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TheKingDedede

In defense of the macabre creature designs from the "Return of Them" series of updates.

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TheKingDedede    3505

So, I've been a fan of the Don't Starve franchise for a while. I was pulled in by the art style and the world that the characters were forced to survive in. I was there when DST was in its beta state and when SW and Hamlet were also going through their beta periods. When the "Return of Them" content updates had begun, three creatures in particular were given additional forms that several forumers found disturbing. Those three creatures being the Horror Hound, Shattered Spiders and the Moonrock Pengulls.

Allow me to preface the following by saying that I understand where others are coming from. Players shouldn't feel afraid for playing a game where they just wanted to play to have fun, and not be startled by something that they could not have seen coming. However, I am here to make an argument that these creatures should stay (They have not been removed, nor has anything been said that there were plans to remove them), and that more should be added into the game if the developers intend to. I also realize that this is a bit late, but I still felt that it was a point that should be brought up and discussed if needed. I am also aware that some games make it their gimmick to hide behind a cutesy facade before blindsiding the player with something disturbing, such as Eversion.

When I first encountered these creatures, my first reaction was one of awe and surprise, not fear. I thought that this was a genius way to show that the Moon was not what it appeared to be, and that preexisting mobs and creatures would be altered and changed by its forces. When I first saw the creatures, I was also interested in seeing how other mobs would be affected if they were to live on the Moon Island. My friends and I were playing the sailing beta at the time and were also surprised by the designs, and we had wanted to see more.

Some users were disturbed by them however, and understandably so. The Horror Hound has several characters quoting that its existence is suffering and its design is certainly freaky and nightmarish. Some people went so far as to create mods that would censor the mobs by changing their designs and keeping their behaviours intact, which was certainly a kind gesture.

I will also admit that I was childish and that instead of speaking up and discussing how I was against the new mobs/monster designs being changed in any significant manner by the artists or developers, I instead chose to change my profile picture to one of the Moonrock Pengulls. This was childish of me.

I did not speak up then about it, but I wanted to now. I want to make the argument that their designs, along with being freaky and disturbing, were also quite cool, as subjective as that sounds. I believe that the developers and the artists at Klei should continue to provide alternate designs for creatures that may or may not appear on the Moon Island by player intervention or as a natural occurrence, but on the other hand I understand that some people do not wish to see such creatures. In my opinion, the intended reaction was to shock players, but it may have been too successful.

There are arguments to be made that the content associated with sailing is completely optional and that players don't have to engage with it if they don't want to. But there is also an argument to be made that players should be able to experience all that the game has to offer without being scared off by it.

I don't have any evidence to support the following, but I feel that after the threads were made, Klei decided to shift their focus from the Moon Island and its mobs to creating and focusing on other things, such as Pearl, her island and the Crab King. I could be completely wrong about this and am willing to accept that. Perhaps Klei decided to merely introduce the mobs at first to test player reactions to them, or that they decided to more forward with the rest of the road map that they had planned.

If the focus is brought back around to the island, I would like to see more macabre designs introduced as preexisting or new mobs, similar to what happened to three mobs mentioned above. I can't make an argument that others can just get used to them, but I can say that I've gotten used to the designs and consider them normal by now, as selfish as that sounds. If anything, the designs show that the creatures who live on the island are not to be messed with and perfectly capture why the island itself is inherently 'wrong'.

Please feel free to discuss or disagree with my viewpoint. Thank you for your time.

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gaymime    4147

to be fair i find the hounds and pengulls to be really quite distressing but it is easy to avoid them. you stay off of lunar island in the winter and you do not go around killing hounds while you are there in any season(spiders are a different matter in that you have to turn off all spiders for them to not appear or put spiders on 'less' and hope you get lucky). all this being said i wouldnt even imagine(and certainly have not entertained the thought) of them being removed. they are corruption manifest in the same way damaged clockworks are; the extreme end of the influence of the night's imaginings

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Mike23Ua    8414

I live for these kind of freakish looking monsters, in fact I would absolutely adore being able to have a pet skin that looked like one of these.. it fits the theme of Spooky, and I like Spooky.

Remember that it is just a game- and even though i LIKE these moon penguins in the game, in real life... I pass out at the sight of my own blood.

I can watch movies and video games all day long with horrifying things in them and not be bothered by it: Because I know it’s all fake, and not real it’s mostly just corn syrup, and food coloring.

But let me step on a piece of glass or something and I’m going to start to feel Queazy.

I guess the best way to handle this in the game: for people who don’t share my “it’s not real I’ll be fine..” mindset- is if they simply just avoid those areas of the game.

