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Survival 101 with Don't Starve: In Tools, Hats, and Scary Monsters

IndieMonth | 577d ago
User blog

By Kyle

“Say, pal, you don't look so good. You'd better find something to eat before night comes.”

Many of you may already be familiar with Klei Entertainment's Don't Starve. Released in April of 2013, this survival “simulator” captured many hearts by drawing inspiration from the adorable-yet-morbid mind of Tim Burton and taking a page out of the “lesson learned” games that are give you a slap on the wrist accompanied by a gentle “Maybe you shouldn't have done that.”

Ah, yes, being murdered again and again by the elements, whatever you might consider them may seem like a harsh punishment, but no, Don't Starve instead offers you consistent and constant learning experiences taking in new information every single time you fail. Failure is a natural part of existence, death only the most natural occurrence in relation to life—everything that lives dies.

Thrust onto an island with nary a modicum of prompt, you venture forth in all your weak-bodied ability to brave this new world. “What do I do? Where do I go? How will I feed myself? Why am I here? Who did this to me?” Answers do not come easily. Or at all. No, nobody is here to explain your purpose, but you know deep within your crippled heart that you must survive at all costs.

You venture forth to gather twigs and rocks and flint, and maybe you craft an axe to chop down a tree. Oh no, you're hungry, though, so you pull some carrots out of the ground and ransack a bush or three for some berries to fill your ever-depleting stomach. How long did that take? Too long, because the sun is going down. In a new world full of the unknown, it's impossible to tell what sort of monstrosities haunt this land in the dead of night. Emphasis on the dead.

A brilliant thought, however—why not take the flint and logs you have from earlier and make a nice, warm fire? Ah, yes, of course! Fire staves off all the horrors of the night, where even the mightiest of creatures are warded off due to their primitive understanding of things that burn them. “Fire bad,” they think in whatever language it is they speak. “Fire bad.”

As you sit beside the fire, you contemplate your actions for the next day as you roast your freshly-pulled carrots or gathered berries over the flame. “What can I do tomorrow?” The brilliance of Don't Starve is that it eagerly prods you forward, without a word, to tread and discover more about the island. Creepy ghouls and scary monsters infest this place, most of them leaving you alone unless they are provoked. However, in the name of SCIENCE(!) and experimentation, you must often leave the bosom of safety and live in the danger zone (DANGEAH ZONE!).

Don't Starve isn't all berry eatin' and fire makin', no sir, but instead you have to create a habitat for yourself. This is your home now and how dare you even consider living like some unclean savage day in and day out. You must do homely things, like build yourself a home area and gather food and make yourself clothes. Wait, clothes? What's wrong with the ones you're wearing?

Note that it's not just your stomach on the line, or your overall health, but also your sanity that is at stake. The horrors of this island will slowly drive you to the mental breaking point, but applying levels of normalcy to your life, that is, wearing dapper hats that you either find or create yourself will allow you to keep all your wits about you. No sense in being the very thing that kills you.

Yet, even with all this knowledge, with all the preparation, you never know what sort of kink is going to be thrown at you. Though Klei have enabled you to defend yourself in every possible manner, you might accidentally forget to feed yourself just enough and you may end up hungry (and subsequently a very charming skeleton) or you may forget to get a new hat and succumb to your instability.

Furthermore, the latest bit of Don't Starve, Reign of the Giants, introduces even more to the world and is reserved for “expert” players. Wetness becomes a factor, and body temperature needs to be regulated via clothes. And what of the giants? Giants, indeed, as they are massive beasts who will pound you into dust at a moment's notice if you so much as come near their beloved territory. Goodbye, little body, I hardly knew ye.

What's this? Ah, of course! Don't Starve Together will soon be a thing, too, as you and possibly up to three friends (or total strangers, you know, whatever) will be able to have a go at surviving the wilderness and helping one another. Like a real life Lord of the Flies, except much more whimsical and less asthmatic.

And all this? You have but one life to live in Don't Starve. Failure means a “game over” for your little dude or dudette and will completely erase your save for that character. Death is very real and it looms over you every possible second. But where's the fun in getting multiple chances? You'll learn something new every time...

“It's getting late. It will be dark soon.”

