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Day and night cycle

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Picture showing: Moonrise, Midnight, Moonset and Sunrise, Midday, Sunset. This image was taken from an old version of Terraria, and therefore uses the previous sun and moon sprites.
You should stay indoors at night. It is very dangerous to be wandering around in the dark.

The Guide

For the cycle of the moon, see Moon phase.

The day and night cycle of the Terraria world refers to the rising and setting of the Sun and Moon, and the ways this can affect the world.

  • Day begins at 4:30 AM, while night begins at 7:30 PM.
  • Day and night each have their respective theme music in some surface biomes.
    • For the "Morning Rain" track, morning lasts from 4:30 AM to 7:30 AM.
  • Some surface enemies only spawn at night (see Enemies below).
  • Some NPCs sell unique items at night, like the Arms Dealer, who sells Illegal Gun Parts at night.

Note that the sun in Terraria rises at the left of the map, even though the left is referred to in-game as "West" (the same for right/East), e.g. when a Goblin Army, Frost Legion, or Pirate Invasion begins approaching.

Time[edit | edit source]

Times
Sunrise/
Dawn/
Moonset
Sunset/
Dusk/
Moonrise
4:30 AM 7:30 PM
  • All newly-created worlds begin at 8:15 AM.
  • One minute of in-game time lasts one second of real-world time, meaning one hour in-game lasts one minute real-world. One Terraria day, therefore, lasts 15 real-world minutes, and night lasts 9 real-world minutes.
  • In-game time can be displayed with the following:
  • Using the Enchanted SundialDesktop, Console, and Mobile Versions, time can be sped up to the end of the current cycle (i.e. to 4:30 AM) once every seven days.
  • Desktop Version Sleeping in Beds makes time pass at five times the normal rate. However, this cannot be done during Events or when Bosses are alive. This also works on multiplayer worlds, but requires all players to be in bed.

Enemies[edit | edit source]

At the surface layer, unique enemies spawn at night. Nocturnal enemies will run or fly away when the day starts.

Additionally, Eye of Cthulhu, Skeletron, The Twins, The Destroyer, Skeletron Prime and OcramOld-gen console version3DS Version can only be summoned at night, and will flee or become nigh-unkillable at dawn. In contrast, King Slime can only spawn randomly during the day, though it can be summoned with the Slime Crown at any time.

The following enemies only spawn during the night:

Naturally, all enemies exclusive to a Blood Moon also only spawn at night.

Achievements[edit | edit source]

Achievement You Can Do It!.png
You Can Do It! • "Survive your character's first full night."
Survive your first full night. Desktop, Console, and Mobile Versions
Achievement Survivor.png
Survivor • "You have survived the first night!"
Survive your first full night. Old-gen console version

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Desktop versionMobile version On the title screen, the sun or moon can be dragged around.
    • Before formal server software was released for Terraria, and while it was necessary to open a second window of Terraria to host a server, dragging the sun or moon around would directly change the time of day within the server.
    • When the sun or moon is in the improper place after being dragged, when the world loads the sun will slowly move towards the proper place instead of instantly snapping there. However, if the moon is present on the title screen instead of the sun or vice versa, the sun/moon will instantly snap to its normal location.
    • Doing this in Desktop version Desktop version 1.4 will cause the title screen music to change from "Journey's End" to the old Title Screen music.
  • While wearing Sunglasses, the sun appears to be wearing them as well. Un-equipping the sunglasses will cause it to revert. This has no functional effect.
  • Internally, the time counter is increased by 1 each tick[1], and is reset to zero at both dawn and dusk. During daytime, the counter is allowed to go up to 54000, and during nighttime, it is only allowed to go up to 32400.
  • Despite the sun and moon both always being on opposite sides of the sky, there are still moon phases (there can be a new moon even though the moon is not visible).

History[edit | edit source]

  • Desktop 1.4.0.1: Beds can now be slept in to pass time 5 times as quickly. However, this cannot be done during Events or when Bosses are alive. Furthermore, everyone in a multiplayer server must be in a bed to speed up time.
  • Desktop 1.2:
    • The sun is now brighter.
    • Midnight is now darker.
  • Mobile 1.3.0.7:
    • Removed shortened nights in pre-Hardmode.
    • Time can now be sped up with the Enchanted Sundial.

Footnotes[edit | edit source]

  1. A tick is a time unit countable by the software. Most of Terraria's updating logic happens every tick. A tick has the length of 1/60th of a second, hence there are 60 ticks in a second and 3600 ticks in a minute.