Unless it's somehow signalled that the core design philosophy of Darktide has shifted from exploiting whales through hostile mechanics to meaningful, rewarding gameplay, players simply won't return

Bugs can be squashed, optimisation tweaked and imbalances balanced. Those are technical issues that have a static, defined outcome - they simply go from being broken to being fixed. I’m not hugely concerned by them. What worries me most about the future of Darktide is that right now,

Darktide is not designed for players. It’s designed for whales.

Almost every system seems to be designed with the express purpose of pushing whales past the cosmetic shop as much as possible so that they can open their wallets more often:

  • An hourly shop refresh designed to facilitate habit-forming, so more whales pass the cosmetic shop every hour.
  • The lack of rewards (Emperor’s Gifts), as it would decrease the likelihood of players needing to visit the store for their weapon choice, so instead more whales pass the cosmetic shop every hour.
  • A purposeful imbalance of blessings, in order to inject more RNG into the gameplay loop and encourage more shop visits, so more whales pass the cosmetic shop every hour.
  • The absence of mission-selection, meaning you have to wait until you the mission you want, leading to artificially inflated playtime until the shop refreshes, so more whales pass the cosmetic shop every hour.
  • A arbritary scarcity of materials designed encourage farming, in order to inflate playtime to the point that the shop rollovers so more whales pass the cosmetic shop every hour.
  • The removal of any and all story elements, replaced by bland and generic cutscenes that literally boil down to explicitly telling you to play more, so more whales pass the cosmetic shop every hour.
  • The removal of pre-written characters, replaced by a bland and meaningless character creator in order to make players more attached to their characters and therefore more willing to spend money customising their appearance.
  • The removal of a weapon attachment system, replaced by weapon marks which were easier to design cosmetics for.

Until the fundamental direction of the game is acknowledged and addressed, any technical fixes and patches are just treating ancillary concerns. It could have 0 technical issues and bugs, but if a continued focus on these anti-consumer mechanics remain, then it’ll still ultimately remain a hollow experience that won’t feel like it’s worth a player’s time.


People aren’t going to return even if they do every single one of the community’s suggested fixes lol.

That’s just how gamers are.

People will come back for significant new content, or not at all.

These are all the real problem of the game. The systems design and the absurd level of RNG. The blatantly obvious filler blessings. (Do you want 4% power once, or 10% that stacks 5 times?)

The game being unfinished, missing content and full of bugs, crashes and imbalance just add onto it, and aren’t actually the biggest problems in the game. OP lists it perfectly.

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The problem with games as live service : they’re not designed to be fun, they’re designed to make as much money as possible.
So you get aberrations like DT, by the same company that made VT2, which was launched with actual content and where getting the weapons you want after reaching lv30 is trivial in comparison.


To be precise, the design intent has to change first because this design (philosophy) is a product of design intent.
These things (e.g. RNG all over the place) are a consequence of deliberate design choices. They are not bugs or some unforeseen consequence of interactions between complex systems in the game (e.g. Economy).
I’ve said this already:


most players wont return either, they have made their decision.
it would need another game or a complete overhaul to have most of them back, the majority who has left had played some, liked the core gameplay and hated the RNG, GaaS and MTX philosophy.

If they want it to be a successfull GaaS title, they need to rework some stuff and hope for new players and consoles etc.

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cmon whats this all about do you think they gonna say:
“huh thought we could milk you like the little cash cows you are, we were wrong.
we’re going to make an actual good game structure now as we always could have but chose not to.”

the open letter corpo talk is all you’re going to get, and you know it.


Solid post. I think it’s too late for Darktide to escape the design hole they dug themselves into, or at least, its probably too lucrative to stop making the game for whales. I don’t know, it just doesn’t seem like something that will ever happen.


I’ve never played a RPG with a less rewarding, more RNG punishing system than this game. Not to diminish the complaints others have, but honestly I just want to be able to play a lot and have good gear to choose between instead of being married to the one decent (not even best) drop I’ve gotten on my characters. Low shop/reward levels + crap blessings is by far and away the single biggest buzz-kill for me.


If a game has macrotransactions available for purchase in-game, they’re fishing for whales.

you mean micro-transaction right? macro-transaction would be something like a expansion.

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No Man’s Sky

Have you checked the prices? I could buy days worth of food for the price of a bundle. They ain’t “micro”.


Replying to signal boost. This needs to be stickied. It’s well-trodden ground of course for us players still here, but necessary to harp on.



Yeah this is what they need to specifically address. The open letter just said they would improve progression. We have no idea what that means. Clearly they thought the systems they had were good, or they wouldn’t have launched with them. Similarly they thought their planned crafting was good, and it’s crap.

I fear we’re going to be only getting minor consessions to RNG, so they can keep most of their whale-fishing systems. If they want us to stick around or come back at some point, they need to actually tell us they’re changing this stuff, and how they’re changing it. It’s not like we can trust them to have good ideas on their own, sadly.


If they go down that route, it will end like Blizzard. From a household name to a detested infamous heretical sh!t company.
If they go further down that road with devious marketing practices for the cash shop and won’t fix the terrible RNG system. I will never play another Fatshark game, ever. And will violently sh!t-talk them to everyone who cares to listen. Those Chinese practices Tencent Is famous for are pure c4ncer and must be challenged in every way possible.

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It’s wordplay, implying that the store prices are comically high.

I’m getting some mad schadenfreude watching Overwatch crash and burn. Blizzard deserves every bit of it. I hope I don’t feel the same way about FS when the next phase of their monetisation plans are revealed.

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And it’s all so forced. The Vermintide formula doesn’t really fit this approach.

RNG needs to go, that’s it. Especially rolling base weapon stats and inability to reroll ALL perks/blessings on gear. This is not Destiny 2 masochistic community. We want to be able to test perk/blessings combos when we want, when we feel like it, which will also lead to faster discovering what needs balance passes.

That’s only one thing that needs to be fixed in game, but it’s very important one.