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Kevin

Food spoilage?

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Dear Kevin:

I feel that this should have been obvious (to me) but it only just came to me.

Preserved food should consume much more base food than it puts out. Like, say, 10 berries + 10 honey + 1 clay pot = 1 jar of berry preserve. Rather than lasting, say, another week, a jar of berry preserve might be good for a full season cycle and have the total nutritional value of about two berries and two honey (which is a lot of healing, but not a lot of sustenance, in this case), and stack to 20... So you can actually stack more nutrients in a single slot, but not by so much that it justifies the tremendous cost in initial nutrients. The justification, of course, is that it will last until winter. Similarly, you could make meat jerky (say 10 meat + 10 grass + 1 charcoal = 1 meat jerky), monster jerky (same recipe with monster meat instead of meat, and no health benefit or loss, pure sustenance), kosher gobbler (5 drumsticks + 5 morsels + 5 salt + ???), Salted Meat (you get the idea)... This would not discourage hoarding, but it would make it less rewarding. And there would also be tradeoffs between quality, efficiency, stackability, and duration.

The best preserved foods (in terms of A> least wasted base food, B> best sustenance/health, C> longest preservation duration, and D> densest stacking) would require hard-to-obtain items that can't be farmed from safe zones... So even if you made your own salt flat biome, it would only spawn salt holes (I'm making this up) if it were big enough to spawn all sorts of salt flat creatures, too, and the salt holes would spawn far from the edges of the biome, so you'd have to tread through the dangerous salt flat territory to get your salt. You could, given enough time to let a whole new biome spawn after moving the terrain, bring it closer to your camp, but you couldn't make it safe.

With Winter on the way, one would have to risk the terrible salt flats biome and produce a large excess of food just to stock in something that will still be edible until hunting becomes viable again. You would not have to farm it, though. You could hunt for meat, salt it, and, I dunno, bury it in a pot... As long as you come back for it before the ground freezes.

I'm not looking forward to shoveling snow in Don't Starve.

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Just a suggestion: Since winter is cold, that would cause food to spoil less quickly than in summer. Some people use the cold as a pseudo refrigerator/freezer in areas with colder temperatures.

tl;dr - spoilage time changes per season.

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Arctic Flog    10

I like the idea as long as there is an abundence of ways to prolong foods.

Examples

-Salt can be introduced to increase raw or cooked meats spoilage rate drastically

-Honey can spoil slower if its in a chest or bee box (Which would make people harvest their honey more often)

-Introduce air tight containers that prevent spoilage altogether while in the container (Equipped in bag slot)

-Make jerky!

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Rudimental    10

If we're going to have methods to make food last longer, please give us some weird and quirky methods suited to this world, rather than just the generic dried/salted/boiled. I want to make preservatives out of a dried frog, use a tentacle to pound meat (I have no idea how this would make it last longer, but it would be great fun nonetheless), use spider webbing to make saran-wrap, and other cool things like this.

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Ahem. So now for details. Let's say that food health and hunger values are as they are currently, but we introduce a new value called "freshness" that decreases linearly with time. Combining stacks of varying freshness results in a new stack that has a freshness that is a linear combination of the two source stacks. Splitting a stack results in two stacks with the same freshness as the source stack. Freshness can neither be created or destroyed via inventory manipulation. You can hide one stale morsel in your stack of 10 morsels, but the overall units of freshness will remain the same.

I am not very clear with the part about combining stacks and splitting stacks...I have lots of questions.

Does the food convert to the stacks freshness when you stack it? or does the entire stack become the average freshness of all the units? or does each unit of food track its freshness individually?

What happens when I have a (50%) stale piece of meat in my inventory and I pick up a (100 %)fresh piece, will they combine to form a stack that is (75%)fresh? If so Can I technically keep splitting the stack into ones and adding fresh meat so that the stack will almost never spoil?eg. I have a stack of 20 (10%) meat. I split the stack into ones and add a 100% meat to that stack. therefore both becomes 55%?

