User Score
8.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 738 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 40 out of 738

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  1. Apr 25, 2013
    3
    I had good fun with this game for a few hours until I got really bored of it's repetitive nature, this game is solely base on the fundamentals of grinding, which is something that I detest and hate in games now.

    I have come back to try the game every major beta update, but no update makes me want to continue playing, pick grass, pick sticks, cut this, dig that, catch animal, eat
    animal, all this for a little counter (days) to increase.

    People are showing their love for an independent small game, but a userscore of 9.2 suggests this game is up there and past other games such as Tomb Raider (2013), Bioshock Infinity, Starcraft 2 HotS, etc, no it's not anywhere close to those. In fact I had more fun with free flash games for longer periods, I'm sorry Don't starve, I didn't like you very much!
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  2. Apr 24, 2013
    8
    Very nice art style, and music. Gameplay wise, it may seem like other "survival" games out there, but this one is really different. Playing the game non-stop is not recommended; it may get too boring too fast, let this game be a break from other ones, and enjoy the experience as long as it lasts.
  3. May 1, 2013
    10
    Great game, I followed it since it first appeared on Steam, and loved all the updates it got. It was like Minecraft experience all over again. I love when I can see all the new things being added And now after the release it's not over yet The devs will still keep new updates coming!
  4. Jun 14, 2013
    3
    Apparently one of many overrated and hyped Indie games that keep popping up recently.
    A simple, random generated arcade-ish clicking game in a line of: run around try to stay alive die randomly restart from scratch go again. Without any story, sense or even tutorial.
    You run around very basic, random generated islands, grinding various resources by clicking on objects like trees and
    rocks. Then you can create various tools out of resource so you can grind more. Rinse, repeat.
    With lack of any idea about what you should do and what to avoid, with no Save functionality, the game start to get very frustrating very soon, while also quite boring from repetition.
    People used to create this kind of simple games in Flash for free and there are still plenty of them available on the web if you so desire.
    The only new thing with this one is that somebody is not ashamed to charge $15 for it, and the only special thing about it is the hype that seem to surround it. Plus a self-proclaimed deep design philosophy explained by author(s?). I only found user un-friendlines though.
    The game is really not worth the price, no matter what the hype tells you.
    You can check 15minutes demo for free on Google Chrome web store and greatly advice it before buying.
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  5. May 7, 2013
    6
    This game is similar to Minecraft's survival mode. You go around gathering resources to craft items, build, feed yourself, and make sure you don't go insane. The insanity meter is interesting because if forces you to do different things otherwise crazy things happen. Death is permanent, so if you die you have to start a new game. For a game that's supposed to be a time-waster and meant to be played multiple times, it progresses very slowly, and I find that a big issue. I can put in a few hours, finally feel like I'm getting somewhere, and then just like that I can die from monsters or something, and that makes the game feel tedious. If the game started off with some items, like a pick ax, and progressed faster, it would be much better. I would much prefer playing something like FTL which makes me feel like I'm getting a lot more done after playing a short period of time, and I don't mind starting a new game with FTL. This game suffers from that long grind that I'm not a big fan of. It's still worth checking out, but keep in mind of it's pacing. Expand
  6. May 11, 2013
    3
    I don't get how people give this game such high scores. It's fun the first couple of playthroughs when you don't know what's going on and you're just exploring, but once you become a bit more familiar with it every playthrough is a 6 hour long grind to craft all the things you need, which can (and will) end abruptly by something just popping up and 2-shotting you. The grind turns from "tedious" to "completely unbearable" when you are trying to keep several pigs around so you can actually attempt to kill something. Let me put it this way, if you think this is "OMG SO HAERDCORE AND CHALLANGING", you are retarded, plain and simple. If you want a challenging game, go play the old Xcom games, this is not challenging, just repetitive and cheap, both in concept and execution. Expand
  7. Apr 23, 2013
    10
    I play Don't Starve since first days it appeared on Steam, so I can surely say it's a really, really great game. It offers ultimate survival challenge and basically is just mind-blowing. Monsters, created by your morbid imagination, pigmen working for food, traditional Grue, cranky Scottish noble walrus who hunts you at winter, terrifying Deerclop...
    It's pretty hard and you need to spend
    some time reading Wiki to understand what actually happening but it's absolutely worth it. Also, this game inherits one of the main principles of roguelikes: losing is really fun, so you will rather laugh at ridiculousness of your death than get frustrated.
    DS is highly customizable, so if you find it too hard you can always increase amount of food, resources etc.
    So, let's make a conclusion: this game has great gameplay, brilliant artstyle and atmosphere, offers real challenge, but is relaxing and welcoming to novice at the same time. Must have.
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  8. May 24, 2013
    3
    I really don't understand the good reviews as this game is nothing special. It gets repetitive very quickly as you need to do the same stuff over and over again.
    Game art is ridiculous for survival type of the game, everything is gray and unrealistic. The music is ok but other sounds are annoying.
    I really wanted to understand this game, but it simply isn't for me.
  9. Sep 17, 2013
    8
    An excellent game. Bought it based upon the survival elements and price. Like other survival/exploration games (you know the ones) it offers longevity and quirky game play. Each time you restart you'll learn a lesson and do it better. My top tip is stock up on food early on until you can build traps. Initially it was (as the name suggests) starvation that finished me off. Similar to a Roguelike game, once you die that's it. No save game, restore point or trial and error. This makes you think carefully before attacking a spider nest or venturing too far from camp. Enjoy Expand
  10. Apr 24, 2013
    7
    The game is fun. Very fun indeed. But that fun doesn't last long. When I got it, I couldn't stop playing for about 3 days. I gifted a copy to my gf and she loved it. But after playing some times until day 30-60, that's it. After playing for a week every free moment my gf had, she never looked back. I checked the patchnotes from time to time, even started a few games, but never got into it again.

