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Change to how Ghost Players work

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So, I’ve been playing DST for about 15 hours, and there’s one thing that I’ve noticed that really could do with a change, and that’s how Ghost Players currently work.


I’ve been on a few servers and I keep hearing people ask dead players to leave so they don’t cause a Sanity drop. This is likely causing newer players to get discouraged from playing, so a change is most certainly in order. Here are some suggestions on how this could be changed.


The first obvious one is only make Ghost Players drain Sanity when they are near players, as opposed to just simply being on the server. This not only reduces the mass Sanity drop on servers with higher populations, but also stops people griefing i.e. dying on purpose, then hiding in some distant corner of the map and draining everyone’s sanity.


Secondly, there needs to be something to combat Ghost Players that are trying to grief, either by Haunting items to make them break or fail (like the Crock Pot) or just causing a Sanity drop. These come in the form of the Ghost Ward and Voodoo Ward. They would work as follows:


Ghost Ward – Requires: 3 Sticks, 1 Nightmare Fuel and 1 Nitre. It produces a small AoE effect that blocks all Ghost Player movement, prevents Sanity loss from nearby Ghost Players and provides a small amount of light (but not heat).


Voodoo Ward – Requires: 2 Living Logs, 4 Nightmare Fuel and 1 Purple Gem. Same as above, but with a much large AoE and more light (again, no heat is produced).


Lastly, Ghost Players needs to a wider range of positive/negative effects from Haunting things. From what I’ve read on the Wiki, there doesn’t seem to be an awful lot players can do as a ghost (aside from boost Crop growth), which makes the process of waiting for a rez even more boring. Plus, with the change to Sanity stated above, Ghost Players would be encouraged to stay near other players, despite the obvious loss to Sanity. This of course could be countered with Ghost and Voodoo Wards, but that could reduce what could Haunt due to the AoE effect. This creates a Risk vs. Reward system between the Ghost Players the live ones while a rez is being prepared.


This is just a few things that could be implemented (along with their current effects):


Note: All the suggested will likely have low chances of happening. Most of the time when a player Haunts something, nothing happens.


All Craftable Objects – Has a chance to break the object

All Plants – Has a chance to burst into flames

Neutral Beasts – Freezes them or 1 hit KOs them

Monsters – Debuffs them (take more damage, deal less damage), buffs them (opposite of debuff) or 1 hit KOs them

Crock Pot – In use: instantly finishes the cook cycle or turns the final product into something else (random)

While not in use: Will either produce Monster Lasagna (more likely) or another random meal (less likely)

Berry Bushes/Saplings/Grass – Instantly makes it reusable again or wilts it

Chests/Backpacks/Coolers – Adds 5 to a current stack of items (food or crafting components), adds 1 new random object to the container (basic crafting components for Chests and Backpacks, raw versions of food for Coolers (not meals)) or turns the entire contents into Ash (Rot and Bad Eggs in the case of Food).

Farms – Plants a new seed or downgrades an Improved Farm to the standard one.

Trees – Makes smaller trees grow to max height or kills the tree


I’m not sure how this whole idea fits into Klei’s plans for Ghost Players, but I feel this adds something to this ‘death state’ while still offering new bouts of extreme randomness, minimises griefing and stops players being chased out of servers for just being dead.

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Firstly, I'd like to believe Klei has plans of reworking the whole ghost mechanic that was introduced to DST. Warding options have always been suggested but the main concern with your suggestion based on what I've seen and discussed with other people with the same line of thinking, is that the restricting ghost movement aspect of the idea can alternately be used to grief the Jury-Rigged Portal in an Endless Mode Server by blocking off ghost players from their last resort to get revived.


So the alternate suggestion for this would be that the specific item that'll ward off ghosts, would instead only restrict haunting within the area. Whether that coverage area maybe as large as a lightning rod's range, or as small as a single tile, that part is up to debate.


Secondly Sanity Drain was meant to make people want to stay alive longer and work together to make that happen. Though this also falls under things I believe Klei will rework somewhere down the line, I'd like to add that reducing the sanity drain to a small area as if its a negative aura might not be the best step to insist that people should work together towards Survival. At best, reducing the Sanity Drain range would simply make Survival Mode become Endless Mode.


Sadly, I'd still prefer the global sanity drain cause in the perfect world with the best type of people playing with the same line of thinking as Co-op Survival, it's not all that bad. Other people would simply suggest that you find the right people to play with and start off from there.


Anyhow, welcome to the forums @NoobMister, hope that helps in some way. Cheers.


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Thanks for the reply @Zillvr.


Yeah, you're right, restricting Ghost movement could be used to grief people. I didn't think about it in terms of Endless mode, as I tend to join servers that run Survival. However, you are right (and I also read the topic you mentioned), we just need to stop players haunting things instead of blocking where they can go.


As I stated above, I have come across the situation where people have been asking others to leave because of the sanity drain effect a few times. This could be because newer players don't understand the game yet and are dying purely out of curiosity, but I have also encountered one person (who's name I can't type here because it contains a swear word) whom I swear dies on purpose just to grief everyone else with sanity loss (that or he REALLY didn't get how to play this game... though I highly doubt that given his name and the state I found one Endless server in >_>)


This is why I suggested the aura effect for the Ghosts and making them slightly more useful to the current live players. Maybe remove the sanity immunity effect from the wards so having them around is costly for the added haunting effects I suggested, but in truth, there needs to be a more drastic change, namely that a player is more useful alive than as a Ghost. The only thing I could think of is that Ghosts would cause problems by just being around, like they would wilt plants or ruin Crock Pot meals by just being near them, but sadly, this could be used even more for griefing, as players could just float around the map and kill/destory resources.


In the end, the bottom line is this: How do you make Ghosts a problem for the alive players that can't be used to easily grief, but something that people will want to stay nearby so they can be rezzed later?

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Unfortunately @NoobMister, I'm stumped out of ideas to improve togetherness for DST on the topic of ghosts. I did however made another long suggestion for reworking the ghosts a few months back. Feel free to look at how that thread turned out in case you were curious. In the end, hopefully Klei will address the ghost mechanic somewhere down the line and make things better. Cheers.

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All I have to say is the player who ask dead players to leave in order to alleviate sanity loss are playing the mode incorrectly.  When a player dies in Survival my first response is not "please leave" its "where are you so I can revive you."  I, in all honesty, dont understand why people who dont wish to play cooperatively choose a mode that has a mechanic that forces you to do so.  While ghost mechanic needs a change I do not think the survival mode is the problem.  The sanity drain is the correct move there.  Ghost mechanics need to be reworked so that ghosts dont become more powerful griefers once they are dead.

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Maybe I play DST incorrectly, but I've only ever played with real-life friends.  I tried joining the random server thing once, and found it to be a really horrible experience.  There is zero incentive for those already in game to assist those who join, and those who join late only seem to look for "the base" and become a drain on resources.  


But playing with real life friends absolutely changes things.  The game is fun, rewarding, challenging, and very much a co-op experience.  When one of us dies, the rest of the gang does everything in their power to help resurrect and restore them.  One person's death is a challenge for the whole team, and we actively work together to have fun surviving and taking on challenges.

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