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The amount of drifters spawning in caves is WAY too much


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It is not too bad. Generally, if you lack a pick there is no reason to be there but once in the metal age you will spend a lot of time there.

Gear list:

  • Have multiple torches or an inextinguishable light source (oil lamp, lantern, candle). Have one torch in the torch slot and keep the rest some where else because if you extinguish your torches in water, you are almost certainly going to die because you cannot see. I cannot understate the importance of light underground.
  • Have some way to ascend, this can be a pick, but ladders are better to have since they are faster and easier to use. Ladders can also be used in open spaces. Dirt/cob is also an option though not as good imo. Ladders or dirt, try to bring a full stack.
  • Have some armor since there are plenty of enemies down there and you are likely to get hit a few times (avoid the situation discussed above until you have better gear). Wood lamellar armor is fairly easy to make (it's so easy, a caveman can do it!) and is a decent starter armor. Replace with metal armor when possible, preferably bronze then iron.
  • Have good weapons, at first this will be a few flint spears you can stab with or chuck in desperation. Later on use metal swords for the attack speed.
  • Optional items include fences which are nice for controlling enemies, horsetail reed medicine since you will get hit and dying sucks, a knife to harvest the enemies you kill and to use temporal gears to restore stability (usually not needed), and a firestarter in case you soaked all your torches accidentally.
  • Whatever you need for the task at hand, usually mining so a pick and propick.

From your entrance, descend into the dark and look around. Use torches to mark the way you came in at junctions, or press 'q' to chuck them down holes to see how far they go. Fences are nice to block off dead ends so to manage drifters and so you don't get lost down them. Fences also make good guard rails for the ladders you place going down a ledge so you don't walk off the edge into the abyss (control key is your friend). Keep an eye on your temporal stability as it will be going down when at more than shallow depths, don't wait till the last minute to return to the surface. You will probably fight drifters under ground so be prepared. Fighting is harder since there is less room to maneuver and the ground tends to be more broken, so use fences and out of reach spots to offset this disadvantage. Swords are better than spears underground thanks to their much higher attack speed and the fact that spears will usually run out of room to maintain their range advantage. If you see a huge mob of drifters, you probably should just return to the surface unless you have a few swords and feel lucky. If you see a locust nest, you should probably do the same. If you see a locust with a saw blade on top, turn around and run! That thing can obliterate your health even in bronze armors and can outright kill some unarmored players in one hit. Do not engage with it, it is not worth it.

Really though there is not much point to exploring caves unless you want salt, saltpeter, a shortcut to a target ore's depths, or artifacts. Caves are not that interesting in this game and not a great way on their own to get ores. The surface is much more interesting and beautiful, if more boring.

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  • 4 weeks later...

It's weird. The spawning feels way too low once you have a basic weapon but before that you're just harassed with a crap ton of monsters you don't really have a means of dealing with. As my time building a minecraft modpack has proven, monster spawning is an impossible thing to get right, though I find it's better to have too little than too much.

This looks like a case of bad design within the spawning algorithm itself. My guess is that being underground is forcing all of the spawns to happen underground in the same structure you're currently loaded in. Doesn't matter how low the spawning chance or mob cap is if 100% of the enemies spawned WILL appear right next to you. How would you fix it? Probably by reordering the algorithm a little bit.

Swarming can be fun so there should still be a rare chance that it happens, but it shouldn't be based on things like the environment. Instead of having spawning just go off of all the time, have it happen in waves. Probably best to do it twice, once at sunrise and one at sunset. During this time, monsters will start spawning like normal in random locations like it does now, though much faster and with a higher monster cap. Then it becomes a matter of surviving. If you kill a monster it won't just come back until the next spawning wave. Naturally monsters also spawn like they do already within temporal storms. They're supposed to be dangerous.

Edited by Omega Haxors
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There is a limit to the maximum number of each type of drifter, and a set world height range each can spawn in. When you are in the range of (55% to 85%), (35% to 55%), (20% to 35%), (10% to 20%) world height, there can be 18, 15, 21, or 18 drifters alive respectively. Since dead ones do not count, the game can keep spawning fresh ones while you are trying to grind through the rest, and so you can end up with an endless horde. On the surface, the maximum you can have is ten, and you can typically out maneuver them easily. The surface drifters also cannot spawn in during the day, and they and the deep variants are much more likely to flee when receiving damage than the tainted and worse drifters. Basically the deeper spawning drifters stay on you more and in greater numbers. Since people typically try to have a decent metal weapon when descending that deep, people tend to encounter these groups then and not before on the surface with a basic weapon.

The easiest solution for dealing with the underground mobs is to corral them into a fence lined, one block deep pit so that more cannot spawn. You could also light all areas within 15 blocks (drifters aggro range) to light level 8 to prevent the game spawning drifters in range of you, but this is pretty hard during a mob fight. Running away is also an option.

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