Don't Starve Survival Guide

Dont Starve Survival Guide

Dont Starve

If youd rather not go in completely blind, weve put together the following set of tips to help you make it through the dark nights with your health and sanity intact, as well as pointing you in the right direction for future exploration.

The basics

The most important information is displayed in the top right of the screen, where the progress of time from day (yellow) to dusk (red) then night (blue) can be tracked. Below this, from left to right, are icons showing your Hunger (150), Sanity (200) and Health (150), which will be explained on the following slides. The figures in brackets are the initial/maximum levels for the starting character, Wilson, and although the icons give a pictorial representation of your current level the exact numbers can be checked at any point by pressing R2 to bring up the Inventory.

Seriously, don't starve

If an item initially has a green background in the Inventory then this means it will spoil over time, with the colour turning yellow then red before it rots completely. Cooking meats will make them last longer than their raw counterparts, but raw vegetables have a longer life than cooked ones, and any food dropped on the floor will spoil much quicker than if it was carried in your Inventory. The positive effects of consuming food is greatly diminished when it starts to perish, so wherever possible you should eat it before it reaches this stage.

Stay sane

You can monitor the effect of current conditions on your Sanity by checking the icon, as an arrow appears over it to indicate whether its increasing or decreasing. Being exposed to the dark, rain or monsters and eating raw meat or other bad foods will reduce your sanity, whereas being near friendly creatures, wearing fancy clothes and eating well prepared foods will increase it. A simple way of restoring Sanity early on is to gather 12 Petals and craft them into a Garland, which can then be worn to slowly recover your marbles.

Stay healthy

If your Health goes down to zero you will die, though this doesnt always mean game over. If you discovered a Touch Stone and activated it during your playthrough youll be resurrected there, and once you unlock advanced magic you can also craft items that will resurrect you. Although this gives you another bite at the cherry, your Hunger, Sanity and Health will all be reduced and youll lose all Inventory items, but these can be recovered if you return to the location where you died.

Getting started

When it starts getting dark, find a spot to combine Grass and Logs to make a Campfire, then pop an additional Log on now and again to keep it burning nicely. You do this by highlighting it in your Inventory then pressing left on the d-pad next to the fire to add fuel. If you place the Campfire in an area near trees or boulders you can continue harvesting materials through the night, but make sure you dont situate it too close to anything flammable or the whole area could go up in smoke.

Build the base

Construct a Science Machine here as this will open up a new set of items in the Crafting menu. The first time you create any item, youll need to use the Science Machine to make a prototype. This also restores a bit of your sanity as you get to exercise your scientific brain. By continuing your research you can build shelters, install Farms to grow crops, and get yourself well on the way to self-sufficiency.

Its a trap

Rabbits, on the other hand, run away in an erratic fashion when you go near them, so a different approach is required. By placing Traps directly over their Rabbit Holes you can guarantee to catch them the moment they emerge, so set the Traps then return later and grab any that are bouncing up and down to claim your prize. Rabbits can be converted into Morsels and cooked to keep your hunger under control, and as each Trap has 8 uses you can put it straight back down again and wait for the next catch to roll in.

Fight night

When engaging enemies in combat the most effective tactic is to let them get close enough to begin their attack animation, then quickly move out of range until it ends. At this point you have a brief window of opportunity before they can attack again, so get in some blows of your own before backing off and repeating the process until your foe is defeated. If more than one enemy is attacking then try to maneuver them together so you dont get surrounded, and remember that you can lure them into traps or the path of other creatures if you need a helping hand.

Stayin alive

Well, thats all of the basics covered--hopefully weve given you enough of a grounding to be able to fend for yourself, and not get dragged off into the darkness by terrifying shadow beasts. Use your newly found knowledge to continue experimenting and exploring the world, as theres a wealth a magical items, contraptions and monsters out there just waiting to be discovered...

Iain Wilson
Guides Editor

Iain originally joined Future in 2012 to write guides for CVG, PSM3, and Xbox World, before moving on to join GamesRadar in 2013 as Guides Editor. His words have also appeared in OPM, OXM, PC Gamer, GamesMaster, and SFX. He is better known to many as ‘Mr Trophy’, due to his slightly unhealthy obsession with amassing intangible PlayStation silverware, and he now has over 500 Platinum pots weighing down the shelves of his virtual award cabinet. He does not care for Xbox Achievements.