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Sanity Meter

Sanity HUD icon

I get crazy when I don't sleep.


Sanity is the character's "mental health" in Don't Starve. The Sanity Sanity icon, represented as a picture of a brain, is located near the character's HealthMeter Health and Hunger Hunger. Characters can gain and lose sanity in various ways. A small animated arrow appears over the Sanity icon, indicating an increase or decrease in Sanity. The size of the arrow signifies the rate of gain or loss.

As sanity decreases, the player's vision becomes shaky, over-saturated, and bright, whispers are heard, and Shadow Creatures start to appear. These creatures become "physical" and aggressive and will attack the player when their sanity is below 15%; the sign that sanity is low enough for Shadow Creatures to attack is when the player's character covers their ears and closes their eyes while rocking back and forth, as if experiencing a bad headache.

Being alone in the wilderness will take its toll. Generally speaking, being in close proximity to Monsters, Darkness, Rain, eating bad Food, or using various magic items decreases sanity; while wearing certain clothing, eating Jerky and Crock Pot food, being near friendly Pigs, and sleeping increases sanity. See the Sanity Tables below for a complete list.

Instant Sanity Table

Action Sanity
• Sleeping in a Tent Siesta Lean-to

• Eating Gears as WX-78 Portrait
• Eating Ice Cream Brainy Matter Lobster Dinner

• Sleeping in a Straw Roll Fur Roll

• Killing a Terrorbeak
• Eating Banana Pop Surf 'n' Turf

• Repairing a Relic Chair

• Eating a Melonsicle Seafood Gumbo

• Killing Crawling Horror

• Eating Taffy Pumpkin Cookies Jerky Cooked Green Cap Cooked Cactus Flesh Fresh Fruit Crepes Mussel Bouillabaise Sweet Potato Souffle
• Prototype a new item using Science Machine Alchemy Engine Prestihatitator Shadow Manipulator
• Learn a recipe from Blueprint

• Eating  Small Jerky Cooked Blue Cap Electric Milk Lobster Bisque California Roll Monster Tartare

• Shaving Wilson's Beard • Shaving Webber's Beard

• Eating a Grilled Watermelon +7.5
• Eating most Crock Pot Dishes except for Wet Goop Powdercake Guacamole Spicy Chili

• Eating Watermelon Cactus Flower
• Picking Flower Seashell

• Riding a wave on a Surfboard with Walani Portrait +1
• Throwing Rawling +1
• Using a Ice Staff Fire Staff -1
• Eating Dark Petals Durian Extra Smelly Durian Monster Jerky Lichen Cactus Flesh Cooked Coffee Beans Coffee

• Picking Evil Flowers
• Using Pile o' Balloons

• Eating Spoiled Food

• Eating Meat Morsel Drumstick Frog Legs Cooked Monster Meat Cooked Red CapBatilisk WingLeafy MeatGlow Berry Dragoon Heart Shark Fin Soup Limpets Seaweed
• Digging up a Grave32

•Eating Monster Meat Blue Cap Deerclops Eyeball Guardian's Horn Shark Fin Mussel

• Going through a Worm Hole Electric Isosceles
• Using The Lazy Explorer
• Entering map boundaries in Shipwrecked

• Eating Monster Lasagna

• Attacks by Charlie
• Using Star Caller's Staff Green Staff

• Reading Applied Horticulture Sleepytime Stories The End is Nigh

• Getting hit by lightning as WX-78 Portrait

• Eating Green Cap Glommer's Goop

• Reading Birds of the World On Tentacles
• Using Telelocator Staff
• Spawning Abigail build

• Using a Codex Umbra -55 Max Sanity
Resurrection via Life Giving Amulet Meat Effigy Touch Stone Set to 1/2
of maximum

Temporal Sanity Table

Name Sanity (/min) Notes
• Sanity aura of aStar Stafflight ≤+25
• Sanity aura of a friendly PigBunnyman and Sand Castle• Sanity aura of a glowing Brainy Sprout ≤+25 Must be very close to benefit from aura.
• Playing as Waxwell Portrait +20
• Being near a fire (Willow Portrait only) +≤10 Amount depends on strength of fire.
• Wearing Tam o' Shanter Shark Tooth Crown (only on a Boat) +6.66
• Sanity aura of Glommer or pudgy domesticated Beefalo +6.25 Must be very close to benefit from aura.
• Wearing Hibernation vest +4.44
• WearingTop Hat Cat Cap Floral Shirt Dapper Vest Thulecite Suit Scalemail +3.33
• Wearing Feather Hat Summer Frest Breezy Vest Puffy Vest Life Giving Amulet Chilled Amulet MagiluminescenceConstruction AmuletThe Lazy ForagerBelt of Hunger Pretty Parasol Tropical Parasol Limestone Suit Windbreaker Sleek Hat Pirate Hat or holding Rawling +2 The 5 amulets will restore sanity as long as they are equipped.
• Wearing GarlandWinter Hat +1.33
• Wearing Spiderhat One-man Band Fashion Melon

