Don’t Starve: Beginner’s Guide

I love playing Don’t Starve, it’s one of those games I fire up when I want to just have an open sandbox to play with that has challenges of finding resources. And there is a plot to the game that you can follow or just ignore it all together. The game does have simple mechanics that are relatively easy to understand, but can take some getting used to. So in this beginner’s guide, my goal is to make it easier for you!

Understanding the HUD

Or the Heads-up-Display. This is where you can access the crafting menu, inventory, equipped items, day-night cycle, and check on your needs (sanity, hunger, and health). You also have access to the mini-map from here.

  • Health: This displays how much damage the player can take. When it reaches 0, it will cause the player’s Death or Resurrection. To get resurrected, you have to find a shrine or totem that will allow this. Or you will be starting from scratch.
  • Hunger: Track how full the character’s stomach is. When this reaches 0, you will start to lose health until you either find something to eat to die.
  • Spoilage: Food in your inventory doesn’t last forever. It will spoil and rot over time. Items start out as green then yellow (stale) and then red (spoiled). At this stage it can be used as fertilizer as it’s a pile of rot. Each stage of spoilage has different effects such as sanity loss, except for on the character WX-78.
  • Sanity: The character’s current sanity level. When sanity drops, different things will start to happen. For starters, the screen will become distorted and shake. At night you will start to see eyes. At levels lower than 100, you see shadow creatures. At level 30, your character will hold their head in pain and the shadow creatures begin to attack.
  • Day/Night cycle: The cycle between the seasons vary on how long day, dusk, and night last.

Surviving the Seasons

If you have the Reign of Giants DLC there are four seasons, otherwise there are only two (summer and winter). Summer is the normal state of the game other than having longer day times. Whereas, in Winter there are multiple differences. For instance, animals and monsters will change appearance or coat color. The player can freeze to death.  Deerclops boss will occasionally spawn. And the duo of Mactusk N’Son will begin hunting you. Overall, Winter is a very hostile season so make sure you are prepared before this season hits.

Surviving the Full Moon

Pigs become werepigs and everyting in general just becomes hostile. Also if you have the Reign of Giants DLC, mushrooms will change into mushtrees while flowers turn into evil flowers. So make sure you have the following equipped:

  • On Hand: Wield tools, weapons, or magical items.
  • Body: Wear armor, dress items, magical apparel, or different type of Backpacks on the torso.
  • Hat: Wear armor or hats.

As these will serve as protection against everything that has become hostile.

Tips for the First Few Days

  • Find as much flint, twigs, grass, logs, and food as possible. The first concerns are hunger and night.
  • Flint and twigs create pickaxes and axes.
  • Cut grass and logs will become a campfire.
  • Carrots and berries can be cooked over the campfire in the evening.
  • Campfire will protect you from Grue or Charlier from murdering you in the dark.
  • 12 flowers will create you a flower garland to keep your sanity.
  • Leave spiders and spider dens alone. Same goes for bees and tallbird.
  • Beefalos are useful for infinite Manure. But be warned during mating season, they will attack you.
  • Swamps are dangerous for beginners, wait until you are better equipped.
  • To avoid death by hounds, go to Beefalos.
  • Explore as much as possible before creating a camp.

Have any other tips that I missed? Let us know in the comments!

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