    Well, there are many big name games that you can finish in one day, so one week of fun is pretty ok. I would recommend this game to everybody. Even players who don't like Minecraft or Terraria. This game is less special, more suited for any gamer. But at the end, it's a game that won't last like those other 2
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  11. May 19, 2013
    5
    Clever, excellent art style and general production quality, but once you get past the "oh gee" reaction it's just a grindy clickfest. It's a shame because much more is hinted at, but this just doesn't deliver.
  12. Apr 23, 2013
    10
    tl;dr Buy this game.

    This game is really great and loads of fun. It has a unique art style and developers who really care about the quality of the game, and who are actively involved in the fairly large community that has appeared since the game went into beta last year.

    The game also has mods that can be found on the forums, and a lot of the game files are in plain-text Lua scripts
    so if there's something in the game that turns you off you can probably change it. But don't do stuff like "I can now craft a Nightmare Sword with a twig" or "rabbits no longer run from me" or you'll get bored from the easiness.

    The gameplay is pretty addictive, and if you like Terraria or Minecraft you should feel right at home in this game. Not too say it's similar to those two games: it's worlds apart. And about worlds, you can customize your randomly-generated world in Don't Starve to make it easier (or harder). Can't find enough food in the early game? Add more berries and carrots. Hounds just too much for you? You can get rid of them. Being able to customize your world is, in my opinion, a really bright idea.
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  13. Apr 30, 2013
    10
    Don't starve was a game that I was constantly looking at on steam, and finally decided to give it a go. I was a bit apprehensive but have not looked back. It has such a fun, addictive gameplay that it never seems to get old. Unlocking new characters, exploring new areas, and discovering new ways to die! Great graphics, great concept, and with extra content being released for 6 months after launch it will continue to be replayable. It will a game that will be easy to come back to in a years time and still have fun with it. Expand
  14. Apr 23, 2013
    6
    Don't Starve is receiving the standard "Indie game devs games are always perfect" praise that most working indie games. Don't Starve seemed like an interesting concept, but not anything particularly new. It seemed to draw on elements of Minecraft, Terraria, and other survival based "Create your own adventure" sort of games. The problem with Don't Starve isn't that the game is really badly made or anything it looks fine and I didn't encounter any errors or glitches. The problem is the game becomes boring really quick. After I managed to survive for awhile I kept exploring and just didn't find anything but more of what I already had. You can craft better items and some can be helpful, but generally they just serve to help you do the same things over and over again quicker. I think the other reviewers were playing a different game, the crafting system in this game was very boring and uninspired. Literally the ingredients needed are listed and the crafted items generally either do the same things faster or they provide information that's not really that helpful. I found rocks to be very sparse compared to other resources in the game which required very lengthy expeditions to find new rock after all the relatively local rock was mined. While I didn't get bored of Minecraft until some time after I played it, same with Terraria I was bored of Don't Starve very quickly. It just felt tedious and boring. Parts of Minecraft and Terraria felt like this too, but they had their rewarding accomplishments. Don't Starve feels like a game that exists just to exist. When I inevitably died from lack of enough resources derived from rocks, I just had no real drive to try again. If you enjoy really repetitive games, you might like Don't Starve but I got bored with this one so quickly I got a refund while it was still a pre-order. I'm giving this game a decent score because it's not broken, it's just not that much fun. The game feels too limited about what you can build or do, so it really seems to lack the fun value of a Terraria or Minecraft kind of game. I love survival games, but this one just lacked any real interesting elements to it. Minecraft and Terraria may not be survival games at their core but they had more enjoyable survival elements than Don't Starve by far. Expand