Day 15 | Klei Entertainment

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BiggCMan  +   577d ago
Failure means game over, good lord! That's rivaling Dark Souls brutality!
rdgneoz3  +   577d ago
The game is fun and brutal. There are ways to survive death if you can find or make them. Can't wait till the Giants DLC for PS4. Co-op looks cool as well.
uth11  +   576d ago
yes, there are several ways to cheat death.

But if you get revived in the middle of winter with no protection or supplies, you may be dead again real soon anyway :)
beepbopadoobop  +   577d ago
This is such a fun game, I suck at it and never last long but its still fun even after repeated deaths which is surprising!
shadowvisa  +   577d ago
oasdada  +   577d ago
I remmember the 1st tym the giant tree monster was chasing me.. i was literally yelling while running lol
randomass171  +   576d ago
Oh gosh. Sounds exhilarating! XD
LukeFair  +   577d ago
Oh those one-eyed monsters reminds me of Patapon! haha
MisterAV  +   576d ago
It reminds me the villain of FMA also
dictionary  +   577d ago
This game looks like a painting! Awesome
styferion  +   577d ago
for the love of me I never survive past 14 days.. gonna keep trying though
SpeedDemon  +   577d ago
Too bad I didn't get this when it was given to PS+ users.
Monster_Tard  +   577d ago
Great game, you should pick it up if you haven't yet!
XtraTrstrL  +   576d ago
Reign of the Giants + Don't Starve Together = me playing nonstop again.
MightyNoX  +   576d ago
“It's getting late. It will be dark soon.”

Brilliant note to go out on.
Sidology  +   576d ago
Thanks! I think it speaks volumes of the intention of the game, which is why I used it as my closer.
uth11  +   576d ago
My favorite game at the moment.

If you can survive the first winter, you can survive anything.

When you start, find a place to camp that's near plenty of food. Build rabbit traps, a stone campfire ring.

Then you want to find what you need to make a crockpot, and find some beefalo herds for manure and wool (maybe a horn too if you're lucky) for winter or beefalo hats

build as many farms as you can and plant them.

I like to also try to have a secondary camp site by winter, far enough away from the first. In case it gets attacked by deerclops, spider queens, treeguards, etc.
pyrocloud7  +   576d ago
The sanity aspect of the game is very interesting, has a small taste of Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem.
rambi80  +   576d ago
The first pic reminds me of Patapon.
gobluesamg  +   576d ago
I never made it more than a couple days.
TreFord  +   576d ago
Free to play. Free dlc
HammadTheBeast  +   576d ago
I love the art style of this game.
Crazyglues  +   576d ago
I never can stay alive for two many days, but my friends are doing numbers like 56 days, 124 days... I'm barely alive for 2 weeks.. LoL

(But I love this game, wish it was Multi-player so you could group up with friends and tackle the survival plan together as well as help get food and stuff) -would be such an awesome feature...

-especially if it's done like toe jam and earl, where you could go one way and your friend could go somewhere else and if you want to meet back up, there would be a little arrow to point you in the direction back to where your friend is...

That feature alone would put the game sales through the roof..

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#18 (Edited 576d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
MYDEATH21  +   576d ago
I really liked this game. The art was cool as hell
MrxDeath  +   576d ago
the art style is perfect and it looks hard ... like Dark souls Hard !!
this is great !
Darklurkr23  +   576d ago
Wouldn't mind an xbox release
Volt4FUN  +   576d ago
This game is very cilmatic and the art is perfect.
Derekvinyard13  +   576d ago
My bro can't last two days lol
Skate-AK  +   576d ago
Will read through this when I get my PS4 on the 26th. Hope there are some good tips in here.
Virtua_Awesome  +   576d ago
Everything in Don't Starve just sounds great! I adore games like this! :) Just surviving against the world, feeding yourself, making shelter, etc. I want more games like it!
ichizon  +   576d ago
Hey, Lana! Better call Kenny Loggins.

I can't claim to be one of the fans of the art style, but it sure is unique. I think Don't Starve cropped up to become a pretty good game though, and the survival aspect is on a whole nother level than what we see in many other popular survival games.
grashopper  +   576d ago
Man I really love the sound of this. Needs me a PS4 so I can give it a go.
MasterofMagnetism  +   576d ago
Great game even though it is hard as hell.
coolbeans  +   576d ago
Nice write-up, Sid. Does anything strange start to happen when you begin losing sanity? Do you begin to see things that aren't actually there or do you just eventually hit a limit and die?
Disagree  +   576d ago
sounds like its really hardcore survival
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