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Dryads are connected to and spawned by a Gauranlen tree. They begin as immature dryads and then specialize into different castes:

  • Carrier: These chunky helpers will haul things where they need to go.
  • Clawer: Vulnerable but fearsome, the clawer specializes in damage dealing.
  • Barkskin: Slow but tough, the barkskin soaks hits for your other fighters.
  • Woodmaker: Generates wood over time.
  • Medicinemaker: Generates herbal medicine over time.
  • Berrymaker: Generates berries over time.
  • Gaumaker: Produces Gauranlen sprouts to make new Gauranlen trees.

Dryad Spawning

All castes will start off as an immature dryad that will spawn up to every 8 days according to an invisible bar. If there are empty dryad slots, a timer will show counting down to the spawning of the immature dryad. The timer will still run even if there aren't empty dryad slots and will be picked up once a new spot becomes available, either by a previous dryad dying or maintaining a higher connection status with the tree.

An unconnected tree will produce up to two immature dryads, which can immediately enter cocoons upon the tree gaining a connection.


Dryads will automatically have the Animals training up to their trainability level upon emerging from their cocoon. The barkskin and clawer dryads have an intermediate trainability, the hauler dryad has advanced trainability, and the rest have no trainability. They can only have their Gauranlen Tree's connected pawn as their master and can form bonds with their master. They do not require regular handling to maintain tameness or other skills.

They have a sleep need requirement and tend to sleep at nighttime, not maintaining a normal sleep throughout the day.

Dryads will attempt to put out fires on nearby Gauranlen moss that is in the home area.

Immature dryads will attempt to immediately form into a cocoon upon spawning, as long as their sleep need is met.

While not following a drafted pawn, dryads will meander nearby their Gauranlen tree.

Upon releasing a dryad to the wild, absolutely nothing will change, they remain connected to the tree and maintain their behavior. They cannot be re-tamed and your pawns will lose control of them.

Dryads cannot be assigned to any areas, and thus movement is only affected by proximity to their gauranlen tree, or if following a drafted pawn.

Following a drafted pawn, dryads will perform identically to other animals, they follow regardless of needs or health.

Changing caste

Upon changing the caste of dryads on a tree, the connected dryads will form cocoons nearby and spend 6 days morphing into the new selected caste.


Dryads heal abnormally fast, and cannot bleed to death (though they still leave blood while bleeding). They are immune to disease events. They cannot regenerate lost body parts on their own, but can fully recover after going into a cocoon to switch castes.

Dryads also have a button attached to the dryad(not the tree) to enter a healing cocoon, which will heal all present injuries to full (not including lost limbs)

Gauranlen tree connection interaction

If there are more dryads than the "mother" tree can support (i.e. by going under the minimum connection limit to support a number of dryads) the dryad will "return" to the gauranlen tree. A dryad returning to the tree will not have any effect on the spawn timer.

Economic potential

There are 3 Dryads that offer creating items of value, the woodmaker, medicinemaker, and berrymakers. In terms of raw financial output, each berrymaker produces $38.2 raw wealth (before selling), and both the other variants make $30. For the maximum value from the components; Berry makers: selling raw berries is most efficient, as packaged survival meals or pemmican require meat to craft. Woodmakers: The raw wood is more valuable than chemfuel, since chemfuel takes 2*wood ($2.4) and 1 amount of work to create 1 chemfuel worth $2.3, however, it is worth noting that chemfuel is significantly lighter, so you can transport 16xsa as much to a nearby settlement to trade, seeing as most wandering traders don't buy wood nor chemfuel. Medicine makers: selling the herbal medicine raw is most efficient, since buying Neutroamine can cost $8.4 at most, the herbal medicine will sell for at least $6, and the cloth will sell for $2.7 at least(or cost $6.3 if you don't grow it), and the industrial medicine will only sell for $10.8 at the least. Even good social skills can only marginally drive prices to be more efficient.