  15. May 1, 2013
    6
    Don’t Starve is one of those, firework kind of games, where you have this expectation of at least a good survival game, and it delivers. However, when the awe of the blast and colors dissipates you see what you are truly left with. Unfortunately, the fun of the games survival mechanic quickly turns into a horrible grind more frustrating and boring than even the most aggravating MMORPG.
    But this is not to take away from some of the games better points. Though the beginning of the game can eventually become a boring grind, especially if you die a lot, if you’re able to continue past the first winter you are golden and able to explore as much as you want. The biomes are beautifully done in the games unique art style, and almost seems to call for you to find out what is hiding around every corner.
    I loved the survival mechanic of eating, and that they added a very rarely seen mental aspect to the game that added a number of levels to the difficulty and the fun. I also liked the crafting system in the game and that for most of the tech all you needed was a science machine and the proper ingredients. And with the supplies you have gathered always at risk of going bad you find yourself constantly trying to improve the longevity of your provisions.
    The monsters, in the beginning, can be somewhat bland and boring, with spiders, the occasional wolf, and the beefalo wandering around, but with some searching and a little bit of luck you can stumble across some of the more interesting creatures in the game. I found that some of my favorites were the clockwork creatures, but only because I needed their guts in order to make my refrigerator.
    The combat is fairly simple in Don’t Starve, just click and kill. You do need to watch you distance from the larger enemies, because they don’t become stunned when attacking and they hit for massive damage, but for the most part they are all killable with a range of effort. There are a few ranged weapons, but they really don’t warrant much mentioning
    But is the game as a whole a good game?
    Yes it is. It’s the type of game that you can play when everything else had bored you and you want a challenge. It’s a welcome breath of fresh air and a look away from the perpetual easy mode that has plagued most games in recent years, and though the game can become quite the grind at certain points you cannot resist its unique charm and allure.
    This game gets a 6. It’s a Decent game and fun to play when you’re bored, but not something that you should really be killing to get.
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  16. May 26, 2013
    6
    Like some here have already mentioned it takes quite a while and grinding to get a good game going and there are so many things one can do that I spent more time reading guides on the web than actually playing. Which wouldn't be the case if it wasn't a permadeath game. In which case one could just enjoy the great, quirky design and the loads of possibilities of things to do in the world. But as it stands, I feel way too much pressure that I would want to bother finding out where to get a resource and how to build something. Expand
  17. Apr 28, 2013
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. [Minor Spoilers]Don't Stave is an excellent game. The best game I've played in quite some time. If you go into the game expecting an easy casual game experience you will be shell-shocked. Don't starve is harsh and unforgiving and you can die quickly. Which is a great thing for a survival game, in my opinion.

