Concerning Symptoms

Does the Eater of the Dead mutation allow you to eat mutant meat without downsides? It seems like it would be very similar to tainted meat given that it’s all weird blob stuff in the end.

There is a thing called ‘rabbit starvation’. Eating only a lean meat that does not provide us with a lot of fat may kill us after two weeks due to diarrhea. Diarrhea is likely to be a death sentence when we are in the wilderness. In fact, during a survival situation it is better to eat nothing instead of eating ‘easy food’ that does not provide us with things that our body needs. The proces of digesting uses a lot of ‘resources’. We should drink water and try to survive. Mors Kochanski and John Wiseman explain this in their books.

Humans need carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and vitamins. Approximately 2000 - 3500 calories per day. It depends on the situation. Anxiety, cold, pain, physical efforts, being wet etc lead to bigger usage of calories.

My ideal camp has to be located near the place where a forest connects with a swamp. Moreover, it has to be located near a river. This kind of setting provides us with:

  • carbohydrates (cooked cattail stalk, starch) = over 100g per day is a healthy amount

  • fat (pine nuts = 68 grams of fat per 100g of nuts) = from 40g to 70g per day is a healthy amount

  • proteins (various fish) = 56g per day is a healthy amount

  • vitamins (wild vegetables and other things) = humans need most 12 vitamins. Vitamins D, and K are easy to get through sun and gut bacteria. Other vitamins are much more problematic though…

I think that it is not so difficult to survive in Cataclysm. Eating and drinking system is soooooo pleasant now. It takes only three regular meals per day to satisfy our characters’ needs. We do not have to eat a given amount of food per two - three hours as in 0.C. We can plan and stick to our healthy diet that is based on specific eating hours. THANK YOU DEVELOPERS:)


Very well put Wojtek. I’d also mention pine needle tea in regards to vitamins, since it’s the easiest source of vitamin C to get year round. Naturally Vitamin C deficiency will kill you dead through scurvy as well.

In spring dandelion greens are also a good source of vitamin C, just as they are in real life. I feel like the rest of the vitamins are very easy to get without any extra effort just by attempting to meat caloric needs.

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Yeah, i wasn’t at all meaning to imply I ever ate only fish in-game, only that fish was my primary source of meat.

Notably, if you can get a bit of farmland set up by late spring, you can have a pretty solid amount of non-meat sources of the rest of your needs well before winter (when things get a bit lean). This does take a bit of work, admittedly, but with the help of some recruited NPCs you can totally get it done and still have plenty of time to do be doing your scavenging and threat removal during the year.

Tangentially, we do not yet actually model the consequences of vitamin deficiency; we track the vitamins, but they are currently purely cosmetic in nature (not that i personally will ever treat them as anything other than the serious problem they should be). This is unlikely to get fixed before 0.E, sadly.

I thought there was a pull request in the works that made vitamin deficiency matter? I remember reading something on the github about it some time ago.

You’re probably thinking of this pull request, which has been somewhat stalled for a while.

even if it were to be finished today, it’s of sufficient scope it probably wouldn’t make it past the feature freeze. We’re just too close to 0.E.

Yup. That’s the exact one. I didn’t realize we were so close to 0.E; 0.D felt like it dropped so recently.

Oh, really? So, I can “safely” ignore all the warnings about Vitamin A and Calcium deficiency on my status sheet without hurting myself in any way?
Well, that explains somewhat why the wiki is lacking a bit on the vitamin description (at least, more than on other topics)… Good to know :woozy_face:

To be accurate and to prevent confusion, the median daily intake should range from 1800 to 3000 kilocalories for an adult human. However, depending on activity, age, gender, enviroment and genetics, the “healthy” or “necessary” intake can vary a lot more, even up to 6000 kilocalories per day (or as low as 1000 kcal).
[Sources: WHO, Wikipedia, recommendation from different countries]

Checking the source code, the game seems to don’t care, where the kilocalories come from (in real life, that would end badly, as explained by @Wojtek94. You may get away with it for a short time, though…). It also states it would take “45 days to starve to death”, based on 55000 (k)cal. Assuming you die at 0, that would be approximately 1200 kcal per day without any activity, which seems very accurate.

