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      The Light at the end of The Long Dark -- Launch Date, WINTERMUTE, Next Sandbox Update   05/16/2017

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Drifter Man

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About Drifter Man

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  1. I agree that I should learn to rely on campfires whenever I need to get rid of a wolf. It may cost a match but one match means perhaps by one day shorter survival for a snowball in hell, while a wolf attack means 100% death. Relying on the flare pistol is not sustainable - flares will run out. The flare pistol should only be used in bad weather or whenever starting a fire is impossible. In bad weather I'm not attempting to steal kills anyway. With this goal in mind I started my Voyageur tests. First I checked stick spawn points around the Mountaineer's Hut. I found that the method developed by earlier snowballs was nearly as good as it can get, I just wasn't following it systematically enough by Snowball 41. Still, I found one convenient place close to base with a few additional sticks that I hadn't been aware of before. I also decided to try to expand these hunts more towards the Wing - but only in areas where I think I can safely avoid wildlife. I put circles with approximate number of sticks that can be found in each place on @whiteberry-toarda's map, color-coding the areas that should be visited on a given run. I'd be alternating between these three runs (orange, green, blue), allowing the sticks to respawn. Based on my previous experience, I only considered areas that are within 25-minute (in-game) walking distance from my base, and that are outside wolf patrol zones. The purpose of this system is to avoid wasting condition when going to places where sticks have not yet respawned. I found 224 sticks altogether in these areas, plus 16 branches close enough to base that they can be harvested without loss of condition, under favorable circumstances. I also checked the surroundings of the 3-way cave, the place I wanted for my snow shelter. Verdict: not enough firewood. Mountaineer's Hut wins, I just have to make it survivable. Now, about condition. In my experience, 10-hour sleep recovers 32% condition (38% with tea). So ideally, I should end each day in 60-65% condition and recover to about 95% during the sleep. If I end the day below 60%, I'm running up debt, if above 65%, I'm not utilizing the day fully. I checked the journal of Snowball 41 and mostly I was guilty of keeping my condition above 70%. By my estimate, I will lose about 20-25% each day to cold (60-75 minutes of freezing), leaving 7-12% to starvation. Back on Interloper, I will check how these estimates correspond with reality. Finally, deer kills. Under Voyageur conditions, I tested the following method: With suitable weather, start fire at the base - the fishing hut would be best but I usually burn fire straight next to the hut. This should work, too. Drive the deer into the wolf on the lake using stones (much, much more efficient than herding them "manually"!) Approach the kill with a torch so that I'm in front of the wolf - does not have to be directly from the front but not from the rear where the wolf is usually ignorant of what's happening until I'm dangerously close With the torch, start a fire at a safe distance, throw a few sticks in Stand up and make the wolf leave the kill and go towards me until it runs away again from the fire Go home and wait for at least 3 hours, or even to the next day (it takes 6 hours for a carcass to fully freeze, and I want to work with my hacksaw; working with hacksaw on a frozen carcass saves about half of the time compared to a fresh one - about 80 minutes compared to 160 minutes). With a torch, return to the carcass. If necessary, drive the wolf away the same way as in 4.-5. Start a fire next to the carcass. It takes 6 minutes to start a fire (level 1), during that time the carcass already thaws by 5%, and I may not succeed at first - so the carcass should be at least 65 or 70% frozen. Put enough fuel into the fire to keep me above 0°C - this can easily be 40 sticks later in the game! Grab all meat at once. Even if the carcass completely thaws during the process, I will still get 1 kilogram per 10 minutes with the hacksaw when I try to grab everything while the carcass is still above 50% frozen If the fire goes out due to a change in weather, abort, ready the flare pistol and run like hell with whatever meat I have If finished normally, wait for the wolf approach and run away again from the fire, then make a dash for the base. If necessary, drop one of the pieces of meat as bait. Finally, I think I got some practice in hitting a wolf with the flare pistol but don't want to rely on it. The time has come for Snowball 42.
  2. I'm glad I finally made it past the 30-day mark. But it's only a two-day improvement over Snowball 34. Yes, that would be a possible way to go. Still, I don't know how to safely carry the meat away from the carcass (not to mention what to do if the fire suddenly goes out). By the way, is torch in your hand now reliable again in keeping the wolf from attacking? Not yet, but I will try today and report I don't have much trouble getting the deer to the wolf on Crystal Lake, although sometimes I'm not happy about the precise place of the kill at the end. But if the deer run away from the stone rather than from me, it could add extra flexibility in herding (less walking required). Edit: YES! You can drive a deer or rabbit towards any direction (including towards yourself) with a stone. They run away from the point of impact. Anyway, I have some ideas how to proceed from here. Snowball 41 again suffered from ignorance - he didn't know how to hit a stationary target with a flare pistol, and was inefficient in gathering sticks. It's time for scientific research I set up a Voyageur test game where I can focus on other things than minute-to-minute survival. In Voyageur it's so much loot everywhere now, and much of it is just redundant... I could live for 1000 days from it...
