Hey, a little late on the review, coming in on Friday morning rather than Thursday afternoon, but here it is, a guest review by Jo.
Relax, I know this is normally a book review blog and I promise I am reading a thing.
I can hear you all now, getting all kinds of judge-y with me. “Little sis, this isn’t a place for game reviews!” And you’re right, but after clocking in almost 20 hours of game play I decided I had to write a review about it.
The Long Dark is a wilderness survival game developed by Hinterland Games and I am obsessed! It’s challenging without being too punishing (unless you run into a bear, fuck bears, man!) and for being in Alpha it’s still really well balanced. The game is a real treat for people who’ve been looking for a realistic survival game. Instead of the traditional ambient health bar sported by most games, The Long Dark measures condition based on fatigue, hunger, thirst and temperature alongside other factors like injuries and infections. It’s a very unique and comprehensive approach to measuring health.
The scavenging is also pretty well balanced, putting items in places you’d expect them rather than being entirely random (though why the guys in the ice fishing hunts drink so much soda but can’t keep a hunting knife around more often is beyond me) while still being random enough to change the gameplay experience every time you start a new game.
The aesthetic is just beautiful. The textures are simplistic without looking overly cartoony or lazy. My personal favorite to look at is the sky, the clouds are all the same shape but the way they overlap make it look like a nice painting. The music is just lovely and relaxing and the voice acting (Featuring Mark Meer! or Jennifer Hale! depending on which gender you choose to play as) is minimal but well done.
The game takes place in the rural Pacific Canadian wilderness and is all the reminiscent of Gary Paulson’s American classic, Hatchet (which is a book I highly recommend checking out). So there, I did mention a book in this review, happy?
This game I would give a 5/5. If you like first person survival absolutely check it out, it’s a breath of fresh air that the genre sorely needed.
Little sis, out!