Definitions for the erudite and articulate, to further cultivate their considerable edification. (Meanings of gaming abbreviations and phrases for people new to the game, or for people who want to extend their gaming vocabulary.)
Almost all terms here are videogame jargon. Those that aren't are unique to the Don't Starve games. As such, they don't hold quite the same meaning as one would find in the Oxford English Dictionary. Some definitions have been paraphrased, but footnotes provide the full and original source text.
- add (n.): 1. (Combat) Any which joins a fight mid-way through; reinforcements. 2. (Don't Starve) The Battle Standards in The Forge.
- add-on (n.): Any addition to the base game; a , an , or .
- aggro1 (v.): (Combat) (As a ) engage in combat with another mob. May be triggered by anything from the target getting too close or entering its (as with aggressive mobs) to a scripted event (as with bosses often), or it might aggro only when attacked (as with neutral mobs). See Mobs for a listing of standard mob dispositions. [Contraction of "aggression" or "aggravation".] Converse of .
- aggro2 (n.): (Combat) The unwillingness of a mob engaged in combat to switch targets. Synonymous with .
- aggro radius (n.): 1. Farthest distance from a target at which a will choose to engage it in combat; e.g., if the player gets close enough to aggro a MacTusk, they've "entered its aggro radius." Picture an invisible, circular region around an aggressive mob that, when entered, triggers the mob to attack. 2. Farthest distance from an ally under attack at which a mob will come to its aid; e.g. how far away a Pig will see another Pig being attacked and come to help.
- AI or artificial intelligence (n.): (Technical) Entire set of instructions that define a 's behaviour.
- ANR (n.): (Don't Starve) Acronym of the title A New Reign, the free content expansion for Don't Starve: Together.
- AoE or area of effect (n.): 1. Area of the game environment where can be subjected to a regional effect; e.g., the area where can be hit by a Deerclops's swiping attack. 2. (Combat, slang) Actions, powers, or abilities that hit targets based on their position in the world.
- backpedal (v.): (Combat) Take one or several steps backwards while facing an opponent, usually to or their attack. Compare this with .
- boss (n.): 1. [Good definition needed.]
- buff1 (n.): Bonus granted by an ability or item, usually of a limited, non-instantaneous duration; applied beneficial effect. Antonym of .
- ~ (v.): Grant such an effect.
- buff2 (n.): (Development) The actions taken by developers wishing to increase the power of playable characters, s, or items for game balance purposes. Antonym of .
- ~ (v.): (Development) Implement such a change.
- CD or cooldown (n.): 1. Time limit on an action until it can be taken again. Keeps the player from activated abilities too much. 2. (Combat) Any action that has a significantly long cooldown.
- CDR or cooldown reduction (n.): (Combat) Effect that reduces the time remaining on a , allowing the user to use it more often than usual.
- counter-attack (v.): (Combat) Strike an enemy immediately after its attack. This is a very effective way to fight in Don't Starve.
- ~ (n.): (Combat) Strike made immediately after a successful dodge.
- debuff (n.): 1. Negative effect imposed on a or player by an ability or item, usually of a limited, non-instantaneous duration; e.g., Poison. Antonym: .
- ~ (v.): Impose such a negative effect.
- DLC or downloadable content (n.): (Development) Extra, officially released game content that's downloaded separately from the base game; e.g., soundtracks, or official like character , new levels, and new features.
- dodge (v.): (Combat) Completely move out of the way of an attack, taking no damage. Can be via player movement (as in Don't Starve) or via a built-in game mechanic (e.g., "press X to dodge"). Synonym for .
- ~ (n.): Act of doing this.
- DS (n.): (Don't Starve) Acronym for the title Don't Starve, the base game.
- DPS or damage per second (n.): (Statistics, combat; unit) Average amount of damage dealt in one second.
- Calculating this proactively can be used to compare attacks & abilities against each other: Divide the damage of a single attack by its period.
- Calculating this retroactively can be used to compare players' combat capabilities against each other: Divide overall damage dealt in a fight by how long the fight lasted.
- DST (n.): (Don't Starve) Acronym for the the stand-alone, multiplayer title Don't Starve: Together.
- entity (n.): (Technical) Single, discernible "thing" in a program; an individual and real unit of creation in a game; e.g., any single Pig with a name, the Crock Pot erected by the Campfire this morning, the particular ground tile located at (23,24), the "Play!" button you clicked on before entering the world.
- evade (v.): (Combat) Completely move out of the way of an attack, taking no damage. Can be via player movement (as in Don't Starve) or via a built-in game mechanic (e.g., "press X to dodge"). Synonym for .
- ~ (n.): (Combat) Act of doing this.
- flee (v.): (Combat) Run away from combat, with the intent to completely disengage from it.
- FoV, field of vision, or field of view (n.): 1. User's viewable area of the game environment, often rectangular (for 2-D games) or rectangular pyramidal (for 3-D). 2. Area of the game environment, usually conical, in which changes can be "seen" by a and might change their behaviour; a mob's own sight lines. See: wikipedia:Field of view in video games
- fog of war (n.): (Interface) Fog or darkness that hides unseen or unexplored regions of the world, particularly in 2-dimensional games where the player gets an omniscient view of the world.
- grief (v.): (Multiplayer) Malevolently irritate, harass, or violate another player through nonverbal means. Such harassment widely goes against the rules in Don't Starve Together, and it is encouraged to report players for it. Common forms of griefing in Don't Starve: Together include hammering, setting ablaze, and otherwise destroying a player's structures and items, and leading aggressive to unprepared bases with the intent to destroy. While griefing is often strictly non-verbal, verbal harassment, including hate-speech, insults, or threats, and is also widely against the rules.