Maybe Klei will even give those who are squeamish to these designs an option to instead of blood.. have them gush with colorful rainbows and glitter (this is NOT a joke... I’ve played games where you can literally turn off the blood and make it all Rainbows & glitter) I can’t remember which games did that but I certainly recall playing em.

Something like a “Horror Filter” if you can’t handle the new monstrosities then you can turn them off or pretty-ify them.

But- As for me a would LOVE pet skins for this type of Weirdness... 

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Well-met    4361

How do I put this

If you are unironically terrified by moon hounds or pengulls, you have much, MUCH yet to see. 

Either you are at a questionably low age or your experience with other videogames or movies is alarmingly lacking.

Even the internet itself is a spookier place than Dont Starve.

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Mike23Ua    8414

I’m still going to stick with my broken record stance on this: Dont Starve is rated 13+ As in not intended for tiny children to play.

Meanwhile Minecraft is rated E for Everyone and IS intended for little children to play.. 

The irony in all of that? Minecraft has cultists & a literal portal to Hell where you will encounter tortured zombified souls with their bones pultruding out Thier skin and flesh rotting off from their faces.. in a Rated E Game for everyone!! 

Even one of their more recent surface world mobs “The Drowned” is a spooky concept when you think about it.. Mobs in the game that couldn’t swim so they drown at sea and when you enter the water they come from it’s depths to grab you by the ankles and cause you to suffer their same faith..

Ahem E RATED KIDS GAME!!!! 
Whatever DST is... it needs to step out of the kid friendly comfort zone and fully utilize its 13+ rating- That or change its Rating to something lesser than 13+

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ShadowDuelist    7651
33 minutes ago, Well-met said:

How do I put this

If you are unironically terrified by moon hounds or pengulls, you have much, MUCH yet to see. 

Either you are at a questionably low age or your experience with other videogames or movies is alarmingly lacking.

Even the internet itself is a spookier place than Dont Starve.

I came to write exactly this, you beat me to it.

I'm also all up for more creepy creatures everywhere, specially on the moon island. The game was always meant to have a creepy-halloweenie vibe to it.

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Mike23Ua    8414
6 minutes ago, TheGoldenDonut_ said:

Bring back cannibalism!

You give pig king the butt of his own fallen villagers he rewards you with gold- Still sounds like cannibalism to me.

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Sunset Skye    10251
3 hours ago, Well-met said:

How do I put this

If you are unironically terrified by moon hounds or pengulls, you have much, MUCH yet to see. 

Either you are at a questionably low age or your experience with other videogames or movies is alarmingly lacking.

Even the internet itself is a spookier place than Dont Starve.

There's a huge misunderstanding (whether it's intentional or not) in these kinds of discussions. Nobody out there is or has ever been complaining that the mutated lunar island mobs scare them. Nobody is or has ever been complaining that they get scared by these mobs. Never have these sorts of discussions ever been about people being scared of the lunar island mobs. I want to make that very very clear.

The thing people bring up concern about is that they are mentally incapable of handling these mobs. Saying someone is just "young or inexperienced" for being bothered by these is like saying that someone with trypophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to look at patterns of holes which disturb them. It's like saying that someone with claustrophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to be trapped in a small space. It's like saying that someone with Acrophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to hang out on the roof of a skyscraper.

People who don't like horror hounds and moonrock pengulls aren't saying "they scare me, never add anything like this again" they're saying "my mind literally cannot handle seeing this type of content that is nowhere else in the game, please add some sort of toggle or option to allow me not to have a mental breakdown while playing this game." And it's possible to understand and respect that, even if you aren't bothered by these mobs. You don't have to brag about how cool and experienced you are with similar media. It's possible to understand and respect other people that are bothered by something, even if you personally aren't.

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Mike23Ua    8414
26 minutes ago, Sunset Skye said:

There's a huge misunderstanding (whether it's intentional or not) in these kinds of discussions. Nobody out there is or has ever been complaining that the mutated lunar island mobs scare them. Nobody is or has ever been complaining that they get scared by these mobs. Never have these sorts of discussions ever been about people being scared of the lunar island mobs. I want to make that very very clear.

The thing people bring up concern about is that they are mentally incapable of handling these mobs. Saying someone is just "young or inexperienced" for being bothered by these is like saying that someone with trypophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to look at patterns of holes which disturb them. It's like saying that someone with claustrophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to be trapped in a small space. It's like saying that someone with Acrophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to hang out on the roof of a skyscraper.

