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Wildfires, What are they good for?


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Absolutely nothing, say it again!

Jokes aside I've been on my overthinking cycle again and wildfires have suddenly become the topic of the second. Personally I don't see the value in them, or frankly the somewhat backwards nature of Summer itself, a season where the counter to the seasons biggest threats is to turtle in a small protected area where things won't wither or burn down, but then you still have to contend with some anti-camper mechanics as well, hound waves, Antlion in DST and Dragonfly in solo RoG. And I've seen that apparently the mechanic of wildfires can even occur to objects not in the vicinity of the player.

In contrast to Winter where basing is kind of the last thing on your mind, there's hunting to be done, Koalefants, Beefalo, Deerclops, MacTusk, and the means to stay warm on the go are far more common and varied than there are means to stay cool. I briefly considered the idea that maybe the Antlion could drop a blueprint for an upgrade to the flingomatic of some kind that would extend the reach to a far reaching area that passively protects whole regions from wildfires at the bare minimum, but its not a great solution, having to suffer the mechanic and make a specific pilgrimage to a remote part of the world for a solution to an already frustrating mechanic with few ideal solutions.

I pose the query, how would one make wildfires meaningful and not just frustrating and largely out of the players hands, or more importantly how could Summer be reworked or added upon to make the season far more interesting enough to merit not just disabling it on world settings.

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I feel like over heating, plant withering, and Red Hounds are enough of a downside of summer compared to winter's no plant growth, and freezing.
Wild fires are just an extra "but why though" on top. I think I would be okay with it if Winter had some other mechanics to make it as hard as summer is. However summer can be completely ignored by going into the caves so... there is that.

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I think they’re fine as is, trees burn down you chop them down, get their pinecones & replant them.. it’s the nature of the game, well it was… until people started building massive Luxury bases & getting upset that the games mechanics weren’t accommodating for them.

if I was going to change one (& only ONE) feature about wildfires, it would be Endothermic Fires- burn it could enough and items within its radius won’t catch fire. I don’t understand how if I’ve got a bunch of “Cold” Fires going (which has a visible radius for its light effect when fueled by the way..) why those Cold fires don’t also cool down an area.

What I would NOT be doing is wanting more items like the Large Tree Canopy’s which nullify Overheating, and Wildfires, and encourages sitting in base ignoring the Weather season altogether.

oh wait I forgot one other thing: Get rid of the Fire Pump, it’s a absolutely TERRIBLE Boat Item that doesn’t even do it’s job… replace it with instead a Fire Pump Mast Upgrade (like the deck Illuminator or the lightning conductor) you fill it up with water (from a watering can obviously) and then when fueled (same as putting wood in a deck Illuminator) it Sprays Water from the top of the Mast Upgrade Fire Pump like a sprinkler system.

Bonus: Since Masts can be built on solid ground it can ALSO be used to fertilize crops. (It won’t help at all against Brightshades though ;) )

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imo Summer was kinda a messy add to the game when it was first implimented.  The dev's obviously wanted to go harder then winter, but thematically it always kinda contradicted its self.  Plants grow faster, and there is more day time to do things ! BUT ! plans also wither and wildfires lol.  The methods of cooling yourself down were always a bit more of a reach then heating up which made the old spring starts a weird kinda janky experience imo.  Fires in DS were complete BS too often razing the screen in an few moments.

In DST the fires spread a lot slower, and we have a lot more methods of handling it so its not as bad.  We could definitely use more character-universal ways of handling it.  For a while we could bug out some mosslings in spring to generate rain in summer and that was pretty cool, then Klei fixed the bug without realizing why it was even being exploited lol  We asked for the dripple pipes but they only gave it to Wicker and Maxwell via Wick's rework.  Its not a bad thing to have, Maxwell is super op with all of Wicker's books and his new stuff anyway so you can always bring him along.

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13 minutes ago, Mike23Ua said:

I think they’re fine as is, trees burn down you chop them down, get their pinecones & replant them.. it’s the nature of the game, well it was… until people started building massive Luxury bases & getting upset that the games mechanics weren’t accommodating for them.

Its not just trees though, you might go to your pig king village to find half the homes burnt down without having even visited it all summer long. Requiring some unwanted grind to repair the damage or face the possibility of pig extinction. Similarly other resources that aren't effected by regrowth as of yet can eventually go extinct as well. Personally while I do base i also like collecting things on the go, like nabbing berries or such as i travel and to my understanding berry bush regrowth is limited and depends on your initial game settings cause they won't regrow without a florid postern present.

19 minutes ago, Evelo said:

I feel like over heating, plant withering, and Red Hounds are enough of a downside of summer compared to winter's no plant growth, and freezing.
Wild fires are just an extra "but why though" on top. I think I would be okay with it if Winter had some other mechanics to make it as hard as summer is. However summer can be completely ignored by going into the caves so... there is that.