• Insanity aura of Houndius Shootius Build

-2 For One-Man Band this is the default insanity aura without followers.
• Insanity aura of Night Light -3 Only when active.
Rain ≤-3.3 Sanity loss depends on "precipitation rate".
Wetness Reign of Giants icon ≤?
• Wearing soaked items. ≤?
• Being on land as Woodlegs Portrait -4.8
Dusk, Night and Caves -5
• Total darkness -50
• Wearing Nightmare Amulet -3.3
• Wearing Night Armour -10
• Wielding Dark Sword -20
• Insanity aura of Spider Evil Flowers Slurper Depths Worm ≤-25
• Wearing One-man Band and having Pig or Bunnyman


(-25 per follower)
• Insanity aura of Hound Red Hound Blue Hound Spider Warrior Beard Monster Beardlord Tentacle Baby Tentacle Ghost Build Nighthand ≤-40
• Insanity aura of Nightmare Light ≤-40 Shadow Creatures spawned from Nightmare Lights are not present during the "warning" phase of the Nightmare Cycle.
• Insanity aura of Treeguard Crawling Horror Terrorbeak Werepig ≤-100
• Insanity aura of Deerclops Spider Queen Bearger Dragonfly ≤-400

Character Specifics

Wilson fear

Wilson looking around from paranoia.

Sanity maximums:

WX-78 - 100-300 Max Sanity (depending on upgrades)
Wickerbottom - 250 Max Sanity
Wilson, Wendy, WolfgangWoodie, Maxwell - 200 Max Sanity
Walani, Warly Shipwrecked icon - 200 Max Sanity
Wes - 150 Max Sanity
Wilbur Shipwrecked icon - 150 Max Sanity
Willow - 120 Max Sanity
Wigfrid Reign of Giants icon - 120 Max Sanity
Woodlegs Shipwrecked icon - 120 Max Sanity
Webber Reign of Giants icon - 100 Max Sanity

Characters with the potential to stay sane longer:

Maxwell - Sanity is restored at a rate of 20 points per minute.
Wendy - Less Sanity is lost while in darkness or near monsters.
Willow - Negates Sanity loss at night while near a fire.
Wolfgang - Even though monsters drain 10% more Sanity, fights can end quicker when "Mighty", meaning less time spent near Sanity-draining auras.
Wigfrid Reign of Giants icon- Gains sanity after killing Mobs, and battles are shorter due to her damage multiplier.
Walani Shipwrecked icon - Due to her drying off quicker, the combined sanity loss from wetness would be reduced over time.
Warly Shipwrecked icon - Gains more sanity from Crock Pot meals.

Insanity Effects

Complete Insanity

Complete insanity reached on Day 1.

Sanity ≤ 80%

Sanity ≤ 65%

Sanity ≤ 60%

  • Eyes appear in the darkness.
  • The screen starts getting distorted.
  • Lighting is desaturated in overworld and caves. Lighting brightens in the Ruins.

Sanity ≤ 50%

Sanity ≤ 45%

  • Whispering can be heard.

Sanity ≤ 40%

Sanity ≤ 15%

  • The screen is surrounded by red tendrils.
  • Crawling Horrors and Terrorbeaks will attack.
  • Player holds head with hands and rocks back and forth.
  • The "day to night" transition jingle becomes warped.

Sanity ≤ 10%

  • Lighting becomes dim.

Placeholder Trivia

  • Sanity was added in the Insanity! update.
  • Distortion can be turned off in the Options menu, removing the blurry effect on the edges of the screen that occurs from Sanity loss. This can also boost performance on slow systems.
Gameplay Mechanics
Activities CookingCraftingFarmingFishingSleeping
Environment Day-Night CycleMoon CycleNightmare CycleEarthquakeLightningRain
(Strong WindsFogWavesFloodingVolcanic Eruption Shipwrecked icon)
Seasons SummerWinter • (AutumnSpring Reign of Giants icon)
(Mild SeasonHurricane SeasonMonsoon SeasonDry Season Shipwrecked icon)
Mechanics BeardBiomeCharactersCharlieControlsDeathDurabilityExperienceFireFood SpoilageFreezingHealthHungerLightMapNaughtinessNon-renewable resourcesSanitySavingStructures
(WetnessOverheating Reign of Giants iconShipwrecked icon) (Disease Don't Starve Together icon) (Poison Shipwrecked icon)
Mode Adventure ModeSandbox ModeCavesRuinsVolcanoDon't Starve Together
Others Pig VillageRoad (Trail) • GraveyardOceanAbyssBridgeSet PieceThingsMorgue

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