The Long Dark interloper is quite possibly the toughest survival challenge you’ll ever face. I mean, there’s an achievement for surviving a single day on this difficulty. And those who survive are not the strongest or most intelligent, it’s those who adapt to change.
We’re not part of mother nature’s plan. We’re interlopers in this cursed, cold land, and we’re about to experience her wrath!
First things first, if there is one huge difference between Interloper and the rest of the difficulties, then that would be the tools and weapons. In every other mode, you can look for hatches, knives, bows, rifles, and even pre-crafted bows with arrows.
This doesn’t happen in Interloper. Ever. You need to craft everything on your own. And for this reason, there are a few things that you must absolutely find and hold on to:
- A heavy hammer
- Scrap metal
Those are absolutely necessary for crafting all the tools and weapons that you’ll need for survival later on. So, your main priority upon starting is finding those ingredients and tools, holding on to them, and heading towards a forge.
Heavy hammers are most commonly found next to forges or crafting tables. Update: turns out that Interloper, unlike other difficulties, rarely ever drops hammers in forge areas. So, do keep that in mind.
Pieces of coal can mostly be found in caves or next to a fireplace, while scrap metal spawns all over the place. Obviously, scrap metal is much more scarce on Interloper.
You’ll also need a bit of wood to get a fire in the forge going. But, that’s the least of our worries here. Firestarters like matches are much more important to find as early as possible as they can help you with both food and water.
2: The Long Dark Interloper Guide: Starve To Death, But Don’t
For the first few days, every other game mode gives you enough food to survive easily for the next few weeks or so. Not Interloper, though. In-game loot is very rare and definitely not enough to keep you from starving. And that’s precisely what we’re going to do!
One very popular technique of dealing with the lack of food on Interloper is by not eating anything until you go to sleep. That’s because the lack of food doesn’t punish you nearly as much as not sleeping, not drinking water, or freezing.
You can spend the biggest part of the day without eating anything, losing a small percentage of condition, and then gaining it back at the end of the day with sleep.
Of course, there is the relatively new food buff mechanic which gives you extra capacity as a reward for continually avoiding starvation. But, my recommendation is to not think about it until you get your tools and weapons crafted.
When you first spawn on The Long Dark Interloper, a few pieces of cattail should be more than enough to get you through the night. Plenty of them can usually be found on lakes and rivers. So, do keep that in mind!
3: Navigation Is Key
As I’ve previously stressed on my “normal” guide for TLD, navigation is extremely important. It can make the difference between life and death and that’s especially true for Interloper playthroughs.
If you don’t know all the maps like the palm of your hand, then I’d suggest stopping here now, going back to something easier, learn the maps there, and then come back to Interloper.
The reason that navigation is so much more important here is because:
- You don’t get to choose the map in which you’ll spawn
- The weather is extremely deadly
That’s why most people never make it past day one. They commonly spawn somewhere in Timberwolf Mountain, Pleasant Valley, Hushed River Valley, or any other place with almost no shelters, and they freeze to death because they don’t know where to go.
How you navigate and where you go is completely up to you. But, do keep in mind that most people prefer using the landscape to tell where they are while Mystery Lake is generally considered to be the most favorable region. Quite possibly because it has lots of shelters while also being connected to numerous other regions at the same time.
After you’ve crafted everything that’s necessary, hunting is the next big thing on the menu. And it works a bit differently on Interloper:
- Don’t go after wolves and bears
- If there are signs that bad weather is approaching, consider leaving the task for another time
- Understand that your tools are extremely precious. Use them with care
- Consider lighting up a fire next to you while harvesting a body
In other difficulties, going after predators isn’t a horrible idea. Bears provide enough food for numerous days while wolves can be taken down for safety. But, on Interloper, there’s the risk of intestinal parasites, and there’s also the fact that your tools are very precious.
You don’t want to waste arrows, bows, or knives and hatchets for no reason. After all, crafting can be tedious and even dangerous due to the distance that must be covered.
Then there’s also the weather. If you shoot your prey and a storm sneaks up on you, then you probably just lost a valuable arrow. So, be careful with that. A cloudy sky and small winds that get increasingly stronger are often an indication that things are about to get rough.
One other major difference between Interloper and other difficulties is that you can get mauled while harvesting a carcass. So, consider lighting up a fire next to you every time you want to harvest. This won’t save you from bears, but it will keep wolves at bay.
5: The Long Dark Interloper Tips: Adapt To The Situation At Hand
Now, when everything is said and done, do understand that TLD is a situational game. Even more so on Interloper which tries its hardest to kill you.
So, do keep everything that we’ve mentioned in mind. But, don’t follow everything by the letter. Judge every situation carefully and proceed to make the right decision for that particular situation.
For example, one very good point that one of my readers made on the last guide is that cold kills condition much faster than anything else. So, if you’re starving during the sunset with low condition and you don’t have food, then it makes sense to just abandon your prey since starvation won’t kill you as fast as cold, right? Wrong!
That’s precisely why I’m saying that TLD is a situational game. In the above case scenario, if you go to sleep starving with low condition, you’ll wake up to hunt in the coldest part of the day while being close to death.
So, the best idea would probably be to sleep for an hour or two until the storm goes away and then proceeding to hunt during the night. It’s not ideal. But, you gotta do whatever is necessary to survive.
The Long Dark Interloper Guide: Wrapping Up
That’s all I’ve got for now. Of course, if I were to mention every tiny detail that there is for Interloper mode, then we’d be here forever. So, I only mentioned everything above by taking into account the fact that you’re already familiar with the game.
If you’re relatively new and/or inexperienced, take it back a notch and play Voyager or Stalker until you’ve got a solid grasp of the maps and mechanics of the game. Also, consider reading my other guide which was made for your average player and not Interlopers.
As for those who are about to get started with the hardest difficulty of the game, here are some final The Long Dark Interloper tips for you:
- Firestarters are a treasure here. Don’t use one unless you absolutely have to. It’s best to rely on the magnifying lens since it never breaks
- When lighting a fire with a match, always prefer using a torch since you won’t have to waste a second match in case the fire doesn’t light up in the first try
- After lighting up a fire, get as much meat and water as you can out of it to save up matches
- Intestinal parasites are a massive pain in the butt. Try to stay away from predator meat
- When it comes to avoiding cabin fever, a snow shelter is a much better solution than a bedroll. After all, as long as you tend to it regularly, you only need sticks to maintain it. Not to mention that it’s much warmer
- Try not to use your tools unless you absolutely have to in order to keep them longer
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