due to our splitting the two “modes” apart, largely for the purposes of keeping spoilers out of Sandbox mode -- the Sandbox game has, to some degree, evolved to take on its own life as its own experience. It needs its own things to be successful -- it has its own “heartbeat”, as it were. And a hungry community needs to be fed! Thus, Sandbox continues to grow, in some ways, beyond the gameplay needs of Story mode...

That’s not to say that Story Mode isn’t built on a foundation of Sandbox mechanics, but I think I over-estimated the extent to which Story Mode could be layered on top of Sandbox, without changes to systems or tuning. Some systems that work really well in Sandbox actually work against the player goals in Story, and vice versa. So, this year we’ve been working through that process -- pulling Sandbox mechanics into the Story game and refining them, streamlining them, tuning them differently, to support the more narrative-driven experience you get in Story. And likewise, there are some mechanics that are built for Story mode and will exist there first and most “purely”, and could get adapted for Sandbox afterwards.

https://youtu.be/dC8WMkY_I48

Caption: In Story Mode, we’re introducing new regions designed to help present the backdrop of The Long Dark’s quiet apocalypse.

With the pressures of wanting to make significant progress on Story Mode without abandoning our players who mostly care about Sandbox, I grew the team to about 25 developers this year, with -- at various points -- most of them working on Story Mode content and systems, and either small “maintenance” teams working on Sandbox updates, or -- depending on the complexity of the update -- occasionally pulling a large portion of the team into helping finalize or test Sandbox mechanics (as we just did for our latest update). I’d say this has been the biggest challenge for our team, and for myself personally. I’ve led large game teams before -- up to 150 developers -- but in trying to stay lean on management overhead and also having a lot of the team being distributed (i.e. not everyone works in the same physical studio space), at some point we hit a size where things just became a lot more complex to manage and to move forward. We’re working through it and have taken steps to improve certain aspects -- including opening up a second physical studio space to house about ⅓ of our development team who were all living in the same city but working apart -- but to some degree these are challenges you solve while on the run, laying track while the train is running, and it’d be dishonest to pretend they don’t have an impact on development progress.

So that’s a lot of words but what you want to know is -- where do things stand with Story Mode? Well as always, in the interest of withholding spoilers, I’ll keep things high level. We have about 6 hours of playable Story Mode gameplay, currently split into two episodes, and these are the episodes we will launch with. The first part serves as a prologue and sets the tone of the story and explains something about the world you find yourself in. The second part continues the story of Will Mackenzie, and what he encounters and learns about the quiet apocalypse of The Long Dark. Astrid’s story, unfortunately, will not be playable at launch, but her Episode will come soon after. We are still planning to release five episodes in Season One, all of which our Early Access/Kickstarter/Game Preview players will get automatically as they are unlocked, for the price they have already paid. We have some cinematic content, we have some in-game character moments, all the voice recording for Mackenzie and Astrid is done, as it is for most of the supporting characters (but not all). We’ve created two whole regions that are new to Story Mode (not counting the new Sandbox region we’ve just released, Forlorn Muskeg), one of them is finished and being polished, and the other is getting a bit of an overhaul for story reasons, but it’s close to being complete, and is pretty unique for our game. We’re about to start scoring the game -- Cris Velasco, who I was fortunate enough to work with on Space Marine, will be composing the score for Story mode, to complement the beautiful work done by Sascha Dikiciyan in the Sandbox score. We’ll be starting that after the holidays. I have some more design work to complete on the remaining systems I mentioned earlier, and then we can finish those as well.

Video: https://youtu.be/yTBs6UZnYHA

Caption: Unfortunately, this guy didn’t quite make it in for 2016. As you can tell, he’s not very happy about it.

As I’ve said before, I won’t provide dates until they are close enough that we are 100% guaranteed to hit them, but I feel really good about where Story mode is at the end of 2016, and we’ll have lots of exciting stuff to share -- including new announcements -- some time after the holidays.

As with the last community update, I’ve teased a few of the things we’ve been working on for our Story Mode launch throughout this post. Enjoy, and thanks for reading. In the meantime, please make sure you check out our latest update, Resolute Outfitter, which introduces a whole new Region, as well as an extensive overhaul of the Clothing system, a Frostbite affliction, and tons of other fixes and gameplay modifications.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHK7nfv9dRM

Caption: Update video for "Resolute Outfitter".

