Guides/Maximum Efficiency Day 13 Base DST Guide

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Note: This guide is based on my experience in the game and may be subjective. -- Loopuleasa

Icon Books.png This article may contain instructional language and subjective recommendations. Readers should read the content carefully, and follow accordingly.

This is a guide for Don't Starve Together icon.png Don't Starve Together, that focuses on the optimal strategy for the first 13 days for one player.

This guide resembles a speed-running min-max approach of getting your first base setup as fast as possible, with as many resources as possible, as efficient as possible.

The Objectives:

  • Explore the entire map (or at least 90% of the general contour) and find the optimal place to base on day 13
  • Prototype every single base structure
  • Prototype every useful item for the early game
  • Gather mass amounts of basic resources
  • Find chester and upgrade him to Shadow Chester on the full Moon (+3 inventory slots)
  • Grab Glommer when full moon occurs
  • Ignore any distractions
  • Don't Die
  • Don't Starve


Exploration Priorities:

Map Icon.png
  1. Find Chester.
  2. Find the whereabouts of all the biomes on the map.
    • Relevant biomes to look on the map:
      • Desert
      • Swamp
      • Grass fields
      • Deciduous Forest
      • Mozaic
      • Oasis
  3. Find where all the Wormholes are, and where they lead.
  4. Find any important set pieces (Pig Guardians, Pig King, Glommer's Statue, Moon Stone, Pig City, Bee Queen, Gears, etc.)
  5. Find where all the roads lead to.
  6. Find the optimal base location.

Exploration Method:

Charlie Closeup.PNG

#1 Follow the Darkness

  1. Move following the edges of the map.
    • Since we are looking for completion of the map, this method is the fastest and easiest to follow
    • Don't be too close to the map edge, and not too far.
    • If you explored the edge of a biome, you can spiral out the rest of the biome center afterwards
    • Tip: Also, exploring edges between two biomes is worthwile if the edge of the map leads to a dead end
  2. Always keep moving, even at night.
    • Use torches if you haven't crafted a mining helm yet
  3. Always move in unexplored territory.
    • Try to minimize the time spent in territory you have explored, as much as possible.

#2 Spend your time Wisely

  1. Always pickup resources on your direct exploration path.
    • For food: Pickup carrots, don't waste time on berries
      • Exception: If you have a juicy berries world it is worth to pick them up when you see them since it is so fast. Since you'll be exploring heavily, you will always find berries.
      • Exception: If there are 3+ or more players on the server at start, you might have to pick berries if the carrots are not enough
      • Tip: Carrots have a huge spoil time, and if the owner of the server is cool with you picking them, you should use them to save time.
      • Note: Carrots are fast, but they can support up to 3 people exploring the map. If there are more people doing that, other food sources like Honey and Berries can suffice.
      • Note: I know, some people prefer having carrots in the winter for example, but if you are setting up various farms late-game, you will never need the carrots.
    • Resources to pickup: Grass > Twigs > Pig Skin > Flint > Boards > Cut Stone > Stones > Gold > Logs
      • Ideally, at the end, you will have 4-6 Stacks of Grass, 3-4 stacks of twigs, 40 pig skin, 2-3 stacks of boards and cut stone, 1 stack of flint, 1-2 stack of stones, 1-2 stacks of gold, 1-3 stacks of logs
  1. Never make fires
    • Craft torches, or ideally a mining helm and also explore at night
  2. Never cook food
    • Cooked food is a waste of time, resources, and inventory space. Eat vegetables and fruits raw.
  3. Don't spend much time on the following:
    • Picking berries
    • Fighting monsters
    • Cutting logs
    • Poop
    • Koelephants
      • Unless you have friends to feed
    • Building / Using Crock pots

#3 Use Shortcuts

  1. Use roads when appropiate.
    • Make sure you know where the edge of the biome/map is, when going down the road.
    • Don't stand long on the roads, since you need to be in the field picking up resources.
  2. If you find a wormhole, stop what you're doing and go through it.
    • There is valuable information on knowing in which biome it leads.
    • Depending on what you find, it might be worthwhile to continue from that location
    • Generally, it is better to explore the surroundings fast, then jump back in the wormhole and continue where you where.
      • That way, you will remember better where the wormhole leads to.

