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75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 16 Critic Reviews What's this?

User Score
6.6

Mixed or average reviews- based on 73 Ratings

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  • Summary: The Long Dark is a thoughtful, exploration-survival experience that challenges solo players to think for themselves as they explore an expansive frozen wilderness. Monitor your Condition, search for life-saving supplies, and master survival skills like fire-building, maintaining your gear,The Long Dark is a thoughtful, exploration-survival experience that challenges solo players to think for themselves as they explore an expansive frozen wilderness. Monitor your Condition, search for life-saving supplies, and master survival skills like fire-building, maintaining your gear, hunting, fishing, and landmark-based navigation. There are no zombies -- only you, the cold, and everything Mother Nature can throw at you. The hit Steam Early Access sandbox becomes the first survival game available on Xbox One! Expand
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The Long Dark: Wintermute Episode One Gameplay
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. Aug 16, 2017
    90
    Using time as an enemy in such an ingenious fashion only makes the game more fun and the challenge more dangerous, and I can’t get enough of it.
  2. Sep 13, 2017
    85
    The Long Dark is a satisfying experience of survival that is both realistic and has good game mechanics. It’s very unforgiving and can be frustrating but gets better the longer you play and learn.
  3. Aug 4, 2017
    80
    The Long Dark is a strong survival title, possibly even the strongest of the entire genre. A beautiful but dangerous Canadian wilderness provides the backdrop to a challenging but largely satisfying fight for survival. While micromanaging every facet of your well-being while trying to survive might sound tedious in description, it actually ends up being fun, satisfying, and even tense. With three more episodes to come for this title's story mode, there's already tons of content to chow down on. Just watch out for the wolves.
  4. Sep 24, 2017
    80
    The Long Dark is the perfect survival game for Canadian kids who grew up with frozen toes and winter camping.
  5. Aug 14, 2017
    73
    With its stellar survival mechanics, The Long Dark makes for a brutal experience that requires patience and micromanaging to fully appreciate. However, it’s brought down by some bugs and a story mode that leaves much to be desired. It’s nonetheless a satisfying test of survival in a gorgeous setting – as long as you can brave the frigid cold.
  6. 65
    If it sounds as if I’m overly frustrated with The Long Dark, it’s because I am. The sheer number of times that it hints at being a special game that entirely dominates every single survival-based title that has come before it is staggering. But for every one of those times, there’s another time where it’s broken, bugged, or just plain poorly thought-out.
  7. Aug 8, 2017
    60
    I’ve been passionate about the development of The Long Dark since its announcement in 2013, and when it works, it’s at the absolute top of the hardcore survival genre. The world is expansive and detailed, demanding to be explored. Mastering the systems provides concrete rewards, truly giving players the sense that they’re learning to survive, and becoming more successful because of it. It’s too bad that the game is so unstable at the moment — when it’s actually finished, The Long Dark will probably be an incredible survival experience. Right now on the PS4? It’s too buggy and hostile to recommend.

See all 16 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 23
  2. Negative: 12 out of 23
  1. Oct 18, 2017
    10
    Wow. I loved this game. I had no idea about it, but saw it in the Playstation store one morning, and decided to download it. I was hookedWow. I loved this game. I had no idea about it, but saw it in the Playstation store one morning, and decided to download it. I was hooked immediately. I spent two hours playing survival mode before I was killed by a pack of wolves. I ended up showing it to all my friends, giving them each a shot in the game. My brother loved it, and, I think he's still alive to this day in his play through. Admittedly I have not played the story yet, just been having fun in the survival mode, competing with friends to see who can outlast who.
    As a Canadian, I also feel quite proud playing the game. When you wade through a blizzard, freezing in the middle of the night (again game time) and you just see that maple leaf waving in the wind... its strangely inspiring. Its not very often I get to see my home in video games.
    Anyway, I thought the game was really thoughtfully done. The survival mode feels huge. You can find entrances and exits to other maps, so there is a profound sense of exploration. Go grab it! Its not even that expensive.
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  2. Jul 31, 2020
    10
    This game is so great and masterpiece . Love this so much . Great work dear
  3. Apr 9, 2018
    9
    The Long Dark has a very interesting introduction when beginning the story mode. The players are simply awoken, then alerted to severalThe Long Dark has a very interesting introduction when beginning the story mode. The players are simply awoken, then alerted to several injuries and survival needs they must fulfill after a serious plane crash. The game gives the player (no outside narrator) direction and no idea of what items they can interact with. At first, I found this frustrating as I was flustered by the immediate demands made by the character and not being able to find the items needed. Then I realized this was a creative tactic by the developers that immerses players in the game immediately. Rather than blatantly telling players where to go and what to collect, the game allows players to figure out the first steps on their own. This gives players a sense of accomplishment in being able to survive a tough situation. This tutorial area does not leave players completely in the dark however, and it is carefully crafted to allow players to teach themselves. Immediate healthcare supplies, tinder and fuel are scattered around the player and can easily be found by roaming around the area. This initial area is also blocked in by a series of cliffs and mountains, so players can’t wonder away from this tutorial without a full understanding of basic controls. Finally, the tutorial adds small pop ups of information when certain items are picked up, or certain menus or controls are pressed. These give important crafting/survival information to help players progress and make the tutorial a very smooth process. Unlike some games, The Long Dark gives players a very interactive and immersive tutorial that teaches players through its level design and character dialog, this being what most tutorials should strive for.