People who don't like horror hounds and moonrock pengulls aren't saying "they scare me, never add anything like this again" they're saying "my mind literally cannot handle seeing this type of content that is nowhere else in the game, please add some sort of toggle or option to allow me not to have a mental breakdown while playing this game." And it's possible to understand and respect that, even if you aren't bothered by these mobs. You don't have to brag about how cool and experienced you are with similar media. It's possible to understand and respect other people that are bothered by something, even if you personally aren't.

I get this but I have one concerning issue- how does this translate over into SKINS? 
like for example- What if they bring in some truly ghoulish skins with this years Halloween skins set?

Your asking to be able to turn off or tone down this content because it bothers you, BUT what about the skins Klei sales? What if for example I could get a skin for Horror Hound as a vargling pup? Or let’s discuss an item already in the game: Deerclops eye.

Nevermind the fact you can EAT the Eye (for what reason I still have yet to figure out) but the general meta for this eye is to wear it on your head as some sort of fashionable umbrella hat.

To put it simply: DST is, was and always will be a weird little franchise..

but that’s what I love about it!

Maybe you can turn off moon penguins or give them a cute “censored version” where they walk around wearing a cardboard box Metal Gear Solid style over their otherwise gruesome body-

BUT that only fixes the visual of the in game mob... it does not prevent ME from buying and using a Moon Penguin skin if a Penguin pet moon skin was ever made available.

What about Wormwoods new skin? Does THIS bring physical discomfort to look at?

D0D099B1-192E-49A5-B405-2ADB96BC7F19.jpeg.c2311eeaa0af3a4a4a2b64a93f8f259c.jpeg

My point is that as long as there are people like me who are drawn to these weird Spooky skins- Klei will make profit off them, but.... How does me liking the Spooky (and would absolutely adore a horror Penguin pet) help YOU feel any more comfortable?

It doesn’t- and unless Klei decides to suddenly pull those types of skins from the game.. there’s nothing you can do to prevent it except not play with me and my collection of Weird skins.

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ShyRo-Zyerenzy    171

Tbh i want more mobs like that around new areas / lunar island . The only thing that really made me shock or be in awe was how the salt rocks represented humanoid petrifications . ( The Book of Genesis describes how Lot's wife became a pillar of salt after she looked back at Sodom. )

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Lunabuns    183

i really, really dig those mob designs and i would love to see them introduce more lunar mobs/bosses of similar designs in the future. having an option for an alternate design while keeping their move set intact for those who don’t like them as is would be nice to have. if the shoe was on the other foot, i wouldn’t want to have to go out of my way to avoid mobs i didn’t care to see in a game that i enjoy playing. or simply just a filter to remove them from your world completely.

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TheKingDedede    3505
1 hour ago, Lunabuns said:

if the shoe was on the other foot, i wouldn’t want to have to go out of my way to avoid mobs i didn’t care to see in a game that i enjoy playing. or simply just a filter to remove them from your world completely.

One example of a game comes to mind when giving players the option to change the look of an enemy is Grounded. Some people can't handle spiders or have severe arachnophobia, so there's an 'Arachnophobia Safe' option that allows you to change how the spiders in the game look. On its highest setting, they become white, featureless blobs that still behave like spiders, but are much less distressing to look at.

I'd be cool with DST implementing a similar option.

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Szczuku    14739
5 hours ago, Sunset Skye said:

is like saying that someone with trypophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to look at patterns of holes which disturb them.

Pretty sure 1 of a ways to cure one out of their phobia is by gradually exposing them to said phobia.

So "inexperienced" is very much something that can be said about those people

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CaptainChaotica    5688

I'm not SCARED of the horror hounds.  They just _gross_ me the (BEEP) out!  

I have indeed seen way worse stuff.  The thing is : It just didn't seem to go with the rest of the spooky-yet-mostly-cuteish look of Don't Starve.  And yes, I am aware of Eversion.  I even really LIKE Eversion!  (Actually that one Wormwood skin REALLY gives me an Eversiony vibe, in fact...)  But it doesn't have body horror, really.  I am a sensitive anxious depressed soul and have been my entire life, I admit that. I'm a wimp.  But it's more that certain TYPES of things twig me out, and having mouth that goes back into where your body should be is one of those things.

I just...use that mod that reskins them into looking more like moon-rock and go about my day, however.  Those who can't use mods, well...try to go to the Moon Island right _after_ a hound attack, only...?  (Yes, this does mean that anybody who plays on my server has to put up with not being able to see the possibly-cool-to-them moon monsters, but you ALREADY have to contend with giant screen-blocking trees and random seasons, on a daily basis.  Less gross monsters would hardly be your biggest concern.)

