High level content and life beyound mere survival in CDDA

The game version is 0.F2.
It took me quite a few tries, but now I understand how this game works.
In my latest playthrough I built a deathmobile, stockpiled on tons of loot, and, after raiding few military outposts and bunkers, I have thouthands of 7.62 NATO, 50 BMG and Rivtech caseless ammunition.
After quite a boring grinding, I managed to dissect enough zombies to install so much CBMs, that it wold be a a good question - is my character even a human now?
I found a combat exoskeleton just laying on the ground near random radio tower.
Otherwise, I crafted a heavy survivor armor, hood, mask, chainmail chausses and pair of studded gloves, so ordinary zeds are not a problem, though they can not get near me anyway.
I have quite a few mutagen serums and journals, so if I decide to go that way, I can become even more overpowered, because CBMs can neutralize many drawbacks of mutations.
So, now surviving is not a problem, more than that, a deathmobile with any kind of machinegun and A7 laser rifle installed is so overpowered, that only a full speed crush is a real danger. If I close the only window in my car with a curtain and use a camera system - thats it, AI does not recognise my vehicle as a threat and I can shoot anyone and anything without any risks.
And I understand that it is not the limit - I can find even more overpowered weapons and armor, I can surround myself with a squad of robots and NPC followers, but - I am already a demigod. Also followers are a huge pain in the ass to deal with in combat.
Bulding my own base… is more like post apocalypse truck driving simulator, and, again, includes dealing with NPCs, who…are not very good.

So, here comes the dilemma - either I drop my demigod character to create a new world with much more difficult rules than normal, or I find a way to challenge myself in current one.
Creating new world comes with a drawback - I had enough grinding in current playthrough, that starting all over again is not so interesting, maybe I will try next stable version when it comes - Exodi and CBM overhaul is a good way to go in my opinion. Overall, surviving first few days is most difficult and challenging, I also tried few challenge starts, but after initial troubles - it is the same all over again, after getting a humble M4A1rifle and few hundreds of rounds for it you are mostly golden.

So, how do I challenge myself? Is there a “high-level” locations in CDDA? Good, interesting questlines? Dangerous and interesting places to go?
Share your thoughts about late game content, because in my opinion it is a main problem of CDDA, and a good way to develop the game further. The “sandbox” in CDDA is VERY good as it is, though not ideal.

Late Game Locations? Sure.

  • Trans-Coast Logistics (a place where you won’t just be mowing through enemies willy-nilly, however it still needs a ton of polishing. Still presents a good challenge if your idea of a challenge is to completely clear the building);;

  • Collapsed Tower (which is also another place you might want to try out. It’s tied to the Hub01 questlines, which I can also recommend);

  • Clear a wasps nest (joke objective, considering how broken the wasps are anyway);

  • Clear a Mi-Go Scout Tower and Rescue all the NPCs (there is an Isherwood’s quest that requires you to do so);

  • Restrict yourself to not using firearms (do a bowman’s challenge or just restrict yourself to melee weapons, etc);

  • Find and Clear a Lab Tower (bonus points if the one you find has the Phase Immersion Suit Finale, because the “special creature” there is… definitely something);

  • Find and clear the Amigara Fault finale in a mine (if it’s still in the game);

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Thanks for the answer, I will try some of these.

Wasp nest - well, wasps are very common in towns, so I killed quite a few, sometimes their nests spawned in fireram shops I radided.
A lab tower - recently, after quite a bit of traveling, I managed to find and clear one - with some teleporters on the second floor. The ground floor, for some reason, was just an office tower on the map. Not too big of challenge, unfortunately, the most dangerous enemeis was M16A4 autonomous TALON UGVs on the top floor - I killed them very fast, those are almost blind in the darkness. I guess there are much more dangerous types, it is just not easy to find a lab.
Collapsed towers are very common, sometimes they spawned near points of my interest - lots of gangenous impalers there, but A7 laser rifle on my deathmobile kills them very fast and effectively. I gues there are more than a 1 floor there, so I will give it a visit soon.
Not using firearms is a very challenging way to play a game, since bows are really underpowered (but, maybe, it is just a realism). Melee is viable, but much, much more dangerous than ranged, and, as far as I understand, will become even more dangerous in future patches with armor being nerfed and even common zeds buffed when in numbers. I am not sure if I am interested in that playstyle since it took me so much effort to stockpile on thouthands upon thouthands of rounds of ammo just to… stop using it.

Here comes the problem I have told about - there should be challenges in the game for a players who play most effective and poweful playstyles, who use high caliber firearms and deathmobiles. Maybe later in the game, when most zeds will evolve to become real monstrocities, firearms will stop being so deadly effective against groups, but deathmobiles will be overpowered anyway.

Trans coast logistics, Mi-Go Scout Towers and a mine - allright, that is a way to go, thank you!

There is also the hazardous waste sarcophagus (purple X) on the map, which could be interesting.

Did you find a necropolis yet? Exploring it might also be worth it.

Irradiation plants are very rare and dangerous but conquering one will give you some useful things.

since bows are really underpowered

Bows have been buffed by the fact that there are weak spots in experimental. I am also working on a PR which adds some more arrows.

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Hazardous waste sarcophagus - was looking for one, but was not lucky enogh to get a spawn, same as Necropolis. I already crafted an ANBC suit, so, I just have to keep travelling.
As far as I understand, Strange Temples are insteresting locations, they add some Indiana Jones feel to your Cataclysm, but the artifacts you find there are more about random negative stuff that willl happen to you when you use them. Am I right?
Weak spots is a good way to go, as far as I understand, they will make dissecting mosnters viable again, after removing CBMs form butchering results. Smells like X-com, if you understand what am I talking about) Overall, not only bows will be buffed by this. Strength requirements of 18-20 (if I remember correctly) for the top bows are still over the line, in my opinion, and can be met only by mutated beasts.