    Your first character is a scientist named Wilson, but you can unlock other characters, each with a signature perk. You are throw into a world knowing little and with nothing. You must forage, hunt, farm, fish, and trap your food. As you explore you'll encounter a number of different enemies and you'll have periodic raids on you camp by hounds. The raiding hounds increase in strength as time goes on. Additionally, you'll encounter various boss type enemies.

    I said you start knowing little. You can and must research various things to survive in this hostile world. You have to gather resources to research various items, which will require you to push your exploration far from your base. And there are some interesting things to research. Some more "magic" in nature (though "magic" plays mostly a minor role, don't expect to be a "wizard" in the game.

    Great graphic style, great game play, and great re-playability. A 10 in my book.
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  18. Apr 23, 2013
    10
    This is one fantastic game. This is very well set apart from other survival games such as Minecraft and the like, as it is one that allows you to learn lessons after death easier, as instead of adjusting the difficulty to peaceful, you have to restart all over again. This also has a far better adventure mode on it. There is also a far better sense of achievement to this game, as this game is far harder than other creative building games. All in all, I could give you millions more reasons to buy don't starve, but it's undeniably a solid 10/10. Expand
  19. Apr 25, 2013
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. “Don’t Starve is an uncompromising wilderness survival game full of science and magic. You play as Wilson, a Gentleman Scientist who has been trapped by a demon and transported to a mysterious wilderness world. Wilson must learn to exploit his environment to its inhabitants if he ever hopes to escape and find his way back home. Enter a strange and unexplored world full of strange creatures, dangers, and surprises. Gather resources to craft items and structures that match your survival style. Play your way as you unravel the mysteries of this strange land.”

    It was a normal day, I logged onto steam to do my daily dose of gaming as I noticed a window pop open that said “Don’t Starve Coming soon”. As the name intrigued me I clicked it to take a look at what this could be, another game similar to Minecraft maybe? The trailer revealed to me that it had similar concepts to Minecraft as the main point was to survive but this looked a little more intense and more hard-core. This got my attention fast and I purchased it as soon as I could and got access to the Beta as the game was not fully released yet. Magnificent.

    When you spawn into the game you straight away get shown the very neat looks of a similar style to a lot of Tim Burton Films which fit this game perfectly as it has a very sinister atmosphere to the game especially at night. The main idea of the game is great and has a lot of potential and can keep you needing to play it for a few days but I do feel it lacks on the entertainment side of things. I say this because the amount that you play it will depend on the type of player that you are, if you rely on the game to give you constant action and fun it will not do that for you. This is because you will need to learn what kills you and then when you replay after you die it is just preventing the way you died before which in the end boils down to preparing for winter by stockpiling food over and over until you fail at something. Although I say this I am the type of player that loves this and plays most games for the whole stockpile element to them, which Don’t Starve is perfect for giving this to me. Even if this doesn't interest you for the same reason as me it will still defiantly keep you occupied for days and be 100% worth the money as it is only £11.99.

    Don’t starves ‘Dark side’ shows when you get to night for the first time and instantly die when you don’t make a fire, which shows you straight away that it’s going to need research or trial and error to survive in don’t starve. As well as the threat of needing a fire as night falls you also need to take care of your sanity, keep well fed and also stay away from terrifying wolves and unusual eye creatures. When you first find out any of this stuff it is a thrill and keeps you intrigued to find out what happens if you defeat what killed you. “What could get me next time?” Don’t starve reveals some of its sinister side when your sanity lowers and you start seeing creatures and figures that render you speechless the first time you see them, even creepy hands that lower the flame in your fire at night.

    Overall I would say that Don’t starve is well worth the amount that you pay for if not more. It is the ultimate survival experience and brings loads of fun along with its unique art style and sinister game play. Don’t Starve is undeniably a solid 10/10.
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  20. Jul 14, 2013
    0
    I thought this game was great for the first few hours because I could see the potential for what it might be. However, this game is literally about grinding yourself to death. The only way to learn about what kills you is to be killed by it. Every time you die, you have to start a new game. So, literally you are grinding with the expectation of dieing in order to learn something new about the game and avoid dieing the next time around.

