Suggestion - a NIGHTMARE SACRIFICE Mod Concept

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Hello Community!


Don't Starve is a great Sandbox game first of all. What a bit sad to my humble opinion though is:

  • it somewhat doesn't give you a sense of direction, goal-setting and achievement beyond simple survival (unless you jump into adventure mode or invent your own objective);
  • it kind of stops pushing you hard as soon as you figure certain food, health, sanity and defense management strategy;

Nightmare Sacrifice is a Mod Concept that is focused on solving these two issues, giving player a sense of direction, goal-setting, somewhat tutoring if you're a newbie, pushing you harder and harder over time.



I. Idea Explanation

Touch Stones mechanics is changed (currently serves as one-time player resurrection point) so that when at least one of them gets activated, a daunting sound is played and a text appears near the Touch Stone:

   - I demand you to sacrifice an <Item> in my name in <N> days from now...


Touch Stone effectively serves as a medium between you and "The Shadowbinder", an evil entity, who controls forces of Nightmares that invade Don't Starve world.  :joyous:


Every task given by The Shadowbinder demands you to Sacrifice a particular item on a touch stone, e.g. Altar, by bringing and drag&dropping it there in a certain number of days.


II. Fun Part

Player now has to seek, or craft a necessary item and bring it to the Touch Stone until time runs out.

  • If he / she fulfills requirements, Touch Stone restores player's sanity, drops a Nightmare Fuel and generates a new task.
  • If Player fails, i.e. timer runs out, a daunting sound is played and player's sanity starts dropping down quickly. Nightmares appear, attacking player.

Negative effect lasts for some time, then disappears (sanity gets a positive boost). It then repeats in half a day though forcing player to return to touch stone, click on it and generate a new task for a new item.


Failing and regenerating a task does not immediately restores player's sanity, as he still has to be punished, however the negative effect won't reappear in X days specified by the new task.


III. Balancing

Balancing is based around "Tiers", each configured by the following variables:

  • items list - these becomes harder and harder to get from Tier to Tier, forcing player to explore more, battle difficult foes, craft complex recipes or venture down into the caves;
  • negative effect (sanity lose) duration - first tiers drop sanity for 15 seconds, highest tier for a couple of days;
  • tasks amount - some tiers may grant player a single task, some multiple.

Additionally, every goal has a deadline timeframe, which is a completely random parameter every time (from 2 to 6 days), adding some extra-fun.


  • Tier 1. Item: Wood, Flower, Grass, Axe, Stone, etc. 15 seconds negative effect. Tasks amount - 2.
  • Tier 2. Item: Web, Charcoal, Sapling, Grass Suit, Bee, etc. 25 seconds negative effect. Tasks amount - 3.
  • ...
  • Tier Z. Item: Gears, Any Dart, Umbrella, Tooth Trap, Mosquito Sack, etc... 80 seconds negative effect. Tasks amount - 4.
  • ...


This mod is optional in a sense player may decide to do not touch the stone at all, or fulfill a special condition to interrupt the sequence (?), to restart later.


Upon passing the highest Tier (with Items such as Glow Berries and ever harder to get or craft), the Touch Stone gets destroyed and player receives some neat permanent bonus such as a sanity boost (ideally a Steam achievement also) and / or item.


IV. Implementation Issues

I'm not certain if this is even implementable using the modding system currently in place, however the Concept itself hopefully does not involve much of a very specific mechanics, except setting timers, affecting player stats, generating objects, accepting and destroying objects on drag & drop, printing text on a screen, playing sounds.


Any feedbacks / suggestions / comments / help welcome! :-)

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