Inventory Management:

Priority: Grass > Twigs > Pig Skin > Flint > Boards > Cut Stone > Logs > Stones > Gold

#1 Plan Ahead

  1. Think of the objectives and item / structure timings you need to hit.
  • Go through the build phases: First Phase > Science Phase > Alchemy Phase
  • Make sure you have the materials before you place down a science / Alchemy machine

#2 Drop items at checkpoints if full


Core Items Overview:

These are the items that you will use extensively throughout the first 13 days of the game. Getting them prototyped is a must for the efficiency of the early game.

  • Basic Tools (Timing day 1)
    • Pickaxe
    • Axe
    • Hammer
  • Science Machine (Timing day 1-3)
    Science Machine Build.png
  • Backpack (Timing day 2-4)
    Dismal Gray Buckled Backpack Icon.png
  • Shovel (Timing day 2-4)
  • Spear (Timing day 2-4)
  • Football Helmet (Timing day 5-6)
    Football Helmet.png
  • Miner Helm (Timing day 5-8)
    Miner Hat.png
  • Ham Bat (Timing day 5-6)
    Ham Bat.png
  • Alchemy Engine (Timing day 3-5)
    Alchemy Engine Build.png
  • Gold Tools (Optional)

With the core items out of the way, below you can see the ordering of the prototypes and some various information on them, to squeeze as much efficiency as you can.

First Builds (Day 1-3):

  • Pickaxe
    • Do it before the Axe, using the first two flints you find
    • Pickaxe is the first item we make, since we can find ores to mine for extra flint
    • We will also need stone for our first Science Machine
  • Axe
    • Getting a stack of wood early on can be useful, for prototyping Science Machine
    • Only chop matured trees
    • Only chop trees on your way
    • Don't go in the forest to chop wood, unless you have to explore
  • Camp Fire
    • Never place this. Keep it for emergency needs only.
    • I always like having a fire built, in case I need it and I don't have resources on me.
    • Tip: Always build another fire in queue after placing one down, this can save your ass in the future.
    • During exploration, never use a fire, and never cook food. Time is more important.
  • Hammer
    • Good for hammering pig heads ( for pig skins and efficient twigs )
    • Good for destroying the Science Machine / Alchemy Engine after you've placed and prototyped what you need
  • Science Machine
    • Prototype this as early as possible
    • Save it for when you have the materials
    • Save it for when the night comes
    • When the above two conditions are met, move on to the next phase
  • Fireplace
    • Can be done whenever you have the 12 x stone and you need space
    • Will eventually be put at your base

The First Science Machine (Day 3-5):

  • Backpack
  • Shovel
  • Hammer
  • Refine: ???xRopes, ???xBoards, ???xCut Stone
  • 2x Doodads > Alchemy Engine
  • Bug Net (For making mining helm later on)
  • Chest
  • Crock Pot
  • Drying Rack
  • Pitchfork
  • Razor
  • Lightning Rod
  • Misc Buildings: Cartographer, Rainometer, Winterometer
  • Signs (Optional, if you want them)
  • Log Suit (Optional, if you have to fight, or don't know how to kite, or if you predict you will need it)

The First Alchemy Engine (Day 5-10):

do it at night, for mining helm, and max efficiency

- Football Helmet

- Straw Hat > Mining Helm

- Bird Cage

- Pig House

- Gold Tools

- Ice Box

- Tent

- Farm (Optional)

The Final Alchemy Engine (Base setup, Day 11-13):

Full Moon Timing:

- Go to pig king

- Shadow Chester

- Pickup Glommer

- Farm Pigs for pig skins