- ~ (n.): Offenses made while griefing.
- griefer (n.): (Multiplayer) Player who griefs.
- Grue, the (n.): 1. (Don't Starve; nickname) Charlie (Night Monster), as referred to in the code before she was properly introduced. (Many players referred to her as such.) 2. Monster introduced in Jack Vance's Dying Earth, described as being part "ocular bat", part "unusual hoon", and part man. Vance's Grue was the inspiration for the Grue of the Infocom game Zork, a creature that devours adventurers when they're in pitch darkness.
- HAM (n.): (Don't Starve) Abbreviation of the title Hamlet, the game's third package.
- HP, hit points, or health points (n.): (Statistics, combat; unit) Value which tracks how much damage an can take before it is killed or removed from play.
- insta-kill (v.): (Combat) Deal enough damage in one hit to a fully healed target that it dies instantly; deal more damage than a target's hit point maximum.
- ~ (n.): (Combat) Attack which does this.
- kite (v.): 1. (Combat) Move through fighting grounds with intent to relocate the enemy; "pulling" an enemy like a kite. [Pioneered in one of the earliest MMOs (massively multiplayer online (game)), titled Nexus, the Kingdom of the Wind.] 2. (Combat, slang) Manoeuvre in literally any way; blanket term for , , , kiting, , , or just fighting.
- leash1 (n.): (Combat, technical) The distance from a 's idle position that it's willing to pursue a target before disengaging from combat.
- leash2 (v.): (Combat) Lead an to the end of its leash1 so that it stops attacking and returns home. Leashing is used tactically to scrape one or more mobs away from a large fight (specifically removing those closer to the ends of their leashes1). Often, mobs would be encouraged to continue pursuit if they've dealt damage or been attacked, while those that haven't would be more inclined to disengage from the fight.
- map1 (n.): Diagrammatic representation of a region.
- map2 (n.): (Technical) An in-game world itself.
- mob1 (n.): 1. Non-player characters and monsters in a game. 2. (Technical) Any entity that moves around the playing field, including the player. [Abbreviation of mobile (unit).]]
- mob2 (v.): (Combat) Move through the fighting ground in a certain pattern that syncs up the attacks coming from multiple 1, making it easier to or . In the Don't Starve games, the easiest way of doing this is moving in circles.
- mod (n.): (Modding) An abbreviation of the term modification, mods are alterations or additions to the original content of a video game. They may present new features, player experiences, and/or tweaks to the game, making the game more enjoyable, or less enjoyable and either easier or harder. The difference between mods and DLC is that these files are primarily created by people who are not developers of the games themselves, and thus are not supported by the developers.
- ~ (v.): (Modding) The act of adding mods to a game.
- NPC or non-player character (n.): Characters which aren't controlled by a player, instead controlled by pre-programmed instructions (as in videogames, like Don't Starve) or by a human "gamemaster" (as in live roleplaying games, like D&D).
- nerf (n.): (Development) Change which weakens. Used when developers wish to decrease the power of playable characters, mobs, or items for game balance purposes. Antonym of .
- ~ (v.): (Development) Implement such a change.
- OP or over-powered (adj.): (Development) Unnecessarily powerful, usually by unbalanced game design; requiring a .
- proc or programmed random occurrence (n.): See lifewire.com
- ~ (v.): Occur in such an arbitrarily selected way.
- pull (v.): (Combat) Relocate one or more enemies at the very start of a fight, usually to more favourable ground; e.g. pulling Spiders away from their den before attacking.
- PvP (n.): Acronym for Player vs. Player, a world setting allowing players to attack each other.
- retreat (v.): (Combat) Move away from an attacker; e.g. drawing an enemy back then retalliating; entirely disengaging from a fight. Forms of retreating include , , , and .
- RoG (n.): (Don't Starve) Acronym for the title Reign of Giants, the game's first package.
- Ruins Rush (v.): (Don't Starve, The Ruins) Clear the Ruins as fast as possible. This may include repairing all Ancient Pseudoscience Stations, prototyping all Ancient Tab items, discovering the entire map, or beating the Ancient Fuelweaver in Don't Starve Together. Ruins Rushing can be seen as a form of speedrunning.
- runner (n.): (Don't Starve, The Forge) Player who around the arena as a distraction so teammates can fight other mobs.
- sidestep (v.): (Combat) Take one or several steps laterally while facing an opponent, usually to or an attack. Compare this with .
- This is effective against attacks from a Clockwork Bishop.
- stun (v.): (Combat) Incapacitate (a target) for a brief time; e.g., Spiders are stunned on hit.
- stun-lock (v.): (Combat) (a target) repeatedly, making it unable to retaliate for an extended time. Only effective on targets that are vulnerable to stunning, and not viable targets capable of breaking stun effects. Commonly used in MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online roleplaying games) in player versus player combat.
- SW (n.): (Don't Starve) Acronym for the title Shipwrecked, the game's second package.
- tank (n.): (Combat) or player that can take sustained damage for a long time. Can be from damage absorption or even simply having massive amounts of health.
- ~ (v.): 1. (Combat) Fill such a role. 2. (Combat) Make no attempt to oncoming attacks, instead relying on heavy armour to absorb damage.
- threat (n.): (Combat) The unwillingness of a mob engaged in combat to switch targets. Synonymous with .
- threaten (v.): (Combat) Cause a to attack. Converse of 2. Synonymous with "aggress".
- UP or under-powered (adj.): (Development) Unnecessarily weak, usually by unbalanced game design; being below the normal power curve, requiring a developmental .
- vanilla (adj.): (Development, ) Standard game content, unchanged by , , or .