The Long Dark – Raphael van Lierop AMA Roundup


Those who have been around The Long Dark for the last few years have probably stumbled upon the subreddit, a place where you’ll very rarely find The Long Dark creator Raphael van Lierop after he’d taken enough abuse and refused to take more. He made his return to Reddit today for an Ask Me Anything, although it was over on the PS4 subreddit. Still, the Raphael van Lierop AMA touched on several topics that will interest fans of the game.

Raphael van Lierop AMA

Raphael van Lierop - Creator of The Long Dark
Raphael van LieropTwitter • Fair Use

Not all the Raphael van Lierop AMA questions are copied below. I’ve picked out the ones that I feel fans would be most interested in. Read the full AMA on the PS4 subreddit.

The Long Dark on Nintendo Switch

Yes, I’d like to bring The Long Dark to Switch. Right now we’re just figuring out if we want to try to staff up internally to make it, or if we’d rather find a good external partner to take it on, so we can be free to work on new stuff.

Plans for Expanding Survival Mode

We’ll keep iterating on existing mechanics to improve them, and continue adding new gameplay and new content, as we have been for the past 3+ years. As long as players continue enjoying the game and people continue paying for it. 🙂

Hinterland Plans on Completion of Story Mode

Hi! I’d like to continue building on The Long Dark but also build another New IP. I hope to start on that in 2018 — there are already 3-4 ideas underway but just at the idea phase. Eventually I’d like to have 3 IPs in production at the same time, alternating between them.

On Criticism Regarding Story Mode

It always hurts when people don’t like something you’ve made, but you tend to hear publicly/visibly from people who don’t like something you did moreso than people who loved it. For every public criticism I have 10 private notes from people who loved it. We take the criticism to heart and intend to always continue improving. Our process has always been about iteration, so Episode Three will be better than 1/2, 4 will be better than 3, etc. When you create something very personal, the criticism is always hard to take. But, that’s just part of putting something out there into the world.

Thoughts on Bringing Back the Roadmap

No. It’s not that the concept of a public roadmap isn’t reliable due to development realities, it’s that no matter how speculative your list is and how publicly you communicate that it’s aspirational and not a promise, some people will still read it as a promise and get upset when things they liked on the list don’t end up in the game when they feel they should be added. It’s better for us to focus on continuing to make the game better. By now, our community should know to trust that we’ll do that.

On The Long Dark and VR Support

VR: If I can find a locomotion solution that feels good for a game that is 90% about walking around, then I’ll consider it. If we do it, it’ll be a very specific experience built for that environment, and not a “port” of the game.

What is Raphael’s Preferred Difficulty?

I prefer Voyageur myself, or Capable Survivor in Wintermute. I like the balance of survival and exploration. For favourite region — I’d have to say Mystery Lake, just because it was the first, and I’ve spent so much time there. It feels like home. 🙂

On Why You Can’t Multi-Task While Cooking

Hey — because everything has a time/resource cost and doing one thing at a time forces you to plan your activities. That said, we’re working on ways to improve the cooking interface that may change that. Thanks for the question!

On Dropping Your Backpack to Escape Predators

Thanks for the question! Yeah, that’s been a request we’ve seen at times. We’ve talked about it and also the ability to drop the pack in exchange for a kind of “speed boost” when fleeing wildlife. Unfortunately our inventory system is very embedded into the guts of the game and these kinds of features would require a massive overhaul. Not sure it will happen, but I won’t say “no” outright. 🙂

Will The Long Dark Get a Co-Op Mode?

Thanks for the question! Co-Op is one of our most requested features — has been for years. I think if we can find a way to do it well and something true to the spirit of The Long Dark, then I’d be open to considering it. It is a big undertaking and I don’t want to do it just to meet industry expectations or whatever. If we’ve done anything innovative with The Long Dark, it’s important to me that that innovation is matched in all other games we do. So it’d have to be something more than “just” adding another player. It would need to be possible to have experiences that are profound as the ones you can have alone in The Long Dark, but with another player. It’s possible we couldn’t come up with anything innovative enough to make it worthwhile doing. But, we’ll see. 🙂

There’s more to the Raphael van Lierop AMA than that, but those seem to be the big ones surrounding the future of The Long Dark. Be sure to visit The Long Dark Guide Hub on TL;DR Games to increase your chances of survival.