Don’t Starve Clearing Out Spiders Guide

Don’t Starve Clearing Out Spiders Guide by pyromaniac

I’ve seen many people having a hard time with spiders, here is a guide to rid your world of them completely as well as having your whole map unveiled by day 40, along with a basic base camp that can be improved upon.
The goal of this strategy is ultimately to deal and defeat spiders more efficiently, so you can focus on base building and comfort in relative safety.

This is an example of what my maps look like by day 40-50ish


Note: this strategy may not suit everyone as it requires a nomad and risky style of play during the first in-game weeks.

General principles

  • Forego comfort and security for a while: explore first so you can have an ideally situated camp later.
  • Destroy before it multiplies: time is of utmost importance as spider dens and the number of their inhabitants grow as time passes, destroy them all before they become a threat to you. Spider nests reaches tier 2 by day 7, and tier 3 by day 15-30 so if you don’t want to waste considerable amount of time killing spiders, just get to them before they grow!
  • Pyromania: fire is your friend, do not waste time destroying nests with weapons, burn them down in mass. Your best allies are forest-all that free fuel!
  • Know your enemies and do not fear: being adventurous when you know how to manage risk is not always a death sentence, and it’s pretty fun to run around at night!

Step by step guide


The best characters for this strategy are Willow, for fire and grue resistance, and Wolfgang for being able to take a beating. This method is written for Normal Map and New Research (although I personally prefer old, as researching everything every time is just a drag to me). It is perfectly applicable for Legacy and Old, as everything is just easier.

General tips:

  • Exploration: plan your route and discover as much landmass as you can by not retracing your steps. Best way for doing that is to follow the edges of a continent until its farthermost sea-side limit, then ‘fill in the map’ by tracing zigzag.
  • Burning things: burning things is accomplished by click and dragging a torch, onto a flammable object until the option ‘light’ shows up. After lighting up the object, unequip the torch immediately to economize resources. Burning down spider nest is accomplished by setting adjacent flammable object on fire, if no convenient tree is present, plant a tree(right click with pine cone in hand) or drop a single flammable object nearby it and set it on fire (ctrl+left click to drop a single object). The best time to burn down spider nest is during day, as the spiders exiting form the nest will immediately fall asleep afterward and often get burned too as a result. Spider without nest are also inactive during dawn.
  • Gathering: do not cluster your inventory with not immediately useful items, you can always come back later.
  • Chester: Chester is a drag during exploration as you have to worry about its safety and pathfinding. When you come across the eyebone, pick it up, but drop it in a safe and easily attainable location at the first occasion for later recovery.
  • Roads: follow roads to travel from one landmass to another faster, but upon reaching a new landmass, you will need to get off of it to thoroughly explore!
  • Combat: do not engage in unnecessary combat during exploration phase, it wastes time. Killing spiders from burned nests count as unnecessary combat, as it saves exploration time to just leave them be and come back later to kill them when you are better equiped.

Day 1 – Gather

You will always start in a grassland biome with at least one flint in proximity. This biome is very safe, so you should spend your entire first day in it gathering basic resource for your long round the world journey.

  • Exploration: stay within the grass biome.
  • Gathering: Pick up a full stack of grass, stick and wood; as much as you can of food (berries, carrots, seeds); a maximum of one stack of pinecones, flint and rocks.
  • Crafting: axe, backpack, torch, pickaxe only if lot of rocks are present.
  • Research: nothing.
  • Combat: burn down the few spider nests you may encounter. Plant pinecones near nest to set tree afire. Do not engage in unnecessary fights.
  • Night and food: do not eat, do not start a fire at night, use your night time to explore more map using a torch.

This phase is important to start your journey on a good foot.

Day 2 to 14 – Exploration I, the journey begins.

Having gathered enough resource during the first day to survive for a few more day, your journey begin. The goals of this phase are a)find the best spot for you base by uncovering the map b)destroy all spider nest on your way. During this phase you will survive on the brink of starvation as you will need to spend the minimum of time gathering food, just make sure that you have enough, kill for meat only if you are really low on carrots, seeds and berries.
The best spot for a base is near beefalos, pig king, rocks and swamp, in that order of priority.

  • Exploration: prioritize exploring forest biomes as they are often spider infested. When you come accross the swamps, do not explore it fully yet, just enough to get the eyebone which is situated on rocky biomes within swamps, and often on the road. If you have already found the Pig King, rocks and beefalos, retreat from very large area that are constituted of the same biome, example: it is unnecessary to explore savannah and grassland in their entirety as there are few spiders in them; and sometimes, if the forest goes too deep, it may be best to retreat as there is little resource in them.
  • Gathering: Always have grass, stick and wood; as much as you can of food (berries, carrots, seeds, the odd rabbits, monster meat from burned alive spiders); a maximum of one stack of pinecones, flint and rocks. Always pick up gold. Note, when you burn forest down, birds will get trapped in the fire and drop morsel: free good meat!
  • Crafting: axe, backpack, torch, pickaxe only if lot of rocks are present in quantity.
  • Research: nothing.
  • Combat: burn all spider nest, fastest strategy is to set whole forest on fire. Be careful of fire damage while doing so if not playing with Willow. Do not engage in unnecessary fights. Avoid killing spiders at night as it aggro then, and combat is difficult with low visibility.
  • Night and food: start a fire to cook things and eat on day 2, and only every two nights afterward to economize resources and have more time exploring the map by torch. Always start a fire on hounds night. A cheap light strategy for night is to light trees on fire instead of spending your precious grass and wood.

By the end of this phase, you should have uncovered 60% to 75% of your map (all areas except swamp and the deepest recess of homogeneous biomes), and have localized a very good spot for you base.
Note: if you find pieces of the escape machine during that phase, take note of the location and come back later as it clog your inventory.

Day 15 to 16 – Set up your base

Now that you have scouted out most of your map, you want to set up your basic camp and get a few things going to be better equipped before heading out for Exploration II. If you have followed the above steps, you should have enough resources to craft the basic items without spending too much time to gather more resource.

  • Exploration: none, your aim now is to set up base.
  • Gathering: gather necessary ressources for your basic base: rocks, gold, charcoal, wood.
  • Crafting: firepit, science machine, spear, log suit, 1 fridge, 1 crockpot, 1 chest.
  • Research ropes, boards, cutstones, spear and log suit.
  • Combat: only necessary combat to secure your base’s surroundings.
  • Night and food: after you have a firepit, you can start fire every night without too much resources.

This phase is important because it is when you get your first researches going and establish basic comfort.

Day 17 to 40ish – Exploration phase 2, uncover your whole map and kill

This phase is for clearing out the map of all its spiders and explore it thoroughly. Now that you are better equipped, you can actually engage in combats with less risk and more efficiency, you are ready to head out again to kill everything in your path, and uncover the area that you haven’t covered previously.

  • Exploration: all area that haven’t been to yet and areas you know you have left enemies in.
  • Gathering: everything that you wish to have for your base. This is a good time to start working on your grass and sapling field. This is also the phase in which you can effectively use Chester without putting him at too much risk.
  • Crafting: whatever required.
  • Research: whatever required.
  • Combat: kill everything in your path.
  • Night and food: staying frugal is probably still necessary at this point, but resource preservation is less important because you can always run back to camp.

Note: you actually want to keep some spider dens around, to farm for spider hat, eggs and silk. Just let a few of them grow in isolation.

When you have accomplished this phase, you will find yourself with a world of 100% mapped territories, and very few threats. Then you can spend your time with whatever goal you can think up for yourself.

After day 40-The world is your oyster. 

Now that you have tamed your world, you can work on survivability, comfort, decoration etc.


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