If rather it is a stack of a 50% meat and a 75% meat...How do I separate the fresh ones from the stale ones in a stack of 20? presumably I would want to consume a Soon to be stale meat rather than a fresher one.

Also I hope that expired food(wet goop) can be used as fertiliser for crops. Or at least a repeatable use for them if not we might have a large stash of useless goops in our inventory.

Edited by Captain Potato

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The_Dizzie    10

If food spoils then I demand that there should be a way to make some long lasting food.

In the old days people use to salt, smoke and dry their meat, and dry out fruits etc to keep a preserve of food for when all the fresh stuff spoiled.

I think it would be nice if we could get a 'Smoke Box' and 'Fruit Drying Rack' so you can make a stock of emergency food if you're dedicated enough. The food would fill you less but it will not spoil.

I WANT JERKY AND RAISINS DAMMOT!

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I am not very clear with the part about combining stacks and splitting stacks...I have lots of questions.

Does the food convert to the stacks freshness when you stack it? or does the entire stack become the average freshness of all the units? or does each unit of food track its freshness individually?

What happens when I have a (50%) stale piece of meat in my inventory and I pick up a (100 %)fresh piece, will they combine to form a stack that is (75%)fresh? If so Can I technically keep splitting the stack into ones and adding fresh meat so that the stack will almost never spoil?eg. I have a stack of 20 (10%) meat. I split the stack into ones and add a 100% meat to that stack. therefore both becomes 55%?

If rather it is a stack of a 50% meat and a 75% meat...How do I separate the fresh ones from the stale ones in a stack of 20? presumably I would want to consume a Soon to be stale meat rather than a fresher one.

Also I hope that expired food(wet goop) can be used as fertiliser for crops. Or at least a repeatable use for them if not we might have a large stash of useless goops in our inventory.

Okay, you are failing to understand how averaging works here. First of all, yes, my interpretation, and others have agreed that this is how they read Kevin's post, is that when you add 1 100% and 1 50%, you get a stack of 2 75%. And there is no way to extract that 100% back out. You just have 2 75% units, now.

Let's simplify it a bit. Let's say that Roasted Beefalo Veal has a duration of 10.00 days, and you have a very predictable Beefalo ranch that puts out one veal per day.

Day 1: 1 unit, 10.00

Day 2: 1x10 + 1x9 = 2x9.5 Total Units: 2 Total Freshness : 19

Day 3: 1x10 + 2x8.5 = 3x9 or 1x10 + 1x8.5 = 2x9.25 (with 1x 8.5 left over) TU: 3 TF 27 either way.

Day 4: 1x10 + 3x8 = 4x8.5 TU = 4 TF = 34 (Other combinations will have the same results.)

Where the pattern breaks down (all variations providing the same TU and TF) is on day 11, when that first unit would have expired, but instead you have 11 units with approximately 5 days left to go. So the TF remains the same, but the TU is 11, instead of 10. So you got some free food, right? Sorta. See, on day 12, if you'd kept your food separate instead of stacking it, you'd only have 10 units with an average freshness of 5.5 days, but if you'd been stacking all along, you'd have 12 units with an average freshness of 4.5, a TF of 54 vs 55 for the former situation. And this will only increase over time. You have a tradeoff between TU and TF, because the more units you have, the whole stack losing an average of one freshness per day, the more total freshness is lost. Thus, by stacking, you keep the TU higher, but make the TF decrease faster.

This tradeoff works out, as a gameplay balance thing and makes some sense in RL terms, as well (although it's nothing like "realistic".) You can keep all the meat, but have a lower quality, or you can keep some of the meat at a higher quality. If you can cook the meat, resetting the freshness meter, it makes absolute sense to sacrifice TF for TU, but if you're eating the meat raw, or if cooking takes freshness of ingredients into account too much, stacking the meat is just a recipe for rapid spoilage. The game won't be as playable in the latter case, since there will be huge incentive to keep meat stacked separately if there's any chance that some of the meet would spoil before the stack is eaten. Realistic as it might be, I am going to guess that few if any would advocate a spoilage system which forces players to keep separate stacks of food to preserve them. So I'm hoping for the 'cooking resets or adds freshness' idea, so long as the amount of freshness added is such that if you are going to cook it, it always makes sense to maximize TU at the cost of TF.