  3. When I'm thinking about it, it wouldn't have worked anyway. With the new smell mechanic, the wolf would be on me the minute I'd step away from the fire. So, the question is: how to harvest animal carcasses in a wolf territory? Edit #1: Damn, I'm now thinking, I could've tried to lure it away with stones... hmm... next time. Edit #2: Maybe the wolf heard the sound of the torch falling onto the ice and reacted to it... I read somewhere that they now are aware of all kinds of sounds. Watch out!
  4. Snowball 41 R.I.P. (30 days 23 hours 31 minutes) Bad weather reigned for several days and I found it increasingly difficult to keep a reserve of sticks. Starting one fire per two days was an unrealistic wish: blizzards strike more often than that, and make sure that they come at the least suitable time. But somehow I was able to continue and eventually decided to move to the snow shelter. Maybe it won't be better there but at least it shouldn't be worse. On Day 30, before moving, I concluded that one pair of my socks can be better utilized as cloth to repair the other pair, and so I did that. I crafted my first snare and used another cured gut to make fishing line - now I had three fishing tackles. A deer appeared on the lake, some 8 days after the kill. To make use of this resource, I drove it into a wolf on Day 32 but didn't do it well: the wolf soon spotted me, left the kill and attacked. I ran for the fishing hut at first; realizing I wouldn't make it in time, I turned around and fired a flare shell. I returned to my fire next to the Mountaineer's Hut and waited for the actions of the wolf. Unfortunately, he kept patrolling over the carcass - I couldn't get close. Eventually, light fog fell and I decided to sneak in and start a fire next to the carcass. So I liquidated my fire (by drawing torches from it, for reprocessing) and lit my best torch (48%) to carry the fire to the carcass. At that point the wolf was away at a safe distance. But as soon as I came close, the wolf made a random turn and went straight for the carcass. I kept dancing around but the wolf would always make a random turn to thwart my moves. Eventually I was getting nearer but the torch was almost out, so I dropped it and replaced with another. Just as I was busy doing it, the wolf spotted me and ran towards me. I tried to draw the pistol but I wasn't quick enough.
  5. I haven't got food poisoning since the last update but it used to work like that you need to take antibiotics AND sleep for 10 hours to cure it. The fact that you were able to reload the save indicates you didn't do the sleep part.
  6. They actually do cost time and calories if you go out after them (not just picking those that you happen to find along the path you would have taken anyway). I once measured the cost of my stick hunting campaigns: the cost of walking around and picking sticks was similar to processing a cedar limb, per fire duration time. Just don't do this when you are also freezing on Interloper (which you almost always are). You'll lose 3-4% condition per branch!
  7. That's right, now you craft an OMB wrapping separately (no need for workbench) and apply it independently of the bandage. The bandage fixes the bleeding, the dressing fixes the infection risk. And cedar, last time I checked, gave 6°C and 1 hour to the fire at 0.50 kg apiece, so it has the same per-kg values as reclaimed wood. You need about 7-8 sticks to get a 1-hour fire though, so if you plan to have the fire going for a fixed period of time, the one built from sticks will be slightly warmer. Now I'd go for combat boots just for the protection against wetness - you're going to travel a lot, in all kinds of weather, and sneakers do get wet very fast. I'd get the combat boots to decent condition until you find something better. I think trail boots would give you the kind of balance you're after, Snowball 41 proudly holds on to a pair of these.
