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Dev Diary: The Death Plague

Many are the threats that await you in the desolate and corrupted world of Nested Lands. Hunger and cold, bandits and maniacs: all are perils you must face in the vastness of Norovellir. Yet, not a single one of them is as dangerous or ever-present as the worst of all: the Death Plague.

Plague Stages

In the game, all characters are susceptible to contracting the plague. That means you, as well as your villagers and even the enemy NPCs can become infected. Because of that, players need to take a variety of precautions to avoid raising their contamination chance and, when all else fails, must search for possible solutions as quickly as possible.

There are three stages to infection: “Spreading”, “Advanced” and “Dying”, with each succeeding stage causing increasingly heavier debuffs to that character, as well as developing additional symptoms, such as violent coughing, skin blisters and marks, and even necrosis in the body. Not to mention, of course, exponentially raising the contamination chance of any other people around that one infected person. If nothing is done, the character will eventually die, leaving behind a plagued corpse, which, while no longer alive, may still spread the disease to any living person that gets too close to it unprotected. To stop a full-blown epidemic in the village, players will have to build one or more Burning Pits, where corpses can be cremated into nothingness.

Treating the Disease

Luckily, treatment of the Death Plague is indeed possible. Through the years of torment and misery, some survivors have learned of a few different options for dealing with such ailment, though some of these means can be exceedingly rare:

  • Building Infirmaries and, later, Plague Hospitals, allows for the containment of infected NPCs, as well as slowing down the spread of the plague among other individuals. In addition to that, through the work of appointed Nurses, infected people left there may have a slow chance to recover, gradually lowering the level of their stage infection.

  • Another building that can help, but this time through prevention rather than treatment, is the Bath House. Hygiene is, after all, one of the best ways to stay healthy.

  • Plague Masks can be crafted in the Tannery, increasing a character’s overall resistance to being infected by the Plague for as long as the mask is worn.

  • Plague Medicine is an item crafted in the Apothecary’s Hut, which decreases one level of infection to anyone who takes it. Still, its ingredients are rare, and depending on how many people are infected, a decision must be made: Do you save the ones closest to death, or do you prioritize those that can be fully healed and will then be able to return to their regular duties?

  • While not certain, there are also legends and rumors of a true cure, hidden somewhere in Norovellir. Some kind of all-powerful medicine which could completely heal anyone infected, no matter how close to death that person is. Still, such tales must surely be nothing more than the rambles of the desperate and the mad. Best not to rely on them.

  • Finally, one could always imprison, banish, or even execute contaminated villagers. The needs of the many, after all.

Plagued Enemies

You are not the only one battling against the Death Plague. All around Norovellir, the factions of enemies which you yourself will be facing are also in constant engagement with the disease. After all, no matter how powerful or influential, no single person is free from the looming threat of corruption. And remember, when facing infected enemies, not only are they physical threats, but simply being near them is enough to raise your contamination chance, forcing you to carefully consider whether to even engage in the first place.

Still, not all enemies will give you the chance for consideration. While no one knows the exact origin of the Infected Savages, these poor and accursed souls were clearly once people. Whether they remain so, however, is a different question entirely. Their minds are gone, and their bodies now follow only the commandments of the Plague: to spread and to kill.

The Death Plague is, without doubt, the greatest and most unrelenting foe that players will encounter while playing Nested Lands. It is unyielding, uncompromising and, most importantly, unending. It will be there from the beginning, but, as we have shown today, shrewd survivors have a multitude of options when dealing with this deadly disease.

If you want to know more about the game, including a few other secrets that may still pertain to the plague, be sure to join our discord server, wishlist the game on steam, and also subscribe to our newsletter, so as to stay up-to-date with all things Nested Lands!

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