A new feature for DST! If you befriend a Pig it will help you investigate a Truffle trail (like tracking a Koalefant) only pigs have the ability to find them. Truffles have the practical ability of a Mandrake, a Booster Shot and a Telltale Heart. When traded with a Pig King, he will give you 50 Golden Nuggets and a ton of other resources. When you let the Pig have the Truffle, it will raise all your stats by 50 and give you a minor Booster Shot. If you keep using a Pig for Truffle hunting and not allowing the Pig it's Truffle, it will become aggressive and you will not be allowed to befriend that Pig again. What do you think?
Not sure if that is balanced at all but ok, let's analyse it.
Pig: I'm a glutton and I'll eat almost ANYTHING from the ground.
Truffle: I'm delicious and am super duper worth my weigh in gold.
Then we put these two together... that's the worst combination ever IMO. Pigs wouldn't have any reason to give you their oh so shiny truffle since they'd attack you if you keep denying them it. Why bother parting with it if you're going to resent the fact?
Now, why would the truffle give you so much boost? Mushrooms are delicious but they're not mega nutritious enough to give a permament boost. If they were to be used in recipes that would give you just the normal bonus that wouldn't be any bad (also, it wouldn't be any good since it would be just another... ingredient.) Unless you make it so they're butter like, but still, I can't see the pig parting with it.
Now, permanently passive for something which he found? That's just making your pig your well-trained dog. After giving him his first truffle then you can keep getting his truffle everytime he finds one... doesn't make much sense, does it?
Also, maximum health increase... I can see this being so exploited! Sure it might be hard to keep him alive long enough for it to matter depending on how adventurous you are, but still. Although in a game you can make it so that this event only happens when you befriend the said Pig to find it, it does leaves the after-thought that they could very well do it by themselves and be happy ever after.
Not to mention the boosting of your stats. That sounds just as broken, if not more, than pigs having their stats increased. No food whatsoever in-game right now increases your stats permanently, not even the harder to get meat from Bosses, among them the unique Horn of the Ancient Guardian which is limited, but that a hunt event, which probably means it could happen as many times as you can keep a pig befriended, could offer such one sounds, to say the least, unbalanced.
I'd say there are quite a few points in need for further thinking if this was to be implemented without people obviously screaming "unbalanced! unbalanced!". Anything that adds permanent stats that is easier to get than solo slaying the Dragonfly would sound preposterous (I do imagine this might as well be the hardest thing to accomplinish in DST, I could be sorely wrong though.)
I just thought it might be nice to have something that only a Pig can do, and a way of valuing Truffles the way they are valued here for their rarity.
And the other Mushrooms have special abilities too, like the green cap when cooked can boost your sanity. And it is a world of magic in Don't Starve so it's not like it's not possible.
Anyway, it was just a thought I had... Sorry I didn't think it through properly. I'll think twice next time. Thank you for your constructive feedback.
Don't feel sorry, it is nice to have something more to the pigs, just that the plusses that the truffles would give sound somewhat... unbalanced? Now if you allow me to futher your idea, I think there are a few things which could be implemented in order to make this feasible:
1 - Attribute a less permanent upgrade:
If you were to reduce its boost, and make it not permanent, there might be something worth exploring here. If truffles were to act as a kind of Ice Cream like item or the main ingredient of it then it might be interesting enough to warrant people to keep a well-fed pig around for finding truffles. But in order to counter it, make it so pigs only find truffles if you keep them well-fed, not just following you. Also, don't make it something that happens from the get-go; pigs should be following you for X time in order for them to start finding these truffle cues. You might as well "domesticate" them before they tell you of these cues (A la Beefalo).
2 - In the case truffle had to give you permanent stats:
Ok, if we're here then we have to big of something big to tradeoff. Also, we need to reduce the benefits that a single truffle gives else we'd be stepping too much into the realm of super-characters in a very short term. Were we to consider a more reasonable update of 5 points to ONE random attribute at a time we might, and just might, be able to not seem so unfair. In order to do this though we should increase the difficultness of finding a truffle and reduce the frequency.
