Can Slimes Starve in Slime Rancher?

Slime Rancher (and Slime Rancher 2) are amazing games that have helped me many times calm down after a particularly stressful or rough day. This is a game that I have recommended to many of the players in the Assorted Meeples community and we have quite a group that has this on a short list of go-to games, but introducing new players had sometimes led to interesting questions like: “Can slimes starve in Slime Rancher?”

“I’m scared to explore because I’m worried about the ranch – can slimes starve in Slime Rancher?”

One such question from our little cozy gaming community

Your slimes will not starve in Slime Rancher. If not fed they will stop producing plorts an may have an unhappy face from being “hangry” but it goes away as soon as they are fed.

Slime Rancher, and now the sequel, Slime Rancher 2, are some of my favorite cozy games out there. Set in a distant future, the whole premise of the game is simple yet the wonderful look, delightful sound work, and personality of the slimes make these endlessly fun, relaxing and stress-free games.

As for the in-depth answers on all you ever wanted to know about your adorable, and sometimes radioactive, slimes, read on for your guide on feeding slimes and living in the worlds of Slime Rancher. Let’s dive in!

pink slimes in slime rancher
I never get sick of this happy little guy. Pink slime from the original Slime Rancher.

Slime Rancher: The Most Wholesome of Cozy Games

There are some cozy games that have those odd mechanics in the name of realism that can make them stressful at certain points, but fortunately the Slime Rancher games have gone the other direction. They are eternally forgiving and while you might have to spend an entire in-game day feeding all the slimes and collecting all the plorts to catch up on work, there is very little that is irreversible.

As long as you keep the Tarrs away, your slimes are going to be alive and kicking when you get back…and they’re forgive you for starving them the moment you feed them again.

Can Slimes Starve in Slime Rancher?

Slimes can become hungry from not being fed promptly. Generally slimes can eat 1-3 times a day and produce plorts, which is part of the reason your food dispensers have three different settings for how often to auto-feed the slimes (assuming you bought those upgrades to your pens). If a slime hasn’t eaten in a set amount of time they will have a bit of slimey drool at the corner of their mouths and a frowny face – as shown in the picture below.

hungry slime slime rancher 2
Yup, he’s hungry. Also since he’s half rock slime I’m very happy he’s in a pen and not free range, otherwise I would be getting battered right now.

Most other slimes will naturally have smiles on their face when fed, though you have slimes like the Hunter slimes or big slimes that are half Hunter who will be hard enough to spot regardless of how they are feeling.

Below is a picture of a happy angler-honey Largo slime. And he is happy, the weird eyes are from one stunning the others right next to it because they’re the only slimes who want to photo bomb to ruin a photo more than the tabby cat slimes.

angler honey largo slime stunned
So happy he decided to stun his buddies around him just as I took the screenshot. The stars around the head are a nice touch.

If your slimes are smiling, they’re fine. If you have tons of food and want more plorts, just shoot the food into the pens. Otherwise you’re good to go and explore to your heart’s content.

What Happens If You Don’t Feed Your Slimes in Slime Rancher?

If you don’t feed your slimes in Slime Rancher they won’t die, but they won’t produce any plorts for you to sell, either. Also instead of the happy smiling face you’re get the sad hungry face on them.

If you don’t have fully upgraded and enclosed pens hungry slimes will work to break out and get in the open to find food. If you have a fully upgraded pen they won’t be able to so it’s a non-issue at that point.

It doesn’t matter how long you got lost exploring, once you get back it only takes one piece of food to get them full, caught up, happy, and ready to produce plorts once again.

The Fire Slime: The One Starving Slime Exception

The one exception to this rule is the Fire Slime. The fire flames must be in fire or ash, which means to farm them you need an incinerator as they will eat the ash of burned fruit and vegetables over time. They then produce those fire plorts. The thing is that if the area runs out of ash, given enough time a fire slime that isn’t fed will “go out” and disappear.

Because of that if you are going to have a couple of fire slimes you will need to feed those slimes so they won’t starve. If you go way overboard because you think they are some of the best looking and coolest slimes in the game like I did, then you need to feed them more consistently or have them split between two incinerators so they don’t disappear.

fire slimes and fire slime plorts in Slime Rancher 2
If you have one or two fire slimes it’s not bad, but if you go way overboard like me, you’ll need to feed the incinerator every couple of days.

Fire slimes will starve if unfed for too long, so make sure to have a silo of veggies close by (and a garden) to launch into the fire and keep these little guys happy!