Incidentally I _am_ thinking about setting up a spookier than usual world for Hallowed Nights, but what I was thinking was more like:  Use mods that put cave creatures on the surface or maybe use a lights-out world...but, scary.  Not gross.

Also:  Ya don't get to expose me to my phobias without my permission, pal.  Are you a psychologist?  Is this a controlled environment?  No?  It's just a game?  Then ya don't get to mess with me.  Well...I mean you CAN, I can't physically stop you, but that's not actual therapy.

...Notorious

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Mike23Ua    8414

You guys completely ignored my counter argument, Yes you might can turn off the in-game mobs or “Cute-ify” them BUT how do you control the SKINS other players are using? You can’t..

Im going to post a Fortnite skin in the spoiler as an example:

Spoiler

A764E718-A595-44B2-B76F-79C714454923.thumb.png.f5cdb7d08ae93041a71327b6676ddb75.png
 

as much as MeLikeyDaSpooky THIS Creeps even ME out a little bit... and running across another player wearing this “Halloween Costume” for the first time was a genuine Jump Scare... but I can not control what skins other players use— so I will have to get used to them using it or Delete Fortnite.

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bruhmoment23    6806

Idk, in the end it mostly falls to the audience imo. If there was an event in which somebody heavily traumatized by gore/flesh horror those two mobs show off got a mental breakdown because of it, then the creatures will either be changed or straight up deleted. I personally don't have anything against that design, i'm partially a fan of horror, but i'm pretty sure the devs are aware of what emotions that design can give people, especially those that are easily disturbed/grossed out.

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Kaos42    27

I don't comment usually, in fact this is my first comment but I just had to say this.

I simply cannot understand how can a frozen penguin and a hound with leprosy can disturb someone. And if that is the case, well, that person requires therapy, and not just avoid it by disable such monsters...

At the end of the day this is a game filled with damn monsters who are trying to rip you out of existence. I love these new designs and lunar content in general, totally looking forward for more similar designs.

 

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bruhmoment23    6806
1 hour ago, Mike23Ua said:

You guys completely ignored my counter argument, Yes you might can turn off the in-game mobs or “Cute-ify” them BUT how do you control the SKINS other players are using? You can’t..

That's not the purpose of a skin/appearance, atleast not in DST. I don't know if there's anybody genuinely afraid of the Wormwood skin, but it's clearly not on the same level as twisted hounds/pengulls. The two mobs visage is extremely malformed physically, with visible organs, bone, sinew or peeled off skin. Wormwood however, doesn't seem that gross or disturbing, to be frank it just feels like a cool "spooky" variant for him. I doubt klei would make a purchaseable/weaveable skin for a character that reflects same hideousness as the two mobs i mentioned. It's open to each person's interpretation what they find gross/disgusting in this game, but i really doubt Corrupted Wormwood is the culprit here.

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Well-met    4361
11 hours ago, Sunset Skye said:

There's a huge misunderstanding (whether it's intentional or not) in these kinds of discussions. Nobody out there is or has ever been complaining that the mutated lunar island mobs scare them. Nobody is or has ever been complaining that they get scared by these mobs. Never have these sorts of discussions ever been about people being scared of the lunar island mobs. I want to make that very very clear.

The thing people bring up concern about is that they are mentally incapable of handling these mobs. Saying someone is just "young or inexperienced" for being bothered by these is like saying that someone with trypophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to look at patterns of holes which disturb them. It's like saying that someone with claustrophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to be trapped in a small space. It's like saying that someone with Acrophobia is just too "young or inexperienced" to hang out on the roof of a skyscraper.

People who don't like horror hounds and moonrock pengulls aren't saying "they scare me, never add anything like this again" they're saying "my mind literally cannot handle seeing this type of content that is nowhere else in the game, please add some sort of toggle or option to allow me not to have a mental breakdown while playing this game." And it's possible to understand and respect that, even if you aren't bothered by these mobs. You don't have to brag about how cool and experienced you are with similar media. It's possible to understand and respect other people that are bothered by something, even if you personally aren't.

toughen up lol

i do not believe a small cartoon 2D drawing of a dog with teeth in its belly is any similar to real phobias.

what's really happening is an overprotected minority may be forcing the game developer to make changes that diminish the art style and affect every player the same just to make sure the minority's rose-colored glasses reality doesn't crumble too early.

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Kaos42    27
11 minutes ago, Well-met said:

toughen up lol

i do not believe a small cartoon 2D drawing of a dog with teeth in its belly is any similar to real phobias.

what's really happening is an overprotected minority may be forcing the game developer to make changes that diminish the art style and affect every player the same just to make sure the minority's rose-colored glasses reality doesn't crumble too early.

Agreed 100%.

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