This Beginner's Guide is for easing new players into the game spoiler-free.

General Edit

The following is a collection of must-knows on your journey.

Forcing auto-save Edit

The game autosaves after every night or special event. However, you can force it to save after interacting with the oven even if you don't convert mushrooms into essence. Just interact with the oven and exit the screen right away and the game will auto-save.

Managing storage space Edit


Inventory management becomes that much more proficient from mastering the game's controls and various shortcut keys.

The character's inventory space is very limited. Managing it is a very crucial part of the game. Only carry what you need on your scavenging tours during the day. Store items you don't need at hand in the workshop which has plenty of inventory space or in any furniture located at the hideout.

Refueling the generator and sawmill Edit

With gasoline in hand stand next to the generator or sawmill and hold down the right mouse button, then press down the left mouse button to slowly refill the machine as necessary.

Charge-attack and quick swing with a melee weapon Edit


Darkwood's control scheme may take some getting used to at first but makes a lot of sense once internalized.

Hold the right mouse button to charge up an attack for major damage, then press the left mouse button to attack. Middle mouse button executes a weaker, much faster swing, albeit at a great stamina cost.

Dodging attacks Edit

Pressing the CTRL key makes the character backstep by about a stick's length. It best serves as a dodge maneuver against incoming (humanoid) attacks. Doing so, however, cancels any primary weapon attack you might have charged up and it consumes quite a bit more extra stamina than a normal attack.

Activating skills Edit

Pressing the Q key opens up a radial menu where you can activate your skills. These are special powers which become available only after leveling up by feeding the oven enough hallucinogens. It's best to always feed the oven with mushrooms before they rot away unused. One of the best first abilities to have when exploring is Navigator, which allows you to mark a spot on your map once per day.

Preparing for the first few nights Edit

After you wake up in the hideout there are several things you must do in order to prepare for the first night when intruders might pay you a visit at your hideout.

First scavenge tour Edit

Your first task is to scavenge for materials as prerequisite for repairing parts of the hideout.

  1. Scavenge the entire hideout including the appended generator room.
  2. Scavenge the outside world in the immediate vicinity of the hideout. There should be plenty of wood logs nearby containing wood as well as nails, which are highly desirable for repairing the hideout and outside well. Also look for any gasoline to power the sawmill.
  3. Turn any wood you find into boards with the sawmill annexed on the outside to the hideout.
  4. Craft a Board With Nails as your first melee weapon at the workshop station inside the hideout.
  5. If you have an abundance of resources, upgrade the workshop station already so that it allows you to enhance the board for extra damage (you can also do that later).

Setting up the hideout Edit


Easily defendable, the workbench room is the ideal place to wait out the night. Block each entrance with furniture and ready your weapon.

The room with the workshop bench is the ideal place for waiting out the night. You will need plenty of nails and boards from your first scavenge tour to set this area up for the night and to defend from intruders. The advantage is that it's a rather small, manageable room with only two entrances.

  1. Repair the well outside the hideout. It will serve you well as a resource to replenish your health once per day.
  2. Barricade the window of the room with the workshop bench in it.
  3. Repair the door of that room.
  4. Block the door of the entrance to the hideout, the room annexed to the workbench room, with the stool.
  5. Drag the two pieces of furniture found in the hideout inside the workbench room. You will use them to block each door inside that room. Once intruders try to force their way into the room, they will have to push aside the furniture first which you can prevent by running against it from the other direction.
  6. Drag the two lamps inside the room. While in the first couple of days, you won't need to turn on the generator, this will come in handy once you do. The entire room will be lit.
  7. Ready your weapon and wait out the night.

You are now properly set up for the first few nights. Now it's time to explore the depths of the dark woods on your own.