    This game also does another thing really well, and that would be using the first-person player perspective and making it work well in a survival game genre. Having played games such as Endnight Games The Forest, survival games in first person often appear choppy and difficult to control. Actions such as jumping, swinging an axe, harvesting materials and building are animated awkwardly or can glitch on players causing them to be less immersed and perhaps even frustrated with game mechanics. Unlike The Forest, The Long Dark does not have animations for certain actions such as harvesting materials and building. Instead, players interact with a specific harvesting/building screen. There is audio of the action being done and a circle timer counting down the time before the action is complete. For me this was a much smoother way to gather materials and this did not take away from the games realistic feel, and it avoided awkward first-person animations that come with swinging a hatchet or crafting a coat. This is similar to a mobile game I had played called Survive published by Sandbay Games, which contains no animation or models, but rather has players manage resources and needs through menus. Only building and harvesting have menus in The Long Dark, making running, climbing and attacking (shooting, throwing rocks, etc.) a fun experience for players. In this way, the game is efficient and smooth, but also remains fun and visually immersive in other aspects.

    What The Long Dark lacks in story, it makes up for in gameplay and balance. One of the most difficult aspects to design in a survival game is balancing needs, consequences, and the time it takes for needs to decline versus what it takes to replenish those needs. The Long Dark does a great job at balancing these needs, as when playing I have not felt I was losing heat to quickly or becoming hungry too fast. Replenishing needs is challenging without being impossible and irritating. Survival is the focus, but the balance gives me a chance to build, gather material, and explore as well as managing my needs. There is also an excellent balance in consequences of players actions. Falling from a cliff may break the players legs or being bitten by a wolf means a player must bandage and disinfect the wound. There are also serious injuries, such as frostbite, which will permanently take away from a player’s health. This gives fun challenge and adds to the games overall realism. I enjoy being kept on my toes and really being worried about the well being of my avatar.

    Overall, The Long Dark is an excellent game for strategy/survival lovers as well as those who don’t usually like or play survival games. It is one of the most balanced and entertaining survival games I have played. For a small developing studios first game, I would declare it a great first impression for Hinterland Games.
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  4. Sep 1, 2017
    4
    After you're done with the tutorial (that's all what "story mode" is), you will have learned that there's one thing more dangerous than wolvesAfter you're done with the tutorial (that's all what "story mode" is), you will have learned that there's one thing more dangerous than wolves or bears in the Long Dark; and that's doors. Because after every third or fourth door (doesnt matter entering or leaving) lurks a blue screen. Game crashed. You now get to repeat the last two or three hours.
    I understand the developers got sidetracked, producing proof of concepts for a Long Dark movie. And that's a shame, because they obviously took their eyes off their game, which can be so mesmerizing at times it's unfortunate that even after Patch 12 the PS4 game it is essentially a defective product.
    So very disappointing, because this is a diamond in the rough, and could be wonderful. I cannot recommend.
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  5. Aug 4, 2017
    2
    I will begin my saying that sandbox is one of the best gaming experiences I've had, but story mode undoes everything that was great about TheI will begin my saying that sandbox is one of the best gaming experiences I've had, but story mode undoes everything that was great about The Long Dark. Where to begin? This title was delayed for years as the developers promised a unique experience and story like nothing we've seen before. What we received is bland and unoriginal. There are no new ideas in this story, just a lot of rehashed ideas all very poorly executed.

    Do you like meaningless fetch quests with questionable character motivation? Then this is the game for you.
    Do you like experiencing AI out of a game from 2001? Then this is for you.

    Yes they are a small developer, but this is one of the worst executed stories I've ever seen in a game. It isn't worth a second of your time.

    I haven't touched on the technical problems, and there are many. This game crashed on me 16 times in two days. It keeps crashing after patches! Was this rushed out as an unfinished product even after years of delays? Must've been, unless the developers are just that incompetent. There's a litany of other bugs to discuss, but there are so many it's unbelievable. Games usually launch with a few issues that need to be fixed but nearly every aspect of this game is broken.

    I'm shocked, appalled, and very sad about a game with so much potential that became so underwhelming.
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  6. Aug 11, 2017
    1
    Very sad to report that The Long Dark is the worst release since No Man's Sky, and somehow worse then that even. Horrible writing, acting,Very sad to report that The Long Dark is the worst release since No Man's Sky, and somehow worse then that even. Horrible writing, acting, bugs, constant crashes, and dated art make it a parody of its former self. I first played with a friend in 2014 on Steam and the visuals were amazing for an early acess and I was excited for the PS4 launch when it was announced. So what has changed? Graphics are the same, gameplay is worse, and a story written by a 10 year old was added. WTF? Expand
  7. Jan 13, 2020
    0
    If you want to be annoyed by the worst inventory system of all time, get this game. If you like an enjoyable play through that doesn’tIf you want to be annoyed by the worst inventory system of all time, get this game. If you like an enjoyable play through that doesn’t penalize you for picking up necessary items, just go buy The Forest. TLD needs to fix their inventory, they claim they’re “into realism” but that seems to mean they hate the player having fun. DONT BUY. Expand

See all 23 User Reviews