Edited by Mr. Alchemist Endrew and various wikia contributors.
Nightmare Fuel is a very important resource in game used to create a multitude of magic-themed tools and structures. It is therefore important to have a lot of it, since the equipment made with nightmare fuel can be life-saving .
Nightmare Fuel is generally acquired by going insane. There are two ways the player can do this.
First, the player can go totally insane and kill hostile Shadow Creatures. Each hallucination killed will give the player one to two Nightmare Fuels. Keep in mind that each time a hallucination is defeated sanity will be raised, which can result in the Shadow Creatues becoming passive again.
This method has the advantage of supplying the player with nightmare fuel much faster than the one below. The cost is that it is much riskier, making the player's entire environment hostile. If this method is chosen, be sure to have something to quickly restore the lost sanity, like a stack of cooked green mushrooms or a Tent, prepared beforehand.
The second method is going partially insane (below 40%) and kill Beardlings (Rabbits when Sanity is low). The player can accomplish this by gathering large amounts of rabbits and then dropping sanity just below 40%, for example with the help of Green Mushrooms. (For further details visit the Mushroom Guide respectively the "Tips and Hints" section.) When killed, Beardlings will give the player one item, Nightmare Fuel (25%), Beard Hair (25%), or Monster Meat (50%). Do note however that in Reign of Giants, the rabbits must be fed in order for them to stay alive, requiring you to catch the rabbits, drop your sanity, and then kill them before they die.
This method is a lot slower than the above, but has the advantage of keeping the player safe from harmful Shadow Creatures. In addition, the player will also get monster meat and beard hair, two items that have multiple uses each.
While it may be hard to detect due to the noises made by insanity, players should listen for hissing noises when killing beardlings. This hissing means that the player is killing too many innocent creatures (beardlings) and should either stop killing them for a while or continue doing so and make a Krampus spawn. Since Krampus farming exists for the purpose of aquiring his special item (see the Krampus Guide for more details), the player can do both, farming nightmare fuel while they attempt to also summon a Krampus.
Dark Petal FarmingEdit
Once the player has built a Prestihatitator or has accumulated enough Nightmare Fuel via the method above to create a Shadow Manipulator, the player can craft Dark Petals obtained by picking Evil Flowers into more Nightmare Fuel. The player can accomplish this by first finding a Teleportato piece that is not the Metal Potato Thing or the player can find a Totally Normal Tree, which are common in forests. Pick all normal flowers so they will not interfere. Next, capture a stack of bees using a Bug Net, making sure that their hive/box is either destroyed or too far away. Put down the bees next to the evil flowers and run (the bees will be hostile to the player that recently placed them). When you come back, the bees will be pollinating the evil flowers. When harvesting, make sure you know which evil flowers are never picked, so you don't accidentally ruin your farm. In RoG, during the full moon, all flowers turn into Evil Flowers, making all flower farms more effective.
The Nightmare Amulet is a fantastic way to farm nightmares due to its ability to induce total insanity and jump back to normal sanity with ease. Since the Crawling Horror becomes aggressive when one's sanity drops below 15%, and the Terrorbeak spawns when your sanity drops below 15%, it is advised to wear a Football Helmet when equipping the Nightmare Amulet to protect oneself from their attacks. Since the player is almost instantly doing battle with the Shadow Creatures, it's difficult to accomplish anything else while the Nightmare Amulet is equipped.
If you are equipping the Nightmare Amulet in order to kill Beardlings for Nightmare Fuel and/or Beard Hair, then the player may be able to do so by equipping the Nightmare Amulet, killing two or three rabbits, then unequipping the Nightmare Amulet before a Terrorbeak or Crawling Horror attacks. Repeat this until the amount of Nightmare Fuel and/or Beard Hair needed is reached.
With the introduction of Nightmare Fissures, players can collect Nightmare Fuel fairly easily in the Caves level. Similarly to the Ruins' Nightmare Cycle, Nightmare Fissures will rarely appear on the Caves layer, going through their own cycle. Only one Nightmare will spawn from a fissure at a time, making it simple to harvest fuel from them. The nightmares will die once the cycle has ended as well, but since fissures are not very abundant, it is suggested to fight the nightmares instead.
With the introduction of Ruins, players have received a great way to gather Nightmare Fuel. Most of the monsters found there drop fuel, but they can be quite hard to handle. The player must be sure that they come with good supplies of light, armor, weapons, and food. Also, do mind the Nightmare Cycle, as the player can become swamped with Shadow Creatures, too.
Ruin-spawned shadow creatures have a special quality to normal hallucinations, as they will die when the ruins cycle is calm rather than just disappearing. Since they die, they will leave behind nightmare fuel. You can exploit this by gathering huge crowds of shadow creatures and outrun them until they fizzle out at the end of the cycle and leave behind their lucid treasure. For those who would rather do without the hassle of avoiding the Nightmare Creatures during the peak of the Nightmare Cycle, the Bush Hat or Snurtle Shell Armour will be very helpful.
Other Ways to ObtainEdit
- Nightmare fuel can sometimes be found when the player digs up a Grave.