    I think the game designers were very lazy. The menu system is broken and inadequate. They intentionally hide relevant details from you to make the game more difficult and mysterious. They tell you not to go to the wiki because it reduces the "adventure" effect, but you absolutely need the wiki to tell you basic things that should be indicated within the game.

    I only spent a few bucks on the game, but I'm still disappointed enough to come here write a review about how absurd this supposedly innovative game truly is. I would highly advise that you buy the game, play it, and then go the game maker's website and give them an ear full about whatever you think so that they can further improve this game. I think you'll find these other reviewers who game the game a 3 or less are spot on with their assessment.
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  21. Jul 26, 2013
    3
    This game is a farming game, 95% of the time you grind stuff and hope you don't die during the night/ process. Don’t bother farming anything during the night. If you do, it’s “game over”—unless you've found a rare sacred stone or built yourself a meat sacrifice thing—which to even get to that level is a task in and of itself. If you love walking around and just clicking on different plants and running away from freaky long legged birds that kill you in 2 hits, then this is the game for you.

    I only continued in hopes that it would eventually get better but it remained boring. I played about 14 hours of the game, it never got better. It got ‘different,’ but still ‘boring different’. Even after collecting half a dozen pigs in my man-pig army. The game wasn’t bad or poorly designed as a whole, it was simply boring. Grinding stuff the majority of the time is incredibly boring. I’d seriously rather just watch my cat groom herself for an hour in the same spot, over and over and over again. Games like Terraria and Mine Craft are fun when grinding, you can literally shape the world around you while you grind for stuff and even use the world to interact with on some level in real-time to fight or block off enemies. All of these great aspects you can't do in this game. It takes far more investment to get to any of these aspects and the pacing doesn’t allow for this in real-time because you’d die while trying to build anything.

    I see the charm in their style and how this game paces itself with items and animations, I like that and it is interesting. But it doesn’t make up for a boring game which just becomes frustratingly difficult when they punish you every time you die. This is not an effective way to hook players in for more, difficulty does not equal fun. Mechanics equal fun, fun and engaging game mechanics. Yes games 15 even 20 years ago games were very difficult and unforgiving but because of their crude graphics and controls they needed fundamentally strong game mechanics. That they were difficult was an aspect of arcade gaming crossing over into consoles. Terraria is a great example of this because the game has little if any story at all, it is paced purely off the players choices and actions. The designers for Don’t Starve would benefit greatly from reading some books on game theory or taking a few courses for learning about game mechanics etc. Don’t bother wasting your time on this boring game, unless you’re into clicking stuff pointlessly for hours with no story at all and collecting imaginary digital shrubs, grass, rocks, etc. Or unless they come out with a seriously significant update that changes a major aspect of this game as a whole.

    I can’t even begin to really describe to you how boring this game is, and I’ve play over a thousand hours on various grinding games. This takes the cake.

    The Good:
    Charming Consistent Visual Style
    Animations and Sounds
    Simple UI and Menus
    Intuitive Controls

    The Bad:
    Extremely Boring
    Horribly Unforgiving
    Too linear for its Genre for an Adventure is lacks story for Simulation it lacks interactions.
    If if they mean simulation as in a farm simulator... then yeah, move along and get Farm Simulator 2013, at least that game knows what it is. I can easily imagine Farm Simulator 2013 being 1000x more fun than this game.
    The UI for building and researching stuff could be a lot better; any means of finding out about the game you’d have to refer to a wiki site--and the developers don't want you to do that.
    And for an indie game as boring as this is, and charging more than 5 dollars with a serious face should be a crime, unless all the money is going to the sound and art guys then I support that.
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  22. Apr 24, 2013
    6
    While very late to the build and survive theme, it still offers some enjoyment. There is no story and no plot (well maybe some in the adventure mode) and all you have to do is survive as long as you can or want. You have three stats. Health, Hunger and Sanity. You start out with some instructions for tools to get you started and then you're on your own to explore a world mixed with forests, deserts swamps and more. The longer you survive the more Experience Points you earn and each level unlocked unlocks a new character with its own unique skill. The price is a tad too much so I'd wait for a sale or a dollar drop. It's sandbox so after all, it's repetitive, but it needs to be. The world customization is very touch. Everything is set as default, the problem is when clicks "more" or "less" the unbalance between them literally makes them one click from "not enough and must start new game" to "too much and no skill required." It's fun for a thirty to sixty minute play, but you can (and will) become bored very quickly so don't play it in huge amounts of time. Expand
  23. Apr 29, 2013
    9
    It really is a shame that this one idiot reviewer on hardcoregamer knocked the score down so far on this game and couldn't even spell the main character's name right or decided for some reason not to review half the game and just complain about sandbox mode.

