The Shadow Pieces are Shadow Creatures exclusive to Don't Starve Together, introduced in A New Reign. They are based on the Clockwork Knight, Clockwork Bishop, and Clockwork Rook. With exception of the Shadow Knight, they have attack patterns completely different from the Mobs they are based on.
All Chess Pieces and Marble Sculptures within 15 units of a Shadow Piece will break and spawn their respective Shadow Pieces (even if the Chess Piece is still on the Potter's Wheel). Hence, when any inner of multiple shaking Chess Pieces is hammered, all other nearby Chess Pieces will instantly break and spawn their Shadow Pieces. This also happens if a Shadow Piece is near a non-shaking Chess Piece, at any time of day, regardless of the phase of the moon.
Characters will notice the shaking of the sculpture if it's examined.
They have the unique ability to level up when a different Piece of the same level as them or higher is killed nearby. For example: If a level 1 Shadow Rook is killed, all the level 1 Knights and Bishops in the proximity will become level 2, and the same with killing a remaining level 2 for the last to become level 3.
The Shadow Rook will not destroy structures but can damage walls. Additionally, instead of charging at the player, it will teleport right behind them and attempt a melee attack.
Instead of a ranged bolt, The Shadow Bishop will turn into a swarm of shadow bats that will damage the player that stays within their range, much like the Sporecloud from Toadstool.
The Shadow Knight will still attempt to do a melee attack, although its attack period is massively longer. More effort is needed to kite these as the Shadow Knight's range is quite large, and it is significantly faster.
Shadow Pieces have three levels, each significantly stronger than the previous. The leveling up of Shadow Pieces is best illustrated with an example.
A Shadow Knight, for instance, keeps track of whether or not it has witnessed the defeat of a Shadow Rook and a Shadow Bishop. The first time that a Shadow Rook is killed within 25 units of the Knight, it will level up; the same happens the first time a Shadow Bishop is killed near it. A Shadow Piece will never level up from the death of another Shadow Piece of the same type. Consequently, to kill a Shadow Piece of level 3, which is necessary to get the Shadow Atrium, it is necessary to have at least one Piece of each type.
Assuming one does spawn all three pieces simultaneously, refer to the leveling chart below for clarification on how to get a level 3 Piece of a desired type.
- Pigs can become scared of the Shadow Pieces (similar to how they act during dusk), seemingly when the shadow pieces are about to attack. The same effect happens to Bunnymen and Spiders.
- None of the Pieces can be dodged in their third phase, unless the player has speed boosts, is Wortox or uses a Lazy Explorer or Beefalo.
- The Shadow Rook's slow attack period allows the player to abuse the Bone Armor's protection to block every attack if the armor is fueled, even in the third stage, allowing an easy kill if chosen as the last piece fought. (The previous kills will have dropped Nightmare Fuel to fuel the Bone Armor, as well.)
- The Shadow Pieces are not true shadow or nightmare creatures, as they can damage and be attacked by other mobs. They do still cost less durability when attacked with a Glass Cutter.
- Killing a level 3 rook and its companions takes either 200% or 199% of a Dark Sword, depending on the order of killing.
- The Shadow Bishop (in any level) can't deal any damage to Maxwell's duelist nor stun it.
- They are invulnerable as they're leveling up.
- The Shadow Knight can become stuck/frozen if attacked by multiple enemies at once in the third phase, and will not come unstuck, leaving it an easy kill.
shadowchesspieces.lua, lines 154 to 156: the first is a comment that explicitly states "
only level up if the source's level is equal or greater then[sic] this inst's level".