I'm not sure how servers behave in DST I've mostly played solo, I've been watching Beard777's videos many of them are old or out of date but it does sound as though wildfires will still occur on the surface even if you go turtle down below, so it doesn't stop it being an unfair damaging mechanic that players have no real answer for.
 

23 minutes ago, Shosuko said:

In DST the fires spread a lot slower, and we have a lot more methods of handling it so its not as bad.  We could definitely use more character-universal ways of handling it.  For a while we could bug out some mosslings in spring to generate rain in summer and that was pretty cool, then Klei fixed the bug without realizing why it was even being exploited lol  We asked for the dripple pipes but they only gave it to Wicker and Maxwell via Wick's rework.  Its not a bad thing to have, Maxwell is super op with all of Wicker's books and his new stuff anyway so you can always bring him along.

It's kinda bad making the only proper solution require a specific character, character perks should ease the mechanics in unique ways not entirely answer for them. Wolfgang is powerful in combat but many other survivors can still hold their own, his unique bonuses don't trivialize other characters experience. Wickerbottom's book should be doing something every character can manage but more efficiently, not saying every character should be able to make it rain on command but something that counters the effects that otherwise require fling-o-matics to deal with. Withering and Wildfires can be countered with a watering can, and i don't think you can rewater the plant periodically to prevent the withering so it would wither again before it grows back, not to mention how tedious that would get.

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There are a Myraid of ways to avoid extinction of things like Pigmen, you can easily go to pig village hammer down two pig houses then rebuild them in the caves or on pearls island (with a nice large tree canopy to boot! :)

I feel like needing to rebuild and repair are just part of the game (if it wasn’t.. we wouldn’t be able to build our own pig huts, or repair damaged walls)

I like having to get creative (such as above Turning Pearls Island into a Safe Haven for example)

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The game has a great deal of maintenance to it, recrafting tools, refueling fling-o-matics, getting more food, and the longer the grind involved with that maintenance the more frustrating it is to repeat, rebuilding the entire pigman population because their houses all burned down definitely sits as a task i'd just restart the game for. But that was only one example and many things that could burn down can't currently be replaced or have natural replacement through regrowth that are slow and unreliable.

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Wildfires should have a more distinct indicator that can be detected and dealt with whenever your base may be at risk of burning.

Instead of random smoldering, massive fires occasionally start in densely packed forests which can spread through the turf in a similar fashion to lunar rift expansion. The fire slowly creep towards your base and all your valuables with a clear smoke indicator revealed on the map.

They could be countered by personally dealing with the wildfire (indirect Willow buff), or completely ignored with sufficient preparation like flingomatics or strategic fire breaks. It could also be a great way to introduce some summer specific resources

A slight revision to how fire interacts with natural resources may be necessary. Instead of being utterly destroyed, they just become totally unusable until next spring, where they recover and grow as if nothing happened.

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1 hour ago, Mike23Ua said:

There are a Myraid of ways to avoid extinction of things

The problem is things smolder often off screen (or to be precise off your visible area) where you can barely if at all notice it so suddenly when you revisit the area everything is already burned down.

As annoying as the Volcano is in Dry Season (Shipwrecked) at least you get a warning to react accordingly before entire area around you ends up in flames.

Fires are simply a random middle finger to the player. At least a quote cue would be nice where characters notice something starting to smolder nearby and say something like "I smell something burning" that would be enough.

For now wildfires are like the disease and it's best to just disable them when making a world.

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Wildfires obviously aren't perfectly designed but they aren't that hard to play around either. They add an extra step to planning things in advance and I like this aspect a lot. Reducing the radius in which they can occur would be nice though.

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Wildfires go against what you are supposed to do in the game, and there is no counter to them, you are just given the option to avoid them by spending your entire summer in caves or basing in oasis.

Why does smoldering happen off-screen? I don't think anyone can give an acceptable answer to this. Even if it happened on your screen, you would need to be very careful and keep your eyes peeled during the whole summer so you don't miss smoldering and your base gets burned down.

I don't think anyone finds this mechanic fun, there are "DST is a hardcore survival game" players that are disingenuous as they usually only play a few hundred days in and reset while they don't build a big base, so it doesn't affect them at all, but they will say that it should stay in the game because it makes it more "difficult".

Flingomatics are completely useless unless your base is small enough and you are experienced enough to plan it out so that one flingomatic covers it. Why do we need to have more maintenance or repeatable mindless tasks like fueling flingomatics that don't provide any value and just exist to waste our time? If Flingomatics didn't require fuel, even if it was more expensive, summer would be much more bearable, but it would still not look pretty to have so many of them around.

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Refueling a million ice flingomatics everyday and not go anywhere outside my base so non-renewable wild resources won't burn, or forced to play one of the two characters to spam books, or never leave the caves and do nothing in this empty and boring place? Yes please!

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44 minutes ago, _zwb said:

Refueling a million ice flingomatics everyday and not go anywhere outside my base so non-renewable wild resources won't burn, or forced to play one of the two characters to spam books, or never leave the caves and do nothing in this empty and boring place? Yes please!

Haven't you crafted a Watering Can before and noticed you can extinguish fires? Or even an Ice Staff? Smolders always appear on-screen, so you should know exactly where a fire's gonna break out and be able to stop it even right after it happens.

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I feel like adding a definitive way to avoid wildfires would kind of devalue the above average trees. I feel like it'd make the most sense to allow us to dig wells/place giant vats of water to grow trees on land. Or perhaps add a new form of giant tree, like a giant lune tree.

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7 minutes ago, Masked Koopa said:

I feel like adding a definitive way to avoid wildfires would kind of devalue the above average trees. I feel like it'd make the most sense to allow us to dig wells/place giant vats of water to grow trees on land. Or perhaps add a new form of giant tree, like a giant lune tree.

Giant Lune Trees that occasionally drop Moon Moths and Blossoms would be excellent, in my opinion.

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53 minutes ago, bloopah said:

Haven't you crafted a Watering Can before and noticed you can extinguish fires? Or even an Ice Staff? Smolders always appear on-screen, so you should know exactly where a fire's gonna break out and be able to stop it even right after it happens.

I guess I could but I have more important things to do than just saving wildfires all summer :/

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51 minutes ago, bloopah said:

Haven't you crafted a Watering Can before and noticed you can extinguish fires? Or even an Ice Staff? Smolders always appear on-screen, so you should know exactly where a fire's gonna break out and be able to stop it even right after it happens.

Those, plus not hanging around valuable stuff and simply running away when something is smoldering also do the trick if you don't mind 2-3 plants burning down.

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Maybe wildfires could be replaced with flaming meteors that could come down every now and again during summer (avoiding landing directly on structures) and require either a full can of water or a deadline of 1 day before it extinguishes itself.

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2 hours ago, Masked Koopa said:

I feel like adding a definitive way to avoid wildfires would kind of devalue the above average trees. I feel like it'd make the most sense to allow us to dig wells/place giant vats of water to grow trees on land. Or perhaps add a new form of giant tree, like a giant lune tree.

I would absolutely LOVE this. 

I already love AATT, but I usually have wild fires off anyway, cause it's tough to keep everything under their canopy when you can only plant those by the shore or in the ocean, maybe a lake, if you're lucky with world gen. 

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3 hours ago, Masked Koopa said:

I feel like adding a definitive way to avoid wildfires would kind of devalue the above average trees. I feel like it'd make the most sense to allow us to dig wells/place giant vats of water to grow trees on land. Or perhaps add a new form of giant tree, like a giant lune tree.

Above average trees have many other uses besides wildfire prevention, even in summer they lower temperatures and prevent wilting, as well as blocking lightning and a little bit of rain, it certainly would knock one point off of their list of useful features but hardly devalues them in a harmful way.

I also generally prefer to avoid using these trees myself as my system is not the best and the leafy canopy effect on the top of the screen really does not do good things for my framerate.

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3 hours ago, bloopah said:

Haven't you crafted a Watering Can before and noticed you can extinguish fires? Or even an Ice Staff? Smolders always appear on-screen, so you should know exactly where a fire's gonna break out and be able to stop it even right after it happens.

Smolders don't always appear on screen.  I've walked away from my base several times with no smolders only to return with half the base just *gone.*  I was using totally tall trees too lol...  Very disappointed in tall trees and wildfire mechanic

3 hours ago, gamehun20 said:

don't lure plants always smolder first? just keep extinguishing that

There is lureplant tech, but its not perfect.  Fires can start anywhere within (iirc) 7.5 tiles from you, if the lureplant is 8 tiles from you then the 7.5 tiles between you and the lureplant are vulnerable.  Lureplant tech is good, but you have to be smart with it to get reliable protection.

3 hours ago, Masked Koopa said:

I feel like adding a definitive way to avoid wildfires would kind of devalue the above average trees. I feel like it'd make the most sense to allow us to dig wells/place giant vats of water to grow trees on land. Or perhaps add a new form of giant tree, like a giant lune tree.

Tall trees are flawed, so I'm fine with them being devalued.  I'm also fine if Klei just fixes them.  I've had holes in the canopy where a single spot, clearly under the shadow repeatedly smoldered and burned.  They can fix the trees to make the more reliable protection, I'm okay with that too.

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