    That being said, the people that are calling it repetitive or grind like probably didn't play this game's adventure mode (which is
    very challenging and often nerve wrecking) and stayed in sandbox. Sandbox mode is only to really get you adequate with the game's mechanics and such but after you get use to that and things become less dire, adventure mode is where you go for a challenge.

    It is a good game and definitively worth the price tag. While it does have some cosmetic things in it it's mainly about survival. i've spent 120 hours on it so i've definitively got my monies worth. also you can adjust the difficulty in sandbox mode to make it even more challenging for yourself~
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  24. Apr 23, 2013
    10
    Great game for the price. Just kinda thrusts you into the world with no explanation on what to do; no hand holding, no instruction, just survival. You really learn through your first couple times, what it takes to survive and each subsequent time you learn from your mistakes, (not building any winter clothing that first winter, getting and attacking a tier 3 spider nest). For people that are new to survival games, or hadn't played one in what seems like forever, this is a good place to start. The unique visuals to the game are another strong point, with all the different characters, tools, monsters and world. Each character has their strong suit (like Wilson, who can grow a beard which acts as protection in winter or Wolfgang who hits like a tank). Overall, it's a game worth exploring and getting better at. It gives me great motivation when I've seen screenshots of people at day 500...and just getting through a week is pretty challenging. Expand
  25. May 24, 2013
    10
    Definitely a great game with a fantastic art style and soundtrack. It's like Minecraft mixed with Terraria with some Tim Burton added in. I can't wait for the future updates. It doesn't seem to get old and is very original in term of gameplay and survival games. Really an amazing deal for its $15 price.
  26. Apr 26, 2013
    9
    This is a very good rogue-like game. Each game starts off on a randomly generated map with differing resource allocations, so each game is a chance to start fresh and develop new survival strategies for each play. The different playable characters each add something fresh with a unique perk and dialogue. Almost every time I have died it was due to a combination of a couple of mistakes I have made, and each death is a learning experience. It takes a bit of thought to manage your health, hunger, sanity, and in the winter, freezing meters (although the freezing meter is not shown). As someone who bought into the beta I have put over 60 hours into this game already, and I feel it is a really good way to spend 12-15 dollars, especially if you enjoy rogue-like games, and are open to the idea that you will by dying and restarting from scratch fairly often. Expand
  27. Apr 23, 2013
    10
    Don't Starve is a ultimate survival game, which allows you to play by many ways. Such things like randomized world, awesome craft and different characters gives you an unique adventure every time you push the start button.

    Two other things that I like about game is a unique visual style and an regular updates. You can also offer a new ideas on the forum.

    What else can I say? Simply
    must have. One of the best indie game I ever played, and absolutely the best survival game for me. Expand
  28. Apr 27, 2013
    9
    I played this game non stop today and can't seem to stop playing it. Great atmosphere and unique art style Yes, it can get pretty repetitive at times but I absolutely enjoy every moment of it. This game has a lot to offer with different tools and creatures you face in your never ending quest to survive.
  29. Apr 24, 2013
    9
    Been looking forward to this game and it does deliver!

    Love the way u hav to figure everything out yourself... the feeling of discovery is really THERE!

    great art style and great sound...

    overall... real good fun...

