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I played through A Dark Room and got to what I'm pretty sure is the ending.

The entire game involves figuring out what the game is about, so I'll describe what happened in spoilers tags.

First off, don't read farther if you haven't built a trading post.

I went down a dusty road, and

eventually cleared out the entire map. This involved finding an Alien Spaceship and several Alien Alloys.

After heading back,

I upgraded both the engines and hull to level 6, then lifted off. I flew through space, dodging space debris, and I think I got hit 5 times (bringing my hull down to 1). Eventually, though, my spaceship started moving on its own to the center of the screen, debris stopped coming, and the ship flew away. At least, I think it flew away, but for all I know, it blew up. It wasn't obvious.

Afterward,

the screen faded out. Then I was back to square 1, in a dark room with a cold fire.

Is that the only ending? Or did I mess up? It wasn't quite clear.

I'm okay with it as an ending, but since it was pretty vague I don't know if I messed up somehow and missed something.

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I didn’t even get back to the beginning, it just stayed there on an empty, black screen for me. ¬_¬ –  Synetech Sep 12 '13 at 18:08
    
@Synetech Perhaps the game got an update since I asked that changed the ending slightly? –  Mag Roader Sep 13 '13 at 11:19
    
I don’t think so. The version on GitHub is newer (it has some fancy sliding effects and ±10 buttons in the village screen), but the rest seems to be the same. Either way, the ending is confusing at best. (Though I do have a theory about it which depending on Peter’s experience could be reasonable and satisfying.) –  Synetech Sep 13 '13 at 14:51

3 Answers 3

I had the exact same experience.

This interview seems to suggest there's an additional reveal that:

you are actually an alien yourself.

However that was revealed, it was too subtle for me!

Edit: Now in the middle of my second playthrough, I can see the hints:

First,

If you find the old man in the murky swamp and give him a charm, you'll get this:

the wanderer takes the charm and nods slowly he speaks of once leading the great fleets to fresh worlds. unfathomable destruction to fuel wanderer hungers. his time here, now, is his penance.

Note that

when you hover over the @ sign, the popup says Wanderer. That's you.

Next, if you read carefully after killing a vigilante you'll see:

beneath the wanderer's rags, clutched in one of its many hands, a glint of steel.

Finally, when you

find the spaceship, you see:

the familiar curves of a wanderer vessel rise up out of the dust and ash. lucky that the natives can't work the mechanisms. with a little effort, it might fly again.

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Where is that revealed? –  SMeznaric Jun 25 '13 at 11:06
    
Thanks for the extra edit and the information, I didn't spot many of the things you mention! –  SMeznaric Jun 25 '13 at 20:00
3  
@SMeznaric You could of course dig through the source code now made available –  Zommuter Jul 4 '13 at 13:34
1  
I spent ages harvesting fur for teeth and scales and then alloy until I hade about 65 hull and 55 engines and still got the same result as above - shame - thought I might get a suprise... –  user52633 Jul 26 '13 at 15:45
    
@Peter, with that much hull integrity, how long did you last? Did the meteors get ridiculously dense and fast? –  Synetech Sep 12 '13 at 18:09

Eventually, though, my spaceship started moving on its own to the center of the screen, debris stopped coming, and the ship flew away. At least, I think it flew away, but for all I know, it blew up. It wasn't obvious.

No, it definitely flew away; if it blew up (you had only 1 point left for the hull and got hit), then you would—somehow—crash back on the same planet and be right back at your village as it was before you took off. The lift off button would be disabled for a while before you can click it to try again.

Therefore when the ship takes over and zooms up and off the screen, the game has officially ended. You have successfully fixed your ship and left the planet and gone home. This is an acceptable ending, though some text to that effect would indeed be good.

(Alternately, it could also have worked well if the meteors had increased in density and speed until you eventually run out of hull integrity and get hit. Then you would crash on a new planet and leave your ship to wander off to find shelter somewhere in a dark room…)

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i heard there might be an alternate ending for iOS but i haven't found it for sure yet.

SPOILERS I know the builder said once that "history has repeated itself" so maybe in the ending what happens is your ship gets hit when there is more asteroid (off screen or something), you get knocked out of your ship somewhere on the way down, you fall and hit your head, losing your memory while your ship is somewhere else in the world. after you fall, the builder probably takes you into the dark room or something but forgets to light a fire. then you wake up. but i don't know, that wouldnt explain how all the buildings are in different spots, unless you fell on a new planet, but the builder is looking after you with her locket.

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I have rolled back the edit because it spoilered the entire answer. If someone is reading this question, they specifically want to know about alternate endings, and spoilering the answer is not needed. –  Frank Oct 17 at 23:57

protected by Community Jul 26 '13 at 18:48

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