Guide:Don't dig up

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This is a Guide page.
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Don't dig up is a special seed that flips the entire world progression upside down by placing the player in the Underworld and making the Surface the most dangerous area in the game. Some weapons are swapped as well, with powerful endgame weapons appearing early in a weaker form and early, weak weapons being buffed and dropping from endgame enemies. (For instance, the Aqua Scepter and Bubble Gun are swapped).

Numerous progression strategies are changed in this seed, which this guide will cover.

The beginning

The first things you'll notice upon spawning are:

The main enemies are Lava Slimes, which do not drop lava upon death even in Expert Mode or above. Leaving the middle third or so of the Underworld will take you to a higher-difficulty area with lava, Ruined Houses, and the usual, difficult Underworld enemies. This part of the world should be avoided until the player is strong enough to survive.

There are no Chests as such in this starting area. Instead, Mimics spawn, a very challenging type of enemy at this stage of the game. They drop the same loot that Underground Chests would contain. These can be cheesed by digging a pit and using a yoyo or some weapon with a debuff.

The main thing to do right now is to make Ash Wood armor and weapons and to break Pots, which contain Rope. This will enable you to make it to the next layer.

The name "Don't dig up" is appropriate, as digging straight up will likely flood your home base with lava or water. It's better to build multiple shafts that don't flow into each other to keep things from falling down onto your base.

Early exploration

Directly above the Underworld layer is a Glowing Mushroom biome that contains stone, and basic ores. Zombies and Demon Eyes spawn on this layer. Players should quickly transit this layer as there is better loot above. Getting a grappling hook will help immensely.

Above this buffer is a false "surface". Here, trees grow and weather occurs. Surface versions of all the regular biomes appear, including the Desert, Snow biome, and Jungle. This is one of the best spots for early players to gather loot, establish bases, and farm creatures. Happiness is not tracked in this seed, making it easier to get pylons.

Aside from the very center (i.e. directly above spawn), most of this layer counts as the Ocean biome 50% of the time, allowing you to fish up Ocean Crates and find the Angler.

Players using magic weapons can find Fallen Stars trapped in slimes, allowing them to increase their mana capacity.

Early bosses

The Underworld you spawn in actually serves as an excellent bossing arena, as it is generally very wide, flat, and has few obstacles. A bridge of platforms (or two) should be enough to fight King Slime or the Eye of Cthulhu.

Note that King Slime has a chance to spawn when killing any slime if he has not yet been defeated, meaning that a Slime Rain is not needed for him to spawn.

The Eye of Cthulhu can spawn in the Underworld during the regular day/night cycle. However, it will not despawn at day, allowing for longer fights.

True surface and later pre-Hardmode bosses

The top part of the Underground layer is filled with lava pools as the player approaches the surface, requiring more care in digging.

The surface itself, as well as the leftmost and rightmost parts of the map, are entirely infected by the Corruption or Crimson. The surface is always night time, and enemies spawn much faster and are stronger. The surface is incredibly hostile. The player is constantly under the effects of a Featherfall Potion, and leaving the top of the map causes instant death. A grappling hook can be very helpful to players looking for Floating Islands.

Building a base on the surface is possible if it is raised high off the ground, away from the evil biome, but Forest, Cavern, and (possibly) Ocean pylons do not work there--if you want to build an artificial surface island for a pylon base, a Mushroom pylon base (particularly one close to the dungeon's entrance) would probably be your best choice. Finding a Magic Conch will aid in quickly reaching the surface.

Outside of Queen Bee, who is much the same as in a regular seed, most of the other bosses are more difficult in this seed due to terrain:

  • The Eater of Worlds and Brain of Cthulhu are difficult not necessarily because they themselves are strong but because summoning them is difficult due to the extreme boosted spawn rate and difficulty of evil biome enemies. Preparing an arena is the most difficult part; once that is done, the bosses themselves can be easier than the regular spawns.
  • Deerclops can be difficult due to not having a wide open area to summon it in. This can be fixed by creating an artificial Snow biome in the Underworld or by excavating a large arena.
  • Skeletron is difficult due to the surrounding boosted enemy spawns. The floating effect, however, can be to your advantage. One strategy is to build a series of platforms moving higher up from the dungeon, away from the evil biome, and leading Skeletron up there to avoid other enemies. He does not enrage or despawn when "morning" comes. If you are sufficiently patient, you can also put up placed walls and blocks around the dungeon entrance to isolate it from the wider evil biome, creating a wider arena free of enemy spawns (at the cost of potentially reducing your ability to maneuver).

The starting area provides an excellent location to fight the Old One's Army.

The Wall of Flesh can be slightly easier due to having a premade Hell Bridge across much of the map, but it will also kill off your NPCs. Make sure to build houses in the Underworld in a way that won't impede your fight. If you have access to Lava Waders or the Terraspark Boots, you can also use the lava lakes around the central area as an extended Hell Bridge.

Early Hardmode

When Hardmode starts, the Mimics that offered basic loot now offer standard loot.

The Hallow no longer spawns in a vertical stripe. Instead, it replaces the large strip of corruption on the same side as the Jungle, occupying roughly 20% of the world.

Mechanical bosses, Queen Slime, Plantera, and invasions

Much of the game becomes more normal now, except that you have to choose between fighting bosses on the surface, with tons of evil biome enemies and low gravity, or the Underworld, with cramped room. Fortunately, mechanical bosses don't despawn in the day time.

A long skybridge high above the evil biome helps to avoid the enemies and, even in normal world seeds, is a good way to fight Queen Slime, The Twins, and The Destroyer.

Plantera is pretty much the same as usual. Invasions, however, will spawn in the Underworld now, including the Solar Eclipse (which occurs with a special custom message, despite no sun existing in this world).

The surface with its high amount of enemy spawns is an excellent place to farm Biome Keys, especially since Corrupt/Crimson versions of the Snow biome and Desert exist there.


Golem and the Jungle Temple can be found on the surface of the world. Outside of the unusual location, nothing else has changed. Duke Fishron, Betsy, the Martian Madness invasion, the Lunatic Cultist, and the Celestial Pillars are also similar to their regular fights, except that the player needs to beware the lower gravity and deathly top of the world.

The Empress of Light will not enrage if fought in the Underworld, but instantly enrages at all times of day on the true surface. It can be difficult to fight around her in the cramped space of the Underworld. On the other hand, Prismatic Lacewings spawn naturally at all times of day, making them much easier to collect.

For both the Empress of Light and the Moon Lord, fighting in the Underworld is much easier with the Rod of Discord, as the player doesn't have as much room to dodge. However, it is not necessary to fight the Moon Lord underground; again, though, remember that the top of the world is an instant-kill zone. If one is patient, one may also use a Rocket Launcher variant that can destroy blocks and a Mini Nuke II to clear out a wide area to kill both in the false surface, filling spots in with an Ice Rod and Pearlstone/Hallowed Grass blocks and arena components as needed to get an artificial Hallow.