Topic: Primitive survival gear & strategies  (Read 287 times)


PoisonPen

« on: November 17, 2017, 10:38:42 PM »
Right now most people settle down and build a cabin or a series of cabins and hunting/fishing shacks, but I think it's possible to rebalance the game to make a more nomadic lifestyle more interesting to play by adding some traditional neolithic survival tools and techniques to the game.

Fire pouch
Primitive peoples found it much easier to keep an ember from their old fire and use it to kindle the next one than have to make a new one every time. There were a number of different strategies, such as enclosing a hot coal from a fire between two tightly-bound shells, but I think you could probably make this work fairly simply in URW by adding a [M]ake menu option to "extract embers" from either a hot fireplace or a burning fire into a container of some sort.  It would work the same way food does, where it has a limited lifespan.  Instead of "stale" you'd get a "dying" status: (dying) rough wooden bowl of embers, and then it just disappears when it goes completely cold.  [A]pplying the embers would use them up, but give a very high chance (say, 95%) of starting a fire on the first try.

Travois
Carts, dogsleds, and other vehicles are probably very difficult to implement, but I think a travois would be somewhat easier, since you could just make it an animal that doesn't move on its own and just follows you around.  Unlike pack animals, a travois can be easily crafted on the spot from a couple of slender trunks and some cord or rope to let you drag that elk carcass or Njerp raiding party loot back to your shelter for processing.

Snowshoes
I know this has been suggested many times before, but I wanted to put my weight behind it too.  Walking in snow should be slow and tiring without snowshoes (which should have the opposite effect of making walking anywhere but snow slow and tiring so you can't just wear them 24/7 and forget about them).  They should also have the benefit of making you less likely to fall through ice.

Atlatl
An atlatl is essentially just a stick with a cord or rope on it, and is used to sling javelins harder, faster, and more accurately (by causing them to spin) than being thrown by hand.  When wielding an atlatl, you could use them to shoot javelins the way bows shoot arrows as implemented in the game right now.

Throwing stick
One step below a javelin, throwing sticks are super-easy to make from a simple branch, and while they have a pretty short range, they're reasonably accurate and can take down small game like birds and squirrels.  They should fit somewhere between a rock and a javelin in terms of their accuracy and killing power.

Funnel trap/fish weir
This would be super-easy to implement, essentially just traps which can be placed at the edges of any large body of water the same way traps are currently placed on land.  Funnel traps would be made from sticks and catch smaller fish, while fish weirs would be made from slender trunks and catch larger fish.

Boiled grass
If you're desperate, it's possible to boil fistfuls of ordinary grass for a few carbs and some critical micronutrients.  I'd like to see it possible to harvest grass from any grassy land square.  Without boiling the grass is indigestible, but if you have a pot and access to water, you can boil it for better-than-nothing nutrition.  It should definitely not be capable of keeping you alive in the long term, but could be useful for grabbing a few urgently-needed calories while waiting for a fishing net to pay off rather than just waiting.

Eating dirt
Dirt contains a lot of spores, tiny animals (like springtails), bacteria, seeds, molds, and other biological detritus which can be extracted by your digestive system at the cost of, well, eating and pooping dirt.  Some survival experts recommend eating dirt in an emergency situation when there's absolutely nothing else, and there's argument about whether primitive peoples used to do the same.  Regardless, it would be a very last-ditch attempt to stave off starvation when there's absolutely nothing else to eat -- but it's there in limitless quantities and requires no tools whatsoever.

Pine nuts
The nuts from pine trees were a traditional staple of paleolithic Europe.  They should be harvestable in the late fall as pine cones, then require some threshing to separate the nuts.  The thing about pine nuts is they're mostly fat (they have more than twice the fat than the protein and carbohydrate content combined) and so are a good way of avoiding starvation without needing to eat meat, provided you can process enough of them.  The reason pine nuts weren't generally sold commercially is because they're so small, and require so much effort to obtain, that they're not generally worth the labour.  But if you have no other source of fat in your diet, they should be able to prevent starvation, which would make a huge difference to the game balance currently in place; it suddenly becomes possible to survive without hunting.

Shrooms
There are already psychedelic mushrooms in the game, but they have no practical use.  There's a theory that what made Norse berserkers so fierce is that prior to battle they would drink a brew made from shrooms until they were stoned out of their brains, and then set loose on the battlefield literally feeling no pain and utterly psychotic with rage.  I'd love to be able to brew some shroom tea before charging into a Njerp encampment wearing nothing but crazy, feeling no effects from exhaustion, pain, or fear.  The game effect would be to remove all tiredness and exhaustion for the duration of the effects, but translate that into physical damage instead.  So you'd be inexhaustible until the shrooms wore off, but cause physical strain to your body which might take days or weeks to heal.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2017, 10:42:56 PM by PoisonPen »

Puella14

« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2017, 10:05:45 AM »
These additions would be amazing!  :D

JEB Davis

« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2017, 05:22:58 PM »
Regarding "eating dirt"... it brought to mind the scene in the Holy Grail...

"Oh! There is some lovely filth down here!"  ;D  ???


Most of your suggestions have been posed before and I'm sure Sami & Erkka have considered
them as far as what fits into their vision of UnReal Iron-Age Finland.

Zalzany

« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2017, 02:49:10 PM »
Need to add just sleds in general not sure about Finland but I know many had sleds instead of carts you would push or drag for logs, and other goods. Granted trying to sight sources or even see if they had such things don't work well I just get a million hits for dog, and reindeer sleds that are not old. And like one pic of soldiers on skis with a single reindeer behind them hauling a sled with gear for each one moving in a line formation... But these are more modern troops...

taptap

« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2017, 08:41:27 PM »
The more survivalist proposals in OP brings this to mind: Doing something for the sake of doing something is probably bad advice, you most likely burn more energy than you gain. Sitting in the sun doing nothing (when you have at least water) is likely a better survival strategy than collecting wood to cook grass for micronutrients etc. Although nobody would pay survival experts to tell them that. The game already features higher requirements during heavy work, but it is only noticeable w/ really hard work, but really should be whenever you walk around instead of sitting in your cabin. Sorry for the unfun.

Throwing sticks - I would try using firewood as "throwing stick" equivalent. It should work already and very simple modding should be enough to give you a "firewood" looking throwing weapon with slightly higher damage and a recipe to produce them from firewood or slender tree trunk or a pile of branches. Slightly more modding could give you a new sprite as well. (Though hunting naked w/ only rocks and a knife is already a perfectly viable strategy in the game - at least during summer.)
« Last Edit: December 04, 2017, 08:44:59 PM by taptap »