Many players of Don't Starve have heard the term "Panic Room" thrown around from time to time, but may not understand what exactly one is, or how to build one. This guide will attempt to provide some direction for the construction of such a panic room, and some tips to ensure its effectiveness.
What is it?
First things first, what is a "panic room"? It is not a room where you walk around and panic. A panic room is a collection of walls that are built with the express intent of protecting the player from mob attacks - the most common of these being the cyclic hound attacks that get gradually more intense as the game progresses. A very handy table that shows the relationship of days to hound attacks can be found at: Hound Attacks. A good panic room will easily defend against the likes of the Hounds, but what about other mobs? Well, its not a very likely scenario that a panic room will be needed to defend against Spiders or Spider Queens (most folks set up their camps in a safe area, out of the reach of spiders), however in this game any scenario is possible. What about extreme mobs like the Deerclops? In the early game it is very hard to prepare for an attack like this, however it is not impossible. The rest of this guide will focus on how to design and build your "safe house".
The early game
Fortunately for the beginner player, the default settings don't immediately inundate you with dangerous mob attacks. As a matter of fact, there is a period of time where players work to establish a base, and the Hound attacks are fairly easy to fend off with little more than a log suit and a spear. The surprise comes when the attack warning period dwindles to mere seconds rather than minutes, and the quantity of attackers seems to multiply exponentially. How in the world is one to survive with attacks coming in from every possible angle? This is where the "novelty" of a panic room becomes pure gold.
The first thing a player must do before even considering anything else is collect the necessary materials. For a beginner player in an early game world, this shouldn't be very difficult as it requires one simple resource: Rocks. "Why rocks" one might ask? Because rocks can create one of the two non-flammable wall structures in the game, the Stone Wall (with the other non-flammable wall structure, the Thulecite Wall, being near impossible to build early-game due to the resources needed). After the player has survived the first two hound attacks, there is a chance of Fire Hounds spawning - and in that scenario, Hay Walls and Wooden Walls just aren't going to cut it. In fact, it could quickly turn your lovely panic room into a burning wall of death. Fire hounds will burst into flames upon dying, and will burn everything near them down when they go.
So, while running around in the first few days of gameplay and collecting the necessities for one's base, it is very likely that a Rockyland biome was discovered (and probably bypassed for more important things - aside from collecting the first 12 rocks for a firepit). It's much easier to accomplish this in the early days when the hound waves come at a less frantic pace, so clear your inventory, build several picks, pack some food for the voyage (and extra Flint and Twigs for tools) and head to the Rockyland. The goal for an early game panic room is to think small, but stout - you'll want to collect a little over 120 rocks to make it happen. This may seem like a lot, but you will be building a small room with very thick walls (more on this later).
- When mining rock, it is far more efficient to build 5 or 6 picks and mow down a whole field of rocks before picking anything up. This allows you to go much faster by left clicking rapidly on the rock to mine faster than if you held the space button down and waited on the automation.
- If supplies of Flint are adequate and rocks are all that is needed, mining the boulders that look like have a higher chance of dropping 5 rocks per boulder, with no Nitre, Flint, or Gold.
Now comes the big question - "Where the heck do I put this thing???". Good placement of a panic room should keep it far enough away from base camp resources such as Twigs, relocated Grass Tufts and Berry Bushes. It should also be close enough to get to in a hurry if the attack sound starts playing. At its shortest interval, the hound announcement will play for 30 seconds before they spawn and terrorize the player. So keeping the panic room location within 20 seconds of the base is ideal (giving time to equip armor, helmet and weapon as well). It can serve a player well to install the panic room in an orientation that allows a nearby road to run right into it, allowing for more preparation time, and less running frantically time.