More math you can ignore if you don't care... But in case you're questioning how I got these figures...

For combining two stacks, take the Units of each stack (U1 and U2) and the Average Freshness of each stack (AF1 and AF2) and generate the new stack as follows:

U3=U1+U2

AF3=(U1*AF1+U2*AF2)/(U1+U2)

Total Freshness TF=U*AF

AF decreases linearly with time, that is, to calculate the AF2 of a stack at Time T2 from the AF1 of the same (unsplit, unmerged) stack at T1:

AF2=AF1-(T2-T1)

E.g. If the stack had an AF1 of 5 days at T1, Yesterday, it has an AF2 of 4 days at T2, today... (today-yesterday=1 day)

Change in Average Freshness

∆AF = AF2-AF1

= (AF1-(T2-T1))-AF1

= T2-T1

= -∆T

(Which is Change in time, i.e. how long you're looking at the stack to measure the change over.)

∆AF = -∆T

Calculating change in total freshness:

∆TF = U*∆AF

= U*-∆T

Which means that TF decreases at a rate proportional to the number of units in the stack. All of which is kinda obvious, but it put it there in case anyone is having trouble wrapping their head around why keeping the food unspoiled after its 10 day lifespan increases the rate of spoilage in the rest of the food.

How's that for unnecessarily geeky?

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Daddums    10

Great... Now I can't explore and focus on everything else I want to do because I'm constantly chasing down the food supply monkey.

That might just be the deal breaker for me. I hope Klei thinks real hard about this one.

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BoneDblock    10

Think it is a great idea, However id personally like to see that goop to be able to be used for something as everything in this game is used for something.

Ideas for that

Alchemy - Being able to use goop in combo with other things to make a health elixer.

Farm - Using it as compost.

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RealmZero    10

While I think this is a fantastic idea and one the game needs along with winter as a challenge, I do believe it will cause a few things to change in hunger and health values correlating to how their ability to stay preserved is, like seeds, and honey. I agree with what some have said, you could limit honey with availability or production of containers, but seeds could either become non food or very little nutrient depending on how long they last.

It does seem a bit strange at first that adding an item to a stack would affect all the items longevity in the stack but for it to be averagely linear in that way solves the problem of stacking. You don't need more than one inventory slot for food, it all goes bad at the same time or all stays good changing the healthy food slot into wet goop and other food adding to wet goop as they go bad. That way you don't have the issue of when you inventory is full it falls on the ground each time an item rots. It's strange, sure, but perfect in management (if that is the way it was meant).

The idea of unpicked food ripening and then going bad after it falls to the ground is an excellent one and fixes hoarding of berry bushes or just not picking farms till the time is right. As long as they fall in random order so you don't come back to nothing being left on crops/plants. Or fruits lying everywhere... though would save time on collecting if it did.

This also does fix the problem of meat effigies if they follow a similar lifespan. Urteem proposed something really neat earlier on, rotted effigies (Pseudo-zombies?) could come to life and be evil Wilsons trying to kill you, that way you make one before a trip to somewhere dangerous (requires planning!) and when you get home that huge boon of not being able to die becomes a liability as it tries to cause it upon you. An interesting idea in addition with this I thought of is you could burn your effigies down with torches to prevent them coming alive, and gather freshened cooked meat back as a resource from them that way.

The multiplier should be bad, like Mobius said, for leaving food on the ground, not "normal" though it makes no difference mathematically as long as its just a lot less viable than containers. Meat on the ground should survive at most one or two days, and be used really as a distraction to mobs only. Backpacks and chests should work as containers, but should standard inventory slots count the same? Again from Mobius, chipping at frozen ponds in former swamps is definitely an elegant way to gather material for an icebox in the winter. Because it doesn't allow you to preserve foods for longer when you don't need to, and does when you do!

