The Long Dark gets its third story episode this December

While its Early Access period provided an open-ended survival experience in the frosty Canadian wilderness, The Long Dark was always getting a story-oriented mode as well. Dubbed Wintermute, the first two episodes of the five episode series are already out, and studio Hinterland has announced today that the third episode will release this December.

Episode three will follow Dr. Astrid Greenwood, providing a different perspective of events that occurred in the previous two episodes. "You’ll meet new survivors, explore a new region, and find out more about the events prior to, and after, the First Flare event that engulfed Great Bear Island -- and perhaps the rest of the world -- into 'the long dark'", the new update reads.

As for the reworks of the first two episodes, they'll now offer a "more open and flexible mission structure", in an effort to make the narrative-centric episodes a bit less linear. There's an overhauled dialogue UI, a new intro sequence for episode one, and even "major" new story elements: in other words, it'll definitely be worth replaying these. There are plenty of other additions and changes too, which you can read about in the diary entry.

But all this cool new stuff comes with a caveat: "Please note that because so much has changed, in-progress playthroughs of Episode One or Two will be wiped when the Redux versions are released in December," the post continues. "Players who have already completed the original versions of Episodes One and Two and who wish to just continue directly to Episode Three will not be affected by the save wipe. So, if you are in the midst of a Wintermute playthrough and don’t want to lose your progress, you have until December to complete it."

As for the sandbox survival mode, a new update arrived for that in June, adding a new region and an overhauled cooking system.

Shaun Prescott

Shaun Prescott is the Australian editor of PC Gamer. With over ten years experience covering the games industry, his work has appeared on GamesRadar+, TechRadar, The Guardian, PLAY Magazine, the Sydney Morning Herald, and more. Specific interests include indie games, obscure Metroidvanias, speedrunning, experimental games and FPSs. He thinks Lulu by Metallica and Lou Reed is an all-time classic that will receive its due critical reappraisal one day.