Each year video games receive expansions that build upon the base experience and bring more content to the table. This content expands on the base game and fundamentally changes the way it’s played.
In 2022, we saw many games receive noteworthy expansions, but Tales from the Far Territory, the first paid expansion for The Long Dark in the eight years it’s been playable, stood out to us as the best of 2022. Tales from the Far Territory didn’t just add new content to the game, it fundamentally changed the way it’s played. The same can be said for our other nominees, Destiny 2: The Witch Queen and Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak, but there could be only one winner.
Tales from the Far Territory launched on December 5, 2022, just barely making it into consideration for the Best Expansion at the 2022 Shacknews Awards. Not only does the expansion add a new transition zone, hub, and region, but that new region is one of the largest of any of the 13 already in the game, giving players a huge territory to explore while trying to survive some of the worst weather The Long Dark has to offer. If that wasn’t enough, Tales from the Far Territory also introduced a new phenomenon called Glimmer Fog which can see players get the Insomnia affliction. The only thing more dangerous than falling asleep in the freezing cold is not being able to sleep (or sleep well) at all.
In addition to the new region, Tales from the Far Territory also saw The Long Dark receive new variants to some of its weapons and tools, as well as Mementos scattered throughout the game world. These Mementos are often clues that will point players to caches of gear or secrets, giving veteran survivors new reasons to explore places they’ve already been.
Perhaps one of the more groundbreaking updates to launch with Tales from the Far Territory is something Hinterland Studio included for both expansion pass owners and players who opted out of this paid track, a complete loot table refresh. That’s right, after eight years of knowing where to go to find that rifle, or box of matches, players are now stepping into The Long Dark without a solid idea of where their favorite loot can be found. All these additions together helped push Tales from the Far Territory to victory this year.
Tales from the Far Territory completely changes the experience for players stepping into The Long Dark. For a game that came out a year after Grand Theft Auto V and a year before The Witcher 3, that’s quite the achievement and deserving of the Shacknews Award for Best Expansion 2022.
Check out our Year of the Games: 2022 article to see all of the other Shacknews Awards that have been announced so far.