Other rare slimes like puddle slimes or yolky slimes don’t have eating requirements (technically puddle slimes do but since they have to live in water and they eat water that then doesn’t go away – it doesn’t really matter) so you don’t need to be concerned about them.

Can Slimes Die in Slime Rancher?

Generally speaking, the answer most gamers are looking for is no, but technically there are some ways that slimes “return to the great slime sea.” You can always shoot them into the water in a long arc, watching them plop in the distance. Common practice with pink slimes when you realize you have way too many now that you’ve gained money and upgrades and managed to get better and more valuable slimes.

There’s actually in-game lore to this: that the slimes don’t die or “drown” but that they somehow return to The Slime Sea where it’s believed all slimes eventually pop up form and return to.

So you’re not killing slimes by shooting them into the sea – you’re just sending them home!

The one situation in the game where slimes die is when a Tarr appears and eats them. Tarrs occur when a largo slime (one of the big ones) eats a plort that isn’t from either of the two slimes they are built from. This happens most often at night because most areas have two types of slimes, and then once you add in the night-only phosphorus slimes, you create a lot of plorts that suddenly can create Tarrs.

These blackened cannibalistic slimes are all about eating the other slimes and turning them into more Tarr, and nothing’s really known what happens to the tars that are washed out (killed) – if the uncorrupted slime goes back to the Slime Sea or what.

Those might be the one thing that can actually kill slimes…they sure as heck can clear out an area, that’s for sure!

2 Tarrs in Slime Rancher 2
And after they’re done eating all the area slimes, or even before, they’ll then turn and come after you!

Why Do Slimes Turn Into Tarr?

Slimes turn into Tarr when they eat plorts they shouldn’t. Largo slimes (the big ones you can ranch) happen when a slime eats a plort of another type. Then they become a big combo of the two slimes – the original and the one that created the plort they ate. Largo slimes are great because they can produce 2 plorts per feeding (sometimes 4 if it’s a favorite food).

However, if one of those Largo slimes eats a plort that isn’t from one of their two slime parents, they then turn into Tarr which aggressively eat every slime in sight, attack the player, and don’t get full. Each slime they eat becomes another Tarr and they can quickly ravage an area if left unchecked…though fortunately if you leave for a day everything will be back to normal when you come back.

They’re also fairly pretty when you hit them with water and the Tarrs then explode. The rainbow is a nice touch – a truly “Slime Rancher” touch.

Tarrs exploding Slime Rancher 2
And that’s the end of that – with a nice rainbow to make blowing up Tarrs even better?

Slimes Don’t Starve To Death

Aside from the earlier exception of Fire Slimes, your slimes won’t starve out of existence, they will just stop providing you with plorts until they are fed again.

So don’t worry – you’re not going to come back to an empty ranch because all your slimes starved and be stuck because of an auto save. They might be giving you guilt-inducing “feed me” faces, but as soon as they get fruit, veggie, or chicken, they’ll all be jolly once again.

Related Article: Does Slime Rancher Auto Save?

This was frankly a very smart decision – especially since the worlds of Slime Rancher and Slime Rancher 2 are both huge – and it’s very easy to disappear for a day or two…or three or four if you’re terrible at finding directions.

Does Food Matter in Slime Rancher?

Each slime eats one type of food (Veggie, Fruit, or Meat) and the Largos eat one or two – depending on what two slimes you combined to create. This makes it a good idea to balance out the combos to make it easier to feed – or to go the other way and make everything able to eat fruit or vegetables so you can mass focus your gardens.

That said, each type of slime has a favorite food which will cause them to create 2 plorts instead of 1 plort when they eat. Figuring out the favorite food for each slime not only helps you produce more plorts, but this information can be used on largo slimes, as well, to really ramp up the mass creation of valuable plorts to sell.

Related Article: Is Slime Rancher Still Worth Buying?

Can You Lose in Slime Rancher?

That’s one of the aspects of Slime Rancher that makes it so relaxing…there is no particularly clear “win/lose.” There are certain secrets you can uncover and unlock which is the closest thing to a win or completion that you will have, but this is a game that let’s you go at your own pace, explore as you see fit, and then just continue the relaxing day-to-day of building, tending, and caring for your Slime Ranch across the Galaxy.

Basically for a good chunk of the game you:

  • Put slimes in pen
  • Feed slimes
  • Vacuum plorts
  • Sell plorts
  • Repeat as you see fit
  • Wander off and explore as you see fit

This is a wonderful recurring schedule that allows this game to be easy, comfortable, and just help the stress melt away. Hit those steps, repeat, and then fully decorate your Ranch to make it look like the futuristic ranch across the galaxy you enjoy most and watch the real-life stress just melt away!

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