Long Gone Days isn’t exactly the story of modern warfare — it takes place in a dystopian reality sometime in our near future. But even if there are elements of science fiction or alternate history in its setting, its creators didn’t shirk on doing their real-life research.
Because unit morale and emotional costs are important to the game, creator Camila Gormaz spent a lot of time looking into the lives of real soldiers and veterans. As she explains to Joel Couture at Indie Games, that research included a lot of time lurking on military forums.
What she found there was, unsurprisingly, much different from what blockbuster movies, games, and fiction would typically convey. She saw a far less glamourous side to war, finding the psychiatric effects of having to kill other human beings.
“A usual topic seemed to be the importance of fear. How fear enhances your senses, and it is in fact a survival skill, and how someone who lacks fear is in fact not a very good soldier, despite what Hollywood wants us to believe.” says Gormaz.
She also found a certain fragility to the men and women on the front lines, one borne of the horrific things they would witness and be a part of. “Another piece of information that caught my attention were psychiatric casualties – how a soldier becomes useless for combat after spending a couple of weeks on the front-line.”
Long Gone Days reflects reality in other ways, too — for instance, players will require interpreters in their party if they want to speak with NPCs who don’t speak English. It takes place in our world (aside from a few key differences), with characters hailing from the very real city of Kaliningrad. And forget about magic or other fantasy RPG staples. Any fantastic elements will be from the realm of science, and the closest thing to a magic system players will need to deal with is a system for party morale.
This stat affects the characters performance in battle. High Morale means better chance of critical attacks and higher evasion, while Low Morale will drop their accuracy and defense. If their Morale reaches zero, the character will lose their will to fight. To keep their Morale high, you must get to know your party members in order to understand how to motivate them during dialogues. A pessimistic character will not be motivated by mindless encouragement.
Long Gone Days enjoyed a successful campaign on Indiegogo earlier this month, and has made its way through Greenlight, so it will be available on Steam when it releases in 2018. For now, it has a demo for you to try.