Conclusion: if you're planning on making money off of dryads, berrymakers are the most efficient. They have only a slightly lower $/kg compared to chemfuel (chemfuel has $46/kg and berries $40/kg). They can also be sold to most settlements, and expire after 14 days. The main reason to choose wood over berries is if you cannot refrigerate the berries but for some reason can make chemfuel(in order to sell them in higher quantities, it is presumed the berries are frozen). This makes $11.46 (at 0 social trading advantage) wealth per day, per dryad. If you are pruning 2 trees with a 20 plant-skill colonist, they can support 8 dryads (working 11 hours a day), and thus make ~$8.33 per hour of work, plus transportation. Its worth noting that corn can be planted and harvested to make $605 per hour with the right bionics. To maintain at least one dryad, ~2.5 hours of work is needed per day, so more dryads per tree are more efficient than more trees.

(note that this only explores financial value, situational need will be more important if you plan on using the dryads for colony use)

Combat potential

Only Barkskin and Clawer dryads are capable of combat and will follow their tree's connected pawn into battle. The dryads cannot be brought off the map on caravans, nor loaded into pod launchers, therefore they can only be used for defense. They incur a -3 moodlet on their trees connected pawn upon death, and can bond with their tree's connected pawn, which can further increase this moodlet.

Between the two, both do what they are supposed to. Combat-wise, they are mediocre fighters, they can melee engage random targets, allowing your ranged pawns to sink in more hits. They are both prone to friendly fire, however, so be aware. They also have a small body size, making them harder to hit.

Barkskin dryads boast high defense. They have similar armor resistances as a thrumbo, with 60% sharp and 30% blunt, thrumbos have 10% more blunt armor and also 30% heat armor. Although this sounds good in theory, the barkskin dryad can only take 3-4 shots from most firearms before they get downed or killed. They do 3.16 dps and have 13% armor penetration. They are better against enemies with low armor penetration that uses sharp weapons and can melee engage enemies. Most ranged weapons have around 12-15% melee armor penetration, while decent melee weapons have 25-40%. Because of this around 23% of ranged weapon melee attacks get deflected, 23% get halved, and the rest do full damage. Good melee weapons will have around 80% full damage, the last 20% will either be halved or blocked. Ranged weapons have around 20-30% armor penetration, and will do full damage about 60-70% of the time, and halved or blocked the other times. So while the barkskin dryad does have an incredible natural tank in comparison to other animals, they are only slightly better for combat than most dogs, as they can tank more hits and do about the same damage. Note that they have more tank than your average tribal. Their armor is comparable to a mercenary. They will do their job and soak a few hits, but are really only useful as secondary cover, since they can block enemy shots while not blocking ally shots.

Clawer Dryads, while they are not very resilient, have extremely potent attacks, dealing 18 damage with 80% armor penetration, and very fast attacks, giving them dps roughly equal to a monosword. Furthermore, they stun enemies on their first attack, allowing them to get in up to four attacks before the enemy can strike back. While they are a poor choice for open massed combat, they can be excellent for use in cramped hallways, or when facing a small number of powerful enemies like centipedes or thrumbos. In testing, they are typically capable of 1v1 against most human pawns.

Conclusion: Even though they require a large amount of a pawn's time, without having to make food players may find them easier to keep than other pets. Additionally, if they die in battle a new dryad can take their place in about a quadrum, a full set of four can be replaced in 38 days. Unlike other weapons and pets, they do not contribute anything to colony wealth, helping keep raid sizes manageable.


Contrary to their individuals, all dryads have a meat yield of 3 immature dryad meat. The exception is immature dryads, which have 4.


  • Immature dryads still appear as adults on the animals tab.
  • When entering cocoons, the dryads will maintain the appearance of their previous caste.
  • If a tree with dryads has its connection to the connector severed, such as by kidnapping or death, all specialized dryads revert back to immature dryads.
  • Dryads can be taken off of the map when choosing animals to take with you when starting a new colony after obtaining a piece of the archotech map, and a master that is taken with them remains as their master. Dryads function without their Gauranlen tree if taken off the map in this way, but despawn after a period of about a little longer than a season.

Version history

  • Ideology DLC release - Added
  • 1.3.3069 - Fix: Dryads can show up as animals for hospitality quests.
  • 1.3.3076 - Fix: Dryads are affected by disease incidents.