Not many players are familiar with the save file location in The Long Dark. First, it’s only something you’ll find on the PC version of the game and, secondly, you must navigate to a hidden file on your PC to get to it. Knowing its location, however, can help you prevent the loss of dozens of hours of play time due to a bug or problems with your PC.
Save File Location
It should be noted that Hinterland Games generally frowns upon players backing up their saves. First, it’s a game that embraces perma-death, so there’s the obvious concern that players would use it to avoid the consequences of letting their character die. Secondly, not everyone is tech savvy and digging around in the hidden files of your PC can be risky business. That said, if you still want to know the save file location for The Long Dark, follow the steps in the list below:
- Open the File Explorer
- Click View
- Click Hidden Items
- Open Local Disk (C:) – Could be a different letter
- Open Users
- Open your profile
- Open AppData
- Open Local
- Open Hinterland
- Open The Long Dark
- Copy your save file
There will be quite a few files in this folder, but there are two you’re looking for specifically. One will be called sandbox1 (or some other number), and the other will be called story11 (or some other number). You might also find other save files in here, but these two will cover the Survival mode and Story mode. Once you have them copied to your clipboard, move them to another folder for safe keeping. If anything ever happens to your save file, you can grab the backup and paste it into this folder to restore you progress.
Now, my personal plea is to ask that you don’t mess with your save file if you’re not confident in your own technical skills. You could break something, and you’ll get no troubleshooting from us. You’re doing this at your own risk. You also shouldn’t use this to cheat perma-death. That’s a major system in the game and the experience suffers if you circumvent that.
What I use this for is to protect against bugs. I once opted to map the entire game, which had me scaling rocks and cliff edges. I was insta-killed by the game several times, so backing up my save was a way to get around that. I’ve also used this in case I format my PC or run into other technical problems. I simply don’t trust the cloud to keep my saves.
Now that you know the save file location, be sure to visit The Long Dark topic page on Guide Stash. We are covering more of this spectacular game every day, and your journey will be better for having read our guides.