At the moment, I’m playing in a city; no farm, no fishing, no mutants, most of the food already rot away… just a few berry bushes and fruit trees and I’m not even near to starve to death. So… personally, I can’t agree with “how difficult it got to survive”. Even in versions long ago, I never ate mutants and rarly any spiders… It just seemed wrong (well, not the spiders - I just never wanted to risk fighting them).

Unfortunately, it is not so simple. A person whose weight is 65kg should able to survive six weeks without food without IRREVERSIBLE changes to his health. There were cases of survivors who survive without food in longer terms but it have changed their health to the extent that it was irreversible. As an example one can check 1981 Irish hunger strike in Belfast.

correct or not, it is standard in american english to refer to that value as “calories” rather than “kilocalories”. so frustratingly, using the term “kilocalories” can increase confusion. this is just one of those things we have to put up with (like the fact the US still eschews metric in general)

as for calorie sources, we have thoughts on doing something about dealing with those, but we’re limited by a few constraints, including technical (there are vagaries in our item simulation that make this tricky), gameflow (despite some common memes, Kevin doesn’t want to make the game miserable to play), and most importantly, quality and consistency of verified data. there are a lot of assertions about how the body processes various things, but the research is often incomplete or contradictory. that makes life a little harder here, especially since we’re trying to avoid personal bias in the system and sticking with what is provable.

and while yes, “it is provable that having a strict diet of only one specific thing is bad for you”, that doesn’t always translate to a mechanism we can use to build an aspect of the simulation on top of. a lot of things are “known” to be bad, but why they are bad is often unclear.

Mutant creatures were one of the easiest ways to obtain mass quantities of meat?

Yes, they were. In contrast to farms for example, mutant meat occurs in virtually every terrain type. For example, fields (giant rattlesnake), forests (spider nests), underground (giant mole-rats), urban (giant cockroach houses, wasp nests, spider basements), swamps (giant frogs, etc), regional (ant nests, etc). Many sources of what is now “mutant meat” were creatures that one was encouraged to deal with anyway.

Ignoring for the moment, the fact that you started off saying food and then shifted the goalposts to meat-only niche situations, there is still a lot of very easy methods to obtain meat.

How about not, since there wasn’t any moving of goalposts and you would have known that had you actually bothered to read my responses, kid. It’s pretty bloody simple: Taking away food sources means more time and energy must be spent collecting food. Regions and areas which previously provided food no longer do. Even if one merely has to walk twice as far to obtain the same amount of food you’ve potentially still doubled the amount of expended time and energy spent gathering. This shouldn’t be disputable. If you want to claim that there’s still food available, cool, but it doesn’t actually affect or mitigate this.

Beyond this fact, virtually all food sources in the game are terrain and circumstance-dependent; due to a variety of things like food allergies, food preferences, loot drop rates, mutations, skills, how long after the cataclysm the present time is, gameworld terrain, nearby dangers. I pointed out several cases where your “alternatives” were not applicable. I could easily point out more. The major time one feels ANY food-related pinch is when dealing with other limitations.

First of all, you calling me “kid” is hilarious and a completely misplaced attempt at patronising me.

You say you didn’t shift the goalposts, and say that I didnt read your original posts.

To be clear your original post was “…and suddenly finding food became a full metric f-ton more difficult.”

When I confronted you on this being wrong, you then hyperfocused on meat being harder to obtain in niche scenarios.

This is obviously shifting the goalposts.

I will re-iterate, that despite some sources of meat becoming less viable, meat is still widely available and easy to obtain, and therefore your statement of it being a full metric f-ton more difficult to find food, is still wrong.

Every one of your regional scenarios you mentioned, have normal meat animals in them in abundance in addition to the mutant ones.
In none of those regional areas, are there now zero meat options, the change would mean absolutely minimal differences in availability.

None of which measures up to a “metric f-ton” does it?

Hence my comment about the hyperbole.

If you are dealing with limitations that reduce the availability of normal meat sources, such as a lab challenge, then you are playing a CHALLENGE designed to be hard, and therefore it is acceptable that it makes it a bit harder.