Strength requirements of 18-20 (if I remember correctly) for the top bows

No, only very few bows, most notably the greatbow, have these crazy high strength requirements. I think the modern recurve ones are still the way to go in terms of bang for your buck.

they will make dissecting mosnters viable again, after removing CBMs form butchering results

Weak spots do not impact dissecting, but it has been basically made useless now that CBMs are exodii stuff.. They grant you damage boosts when you hit the spot.
However, there has been some discussion that there will be unique creature parts, such as mandibles from ants. Human skulls have been added, too. There is Giant insect overhaul · GitHub if you are interested in that, but the whole dissection thing is not limited to just insects, of course, but insects got a lot of attention in recent times.

Fortunately it is very easy to contribute if you have any ideas you’d like to implement!

Oh, maybe I did not understand correctly, I thought that by dissecting zombies, insects and other creatures you will understand their anatomy and find their weak spost, so later, when you fight them, you can exploit those weak points. In the game terms I thought it would tranlate to a higher critical chances when you hit said creatures. As far as I remember, In X-com series you dissected creatures in your lab and was able to find new tech and improve your damage aginst those foes. A good idea if, you ask me

For some reason, devs think that it is a bad idea to give creatures limbs and a way for players to target them, like in Fallout, so weak spots is kind of a shortcut.

About contribution - I guess there are lots of people with Ideas, but very few people who can actually create some code to implement those, and I am not a coder myself.
Also, as you can understand by my awkward way of explaining myself, I am not a native English speaker, but I use English forum because Russian branch is almost dead.

and I am not a coder myself.

neither am I. Most of it is just JSON, which is really easy to modify if you have irl computers 3 or something.

or some reason, devs think that it is a bad idea to give creatures limbs and a way for players to target them, like in Fallout, so weak spots is kind of a shortcut.

No, implementing it is actually hard since this is the part that has to be done in code, C++ to be specific. This requires time, effort and a lot of good ideas how it can be implemented into gameplay. This is dark magic.

What are limitations of JSON files? What can be done and what can not?

So, I am in collapsed tower basement right now. Holly molly this place is fun! Still, a gas mask and kukri do the trick.

So, here is a nanofabricator I was looking for so long, but I can not interact with it. Is it missing something, like Autodoc will not work without its coach? Some kind of broken machinery nearby. Is it possible to find a working nanofabricator in collapsed towers?

I can’t really provide a good answer regarding JSON files, because it varies from area to area. You can adjust the things that the code supports, which, again, varies.
Some things you can do (there are lots of others):

  • Define recipes for construction and cooking
  • Define items (that you may then define recipes for)
  • Design locations using map segments you define, with some variability if desired
  • Design base camps and expansions (which is just a special case of the above)
  • Define factions and their dialog (again, within the limits of what the dialog system is capable of).
  • Define mutations (again, within bounds: you can’t define wholly new properties (I think), but you can play around with the existing ones.
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Never bothered with the Hazardous Waste Sarcophagus locations, what’s down there? I only really found radiation poisoning so I’ve avoided the area like the plague.
Then again things might’ve changed the last 5 odd years since I’ve been there

Nano fabricators are broken in the collapsed towers, you’re better off making off with the blueprints and canisters and looking for a lab finale with a working fabrication machine.
If you weren’t finding what you were looking for then the finale provides more spawns for templates and canisters.

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You find a big horde of zombies down in the basement. What makes it worth going down there are all of the mutagens you find lying around and the fact that they are the best source in the game for nanomaterials. Also barrels, lots of barrels down there if you are looking for some.

Never knew that was a good source for nanomaterials. I could care less about mutagens, but barrels might be useful if I ever decide to make a base.

According to Hitchhikers guide, a Sarcophagus can spawn some rare items, as for radiation - there are a lot of options to deal with it.
Thanks for info about nanofabricators, collapsed towers are not very dangerous - but after visiting one you need to restock on A LOT of gas mask cartridges.

As for another points of interest - wasn`t able to locate any, next goal for me is a Mi Go scout tower. As far as I understand, there will be no interesting loot, but some people to save instead. NPCs…well, lets say I will do it for the sake of it.

The main question of this topic is still actual, overall. What do you people do after you get enough loot?

The main question of this topic is still actual, overall. What do you people do after you get enough loot?

Depends on what is “enough.”
Usually I travel around as soon as I get a car I can call a mobile base, until Autumn 20. At which point I will start searching for a good location with an underground shelter on the outskirts of a moderately sized town and (preferrably) with no hints at an underground lab underneath it, where I can survive for the winter, until there is a way for Zombies to actually be “slower” by design when the weather gets too cold and when snow is a thing.

Usually I have one or two NPCs with me so I’d probably spend the entire winter skilling them up.

Enough - is when you crafted everything you wanted to craft, finished your deathmobile and have enough food and ammo to sustain yourself for a very long time.
Winter is coming, yeah - but as far as I know, indoors temperature does not fall below or above certain levels, and vehicles are concidered indoors by the game. Is it true?

In that case, what I said pretty much: a building with a downstairs of sorts where I can have a cozy hideout without freezing to death and without relying on bugged features that may prevent me from thawing liquids.

Indoors at Z-0 the temperatures are the same for me as they are outside, considering my thermometer does not give me any different readings (I just use upstairs for an easy way to freeze food), so I am not sure about that part. In vehicles though, I’ve had occasions where the warmth just literally zeroed out despite being either peak summer or peak winter, but the side effect being that all my water in the tanks is frozen anyway.