  8. Snowball 41 / Day 28 Surprisingly, life is not bad in the Mountaineer's Hut. I'm putting off my move to the shelter for now. On Day 22 I stole a deer kill from the wolf on Crystal Lake. The flare shell missed its target again - I really wanted to have the wolf out of the way when I harvest the carcass, but I just can't make the flare hit the target. While I left the fresh kill to freeze (hacksaw is about twice as fast when working on a frozen carcass), I bagged a rabbit and processed it in the fishing hut. A blizzard set in and I was forced to spend the entire day inside. Unsuspecting, I kept what was left of the rabbit carcass on me all the time, which caused the wolf circle around the hut. I nearly ran into it nose to nose while stepping out! So I dropped the smelly things on the floor, waited a while and then left safely (and recovered them later). It was almost night, so I returned to the Mountaineer's Hut and spent the next day gathering sticks and gradually processing the deer carcass. I was able to take 2 kg chunks at a time, without a fire. Whenever I touched the carcass, the wolf came in at a fast pace, and I withdrew home at a pace equally fast. After a while, when the wolf went off away, I would return to the carcass again. I managed to finish the job on Day 24. Day 24 was also the day when cabin fever risk appeared. I visited the Forest Cave and collected a flare plus two pieces of cedar firewood - one of the last places I haven't visited yet. I also found some reishi mushrooms and rosehips in the area. With two extra pieces of cloth in my hand, I tried to repair my thin wool sweater but succeeded only once. Now I have 5 cloth left, which I want to keep for building the second shelter. Cabin fever risk persisted into Day 25, so I started a partially protected fire next to the entrance into the hut and cooked the venison from the kill along with some rabbits. I also collected around 90 sticks. On the next day, I managed to repair my trail boots. Cabin fever risk went finally away but I know it will be back soon. The good news is that it can be addressed by starting fire outside the hut. As mentioned in this thread previously, outside fires get a bonus that makes them last longer. I tried to measure the times and got a +10% time for the indoor fireplace in Mountaineer's Hut, +25% time in the outdoor cave below the summit, +50% in the fishing hut and ca +90% at the doorstep of Mountaineer's Hut. So I really save a ton of firewood when burning the fire outside - although wind can blow it out if it comes directly along the front side of the hut. I'm trying to limit making fire to once in two days, and use torch to get 1-match starts. Whenever I turn out to have more fire than I need (especially when warming up outside), I take as many torches from the fire as I can before leaving. I keep some of the best ones (> 40%) and process the rest into sticks. It's better than leaving the fire that still has 2 hours in it. In fact, each torch only costs about 2-3 minutes of the fire since you can turn it back into a stick. At firestarting level 5, you might even be able to generate firewood this way! So it seems that the firemaking and cabin fever problems can be managed reasonably well for now. Whether or not I can stay in the Mountaineer's Hut depends mainly on one thing: when does the next deer appear on the lake and whether I can claim it for myself without being eaten. Inventory: Firestarting: 42 matches, firestriker at 58%, 1 accelerant (should be enough to make 66 fires). Medical: 12 pills of antibiotics, 4 painkiller pills, 1 stim, 1 bandage, 1 OMB dressing, 5 cups of rosehip tea, 48 rosehip buds, 15 reishi mushrooms Clothes: Deerskin pants (99%), rabbitskin mitts (97%), ski jacket (60%), down vest (28%), plaid shirt (47%), thin wool sweater (83%), jeans (24%), two pairs of wool socks (46%, 28%), trail boots (91%), two wool toques (62%, 33%). Bonus is still at +10°C / +6°C. Food: Three boxes of salty crackers, 5 kg of cooked venison, 1 kg cooked rabbit, 28 cattail stalks, 5 cups' worth of tea and 7 cups' worth of coffee. Tools: Flare pistol with 8 shells, one flare, hacksaw (66%), fishing tackle (37%) and two hooks. Material: 5 cloth, 2 pieces of leather, 1 rabbit pelt, 3 curing guts I brought those salty crackers all the way down from the Summit and intend to eat them as the last thing before death
  9. Thanks - I had no idea about that!
  10. Guys, please try to keep it TLD-related
  11. And I can add, don't stand in a fishing hut with anything smelly in your backpack. Wolves will be drawn to the hut like a magnet and can attack you the second you step out. Drop everything on the floor.
  12. Snowball 41 / Day 22 I spent most of the past three days at the crafting table and made deerskin pants and rabbitskin mitts. My clothes now offer +10°C / +6°C bonus. The sewing kit is gone and I used my last piece of scrap metal and my only extra gut to produce fishing tackle. One pair of jeans, the ear cover and wool mittens are now scrapped. This gives me 7 pieces of cloth in total, out of which five will go into my second shelter. There should be about two to three days before cabin fever becomes a problem. My short-term plan is to remain for a few days here at Mountaineer's Hut, using the local resources - rabbits, sticks and hopefully a deer. I also want to visit the two Echo peaks and the Forest Cave. Then, once local resources are depleted, I'm moving to the 3-way cave to build a second shelter. Last time I checked, the 3-way cave had a temperature bonus of 8°C, compared to only 3°C of the alcove below the Summit, and should match or exceed the temperatures in the Mountaineer's Hut until about Day 35. I'll see how it goes from there. I may remain there to die or return to the Mountaineer's Hut for my endgame. A for clothes, I analyzed how much temperature bonus and for how long time I can get from each piece of cloth. The winners were the wool toques and the thin wool sweater. I'd also like to keep the plaid shirt and one pair of socks. Therefore I will have 7 pieces of cloth available for repairs. At 70% success rate, I should statistically get five successful repairs, one per each item. Sewing equipment is not a problem as I have hook and line for another tackle and can produce one more tackle after I get another cured gut. If my estimates are correct, jeans will wear out on Day 44, the down vest and first pair of wool socks on Day 49, the second pair on Day 67, and the rest between Days 80 and 100. I don't suppose I have to plan that long into the future
  13. I don't tend to get freezing boots because somehow, whenever I'm outside for a longer period of time, I must spend a lot of time by the fire. But I'll follow your advice and try to keep one pair if I can.