In normal playstyles, it did not become " metric f-ton more difficult to find food" as you originally stated.

Everyone but you knows this, it seems.

Yes, but what about the food sources that have been added? Are we only counting “reductions”, and not counting additions?

And you can still eat mutant meat. You just can’t have it be the vast majority of your diet.

Yiiiiiikes, this exploded when I wasn’t looking now didn’t it?

All this talk about the challenge, realism, etc, doesn’t really seem all that necessary.

Let’s just remember the descriptions for this stuff, something that I didn’t pay much mind to at first because I was used to .C and vanilla release .D, that being:

“This is a cooked chunk of meat from a mutated animal. It has an unsettling, spongy texture, but otherwise tastes… mostly normal. Hopefully you got all the bits of hair and bone out…”

This description should probably raise some warning signs to most of us that something’s up. Let’s consider the mutants in general, there’s the massive spiders, ants, snakes, etc. These things are unnaturally huge abominations that, through some means, became this massive. This stuff, whatever it is (Likely not lore-ified yet) almost certainly terrible for your health.

Gotta consider how the nutrients get digested, all of that “Stuff” in this weird meat is now going into your muscles, blood, and fat. If you follow the track, that being nasty headaches into convulsions and your body randomly twitching, that’s signs that this mutant crap is wrecking your system because Factor-S(tuff) is now starting to mess with your body to horrible results. Makes sense that these likely radioactive monsters probably aren’t the best source of food unless you’re desperate.

Now, as for food management and gathering, it’s definitely taking a turn towards (At least attempting/beginning to) a realism aspect. Drying out all the meat from a dear/moose you beat with your bare hands is going to take a full day full-stop. Likely, you won’t be able to eat or preserve most of that meat if you don’t have skill levels into that, and it’s a grind over time to build those skills up.

Gotta admit I was annoyed when 80% of my kills rotted before I could preserve them, definitely made it interesting over time, and even fun to have to expand my infrastructure in order to improve my preservation methods.

Turning on auto-forage and charging through the swamps is a fantastic way to bog your inventory down with 90L of foodstuffs in about 15 minutes since there’s all sorts of things out there. Etc.

All this talk about preserving the challenge, or making things too difficult isn’t really something I’m interested in focusing on, full-stop. Preserving food is taxing labor outside of modern society’s convenience, rationing food is necessary if you are city-locked and you may need to skip a meal every now and then until you can stockpile non-perishables, gotta eat the stuff that goes bad faster, and so forth. Convenience wise, I’m loving the fact that the Shift+E command now ranks food by when they roughly will expire.

On the Health stat, I’ve found that the bugger crashes very easily once you have to battle against those acid bastards and thorny monsters that shoot you up with acids, chemicals, and poisons. All things granted, however, if those tainted, radioactive, and horrible cocktails got into my bloodstream, I’d be boned for a few weeks myself, so it’s just an addition of realism that bites you and is less convenient.

Had my super healthy unarmed character get rushed by a Bone Giant, a bunch of acid spitters, those zombie-fusion abominations, a Zombie master and a Necromancer. Had to pop both Meth and Adrenalin beforehand because I knew I was almost certainly F*cked. Came out of that mess with 4 deep bites and less than 35% overall health and a broken leg. Didn’t even have time to smash them since I got zapped by a Zombie brute, who I had to beat down with a broken leg with my fists (Owww). Limped back a bit still high on the Adrs, stopped the bleeding, got back to my Mega Rig with 350 pain knocking my movement to 25, patched up, and passed out. Health crashed over the next 3 days to -200 from +50. Absolutely deserved it, and this recovery is probably going to take at least a month if not more, like a torn muscle taking 4-6 months. If I wasn’t on the cusp of late-game mutations, I’d have been dead, not sick, hehe~~

My take? Cataclysm’s always been trying to be a realism roguelike that’s not interested in taking away our toys because it makes things too easy, and is solely focused on attention-to-detail, such as toxins in flesh getting into our bodies, or the fact that the body doesn’t heal well when we’re messed up bad, or poison messing up our natural cellular functions.

