When the player's hunger, temperature or air (under water, on a moon, or asteroid field planet) reaches 0, the character begins to lose health (7 HP per sec). A warning sound kicks off once the imminent danger of starvation, freezing to death or asphyxiation is close. Freezing is accompanied with an animation of the player's breath being visible and the whole screen turning white.
When character's health drops to 0, they dies.
Depending on the difficulty you play on, different penalties are being applied.
- Casual: You lose 10% of your pixels, and respawn at your spaceship with full health. All your items stay with you.
- Survival: You lose 30% of your pixels and most your items, and respawn at your spaceship. Items that you don't drop on death include: the Matter Manipulator, tools, weapons, shields, armor (both equipped and in your inventory), throwable items, musical instruments, items in the third tab (such as saplings, chests and other structures), and seeds. Note: during missions and while in space (and potentially other areas), items are not dropped at all.
- Hardcore: As the name suggests, you lose your character and everything you achieved with them.
- If you wish to keep your permadeath character, it is recommended to do constant backups.