- Now that a good location has been determined, the actual structure can go up. For an early game build, a large room is not always necessary as it can consume a lot of time mining rocks to build. Also, without Tooth traps or Bee Mines for protection, the hounds can quickly destroy a larger structure without much effort, and leaving the player susceptible to attack from multiple directions. With that said, a small structure is fine to start out with. The goal of the early panic room is to simply organize the attack better, so that the player is not overwhelmed. The design should include a triple thick wall of defense all the way around. Why 3 walls thick? Because the hounds will be able to attack and injure the player through 2 layers of stone wall. The third layer keeps them from reaching through with their long bite angle. The entrance is not very long, but is narrow - this is what will "funnel" the attackers into formation for one-on-one combat, rather than being overwhelmed by multiple attackers at once. Take a look at the picture on the right. The room is built at the end of a road, the walls are thick enough to prevent damages from side or back attacks, and there is a Fire Pit and Chests there for night attacks. It's small, but does the job it needs to very well.
That is, unless Deerclops comes. He won't be fazed at all by the puny walls, and lack of defenses.
- Another method of creating a panic room is to make a small passageway, as shown on the right, and fill it with tooth traps. Upon being
As seen on the left, this panic room can double up as a trap for other mobs that require farming, such as pigs. You can either befriend them with meat and lead said pig into the trap, or place food in the center which will cause all pigs in the vicinity to converge on the trap. Just remember to reset each trap after it has been used, just in case a group of hounds shows up when least expected.
Setting up a panic room in this way will require large amounts of Hound's Teeth, with are dropped by hounds upon their death. This can make building a panic room in this way difficult early on in the game, but it is definitely worth creating as soon as possible, especially due to the increase in hound numbers later on in the game.
Don't just run right into the panic room when the sound plays - get prepared with your armor and weapons and then run around when they attack. Get them all into a group and then run straight into your panic room. Quickly turn around and dispatch them one by one. The reason for this is to protect your walls. Hounds come from several different directions, and will run directly to the player. If a wall intercepts their path, they will chew on it until it is destroyed to get to you. If this happens, take out all the hounds that reach you first, and sneak out the entrance to attack them one at a time to lure them away from the walls if need be.
If Deerclops shows up early on, try to attack him once and lead him far away from your camp and your tiny panic room. Get him to aggro on a Pig Village or some Beefalo and just run. Try to get through winter and plan the next phase of panic room design.
Advanced Panic Planning For Boss Monsters
To prepare for the Moose/Goose it's simple! First make a 12 x 12 room full with bee related items, bee mines, Beehives or Killer Beehives because it's spring! All bees are killer bees, after that make sure you have prepared the panic room near a pig village, then lure the creature over to the village, and in combination of the Bee's work and the Pig's work the Moose/Goose will be dead. If you want the Meat loot of the Moose/Goose, don't go over to the Pig village.
To prepare for bearger start by making thin Walls and 1-3 Bee Boxes and set up some tooth traps around the Bee Boxes so the Bearger will have to have to deal with the Bees and the Traps; then finish it while kiting it in the back while the bees take the front. Note the Bearger has a pound attack that may destroy the whole trap or about anything around it.
To prepare for the Dragonfly you can make a panic room, but drop 20 ashes in front after going into the panic room, after it eats the Ashes it will go to sleep, after this you will prepare to attack, starting by hitting, but be prepared as it sets things on fire. Go to a Rockyland and get it stuck between two rocks and kite it. You can bring it to villages, herds, Tallforts, Hound Mounds, or try to get the advantage of freezing it (note that it thaws fast). While asleep, setting an Ice Flingomatic and preparing with strong weapons is recommended.
To prepare for a Deerclops, go to a Pig village immediately or else it will come and destroy your home, but if it does get there set Traps and make it hit in a direction were none of your stuff is, because it has an attack range of ice destroying any structure it touches. Don't fight it next to or inside your camp as it can and likely WILL destroy it. Camping near a Pig village before the attack will help you avoid this. On a default setting, there will only be one Deerclops per Winter, so one can safely return home after the attack and feast on Meat and a Deerclops Eyeball. It is recommended to befriend all Pigs in the village for them to help you and biggen the reward.