On behalf of the entire team at Hinterland, I wish you and your loved ones a great holiday season. 2017 is going to be a huge year for Hinterland, and The Long Dark. We’re glad that you’re here with us.

- Raphael
Community Announcements - Hinterland_Studio


We’ve just updated The Long Dark’s Sandbox mode to v.386, “Resolute Outfitter”. This is the last Sandbox update of 2016, and the biggest of the year. Details below.

Video:
https://youtu.be/OHK7nfv9dRM

***

NEW REGION: FORLORN MUSKEG

We’ve added a new region to the game -- Forlorn Muskeg. It’s a vast frozen landscape of dead trees and ice. There’s very little shelter, so this region is definitely not for the faint of heart. Hardy explorers will be rewarded with access to a second Forge.

NEW CLOTHING ART

All the Clothing items have been re-built from scratch to better reflect the game’s art style. You may see some familiar items updated, as well as many new items.

NEW CLOTHING ITEMS

There are over 65 items now, which nearly doubles the amount of Clothing items in the game. We’ve also included a new Craftable Clothing item: Bearskin Coat.

CLOTHING TUNING

Every Clothing item in the game has had a tuning pass, though we expect to change some things based on further playtesting feedback. This tuning pass includes re-balancing the Weights and Warmth values of pre-existing Clothing items, to reflect the fact that you can now find and use a lot more Clothing than before.

CLOTHING LAYERING SYSTEM

You can now layer Clothing items using a slot-based system. Some areas of the body -- example, the Torso -- have multiple slots, which allows you to layer more than one thing. For example, you can wear two items on your head, whether that means two Toques, or Two Scarves, a Scarf + Toque, etc.

CLOTHING UI & “PAPER DOLL”

There is a whole new Clothing UI, which communicates what your Survivor is currently wearing in the various slots. You can now easily see when a slot is empty, and remedy that. You can also see when a slot has multiple options available, for example when you pick up a new Clothing item.

Cycling through the valid items in a slot will allow you to see a comparison between the currently equipped item in that slot, and the other valid items in your Backpack that would work in that slot.

Paper Doll layering should display the correct items on the outside layers, giving you a quick visual frame of reference as to what your Survivor is wearing.

Damage states are visualized on the Clothing Items and on the Paper Doll items, providing a quick visual frame of reference for whether items need to be repaired or not.

You can access the new Clothing UI from the Radial menu, from the Backpack interface, or using the C hotkey.

WETNESS, FREEZING, & DRYING

In certain weather types, your exterior Clothing layer now accumulates Wetness. As items become Wet, they lose some of their Warmth value, and become heavier. Once an item is 100% Wet, it begins to slowly Freeze. Frozen items lose more of their Warmth value, and become heavier. An item’s Warmth value when Wet depends on the Material type. Ex. Wool retains more Warmth when wet, than Cotton.

Wet and Frozen items can be dried when worn or placed near a Fire, or when worn in interior locations with above freezing temperatures. Each Clothing item has a different rate at which it dries, depending on the Material type.

Dry Clothing protects your body from accelerated Hypothermia risk, and Frostbite.

CLOTHING ITEM STATS

Every Clothing Item now has a series of Stats which are displayed when you select that item in the Clothing interface. Gear selection and maintenance will require a balance between these various factors.

Stats include:

* Warmth: How much Warmth this item affords. The Warmth of all *worn* Clothing items is totalled and used to modify the Air Temperature. The Feels Like temperature (accessible from the Tab key) is the result of [Air Temp] - [Clothing Warmth]. Ex. If the Air Temp is -20C, and you are wearing Clothing that offers a combined total +10C Warmth, the “Feels Like” temperature is -10C. We then use this -10C “Feels Like” to calculate how quickly your Cold Bar depletes. Keep in mind that some types of materials (ex. Wool) still offer Warmth when they are wet; others do not (ex. Cotton).

* Windproofness: How much Windchill protection the Clothing item provides. This value reduces the effect of Windchill in reducing your “Feels Like” temperature.