Once again I suggest making the domestication the way of doing this. And we might as well divide the Pigs into types just like Beefalos. So you have the better woodharvester, the fighter and you have the "digger" of truffles. But make it so there is some harsh requirement for achieving this kind of digger and that he takes a VERY LONG time to find (be it he has to spend a good time in a specific biome, that he can only find it in a specific season [Autumn], that it has to have had a specific need of rain during the year, etc etc). All of this would reduce the chances of having a super character.
3 - If it's in order to have a permanent pig:
I don't see this working... not so long the pig is the sole one who does the job of finding and getting the truffle. If you had to do something in order for him to get the truffle, then we would still be left with the feeling that you get a permanent follower for free... is too much. Not even Beefalos will do your walking for free. You need to keep making new saddles. So we'd need something in order to counter this. Not sure right now what could be it...
4 - Pig King L-O-V-E-S truffles:
This is not really an issue at all, just that 50 gold is too much. Just adjust the value to reflect the effort the player has to do in order to get the truffle. For that much gold at once I guess that soloing two Dragonflies might be reasonable :P (Once again, I'm not sure how hard that might be, I could be very wrong here.)
+50 hunger (Considered a fine dish, Warly will not get a penalty for eating it, and will get 33% more health, hunger and sanity from it)
Truffles have to be plucked, so pigs can't just eat them off of the ground (unless you put them there)
If a Truffle is fed to a Pig, they will become better friends with you. They will say certain new quotes when you're nearby, and you can trade certain items with them in exchange for meat (determined by crock pot values). Each day they'd have a different selection of items, and I'd suggest these could be some:
(Values are based on how much you'd get from 1 meat, so if you gave them a morsel, you'd gain half of the items. No idea how balanced these would be)
Rot x 2 (Common)
Log x 20 (Common)
Flint x 8 (Common)
Silk x 4 (Common)
Grass Tuft x 1 (Uncommon)
Sapling x 1 (Uncommon)
Berry Bush x 1 (Uncommon)
Gold Nugget x 4 (Uncommon)
Nitre x 4 (Uncommon)
Blue Gem x 0.5 (Rare, 0.5 means it requires 2 meats in order to purchase)
Red Gem x 0.5 (Rare)
Thulecite Fragment x 1 (Very Rare)
Purple Gem x 0.25 (Very Rare, 0.25 means it requires 4 meats in order to purchase)
Orange Gem x 0.25 (Extremely Rare)
Yellow Gem x 0.25 (Extremely Rare)
Green Gem x 0.25 (Extremely Rare)
Again, forgive me if these are unbalanced. I'm no expert at balancing resources. You'd be able to buy certain otherwise non-renewable resources (thus, making them renewable). Pigs would also have a "Friendship Meter". This will go down over time, but if you do certain actions, you can affect it. Giving them free meat would increase it depending on the meat's hunger value. Trading meats with them would increase it depending on the hunger value (but less than giving it free). Truffles would increase it by a lot, giving them Monster Meat would temporarily increase it, but it will be decreased after the next day. If it gets too low, you won't be able to trade with them anymore, and you will need another truffle. When it's high, you have a bigger chance of getting rarer items, and you may get certain offers on items. Also, if you recruit a pig using meat, the duration of the effect will be increased.
I say keep it simple. Befriended pigs should rarely sniff out truffles, and you can eat them for 50 hunger, 15 sanity, and 20 health. Pig King will trade 10 gold for it. I don't think giving pigs truffles should do anything other than produce manure, just like the other mushrooms in the game.
I think the truffle should be basic like stated above, but also be able to make "Truffle meat" with it which is a very explicit dish that restores 40 sanity, 50 health and 150 hunger. You need 2 meat value, 1 truffle value and 1 vegetable value in order to make it, and truffles would probably be rare to find then.