Hey everyone, just wanted to give you guys an overview of the Health/Vital system in development. Simplicity was a big part of the design, we wanted to keep it basic yet with enough depth to keep the game fun and challenging. We’d appreciate any feedback as to what you guys think about it. Nothing here is set in stone and I’m sure there will be a lot of tweaking needed to get that perfect balance but we feel this is a good starting point for discussion.
Health is what determines if you are alive or dead. Health decreases when you take physical damage in the world from animals or from falling. It will also decrease by not maintaining proper vital levels: The vitals: Thirst, Hunger, and Fatigue will reduce health if any of them reach zero. If all 3 vitals are above zero then health will very slowly regenerate. If all 3 vitals are at zero then your health will deteriorate very rapidly.
Some items may be able to increase health directly but they aren’t readily available. These items might include medkits and a specific mix of plants. Most of the time however, keeping all your vitals above zero will be the only way to regenerate health.
Health levels also have the ability to impact gameplay. As your health decreases some gameplay changes will occur. Only health will affect gameplay directly, vitals only do so indirectly. Some possible changes: sprinting will be disabled and your walk speed will slow down. Blur may increase and when closer to death blood effects will appear on screen.
Thirst is what determines how well hydrated a player is. Once thirst reaches zero it will start to impact Health. It takes ~24 hours of in game time for your thirst to reach zero. Once this happens it will slowly bring down your Health level. If no water is found, your health will be fully depleted just from thirst within ~72 hours in game. Thirst is the most important vital to manage because it decreases the fastest and will also reduced your health the fastest.
Thirst is increased by drinking water from rivers, large puddles, and water holes. If you are equipped with a canteen, it can serve as an extension to your thirst meter giving you more time before needing to find water. Having a canteen will give you an additional ~24 hours of in game time before it gets automatically drained. Larger canteens may be available. Once water is found the canteen will be refilled as well. Some items found may be able to provide you with some water but these will be scarce.
Hunger is what determines how famished a player is. Once hunger reaches zero it will start to impact Health. It takes ~48 hours of in game time for your hunger to reach zero. Once this happens it will slowly bring down your Health level. If no food is ever consumed, your health will be fully depleted just from hunger after ~4 days in game.
Hunger is only increased by eating food. Each day your hunger meter will be going down and eating food will keep it in a normal range. Different foods will provide different amounts of nourishment with meat being the highest and plants being the lowest.
Fatigue is what determines how tired a player is. Once fatigue reaches zero it will start to impact Health. It takes ~24 hours of in game time for your fatigue to reach zero. This won’t be based on anything but time for now, not based of walking/running etc. This accounts for mental fatigue, even if you sit all day you still need rest. If no sleep occurs, the player will die from fatigue after ~5 days in game.
Fatigue level can only be increased by sleeping. 8 hours of sleep are needed to take the fatigue meter from zero to full. Sleeping can be done at any time. If you choose to sleep anywhere you run the chance of being woken up and attacked in the middle of the night. However, sleeping in a shelter allows you to sleep comfortably without being woken up. Some other items may be able to give you a small fatigue boost.
Note: 1 Day in game = 40 min real time
Here is just a quick GUI mock-up to better visualize it: