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InaneDugong

A Reconsideration of Don't Starve's Meta

Regarding the Meta-Gameplay of Don't Starve  

54 members have voted

  1. 1. Considering the current state of Hounds and Giants, in 'isolation', is their threat profound enough? Disregard other difficulty modifiers.

    • Too hard. I play with both on 'less' or 'none'.
      0
    • I usually play with Hounds on 'less' or 'none'.
      2
    • I usually play with Giants on 'less' or 'none'.
      4
    • It's fine... Go away! (Before someone actually listens to you...)
      23
    • Not sure, but I usually play with one or the other on 'more' or 'lots'.
      10
    • Too easy. They're novel, but I feel they need tweaking and don't present a challenge to me.
      13
    • Other (specify in comment)
      2
  2. 2. Would you like to see Krampus reworked? And, if so, how?

    • Krampus is fine, you antagonistic heretic!
      2
    • Krampus? Who's that?
      7
    • Krampus is effective - well, when actually summoned...
      9
    • I'd like to see Krampus reworked to a more persistent role of devilish-doings.
      31
    • GOD NO! PLEASE, NO!!! WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO ME?!!...
      1
    • Other (specify in comment)
      4
  3. 3. How do you feel about Combat Item Tiering (disregarding Blow Darts, Bee Mines and Tooth Traps)?

    • The pace in teching is fine and the higher-tier combat weapons are balanced.
      19
    • The pace in teching is a bit slow but the higher-tier combat weapons are balanced.
      8
    • The pace in teching is fine but the higher-tier combat weapons aren't very strong.
      6
    • All upper-tier items cannot compare to the power of my Spear! Also, what was the point in teching again? Oh yeah, hats!
      7
    • Upper-tier weapons are over-powered and I'd appreciate it if you didn't get them buffed.
      3
    • But aren't Blow Darts and Tooth Traps all that matter anyway?
      5
    • Other (specify in the comments)
      6


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InaneDugong    121

Heyho hello holla. Salut. 

 

As the title suggests, I want to talk about Don't Starve's Meta considering the DLC (not considering the DLC's contributions, but rather the DLC in isolation - as a game).

 

There is a TL;DR for anyone not that interested in reading.

 

So, what is "meta"? What is a game's "meta"? It's two things: it's gameplay established in a game through community experience, i.e. trends, strategies; and, thus, it's also an in-depth reflection of the game's elements when disambiguated - including its present, past and potentially future. If you take a competitive eSports game, the meta will be whatever playstyle and/or strategy is currently being thrown around along with where it historically developed from and its trends that'll inevitably lead to where it develops into.

 

Now that we've covered as much (and I apologise for introducing such a complicated concept - I stress that one looks it up for further clarification), let's talk about how all of this can be considered within Don't Starve. 

 

 

Don't Starve is a Survival Horror that involves a player battling the elements to survive. What elements though? Food supplies, weather conditions, and hostilities found naturally within the environment [and, if you're me, your own stupidity/curiosity]. The relationship between these 3 elements determines the challenge presented to the player--the other relationship to consider is the utilities presented to the player to counter-act the 'elements'; these include items, friendly creatures, and the exploitation of the game's mechanics.

 

So, Elements vs. Player Utilities - a complicated disambiguation to make, so bear with me. The first step in disambiguating as much is to discern the relationship between each of the named subsidiaries wherein they are quantifiable by us.

 

Food Supplies

A constant prerequisite for living, but not overly pressing. Only so much food it needed on a daily basis, and it's more about building a supply in advance than it is a continuous issue. Consider it a test of Urban Planning. All in all, there is no way to curb this requirement - its significance is maintained throughout the game.  

Current Meta: Food isn't all that hard to find in comparison to the former Vanilla. Whether you collect Monster Meat for Meat Balls, or you raid the planet for Berries, or you slaughter the numerous sources of Morsels without any repercussions (bar your conscience), food is easy enough to come by.

 

Summary:

Cannot be deterred by item tiering, has to be dealt with continuously, never varies - no discrete variations. This is the foundation for the game's design.

 

Weather

The strongest of the ever-present variables and much the hardest mechanic to deal with. Irrespective of where you are or what you are doing, the weather is there to make whatever you're trying to accomplish seem like a secondary goal. All in all though, half of the weather mechanics can be countered by Item Tiering, and the other half serve to punish camping (i.e. setting up a base and concentrating resources into a location).

Current Meta: Weather is currently the prevailing modifier of an unhealthy relationship with the first 50 days and micromanagement. The weather can be divided into two fields: continuous and utility. The continuous part is the Winter cold, the Summer heat, and the rain - all of these require a degree of technology advancing wherein the degree represents how much of a threat the weather will be. The utility part is Falling Frogs, Wild Fires, and Lightning - all of which exist to make resource-concentration difficult to maintain.

 

 

Summary: 

50% of variables created by the weather can be deterred by item tiering and serve to represent discrete events that the player can curb with an efficiency correlating to their item tiering [the degree of tiering determining whether the weather is a minor issue or a major issue, in which a relationship is formed where the player is forced to allocate their resources towards either the slow-but-continuous element of Food Supplies or the fast-but-varying element of weather negotiating], whilst the other 50% serves to directly punish players trying to develop an efficient way of dealing with the Food Supplies element. All of these constituents work wonderfully.

 

Environmental Hostilities, i.e. creatures

The game presents two sets of Environmental Hostilies: Passive Creatures and Aggressive Creatures. Aggressive Creatures entails Hounds, Krampus, and the Giants (basically, all the creatures that will seek out the player irrespective of location), and Passive Creatures entails everything else. Between all of these creatures, there is another way to subdivide them: creatures that can be easily dealt with through item tiering, and creatures that require mechanical exploitation to easily prevail [i'll get back to this aspect later]. 

 

There is an inherent flaw regarding creatures in Don't Starve. Passive Creatures range between Friendly, Neutral and Unfriendly, and their placement in Biomes doesn't compliment the Food Supply element. Friendly and Neutral creatures are often found in areas with the highest density of Food whilst Unfriendly creatures are found in the hardest environments. This is a severe novelisation of Good and Evil in Don't Starve though I don't see any way around this, but you can all see the issue here. Evidently, as compensation for this, Aggressive Creatures were implemented to continuously serve as a danger, allowing the player to choose whether they want to explore the dangers and wonders of Don't Starve or just merely survive. 

 

Which brings us onto Aggressive Creatures (Hounds, Giants and Krampus): they are broken. What purpose do they serve, exactly? We have discussed the relationship between the first two elements and discerned that they compliment each other astutely, but the implementation of Aggressive Creatures is meant to compensate for the lack of danger in foraging. Currently, Aggressive Creatures periodically hassle the player [and, in Krampus' case, doesn't at all], leaving a lot of time in between to prepare for the periodic attacks. 

 

To fit Aggressive Creatures into the other two elements (Food Supply and Weather), we need to consider how they affect the player. Item Tiering for Combat and Weather are organised into different streams (arguably intentionally). We discussed how Item Tiering for weather slows the player's ability to accommodate the ongoing Food demand, so it's fair to say (potentially) that Item Tiering for combat is also intentionally put forth to aid the same process involving weather. 

 

Currently, there is a lot of space and time between Aggressive Creature invasions, leaving the player free to concentrate on Weather and Food. We've discussed how Passive Creatures aren't an issue that has to be dealt with, and we've discussed now how Aggressive Creatures don't pose a consistent-enough threat to warrant a continuous investment likening to the one for the Weather.

 

Summary:

Aggressive Creatures (Hounds, Krampus, and the Giants) don't pose a continuous threat, giving the player ample opportunity to both prepare for invasions and invest into Weather-deterring. Passive Creatures (Friendly, Neutral, and Unfriendly) are also designed to not affect the player's general foraging experiences without it being part of the player's intention. 

 

Items, friendly creatures, and the exploitation of the game's mechanics

Looking at Items, Don't Starve has a good 6 Technology Stages that one has to navigate in order to ascertain the most effective items. Along with each one of these stages, there is also a large variety of constituents required to meet the various recipes' prerequisites. In order to gain all of these constituents, a lot of time is taken away from seeking Food and concentrating on Weather techs. If a player can avoid spending this time Weapon-Teching, they're in a better position to survive. This sounds ridiculous, but it's perfectly feasible in the current meta.

The other perspective to consider here is that the upkeep for Weather is potentially too high currently, making it difficult to multi-task both upkeeps + food. 

 

So, I need to break off into two directions again here. There's two different situations one will encounter when coming across a creature in Don't Starve:

There are the situations where any basic weapon will do the trick and it's only a question of 'how long till it dies', and there are situations where only 95%+ damage mitigation and/or a bucket-load of cheese (Tooth Traps and Blow Darts, for instance) will get you anywhere. This is where item tiering begins to fall off and 'Friendly Creatures'/'Exploitation' become incredibly effective, and this is an issue. Creatures coming in two different flavours with very little in between makes for 'little incentive' to Tech, and given that the most-powerful of creatures are difficult to best with weapons anyway, the stress on Combat-Teching is underwhelming in the current Meta.

 

[so, what is "Exploitation"?] (Read if unsure--otherwise, continue)

As an example, Hounds will attack 3 times before re-aggroing ('aggro' - targeting something). At this point, the Hound will target the closest creature. So, say you run around some Beefalos and the Hounds re-aggro, they'll attack the Beefalos presuming they're the closest target.

Another example: You're being chased by the Badger in a Biome full of Chess creatures (Rook, Bishop, Knight) or Bee Mounds. You attack each Bee Mound as you pass them or attack one of the Chess creatures. In the case of the Bee Mound, Killer Bees will fly after you; in the case of the Chess creatures, the Rook will charge after you. If the Rook charges into the Badger, it'll aggro the Badger - and, subsequently (if you play your cards right), the rest of the Chess creatures. If the Killer Bees fly after you, as soon as you're out of their aggro distance, they'll begin their flight back to base whilst continuously checking for a target within range to re-aggro; if the Badger is the closest target, they'll all re-target the Badger.

This is called 'Exploiting' since it's more something that constitutes the Meta and less an intended gameplay mechanic.

 

 

So, irrespective of the flavour of creature (strength-wise), consider this:

A Giant or some Hounds or a Tree Guard or something BIG comes along and you don't have the Item Tech to deal with it (or just don't want to risk fighting it anyway). What do you do? Exploitation is one of the safest answers you can look towards in the current Meta when looking to be done with these pesky monsters. There's Killer Bees, Chess Pieces, Tall Birds, Birch Tree-Guards (if you're clever), Spiders (tricky though), Pigs, and anything else if you're creative.

 

To cover all the bases, there's also befriending creatures at the cost of Food - a tax that's as fatiguing to the Food Supply as Item-Teching for combat (we talked about Weather and Combat both being upkeeps). Befriending can be abused in that building a base around, say, Pigs gives a readily-accessible supply of Friendly Creatures to utilise if one is in a difficult spot - and since Giants and Hounds give plenty of warning, this option is the easiest to execute.

 

Summary:

Item Tiering for Combat is currently overwhelming, and is a form of upkeep that is best avoided - either due to the upkeep for Weather being too high, or simply because it's more profitable (you decide). 

Exploitation of game mechanics and Befriending is an easier means to deal with all hostile creatures since the time it takes to execute both isn't an issue when you only have to do so every 10-15 days. If the periodic attacks were less distanced, weapons would be the most appropriate means.

Having said this, Creatures can be subdivided into two categories - Weak and God-like - in which the latter is difficult to prevail even with the strongest Combat Techs (that is, not considering the imbalance of cheesy weapons, such as Blow Darts) and the former requires little Tech to deal with. This disparity really retires later techs of weapons in the current meta. 

 

Let's Tie This All Together - Relationships:

We've now covered all the relationships I mentioned and it's time to tie it all together. Firstly, we have our foundation: Food Supplies. Everything revolves around this concept as it's what Don't Starve is all about. Then we have Weather, the layer above Food that forces the player to change their repertoire of playstyles periodically. Without meeting the prerequisites of the Weather, the player will die faster than to any other element of the game; however, this element can be as ineffective as it can be deadly depending on how much effort is invested into deterring it by the player - which is where the balance relies on Creatures to force the player's hand in items...

And then there's Creatures - which is where everything falls out of balance. Creatures are subdivided into Aggressive and Passive Creatures. Aggressive creatures serve to present an ongoing hostility from the world itself - a foreshadowing that is currently near non-existent; Passive creatures serve to present a hostility from the environment, i.e. Biomes, for when the player tends to their Foodstuff' needs - another threat that's non-existent. 

The circle created between these relationships also determines how the player quells each - this is where we bring 'Items, Befriending and Exploiting' into the picture. When items from early to late tier aren't necessary, the player has more time to deal with the Weather and Food. When Aggressive Creatures and Passive Creatures aren't much of a continuous threat, Exploitation and Low-Tier Weapons become the Meta.

Without shorter periods between Aggressive Creatures, low-tier Combat Items are all that are necessary, thus making the elements 'Food' and 'Weather' easier to deal with due to less time-restraints. When Passive Creatures pose no threat to the player, the Weather becomes significantly less effective since those prerequisites don't have the same kind of discrete "Event Power" that they have when it's harder to deal with the spontaneity.

And, if we were to buff Aggressive and Passive Creatures, the Event Power of Weather would potentially become too effective.

 

Lastly, we mentioned that Weather Item Tiering eventually becomes irrelevant or a much smaller factor than it begins as. Aggressive Creatures do scale in their appearance, but the scaling isn't proportional to the progress of Weather deterring. Just something to consider there.

 

TL;DR

The current Meta revolves around the Weather. The Weather somewhat forces players to bunk-up a little or spend a good chunk of time prior to the significant seasons preparing for them. The Weather punishes you if you stay still (I.E. if you concentrate burnable resources in an area or build walls for frogs to party within), but it also makes nomadic play difficult without the preparation part happening first. The preparation and base-play is integral to surviving the Weather for the first 30-80 days, and this time is extended in the event of interruptions (making the upcoming weather more dangerous per time-extension).

At this point, you'd expect creatures to be the negotiating factor in making this preparation process as elongated as possible - Creatures scaling in appearance starting around day 10 and haltering their significance around day 150 -  but this only occurs in unlucky situations (the elongation detriment, that is). Due to creatures not being part of this process until a certain point and not making much of an impact prior (or even post) to Teching for the Weather, the whole element can be dedicated to and hazard-controlled to near redundancy.

 

 

The point of this thread:

Are we happy with the state of these relationships? The Weather is the significant variable up until a certain point, and the creatures only work weekends. The game isn't easy, and I'm sure new players struggle enough with the game as it is, but the scaling of Creatures vs Weather vs Teching vs Items seems completely out of sync.

 

So, how do you all feel?

And, of course, thanks for reading.

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Maximum124    1,233

I dont feel its a survival horror game, maybe a survival game but its way too wacky to be "horror"

 

I would very much like to see the other mechanics in the game as fleshed out as the weather. All the combat is focused on "kite, hit, kite, hit" and it's very very repetitive. All the enemies can be killed like this and ranged weapons are always better then the melee ones with this because you don't have to worry about the enemy hitting you if you stay far enough away. Heck you dont have to fight anything, just kite it into something that will agro on it, or run far enough away that it loses interest in you. And that's just the combat.

 

Sanity is the other thing that would be interesting to see more of, there really isnt much...direness to it? It always come after health and hunger for me and its just "Well if I have the time and resources I'll take care of it." It only gets dangerous when it gets to the point of terrorbeaks spawning. But this is probably just how I feel, its never much of a worry for me when I think it should be.

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InaneDugong    121

I dont feel its a survival horror game, maybe a survival game but its way too wacky to be "horror"

 

I would very much like to see the other mechanics in the game as fleshed out as the weather. All the combat is focused on "kite, hit, kite, hit" and it's very very repetitive. All the enemies can be killed like this and ranged weapons are always better then the melee ones with this because you don't have to worry about the enemy hitting you if you stay far enough away. Heck you dont have to fight anything, just kite it into something that will agro on it, or run far enough away that it loses interest in you. And that's just the combat.

 

Sanity is the other thing that would be interesting to see more of, there really isnt much...direness to it? It always come after health and hunger for me and its just "Well if I have the time and resources I'll take care of it." It only gets dangerous when it gets to the point of terrorbeaks spawning. But this is probably just how I feel, its never much of a worry for me when I think it should be.

 

After playing Adventure, I've never cared much for Sanity. Think I've played the first three missions a good 10 times now whilst completely insane. Once you get used to Terrorbeak and the other slug, it's actually figure them to be quite good sources of Nightmare Fuel. 

 

The whole focus on kiting is only because you don't have anything to defend, per se; the OPness of ranged weaponry arises from not having to use them much (since most people save them for when kiting is a pain); and both of these elements are a bit out of place simply because, well, how often do you actually 'have' to fight? It's normally on your grounds and the periods in between leave plenty of time to regroup. 

 

But yes, kiting does get a bet eeeehhh. You can take up the 100% mitigation strats, but they involve a lot of tedious teching and, even still, aren't amazing since, well, what's the max damage you can get out of melee weapons? Add in attack speed and it's nothing compared to either remote mass-weaponry or 100 damage ranged stuffs. But you can play with a Nightmare Sword and football helmet + marble suit. It is effective, it's just not very interesting--and the stuff in between that tier and the starting stuffs is all really very similar to each other. 

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UnderwearApp    134

Well, I put other for my first vote because I use mods to up the difficulty. But consider that hound mounds being added to sandbox mode takes away a little of the isolation of hounds.

 

Krampus could use some rework. I summon him all the time now (due to mod) but even when I don't realize he has spawned, he has yet to steal anything from me (that I've noticed).

 

Combat items are fine in my opinion, but you also can't disregard the items you mentioned, because that puts combat almost purely in the melee category, and I don't see having higher damage melee weapons as helping the situation.

 

As for friendly creatures, I feel they are much less useful now. I never run red hounds to the pig village any more (same could be said for the dragonfly) because they will outright destroy it. You can bring them to help you, but you have to be very prepared and have the spawn occur during daytime. These are enough restrictions in my opinion on this friend, not to mention werepigs.

 

As for hostile creatures fighting other creatures (or exploitation, as you put it), it is a fine addition. Prime example, I was running from a hound attack and found the Goose/Moose, then promptly let them fight it out. Running creatures in to other creatures is the bigger issue, and the way to deal with this is to increase the run speed of the monsters so that you cannot (or at least be more difficult to) outrun them. If I remember correctly, the only thing you cannot outrun is a Terrorbeak. Making the creatures faster would limit the options. I led Deerclops to a treeguard setpiece halfway across the map twice in one game without feeling threatened, this should not happen. The base hassling giants do force you out of your base though (lest it be destroyed) which is great.

 

Finally, I disagree fully with the points about the weather being something that takes too much time and preparation. The clothing, once acquired is essentially an infinite item (repairs via fairly cheap sewing kit) and summer essentials such as ice can be mined while out gathering other resources. You stated weather either forces you to bunk up or go nomad, while I think it is both, and that is what is intended with this update. I believe Klei does not want you to either camp or explore, but do both. And having to do both is what makes it more of a constant struggle of survival. Wildfires have done an excellent job of making no base feel completely safe. Frog rain forces you to stay on the move, at least for a little while. And lightning was never really a concern as lightning rods are so cheap, but now that it can strike you, you have to worry while on the road.

 

TLDR: I feel the relationships are better now than they were before DLC. It seems to be a much more hostile environment. What I would like to see is some creatures that just wander the environment looking to cause havoc, however with the current game engine, this would be difficult to implement. Weather is in a good place (if not too easy after the nerfs), and weapons are quite useful if you use the full arsenal. Tooth traps should lose more durability when in fire though. That would probably limit the fields of traps. I would also like to see things like hound mounds, beehives, and other creature based structures spread through the world (but I don't need to ask for that anymore ;P).

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Maximum124    1,233

After playing Adventure, I've never cared much for Sanity. Think I've played the first three missions a good 10 times now whilst completely insane. Once you get used to Terrorbeak and the other slug, it's actually figure them to be quite good sources of Nightmare Fuel. 

 

The whole focus on kiting is only because you don't have anything to defend, per se; the OPness of ranged weaponry arises from not having to use them much (since most people save them for when kiting is a pain); and both of these elements are a bit out of place simply because, well, how often do you actually 'have' to fight? It's normally on your grounds and the periods in between leave plenty of time to regroup. 

 

But yes, kiting does get a bet eeeehhh. You can take up the 100% mitigation strats, but they involve a lot of tedious teching and, even still, aren't amazing since, well, what's the max damage you can get out of melee weapons? Add in attack speed and it's nothing compared to either remote mass-weaponry or 100 damage ranged stuffs. But you can play with a Nightmare Sword and football helmet + marble suit. It is effective, it's just not very interesting--and the stuff in between that tier and the starting stuffs is all really very similar to each other. 

 

There's also the whole strength in numbers thing, if you have enough followers you can put things into a stun lock, and even if the enemy gets an attack it can only hit one thing. Ive heard on the wiki that some mobs have AOE attacks? But ive never seen them in the game much less been a victim to one. And that applies to if multiple things attack you at once, you can only attack one thing at a time, sure you might be able to tank a bit but eventually if you have a lot on you you have to run away and take them on one at a time, the only thing you can use to attack multiple things is bigfoot, and that isn't very practical.

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rezecib    3,147

I think food is more about producing a learning curve, with your initial experience of the game being very tense. Before you learn where and how to get food, it's a pretty big issue, but once you've figured out crockpots, food is just a small chore.

 

As you said, I think weather is in a good place. I still have some soreness about wildfires being able to start off-screen as you're leaving an area, though.

 

I agree that "mid-tier" enemies do kind of feel lacking, although they kind of do exist-- clockworks and beefalo are both mid-tier in stats. Also, the Varg. That being said, clockworks disappear quickly, beefalo don't usually fight you (and are easily avoided), and the Varg only shows up if you tempt koalefants (usually later in the game), which is certainly feasible. There are also mid-tier enemies in the caves, but again, those can be ignored, and caves aren't the focus in RoG.

However, I think you're neglecting that the "easy" enemies use swarming to compensate for their weakness, which makes them as much of a threat as giants.

 

As for combat. I think swarming for small enemies is in a really good place, because it can be mitigated by good mechanics-- drawing enemies out from the pack. This feels rewarding, because it allows you to strategically lessen a threat through a bit of work. I definitely agree that kiting feels very tired by the time you get to giants, though, because it's basically the only combat strategy. On the other hand, how would you replace kiting? Until we see some good suggestions to remedy it, you can't exactly make a persuasive call for change. Generally in a game that's richer in combat mechanics also has a larger dedicated set of controls for combat. Since we're limited to moving, attacking, and using items, it's really difficult to diversify combat. Personally I think the only existing combat mechanics are swarming (and the counterpart separation), aggro-shifting (what you called exploiting), and kiting (which definitely feels overused).

 

I think aggro-shifting is an intended and rewarding mechanic, not an exploit. It can't be done in every situation, so you could say a bit of preparation goes into it, and it also allows for interesting strategies. After learning food, I think this compromises a large part of the learning curve-- how can you get creatures to fight each other so you don't risk your own hide?

 

Summary: I think food, weather, and most combat are in a good place, but kiting is feeling tired. However, we can't say "fix kiting!" unless we actually have an idea for how it could be fixed.

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MeingroessterFan    4,139

Okay, first of all: I really love the way you talk. Since I'm not a native speaker, all the fancy phrasing and uncommon words are very impressive to me. Keep em coming, I'd like to learn a thing or two.^^

 

Okay, onto the topic. As the original post pretty much said, weather and food are in a pretty decent spot. Creatures however, could generally do with some reworking. The difficulty is not so much an issue (I'm not a fan of very hard gameplay, so I leave pretty much everything on default, except Treeguards which I set to 'more'), but the entire execution is a bit wonky. Sanity, for one, is pretty underdeveloped. Screen distortion and two easy to avoid shadows are all that you get. Some newly introduced environmental hazards would be called for, like trees starting to grab you when you go insane. Ideas for that have been collected in other threads.

When it comes to the other hostile monsters you may face, I feel like the main issue is that they're too predictable. Tallbirds wander around their nests, hounds come every so and so days, giants never bloody show up anyway (at least for me). And honestly, I don't even feel like the kiting thing has to be completely gotten rid off; the fights themselves are actually pretty tense as long as there's more than one enemy involved (or in the best case, multiple types of enemies that are hostile to each other *3*); the issue is more that you can perfectly predict when, where, and with what you will fight.

My proposition? Make enemies less predictable. Tallbirds could walk into the wild and collect food for their younglings. Your food, to be precise. Hounds could circle around your base instead of running at you every ten days. I can't think of anything more as of right now, but things that go in this direction would help make the game feel less under your control and more natural, while adding more of an interesting challenge aswell that can't simply be subdued with toothtraps.

 

TL;DR: Weather good, food good, combat not too bad, but enemies too predictable. Make them do cooler things.

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InaneDugong    121

Wow-ee, wow-ee, thanks for reading - really appreciate it. 

 

Just a point: do keep in mind that this thread is dearly about the balance between the elements presented in the game and not discrete mobs - though they are relevant, but they don't comprise the overall gameplay. 

 

Well, I put other for my first vote because I use mods to up the difficulty. But consider that hound mounds being added to sandbox mode takes away a little of the isolation of hounds.

 

Krampus could use some rework. I summon him all the time now (due to mod) but even when I don't realize he has spawned, he has yet to steal anything from me (that I've noticed).

 

Combat items are fine in my opinion, but you also can't disregard the items you mentioned, because that puts combat almost purely in the melee category, and I don't see having higher damage melee weapons as helping the situation.

 

As for friendly creatures, I feel they are much less useful now. I never run red hounds to the pig village any more (same could be said for the dragonfly) because they will outright destroy it. You can bring them to help you, but you have to be very prepared and have the spawn occur during daytime. These are enough restrictions in my opinion on this friend, not to mention werepigs.

 

As for hostile creatures fighting other creatures (or exploitation, as you put it), it is a fine addition. Prime example, I was running from a hound attack and found the Goose/Moose, then promptly let them fight it out. Running creatures in to other creatures is the bigger issue, and the way to deal with this is to increase the run speed of the monsters so that you cannot (or at least be more difficult to) outrun them. If I remember correctly, the only thing you cannot outrun is a Terrorbeak. Making the creatures faster would limit the options. I led Deerclops to a treeguard setpiece halfway across the map twice in one game without feeling threatened, this should not happen. The base hassling giants do force you out of your base though (lest it be destroyed) which is great.

 

Finally, I disagree fully with the points about the weather being something that takes too much time and preparation. The clothing, once acquired is essentially an infinite item (repairs via fairly cheap sewing kit) and summer essentials such as ice can be mined while out gathering other resources. You stated weather either forces you to bunk up or go nomad, while I think it is both, and that is what is intended with this update. I believe Klei does not want you to either camp or explore, but do both. And having to do both is what makes it more of a constant struggle of survival. Wildfires have done an excellent job of making no base feel completely safe. Frog rain forces you to stay on the move, at least for a little while. And lightning was never really a concern as lightning rods are so cheap, but now that it can strike you, you have to worry while on the road.

 

TLDR: I feel the relationships are better now than they were before DLC. It seems to be a much more hostile environment. What I would like to see is some creatures that just wander the environment looking to cause havoc, however with the current game engine, this would be difficult to implement. Weather is in a good place (if not too easy after the nerfs), and weapons are quite useful if you use the full arsenal. Tooth traps should lose more durability when in fire though. That would probably limit the fields of traps. I would also like to see things like hound mounds, beehives, and other creature based structures spread through the world (but I don't need to ask for that anymore ;P).

-You can outrun Terrorbeak. You can outrun everything at regular speed - as far as I know. It's not so much movement speed as it is attack speed. The attack speed of all units isn't fast enough for the player's standard speed to not get them out of range of Melee attack. Tentacles are about the only mob that attacks faster from animation-start to damage incurrance for movement speed not to bring the player out of danger fast enough.  

-The weather is easy to prepare for because nothing is truly distracting you from that process. If gathering resources was a tougher challenge, a parasol would be about the only item easily attained to combat weather. Everything else would be up to chance and planning.

-As I told you in a PM, Krampus has a really slow rate of stealing. I read this from someone else's mod in which they sped it up significantly and found Krampus to be a much bigger pain. And, yeah, you're using mods. :p

-Scaling isn't a problem for you because, once again, you're using mods. xD

-How did you mess up with the Pigs? You gotta pull them out on a full moon to get them into Werepigs, I'm pretty sure. Otherwise, there's no threat to you if you're caught out at night with them - just setup a camp and it's fine. 

 

As for disregarding Ranged/Remote Weaponry, this is because they're overpowered and could occupy an entire discussion in themselves. Yes, this limits the discussion to Melee items, but why is that a bad thing. You've all said, thus far, that Melee Fighting is boring since it involves clubbing something and kiting whilst utilising heaps of damage mitigation - nothing particularly fascinating there, right?

Well, you've all just answered your own qualms with the notion: Melee armour and weaponry need some utilities attached to their stats rather than, well, just plain old stats. What if Nightmare Armour had a chance for a small enemy creature to become 'insane' and, thus, hunted by Terrorbeak for a few moments? What if the football helmet had a charge-up property that gave the first hit in combat extra damage? 

There's some real interesting things you can do that doesn't break that game here. Ranged vs Melee is an issue in lots of games, and it's often solved by reducing the overall value of the Ranged features in comparison to the Melee. You don't have that in Don't Starve yet. 

 

And Klei probably does want the player to both bunk-up and go nomadic. It's a good change, but it's not really my point since I concur with the changes/features. Rather, I'm complaining about the other elements of the game that interact with these mechanics and how they're barely in-effect, I.E. Aggressive Creatures and Passive Creatures. 

 

That example of yours about Exploiting mobs to take out the Giant is something I'm basically fine with. It's difficult to arrange and takes time. The issue is you've got all that time to set it up, and there's nothing really that can kill you whilst you're running. The whole idea of the Deerclops 'freeze' mechanic was, I thought, to stop people from running away. Rather, he's as useless as he always was.

 

(Sorry, doing my best to respond to everything).

 

There's also the whole strength in numbers thing, if you have enough followers you can put things into a stun lock, and even if the enemy gets an attack it can only hit one thing. Ive heard on the wiki that some mobs have AOE attacks? But ive never seen them in the game much less been a victim to one. And that applies to if multiple things attack you at once, you can only attack one thing at a time, sure you might be able to tank a bit but eventually if you have a lot on you you have to run away and take them on one at a time, the only thing you can use to attack multiple things is bigfoot, and that isn't very practical.

 

Deerclops has AoE. Stun-lock is a very effective tool - I like to play Wendy, so I use Abigail for this all the time. It's amazing for farming Silk. :3 Anyway, it's rare to get stunlocked yourself though - though I'm not sure why...

 

I think food is more about producing a learning curve, with your initial experience of the game being very tense. Before you learn where and how to get food, it's a pretty big issue, but once you've figured out crockpots, food is just a small chore.

 

As you said, I think weather is in a good place. I still have some soreness about wildfires being able to start off-screen as you're leaving an area, though.

 

I agree that "mid-tier" enemies do kind of feel lacking, although they kind of do exist-- clockworks and beefalo are both mid-tier in stats. Also, the Varg. That being said, clockworks disappear quickly, beefalo don't usually fight you (and are easily avoided), and the Varg only shows up if you tempt koalefants (usually later in the game), which is certainly feasible. There are also mid-tier enemies in the caves, but again, those can be ignored, and caves aren't the focus in RoG.

However, I think you're neglecting that the "easy" enemies use swarming to compensate for their weakness, which makes them as much of a threat as giants.

 

As for combat. I think swarming for small enemies is in a really good place, because it can be mitigated by good mechanics-- drawing enemies out from the pack. This feels rewarding, because it allows you to strategically lessen a threat through a bit of work. I definitely agree that kiting feels very tired by the time you get to giants, though, because it's basically the only combat strategy. On the other hand, how would you replace kiting? Until we see some good suggestions to remedy it, you can't exactly make a persuasive call for change. Generally in a game that's richer in combat mechanics also has a larger dedicated set of controls for combat. Since we're limited to moving, attacking, and using items, it's really difficult to diversify combat. Personally I think the only existing combat mechanics are swarming (and the counterpart separation), aggro-shifting (what you called exploiting), and kiting (which definitely feels overused).

 

I think aggro-shifting is an intended and rewarding mechanic, not an exploit. It can't be done in every situation, so you could say a bit of preparation goes into it, and it also allows for interesting strategies. After learning food, I think this compromises a large part of the learning curve-- how can you get creatures to fight each other so you don't risk your own hide?

 

Summary: I think food, weather, and most combat are in a good place, but kiting is feeling tired. However, we can't say "fix kiting!" unless we actually have an idea for how it could be fixed.

 

Mid tier creatures do exist, but they are so immensely passive that you can avoid them all together. The Varg needs to be summoned and, thus, meeeeeeeeeeeeeehhhhhhhhhhhh. Like, what's with all these enemies requiring you aggro them first for them to be a threat? Or for you to go out of your way to come into their aggro range before they are an issue? Why not have Tallbirds protect all rocks in a Biome or periodically check to see if someone is tampering with their shiz? Passive Creatures do exist in multiple tiers, but they are just so damn useless as a threat. 

 

Low-Tier units do have the ability of swarming, but only if you decide to stick around. Sure, if they come to your base, you're probably going to want to fight them and will find that their numbers is an immense strength even if your armour reduces their attacks to 1 damage a hit (8 hitting you at a time still hurts if you're not playing a decked-out WX-78, but let's not talk about that thing...). 

 

See, I don't think kiting needs to be changed at all, and it's really not my point. My problem with the current state of gameplay is that you really have all of this time to kill stuff, make items, prepare for weather, gather food, and still have some extra time to make a neat little base with flowers and carpets and so on. Kiting is a luxury that everyone has time for because there's nothing pressing them to hurry up. As I said in my post, what if Passive Creatures were actually present in the whole negotiation of Foraging or simply resource gathering? Or what if Aggressive Creatures came to you during the night more often than every 15 days? You might find yourself investing in some Marble Armour just so you can stand there and kill things faster all for the purpose of indirectly surviving (like, so you can get out there and get some berries or grab some ice cubes faster, or even just to setup a camp - which you can't do whilst moving).

 

Aggro-shifting is certainly intended by now, and I only call it 'Exploiting' because of how affective it is in the current Meta and because, well, it's a more presentable word~ I'm fine with aggro-shifting since, yeah, it's a luxury that wouldn't be so effective if you didn't have all that time to run a marathon around the map and have supper + hats on you to last a whole winter. 

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porps    118

i definately think krampus should be more of a threat. I've never ever managed to accidently summon him, only time he comes is when i want him to come which (excluding killing glommer) tends to take a fair bit of effort. 

 

He's also extremely easy to deal with when he does arrive, although i must admit that my morgue is littered with krampus deaths - thats not because he is hard though, thats because he is easy -  i think to myself "ok so my log armour has ran out, i have 10 health left... sure, i can summon and kill another one before i need to heal"

 

His only threat comes from lulling me into a false sense of security.

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Zalyn    69

Great post!  I have been thinking about how the design of game elements influences styles of play, so this is very interesting to me.

 

My impression from playing RoG's beta a few weeks is that the giants constrain play too much to require players to fight.  Fighting in this game mostly consists of maxing out weapon/armor tiers and spamming them - so I see bosses measured in terms of numbers of log suits and ham bats.  I personally do not care for the fight mechanics in this game; I will fight small things and occasionally take out a pig or merm.  But for me, the fight mechanics are not interesting enough to make me want to practice them to get better (I have experience with ARPG, RPG, and some RTS).

 

One of the greatest feelings I got was discovering that a herd of beefalo would take out a hound wave for me.  This entailed my settling hear a herd and having a planned path of movement to get to the beefalo by the time the hounds hit, a potential challenge given weather/night elements.  This was fun.

 

Likewise, when I discovered how effective it is to take out a Spider Queen with a horde of killer bees (either from Killer Bee Hives or from captured ones), I found that to be fun and sandbox-creative.

 

Even Deerclops can be led away to a different area if you start running away from camp as soon as you hear him, and I've been able to avoid him successfully that way.

 

But the new giants - I've only encountered Bearger so far - break this balance.  The AOE attacks will take out every neutral/friendly creature you try to bring to the fight too quickly, making it necessary for you to use the kite & fight mechanic to defeat it.  Running away is no good since Bearger teleports.  Even dying doesn't let you avoid him. 

 

What this does it is constrains the player too much for a sandbox game, IMO.  There should be multiple ways to deal with challenges that go beyond different choices of gear to use.  Maybe Bearger really doesn't like one particular type of food - maybe dragonfruit pie (as a reasonable penalty for the player) - and so will run away from the area if you feed that to him.  Or maybe you can craft some type of repellant that will slow him down enough so that you can fight him with your furry and scaly friends.

 

The penalty for not engaging with the giant is that your whole camp gets destroyed.  I'm not a big camp builder; I prefer to "live with the land" and so have, at most:  a crockpot (only one since food spoils in the crock now), 4 drying racks, fire pit, alchemy engine, 2-4 chests, a bird cage, and some farms (I have not played summer yet).  Also, I plant trees nearby. That's a pretty light camp that is just the bare essentials.  I can understand the balance factor where a Giant will counter someone who builds a small city for themselves, and wrecking a section of one's 10 x 10 farm grid would be annoying, but not difficulty raising per se.  That serves as an incentive for a player who put in that time and effort to defend their compound.  But for someone with a small camp like mine, there is no redundancy, and having to rebuild that when finding rare resources in addition to fending off an Angry Giant is not fair. 

 

One other perspective I have is that since the game is divided into Overworld, Caves, and Ruins, challenges in the Overworld should be defeatable using only Overworld-sourced things.  I see many strategies involving Rock Lobsters or items craftable from resources in the ruins; that's not sufficient.  If the caves are to be option, they need to stay optional. 

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Maximum124    1,233

I should probably elaborate some, I just want some more variety to the combat. Things like weakness and resistance towards certain things. Fire hounds being weak against the ice staff, but the fire staff doesnt to jack to them. Hallucinations being strong against the nightmare sword and can ignore the night armor. Being able to craft weapons that have AOE so that you can take groups on. Just little things that make combat more of "What should I do next? What tool would be good for this situation?" then "Run, hit, run, hit. Win."

 

It promotes variety which the combat desperately needs. I dont mind aggro shifting, seeing merms and tentacles fight is neat, seeing hounds get shredded by beefalo is hilarious. But there's a lot of "Neutral" mobs who are flat out aggressive to other mobs despite not even being hit Is all. And maybe that needs a little tweaking.

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Skorp    98

Great post!  I have been thinking about how the design of game elements influences styles of play, so this is very interesting to me.

 

My impression from playing RoG's beta a few weeks is that the giants constrain play too much to require players to fight.  Fighting in this game mostly consists of maxing out weapon/armor tiers and spamming them - so I see bosses measured in terms of numbers of log suits and ham bats.  I personally do not care for the fight mechanics in this game; I will fight small things and occasionally take out a pig or merm.  But for me, the fight mechanics are not interesting enough to make me want to practice them to get better (I have experience with ARPG, RPG, and some RTS).

 

One of the greatest feelings I got was discovering that a herd of beefalo would take out a hound wave for me.  This entailed my settling hear a herd and having a planned path of movement to get to the beefalo by the time the hounds hit, a potential challenge given weather/night elements.  This was fun.

 

Likewise, when I discovered how effective it is to take out a Spider Queen with a horde of killer bees (either from Killer Bee Hives or from captured ones), I found that to be fun and sandbox-creative.

 

Even Deerclops can be led away to a different area if you start running away from camp as soon as you hear him, and I've been able to avoid him successfully that way.

 

But the new giants - I've only encountered Bearger so far - break this balance.  The AOE attacks will take out every neutral/friendly creature you try to bring to the fight too quickly, making it necessary for you to use the kite & fight mechanic to defeat it.  Running away is no good since Bearger teleports.  Even dying doesn't let you avoid him. 

 

What this does it is constrains the player too much for a sandbox game, IMO.  There should be multiple ways to deal with challenges that go beyond different choices of gear to use.  Maybe Bearger really doesn't like one particular type of food - maybe dragonfruit pie (as a reasonable penalty for the player) - and so will run away from the area if you feed that to him.  Or maybe you can craft some type of repellant that will slow him down enough so that you can fight him with your furry and scaly friends.

 

The penalty for not engaging with the giant is that your whole camp gets destroyed.  I'm not a big camp builder; I prefer to "live with the land" and so have, at most:  a crockpot (only one since food spoils in the crock now), 4 drying racks, fire pit, alchemy engine, 2-4 chests, a bird cage, and some farms (I have not played summer yet).  Also, I plant trees nearby. That's a pretty light camp that is just the bare essentials.  I can understand the balance factor where a Giant will counter someone who builds a small city for themselves, and wrecking a section of one's 10 x 10 farm grid would be annoying, but not difficulty raising per se.  That serves as an incentive for a player who put in that time and effort to defend their compound.  But for someone with a small camp like mine, there is no redundancy, and having to rebuild that when finding rare resources in addition to fending off an Angry Giant is not fair. 

 

One other perspective I have is that since the game is divided into Overworld, Caves, and Ruins, challenges in the Overworld should be defeatable using only Overworld-sourced things.  I see many strategies involving Rock Lobsters or items craftable from resources in the ruins; that's not sufficient.  If the caves are to be option, they need to stay optional. 

You know that you can deal non-aggressively with the giants right? For me the fact that the bearger has a area of attack means that I need to plan very carefully how to kill him or which mobs should I use, but generally if I see that I won't be able to deal with him I just leave it alone.

The teleporting is really anoying though, I'll agree on that.

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Zalyn    69

I should probably elaborate some, I just want some more variety to the combat. Things like weakness and resistance towards certain things. Fire hounds being weak against the ice staff, but the fire staff doesnt to jack to them. Hallucinations being strong against the nightmare sword and can ignore the night armor. Being able to craft weapons that have AOE so that you can take groups on. Just little things that make combat more of "What should I do next? What tool would be good for this situation?" then "Run, hit, run, hit. Win."

 

Agreed.  If combat is going to be a necessary mechanic (beyond whacking the occasional frog), then it should be more interesting and reward situational player creativity (not just tech-ing).  I am fine with a more combat-optional game though; classic games like King's Quest always had nonviolent options for solving puzzles, and that not only encouraged creativity, but it also allowed people to bring different perspectives to the game. 

 

I feel like it would be easier and better for game balance to introduce situational weaknesses and/or special items (like Bearger repellent/bait) than to rework and rebalance combat entirely (which would take dev time away from other sandboxy features).

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Skorp    98

Agreed.  If combat is going to be a necessary mechanic (beyond whacking the occasional frog), then it should be more interesting and reward situational player creativity (not just tech-ing).  I am fine with a more combat-optional game though; classic games like King's Quest always had nonviolent options for solving puzzles, and that not only encouraged creativity, but it also allowed people to bring different perspectives to the game. 

 

I feel like it would be easier and better for game balance to introduce situational weaknesses and/or special items (like Bearger repellent/bait) than to rework and rebalance combat entirely (which would take dev time away from other sandboxy features).

Right now you can create a trail of berries for the bearger to lure him towards a swamp, hound mound or just far from your camp.

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Zalyn    69

You know that you can deal non-aggressively with the giants right? For me the fact that the bearger has a area of attack means that I need to plan very carefully how to kill him or which mobs should I use, but generally if I see that I won't be able to deal with him I just leave it alone.

The teleporting is really anoying though, I'll agree on that.

From what I've heard, he'll destroy all the structures around and eat all the food, right?  That's my point - his AOE would probably take out my entire camp as he tried to get my food.   I haven't worked with him much yet (got killed after being rezzed last time), so I am working with limited knowledge.  But a mob that destroys all structures AND follows you is basically forcing a fight - or else how do you rebuild?  Wait until winter?

 

 

Right now you can create a trail of berries for the bearger to lure him towards a swamp, hound mound or just far from your camp.

When he teleported to my rez stone in a swamp, he plowed through everything - merm houses, tentacles, spider dens.  So he won't die there, meaning he can come back.  Or will he reaggro to those denizens and not come back?

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Skorp    98

He only uses his attack if he gets agroed, otherwise he breaks only the containers that have food. But if anything attacks him he'll start to destroy everything in his path.

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InaneDugong    121

Okay, first of all: I really love the way you talk. Since I'm not a native speaker, all the fancy phrasing and uncommon words are very impressive to me. Keep em coming, I'd like to learn a thing or two.^^

 

Okay, onto the topic. As the original post pretty much said, weather and food are in a pretty decent spot. Creatures however, could generally do with some reworking. The difficulty is not so much an issue (I'm not a fan of very hard gameplay, so I leave pretty much everything on default, except Treeguards which I set to 'more'), but the entire execution is a bit wonky. Sanity, for one, is pretty underdeveloped. Screen distortion and two easy to avoid shadows are all that you get. Some newly introduced environmental hazards would be called for, like trees starting to grab you when you go insane. Ideas for that have been collected in other threads.

When it comes to the other hostile monsters you may face, I feel like the main issue is that they're too predictable. Tallbirds wander around their nests, hounds come every so and so days, giants never bloody show up anyway (at least for me). And honestly, I don't even feel like the kiting thing has to be completely gotten rid off; the fights themselves are actually pretty tense as long as there's more than one enemy involved (or in the best case, multiple types of enemies that are hostile to each other *3*); the issue is more that you can perfectly predict when, where, and with what you will fight.

My proposition? Make enemies less predictable. Tallbirds could walk into the wild and collect food for their younglings. Your food, to be precise. Hounds could circle around your base instead of running at you every ten days. I can't think of anything more as of right now, but things that go in this direction would help make the game feel less under your control and more natural, while adding more of an interesting challenge aswell that can't simply be subdued with toothtraps.

 

TL;DR: Weather good, food good, combat not too bad, but enemies too predictable. Make them do cooler things.

 

Well, the purpose of this thread (unlike my others) isn't to recommend any overhauls to any existing mechanics - I actually want to talk about how the game can be improved whilst maintaining its integrity entirely.

 

But yes, I think we're in agreement over the creatures. Regarding Giants, I got all excited over the Spring Giant (sounded like Deerclops call though) groaning at me. I moved to an open area, waited for the groans to stop, and further waited for something to happen. You guessed it, nothing happened. When the Badger spawned for me, I led him to a Rook and took him out on day 13 without raising a finger (well, raised a leg, I suppose). 

 

Anyway, Insanity could probably do with a buff as a feature that's, like Krampus, completely under utilised, but can anyone brainstorm any general ideas about the continuous gameplay that relies on the balance of Weather and Creatures (passive and aggressive)? 

 

Also, regarding Items, how many others think melee-orientated items should be more than straight number-crunches and maybe carry some unusual utilities to make them worth using for more than their straight values?

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rivenwyrm    14

Summary: I think food, weather, and most combat are in a good place, but kiting is feeling tired. However, we can't say "fix kiting!" unless we actually have an idea for how it could be fixed.

 

Mostly in agreement. I personally think food is a bit too easy right now (maybe we need more spider-queen counterparts for Beefalo/Catcoons/Moles/Birds, etc), but otherwise I'd agree that the biggest problem right now is that "fighting" really means kiting, and as Giants have entered the game fighting is now being emphasized much more heavily, but hasn't really received any mechanical attention. Instead all the design changes have gone into weather, leaving the Giants in this weird limbo space where the Giants themselves are new but how we deal with them is nearly identical to how you fight anything else in the game.

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rezecib    3,147

But yes, I think we're in agreement over the creatures. Regarding Giants, I got all excited over the Spring Giant (sounded like Deerclops call though) groaning at me. I moved to an open area, waited for the groans to stop, and further waited for something to happen. You guessed it, nothing happened. 

 

The Gmoose actually won't come to you at all unless you have three structures within 30 range of you (more or less on-screen). So that's what happened there.

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Zalyn    69

 

Also, regarding Items, how many others think melee-orientated items should be more than straight number-crunches and maybe carry some unusual utilities to make them worth using for more than their straight values?

Yes.  Since I don't usually engage in fighting, I look at the differences in stats for, say a Tentacle spike and a Hambat, and I shrug and think, "eh, what's the point of wasting meat on a Hambat when I could have jerky instead and need a few more hits for most things?"  Since I don't usually kill things for big meat, I just jerky any big meat I find to make the most of it.

 

If there were actual different types of vulnerabilities, I would feel more interested in making the effort to try crafting new weapons.  This isn't a request for it (*waves at devs*), but simply an observation of my motivations as a player responding to design features.

 

Here's another idea (inspired by the Gmoose above): what if one giant (or other uber enemy) only attacked you if you carried weapons and armor?  Kind of like the Bunnymen, but instead an uber-pacifist. You have to make a show of good faith by dropping your pointy things, and it will leave you alone.  That would be an interesting mechanic that is open-ended and promotes player creativity while also making a puzzle.  (I figure that this would not be a hard mechanic to implement, except that the Walking Cane would be tricky since it can be used as a weapon but might not count as one...? I don't know Lua)

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userr3    58

First of all I want to say,great thread, I hope some of the devs read all this great stuff!

Fighting systems made me think:

Don't Starve is kiting only, that's true!

Maybe a ranged weapon you have to aim with would make a difference. A static catapult or a static slingshot that fires self made projectiles and you aim with the key arrows, would be great. You would not be able to carry it around, giants still would run up to you and destroy the catapult, so it kinda isn't too OP. This would greatly make a difference.

Introducing Aoe Damage, or similar just would need too much changes in the fighting system and would change a core concept of dont starve.

Insanity should definiley be rethought! It is great the first time you experience it, but kinda feels boring after some time. Meanwhile I feel like it is annoying and difficult to keep my sanity low, when farming nightmare fuel, it does not feel like a threat, more like something that has to be done from time to time.

Krampus... The reason I joined this forum a long time ago... COMPLETE REWORK AND BUFFS are heavily needed! He feels like an easter egg and thats a state it should not be left in. :(

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InaneDugong    121

Yes.  Since I don't usually engage in fighting, I look at the differences in stats for, say a Tentacle spike and a Hambat, and I shrug and think, "eh, what's the point of wasting meat on a Hambat when I could have jerky instead and need a few more hits for most things?"  Since I don't usually kill things for big meat, I just jerky any big meat I find to make the most of it.

 

If there were actual different types of vulnerabilities, I would feel more interested in making the effort to try crafting new weapons.  This isn't a request for it (*waves at devs*), but simply an observation of my motivations as a player responding to design features.

 

Here's another idea (inspired by the Gmoose above): what if one giant (or other uber enemy) only attacked you if you carried weapons and armor?  Kind of like the Bunnymen, but instead an uber-pacifist. You have to make a show of good faith by dropping your pointy things, and it will leave you alone.  That would be an interesting mechanic that is open-ended and promotes player creativity while also making a puzzle.  (I figure that this would not be a hard mechanic to implement, except that the Walking Cane would be tricky since it can be used as a weapon but might not count as one...? I don't know Lua)

 

I certainly feel you on this. It wouldn't be such a bad idea if most new units were released with different kinds of utilities to bring to the board. There seems to be a minor consensus so far that fighting is quite boring due to two variables: Weapons are all very straight forward and operate the same, and enemies - particularly the stronger units - aren't all that interesting to fight since it all comes down to micromanaging armour/high-tier weapons and/or managing ranged/remote weaponry (or simply aggro-swapping/using companions). 

 

Perhaps Klei should consider bosses that simply lend on abilities that involve puzzles/patterns in order to make the fighting aspect of the game more interesting, and potentially introducing different abilities/utilities to pre-existing weaponry in order to give purpose to, say, the Dark Sword or Ham Bat or Bat bat or Marble Armour, etc, long after the final tier of weapons has been accessed. Puzzles. Puzzles/pattern warfare would make fighting a little less monotonous. 

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userr3    58

I certainly feel you on this. It wouldn't be such a bad idea if most new units were released with different kinds of utilities to bring to the board. There seems to be a minor consensus so far that fighting is quite boring due to two variables: Weapons are all very straight forward and operate the same, and enemies - particularly the stronger units - aren't all that interesting to fight since it all comes down to micromanaging armour/high-tier weapons and/or managing ranged/remote weaponry (or simply aggro-swapping/using companions).

Perhaps Klei should consider bosses that simply lend on abilities that involve puzzles/patterns in order to make the fighting aspect of the game more interesting, and potentially introducing different abilities/utilities to pre-existing weaponry in order to give purpose to, say, the Dark Sword or Ham Bat or Bat bat or Marble Armour, etc, long after the final tier of weapons has been accessed. Puzzles. Puzzles/pattern warfare would make fighting a little less monotonous.

Just when I think of other game bosses, the actual "hit n kite" is pretty rare. Most of the time it's, dogde and combine/do something to make the boss vulnerable to your attacks. This is not the case in dont starve, but would make boss battles more thrilling...

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Lonestarr01    187

I think the game is fine the way it is. My opinion, is that you should really play another game xD You're overthinking everything wayyyyy too much.

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BipedalBear    107

Yes.  Since I don't usually engage in fighting, I look at the differences in stats for, say a Tentacle spike and a Hambat, and I shrug and think, "eh, what's the point of wasting meat on a Hambat when I could have jerky instead and need a few more hits for most things?"  Since I don't usually kill things for big meat, I just jerky any big meat I find to make the most of it.

 

If there were actual different types of vulnerabilities, I would feel more interested in making the effort to try crafting new weapons.  This isn't a request for it (*waves at devs*), but simply an observation of my motivations as a player responding to design features.

 

Here's another idea (inspired by the Gmoose above): what if one giant (or other uber enemy) only attacked you if you carried weapons and armor?  Kind of like the Bunnymen, but instead an uber-pacifist. You have to make a show of good faith by dropping your pointy things, and it will leave you alone.  That would be an interesting mechanic that is open-ended and promotes player creativity while also making a puzzle.  (I figure that this would not be a hard mechanic to implement, except that the Walking Cane would be tricky since it can be used as a weapon but might not count as one...? I don't know Lua)

Oh, you will feel sorry for not making a ham bat while playing as Wigfrid. Since she is more fighting oriented, and also the introduction for giants, it is a must have weapon in DLC.

To point something out with your item dropping suggestion: first, all tools (other than shear and pitchfork) have some damage output built into them. This is just not feasible as you have to drop necessary items just to avoid giants. Secondly,  the giants won't aggro on you unless you provoke them, so I think we should leave that suggestion behind. 

I'm not sure how the devs want to expand the recipes for giant loots, there might be a weapon coming up or we will have nada. Then again, thulecite club seems to be what you're pointing out. It requires a hefty amount of work and is OP as deuce.

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