If we have live rabbits die when realistically shoved into containers with no food and become goop after a while, that would be good... Or they could escape from containers after a while and eat your crops hilariously.

All in all, would be a great addition leading to further necessary tweaks. I'm for it. In a game called Don't Starve, starving should be a legitimate game over.

Edited by RealmZero

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Okay, you are failing to understand how averaging works here. First of all, yes, my interpretation, and others have agreed that this is how they read Kevin's post, is that when you add 1 100% and 1 50%, you get a stack of 2 75%. And there is no way to extract that 100% back out. You just have 2 75% units, now.

Let's simplify it a bit. Let's say that Roasted Beefalo Veal has a duration of 10.00 days, and you have a very predictable Beefalo ranch that puts out one veal per day.

Day 1: 1 unit, 10.00

Day 2: 1x10 + 1x9 = 2x9.5 Total Units: 2 Total Freshness : 19

Day 3: 1x10 + 2x8.5 = 3x9 or 1x10 + 1x8.5 = 2x9.25 (with 1x 8.5 left over) TU: 3 TF 27 either way.

Day 4: 1x10 + 3x8 = 4x8.5 TU = 4 TF = 34 (Other combinations will have the same results.)

Where the pattern breaks down (all variations providing the same TU and TF) is on day 11, when that first unit would have expired, but instead you have 11 units with approximately 5 days left to go. So the TF remains the same, but the TU is 11, instead of 10. So you got some free food, right? Sorta. See, on day 12, if you'd kept your food separate instead of stacking it, you'd only have 10 units with an average freshness of 5.5 days, but if you'd been stacking all along, you'd have 12 units with an average freshness of 4.5, a TF of 54 vs 55 for the former situation. And this will only increase over time. You have a tradeoff between TU and TF, because the more units you have, the whole stack losing an average of one freshness per day, the more total freshness is lost. Thus, by stacking, you keep the TU higher, but make the TF decrease faster.

This tradeoff works out, as a gameplay balance thing and makes some sense in RL terms, as well (although it's nothing like "realistic".) You can keep all the meat, but have a lower quality, or you can keep some of the meat at a higher quality. If you can cook the meat, resetting the freshness meter, it makes absolute sense to sacrifice TF for TU, but if you're eating the meat raw, or if cooking takes freshness of ingredients into account too much, stacking the meat is just a recipe for rapid spoilage. The game won't be as playable in the latter case, since there will be huge incentive to keep meat stacked separately if there's any chance that some of the meet would spoil before the stack is eaten. Realistic as it might be, I am going to guess that few if any would advocate a spoilage system which forces players to keep separate stacks of food to preserve them. So I'm hoping for the 'cooking resets or adds freshness' idea, so long as the amount of freshness added is such that if you are going to cook it, it always makes sense to maximize TU at the cost of TF.

More math you can ignore if you don't care... But in case you're questioning how I got these figures...

For combining two stacks, take the Units of each stack (U1 and U2) and the Average Freshness of each stack (AF1 and AF2) and generate the new stack as follows:

U3=U1+U2

AF3=(U1*AF1+U2*AF2)/(U1+U2)

Total Freshness TF=U*AF

AF decreases linearly with time, that is, to calculate the AF2 of a stack at Time T2 from the AF1 of the same (unsplit, unmerged) stack at T1:

AF2=AF1-(T2-T1)

E.g. If the stack had an AF1 of 5 days at T1, Yesterday, it has an AF2 of 4 days at T2, today... (today-yesterday=1 day)

Change in Average Freshness

∆AF = AF2-AF1

= (AF1-(T2-T1))-AF1

= T2-T1

= -∆T

(Which is Change in time, i.e. how long you're looking at the stack to measure the change over.)

∆AF = -∆T

Calculating change in total freshness:

∆TF = U*∆AF

= U*-∆T

Which means that TF decreases at a rate proportional to the number of units in the stack. All of which is kinda obvious, but it put it there in case anyone is having trouble wrapping their head around why keeping the food unspoiled after its 10 day lifespan increases the rate of spoilage in the rest of the food.