    USE YOUR COMMON SENSE AND DONT STARVE...DYING IS FUN...
  30. Apr 25, 2013
    10
    I created a Metacritic account just to give this game a good review. I bought this game at half price on a whim back when the beta started and have very much enjoyed the experience. As others have said, even though the game inevitably becomes a bit dull (as all games do), the "hours of entertainment per dollar" value can't be beat and the great artwork is worth the price of admission alone.

    The game is a point-and-click, top-down-view "survival" title, where you are dropped into an enchanted forest world that hates you and wants you to die. The world is randomly generated based on parameters you select (think Age of Empires) and changes with every new game. You must explore, gather raw materials, and fight critters in order to manage hunger, health and "sanity" levels. As the days go on, you construct equipment and establish base structures of increasing complexity, which are all needed to take on the increasingly difficult monsters and environmental challenges the game throws at you. Death is permanent and makes you plan your actions very carefully, yet there is a useful late-game mechanic that lets you make an effigy of yourself out of meat, wood, and hair (not making that up) that will revive you after a particularly unlucky encounter with a sinister Eyeclops or blowgun-toting-kilt-wearing-walrus (also not making that up).

    The feeling of progression is wonderful as the game plays out. You go from foraging for berries and mushrooms to harvesting corn from farm plots to make tasty fish tacos. You go from a measly campfire to a roaring fire pit, surrounded by stone walls and chests of loot. And while you begin the game running from spiders and fending them off with a pointy stick, you can come back for vengeance later with a shadow sword constructed of pure nightmares and an army of friendly pig-men. Also, you've given the pig-men top hats, because it's important to look dapper.

    Artistically, the game is very unique and incredibly weird, with a style that makes all the characters and props look like living pencil and charcoal drawings. The theme is playful and cartoony while having very sinister undertones. Think Alice in Wonderland and Nightmare Before Christmas, with a dose of Lovecraft thrown in when your sanity dips and you start to go nuts. In 40+ hours of play, I haven't stopped smiling at how goofy the berry-stealing Gobbler is or how the noble Beefalo herds stare at you blankly when you walk by. And the shadowy hand that slowly reaches out of the darkness to snuff out your camp fire (with the background sound of a broken jack-in-the-box) is just straight-up disturbing.

    Speaking of campfires, the day/night cycle this game has is one of the best implemented I've seen in a video game. There is a day/dusk/night rotation (as well as a summer/winter/rainstorm mechanic) that greatly influences how the world and the player behave. Rabbits frolic during the day, creepy/crawly things come out at dusk, and straying from a light source for even a few seconds at night causes an unseen horror to straight-up murder you. Even when you're far into a game with an established, well-stocked campsite, you're still just a castaway huddled next to a fire, gnawing on a rabbit bone, trying not to go crazy.

    Which brings me to my last point concerning difficulty. At some point, the game stops ramping up challenges so quickly and just starts to just cycle them. It's then when players begin to complain of boredom. "I've survived 100 days and now the game is boooring!" Well, boredom only comes from security and security is only achieved from a fully-explored map and campsite bursting with supplies and gadgets. There's always the option of stuffing a few things in a sack and jumping through the Teleportato (not a typo) to generate a whole new, unmapped, dangerous world. I've done this several times and the thrill of mapping out a new island hasn't gotten old.

    Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to eat a sack full of mushrooms and beat an angry, walking pine tree to death with a bat made out of ham, all while tripping my ass off and hallucinating rabbits with beards. Then, maybe I'll play Don't Starve some more.
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Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. Jul 19, 2013
    80
    Don’t Starve is a game for those who persevere. The infinitely playable survival RPG with an artsy appearance tests your endurance, but rewards players with a surprisingly unique experience.
  2. Jun 28, 2013
    80
    It's a game that just keeps giving, even as it tears your life from you. [Issue#136, p.110]
  3. Jun 26, 2013
    85
    A refreshingly upfront experience, right down to the title. A game that shoves players into a complex, harsh world with little explanation, it can be tough to parse at first. But little by little, Don't Starve reveals itself via deep mechanics and an ever-evolving world. It started strong and got better.