* Waterproofness: How water repellent this item is, which modifies how quickly it becomes Wet.

* Weight: How much an individual Clothing item weighs. Remember, any Clothing items worn or carried in your inventory all count against your total Inventory Capacity. Wet and Frozen items will weigh more than those same items when they are dry.

* Condition: A % range that reflects the current physical Condition of an item, between 100% (New) and 0% (Ruined). Item Warmth, Warmth When Wet, and Waterproofness scales with Condition, ex. an item’s capacity to provide Warmth is compromised as it becomes more worn out.

* Mobility: Bulkier or more restrictive clothing items may impact how quickly you can move through the world. This is expressed as a % decrease of your Sprint stamina. For example, if you wear a combination of bulky clothing items that reduce your Sprint by 10%, you’ll notice that reflected in the size of available Sprint resource in the HUD meter. Note that this only affects Sprinting and not Climbing.

* Protection: How much this item protects from Physical damage to your Survivor, including Wildlife attacks, Falls, Burns, etc. The higher your total Protection %, the less damage you will take from these events.

Deeper Stats and differentiation through tuning means that you can now create Clothing combinations that support different playing styles or daily goals. For example, if you intend to make a fast supply run to a nearby location, it makes sense to wear light waterproof clothing to optimize your Inventory capacity for supplies you may find. If you’re heading into unknown territory and scouting an area you think might have hostile wildlife, you may opt for heavier items that offer more physical protection, at the expense of some mobility and carrying capacity.

REVISED LOOT TABLES

We’ve revised all the Loot Tables, to better distribute Clothing around the world. We’ve also hand-placed more items and balanced the availability of the rarer Clothing items. You should find the search more rewarding. You should not find too many repeat items per container, although it may occasionally happen. You should generally find Clothing items where you would expect to find them. Keep in mind that Loot availability is modified by your Experience Mode.

FROSTBITE AFFLICTION

Now that players can visualize what their Survivor is wearing in each location, we have the means to properly communicate Frostbite Risk.

Through exposure (i.e. when an area of the body is not protected by Clothing), or due to clothing items becoming Frozen, an area of the body will begin to accumulate Frostbite Risk (expressed as a %). One this risk becomes 100%, your Survivor will receive a Frostbite Affliction in that area. Frostbite does permanent, irreparable 10% damage to your Survivor’s Condition (note: this tuning may change over time). You can track Frostbite afflictions in the First Aid screen (accessible from the Radial menu). It is possible to accumulate multiple Frostbite Afflictions -- one per major area of the body. Once you have a Frostbite affliction, your maximum Condition will never recover beyond that point.

The speed at which your Frostbite Risk increases depends on the Air Temp, and the area on your body. For example, Frostbite Risk increases more quickly in the extremities -- hands and feet -- than on the Torso.

Keep in mind that in addition to Frostbite, you still have to monitor Hypothermia risk, which works as it did previously.

We intend to build on this system in the future, by adding modifiers to Skills requiring dexterity (ex. Crafting, or Archery, etc.) when you have Frostbite damage to the Hands, for example.

IMPACT TO PRE-EXISTING CLOTHING

One outcome of this update is that some Clothing items that exist in your current Inventory may change, post-update. This includes, to varying degrees, item names, descriptions, but also statistics. We apologize in advance if this results in you losing the benefit of a favourite Clothing item. We hope that on the whole, you’ll appreciate all the new benefits offered by the enhanced system.

GAMEPLAY CHANGES: STAMINA

We’ve modified the Stamina tuning to reflect changes in the clothing system, notably the inclusion of Mobility. You’ll find that you can now sprint for shorter bursts but the Stamina recovery is much quicker. Also, the Fatigue cost of Sprinting has been reduced, so over the course of a day you’ll be able to Sprint more before you get Exhausted. This is modified by the Mobility penalties of wearing bulky clothing items, which reduce your Stamina -- as indicated by the right side of the Stamina bar being blocked out with a section of red. This indicates how much Stamina you are “losing” due to Clothing choices.