How's that for unnecessarily geeky?

Okay, you are failing to understand the point of my post. Basically I understand how averaging works...What I mean is you can prolong a particular piece of meat using new fresh meat even though it is inadvisable and might not be good for hunger...But there is also the issue of crafting you see..

Sure I understand the math but what I am looking for is the confirmation from kevin of which system they are planning to use.

Edited by Captain Potato

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Sure I understand the math but what I am looking for is the confirmation from kevin of which system they are planning to use.

Okay. Well, that's how I read what he posted, but I can't confirm. Have to wait on Kevin for that.

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help    12

If this is going to happend i really want a difficulty setting in the game so u can put those kind of things off:P

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Moonkis    153

If this is going to happend i really want a difficulty setting in the game so u can put those kind of things off:P

Most likely not, it's a hard game, it should be hard period. After all it's a survival game with ( aimed to utilize ) rougelike similarities.

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Daddums    10

People who want more challenge are grabbing at this without considering how much they'll be micro-managing their food supply at the expense of doing anything else.

Deal breaker for me. Make this real and I'm gone (I can't be the only one).

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People who want more challenge are grabbing at this without considering how much they'll be micro-managing their food supply at the expense of doing anything else.

Deal breaker for me. Make this real and I'm gone (I can't be the only one).

Well that is a big problem. The devs want to include very little micromanaging. *Turns to audience* What now kids? Will Klei make the greatest update or will they make the biggest mistake? Come back next time to find out the epic conclusion to this epic journey!

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w00tyd00d    191

People who want more challenge are grabbing at this without considering how much they'll be micro-managing their food supply at the expense of doing anything else.

Deal breaker for me. Make this real and I'm gone (I can't be the only one).

I think if they were to add this mechanic in (still in the thought process guys, its not "official" yet) they would make it so it's not going to be absolutely necessary to hunt for food every single day. What it's meant to introduce is a balance in stockpiling food so that it's useless to do any extra hunting than you need to in order to survive. You can't just hunt for 3 days straight, get 2 or 3 stacks of morsels and berries and then not have to do that for another couple in-game weeks. It's eliminating the grind of gathering food just so you have the relief of not having to worry about it; food should be a somewhat constant worry; hence, literally, the name of the game. Not only does it eliminate the grind, but it also introduces food gathering back in to the micro-managing you would be doing with other things in the mid/late game, say building your base up or gathering more supplies. I would say after an in-game week food just doesn't become an issue for me because I already have so much meat and berries, which just utterly takes the challenge out of it. It's not going to be the only thing you need to worry about, although you will still have to worry about it. Why even add in hunger if it's so easy to stockpile food? It's kind of just an annoying mechanic then, not a challenging one.

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Spazmatic    1,033

Maybe implement food spoilage as an update,that you can play with or without,and let the update run a week or so.When you have played through DS *with* food spoilage for some time,a message shows up asking you if you would like food spoilage to be implemented into the game permanently or not.Allthough considering it might be a hassle to set this all up and get the results.Maybe a topic on the forum or a counter on the website to see what the opinion is of people who play DS,and not just of the people on the forums,since it might not be entirely accurate and representate what the general DS player thinks of food spoilage(since I don't think every single DS player is registered on the forum).

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Diezen    125

I don't know if anyone said anything about this or not yet, but it would also be interesting if you implement this related to the sanity system that would be implemented in future updates. Such as eating food that isn't fresh, like stale or worse could decrease sanity, and fresh food slightly increases it.

This seems like a very interesting system that would make stockpiling food not the best idea.

Also yes I would think honey shouldn't really spoil, or if it could make it so you can refine and can honey (pure honey- more hunger/health restored).

Edited by Diezen

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Artem    27

Love it, and honey shouldn't spoil.

Agree, same for seeds, also, I think that flowers should spoil; or at least, let them be super-long to spoil (so, all food can be marked with colors in inventory or any containers) :) Edited by Artem

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