Cataclysm to me has two modes, Vanilla and Point Splurge, meant for the diehards and the every-other-day-ers.

You either jump into vanilla and try to survive with what you have available in Vanilla, despite how ridiculous it sometimes is to survive in a Literal world-ending Apoc with all sorts of aliens and evolving zombies out for your face (and shoes!).

Or, you use the now available unlimited points mode to build up a character much, much more readily able to survive in the Apoc. Your standard RPG, Fantasy, Superhero, character as strong or weak as you please, and play it out that way.

When I get my butt handed to me hardcore in Vanilla, or my favorite toy gets harder to use after an update, I remember the contract I signed the moment I sold a fragment of my soul and life to this game:

Surviving is difficult: you have been thrown, ill-equipped, into a landscape now riddled with monstrosities of which flesh-eating zombies are neither the strangest nor the deadliest.

I signed myself up for a realistic Cataclysm simulator meant to kill me over, and over, and over again until I finally DON’T die after a month. The seasons are finally realistic in length, food exponentially becomes tricky to come by, winter is -brutal-, and the evolving zombies are starting to get to the point where even our end-game tools are starting to actually be tested if we make a bad mistake.

Such is the way of the Cataclysm, Gents, We swear ourselves to the certainty of death one day, to learn from our mistakes and progress further the next time.

Remember the motto:

Surviving is Difficult, And I Will Survive




Its still pretty straightforward to get food. Unless you are carnivore with other food allergies AND accelerated metabolism you should have no problem feeding yourself. In that case it should be a challenge since those mutations typically come with other positives like toughness and strength.

Unless its changed recently, Carnivore only requires you to eat meals where the main focus is meat. Many recipes (like soups, sausage and pizza) allow you to include non meat fillers like flour, oils etc. You can also continue eating eggs and cheese as well. Now that animals actually reproduce, once you find a farm you can protect or a nice spot by the river you are mostly set.

I’m actually pretty glad they’ve made it a little more involved to get food because it was way too easy before. Now at least there is a little planning involved to prepare for winter or large excursions and crafting projects.

See, now, after reading your description of that, I want mutant meat to have a chance to mutate characters into something proportionally large, more dangerous and so forth.
Also a character with Robust Genetics, Radiogenic and no mutations detrimental to natural healing rate would have little trouble subsisting mostly on radioactive critters.

Sounds like attaching a tag to the meat for minor mutations, similar to what they did with Tainted Alcohol, might be an idea here. Either that, or radiation or just flat out have it be poison.

I’d recommend putting this suggestion into the Garage. It certainly has potential viability if someone is creative enough to come up with some lore and a system involved.

Presently, assume that eating Mutant meat is essentially eating smelling meat or something that is partially bad. There’s always the risk that you’ll get sick from eating it, but you could also not. It’s food, and sometimes you’ll be just that desperate to eat meat that has some fuzz on it so long as you cut that little bit off.

After all, you once watched a YouTube video about good restaurants aging their meat and this should be the same thing… right…?

Eating mutant meat doesn’t make you a mutant, any more than eating cow meat makes you a cow. It’s toxic because the mutated creature it came from has all kinds of indigestible no-longer-entirely-earthly compounds in it making it risky to digest.

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It’s the idea of having certain traits that would make an otherwise poisonous food source into new mutation routes.

We’ve been in a bit of a rut over the last year+ for new and or unique mutation paths. We’ve gotten new mutations that I’ve loved playing with, but not as much with entirely unique mechanics.

We have the secret mutations path, but if we had other paths similar to that and not just the path of the blob and treason, that would be fun. It’s all simply something to consider for future development.

We’ve established the potential of new substances in the mutant meat that is entirely toxic to the human being, now it’s a matter of coming up with good ideas of what to potentially do with that.

Idea for “Lost beyond the portal” - eating certain regularly appearing foods in other dimensions will cause you to mutate. So that means that there could be a new source of either unique or unpredictable mutations, and the only cost is walking through a tear in the universe and getting hunted by inter-dimensional monstrosities. Still probably easier than crafting mutagen. When/If other dimensions get introduced, of course.