##

THE LONG DARK SANDBOX v.386 CHANGELIST

* [NEW!] Addition of new region: Forlorn Muskeg
* [NEW!] Addition of new enhanced Clothing system and assets; refer to the detailed design notes on this new system as it changes core gameplay significantly!
* [NEW!] Affliction: Frostbite
* [Crash] Fixed intro video crash on Windows XP
* [Crash] Fix for rare crash when placing footprints
* [Gameplay] Retuned Sprint Stamina recovery and Fatigue cost
* [Gameplay] Retuned cool downs on Heated drinks; they will now stay warm much longer
* [Gameplay] Retuned Hypothermia recovery times
* [Gameplay] Retuned Hypothermia Risk times; it now takes longer to develop Hypothermia
* [Gameplay] Hypothermia recovery times now modified by Experience Mode
* [Gameplay] Added ability to relight a burned out Campfire
* [Gameplay] Made Scrub Brush harvestable for fuel
* [UI] Added new Clothing “Paper Doll” interface
* [UI] Decoy moved to the Camp Craft submenu on the radial
* [UI] Fix for buttons overlapping when progress bar is active on inventory UI
* [UI] Accelerant now stacks (no longer degrades)
* [Bug] Fixed bug that caused Fluffy to fall through the floor of the Dam
* [Bug] Fixed bug that prevented Challenge retries from working properly
* [Bug] Fixed bug that caused audio to be muffled after started a game after a drowning death
* [Bug] Fixed bug that caused wind audio to cut out in interiors
* [Bug] Fixed issue where it was possible to equip partially crafted clothing items
* [Bug] Fixed bug with showing "Repair" instead of "Read" for books when using gamepad
* [Bug] Fix issues with Distress Pistol not animating and playing audio
* [Bug] Fixed snow shelter rendering glitches

###END OF CHANGELIST###
Community Announcements - Hinterland_Studio


We've just updated The Long Dark Test Branch to v.377T.

The focus of this Test Build cycle is on the ENHANCED CLOTHING SYSTEM.

Please note that the December Update will include other content, but that the changes to gameplay due to the revised Clothing system are so significant, we need the testing to be focused solely on the Clothing System for now.

Details on the contents of this build are available in the [SPOILER FILLED] test branch forums.

***If you don't want to be exposed to spoilers about the next Sandbox update, please DO NOT go to the Test Branch forums.***

>>>

Everyone else, instructions on how to access the Test Branch can be found here IN THE TEST BRANCH SUBFORUM: http://steamcommunity.com/app/305620/discussions/8/351659808478003064/

>>>

We're trying a few new things about how we gather Bugs and Playtest Feedback in the Test Branch, so please make sure you read the stickied thead called "***READ THIS FIRST***".

Thanks in advance for your help to firm up the next update! More news on the full release to MAIN BRANCH will be coming in the next few days, based on what we see from TEST BRANCH progress.

- The Hinterland Team
Community Announcements - Hinterland_Studio


Hello community,

We'll be deploying a new build to the Test Branch later this week.

This Test Build will include major changes to the Clothing System that we're planning to roll out in a December Sandbox Update before the holidays.

We'll share more details soon, but in the mean time, keep the following in mind:

* The Test Branch is optional; you do not have to participate.
* All tuning is placeholder; don't freak out if you see something you don't like. We'll continue refining the values leading up to the full December Update release.
* The Test Branch contains spoilers for the full Update. If you don't want to know what's coming in the full December Update, stay out of the Test Branch discussion.
* Please avoid posting Test Build spoilers in the main discussions.
* Current in-progress save games can be carried over to the Test Branch, but not the other way. This is to protect your progress from being polluted or influenced in some way by bugs or tuning issues in the Test Branch builds.

We'll update here and in the official community once the Test Branch is live.

We'll post detailed instructions on how to participate in to the Test Branch -- including how to download the build and how to post bugs/feedback -- when it is live later this week. Please don't ask for instructions in this thread or discussion.

Note that the December update will include more than the Clothing System updates, but since the changes are substantial we'd like the current Test Cycle to focus on this system. The changes to the Clothing System are very extensive and introduce multiple new layers of survival gameplay. We're excited to get this system into your hands in the full December Update. In the mean time, your contribution to the Test Branch playtest will help us ensure the December Update is as bug-free as possible.

We'll have another update on Story Mode progress to share, later in December.

Thanks in advance!

- The Hinterland Team
...

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