  14. Snowball 41 / Day 19 It is early morning of Day 19. Snowball 41 enjoys the -6°C sauna of the Mountaineer's Hut. Three days ago, on Day 15, I managed to drive a deer into a wolf at Eric's Falls. This cost me a flare shell (missed the wolf again) but the gain of 8.8 kg of venison secured my food supply for a few days. I was hoping to use the "fire" trick to drive the wolf off - the weather was good - but the wolf made the kill on a steep slope and I couldn't get the fire going nearby. Maybe I should have started it farther away and lured the wolf in. Anyway. On Day 16 my thermal underwear hit 9% condition and became dead weight. I scrapped it to get a piece of cloth. In the morning hours on Day 17 I explored the cave I came in through from the Secluded Shelf and collected 8 coals. I came out of the cave at sunrise: air temperature was -37°C, meaning I would feel -6°C in the shelter. I waited for a few hours for temperatures to rise when a blizzard started. I could only return to the shelter in the afternoon and went to sleep before sunset. I woke up in the middle of the night with a hypothermia risk. The place was getting way too cold. The writing on the wall: leave and don't come back. I lit a fire and started packing. First I repaired my hacksaw with one of the two pieces of scrap metal I had - so I can leave the toolbox behind. I scrapped the running shoes. I weighed all items carefully. In the end, I left behind a bottle of antiseptic (I keep an OMB dressing instead), 3 pieces of leather, 0.15 L fuel, leather shoes and the quality tools. Also two guts that haven't cured by now - they will remain in the cave for some other survivor to collect. A blizzard started and I kept the fire burning into the afternoon until it ceased. Then I dismantled the shelter and left. I packed five kilos of cooked venison and although no smell icon appeared, the wolves were homing in on me from afar. Right under the first rope, I had to drive one away with my flare pistol - again, no way to start a fire on the slope. I ran to the second rope and waited to catch my breath before going down. I could see the wolf below approaching the rope and the wolf above was also returning. With no time to lose, I went down and started a fire to drive off the second wolf. After a brief stop in the Cave of Engines, I reached the Mountaineer's Hut in the evening of Day 18. Firestarting: 44 matches, firestriker at 86%, 2 bottles of accelerant. Medical: 12 pills of antibiotics, 6 painkiller pills, 1 stim, 1 bandage, 1 OMB dressing, 6 cups of rosehip tea, 17 reishi mushrooms Clothes: Same as before but thermal underwear and the two extra pairs of shoes are gone. Bonus is now +7°C / +3°C. In 8 days of continuous wearing, Ski jacket, thin wool sweater and trail boots lost 9%, down vest, plaid shirt and the two pairs of jeans lost 14-15%, and the two pairs of wool socks, two toques and the ear wrap lost 18-19% each. Food: Three boxes of salty crackers, 4 kg of cooked venison, 6 cups' worth of tea and 7 cups' worth of coffee. Tools: Flare pistol with 9 flares, hacksaw (68%), sewing kit (80%). Material: 4 cloth, 4 pieces of leather, 3 deer hides, 5 rabbit pelts, 7 guts, 1 scrap metal Firestarting, carcass harvesting and cooking are at level 2. I've burned the books that taught me. As you can see, clothes won't last long. I'm thinking about which pieces to prioritize. As I said, the jeans will go (both pairs) as I only plan to have the deerskin pants once I craft them. Wool mittens will be replaced with rabbitskin mitts. I will also get rid of the socks and ear wrap once they wear out - they burn fast and provide little benefit. This will free up 6 pieces of cloth. It's difficult though how to handle the two toques and the items worn on the torso. I have a few days to figure it out.
  15. It's definitely intentional - I get a message "cannot quarter carcass more than 50% frozen", or something along this line.