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Placed items are those that have become fixed parts of the world, requiring a Tool in order to free and pick up. This is in contrast to inventory items or dropped items. Items can be "naturally placed" by the game, which most commonly occurs when a world is first generated. Items can also be placed by the player: When a player builds structures, they are placing items such as Blocks and Furniture.

Foreground vs background placement[edit | edit source]

A character surrounded by placed Dirt and Stone Blocks (foreground).
A character standing over a Bookcase (background).
  • Placed foreground objects: A foreground object is something that collides with the character and inhibits movement. Blocks almost entirely comprise the game's foreground objects (Boulders, Teleporters, and closed Doors are some others). Foreground objects can be turned into background ones (and back again) with Actuators.
  • Placed background objects: A background object is something that doesn't collide with characters. Characters can move through them freely. These include trees, vines, walls, and furniture. Many background objects are for visual appeal only, though several, such as crafting stations, also have functions.

Some objects possess qualities of both. Doors are foreground objects when closed and background ones when open. Objects like Bars, Platforms, and Tables are mainly background objects, but can still affect character movement as it's possible to stand on them (pressing the ▼ Down key causes the character to "jump down" by falling through). The Active/Inactive Stone Block has the ability to shift between foreground and background state.

There are also at least three other specialized "layers" for game elements:

  • Walls do not impede objects on any other layer, but they can provide "support" for placing foreground or background objects. Otherwise they do not interact with other layers, and are depicted behind everything but the biome-dependent "scenery".
  • Liquids occupy their own layer: While they normally flow around blocks and can't be placed in them, blocks can be placed in liquids (except lava) and the liquid is then trapped but not destroyed. A few background objects can similarly trap liquids (chests), but normally liquids can flow through background objects, possibly breaking them in passage.
  • There is also a "wiring layer": Wire and actuators can overlap and interact with foreground or background objects, and never collide with the character or other entities. They are not visible unless the player is either wielding a mechanism-related object, or else using a Mechanical Lens or The Grand Design.

How to place[edit | edit source]

There are two ways to place items:

In either case, this must be done while the mouse cursor is in an appropriate spot for placement of the particular item, and while your character is within a few tiles of the placement location.

For example, most Furniture items, like the Work Bench, must be placed on a flat surface of at least 3 Blocks in length. With the Work Bench item selected in your Hotbar, move the mouse cursor to just above a relatively long, flat surface, clear of any other items (grass included), and press the Use / Attack button.

To free an item and pick it up again, you must use a Pickaxe.

For items with left/right orientation such as beds and chairs, the direction the character is facing at the time of placement determines which way the item is placed.

Requirements for placement[edit | edit source]

The Torch is a versatile Furniture item in terms of its placement options.
  • An item must be "placeable". Most, but not all, items are placeable. Whether or not an item is placeable is indicated within the game via its tooltip; items that say 'Can be placed' when you hover you mouse cursor over them are placeable.
  • The placement area must fit the particular item. While Blocks can be placed in any empty space adjacent to any other Blocks, Furniture items generally have more stringent placement requirements. Most require a solid, flat surface, while some are more versatile (like Torches), or more demanding (like Doors or Candles). After Update, it's easier to find appropriate placement area, using Placement Preview option found in Interface Options.

Function of placed furniture items[edit | edit source]

  • Placed crafting stations, like the Work Bench and Anvil, expand the player's crafting menu when the character stands near them. The current crafting options can bee seen by opening the inventory (Inventory) and looking at the bottom-left corner of the screen. Scroll through the craftable items with the mouse wheel. Different crafting options will appear depending on which crafting station the character is near at the time.