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Like the question states, I'm wondering if a certain amount of time must pass in-game before you're able to summon him again.

The reason I ask is this: An arena has been built, using over 500 Ebonstone, in which to fight the Eater of Worlds. However, upon using Worm Food, he only spawns about 30% of the time. The rest of the times I've tried, nothing has happened.

The message "The Eater of Worlds has spawned," or something like that, doesn't show up.

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There appear to be several bugs surrounding the EoW. Everything ranging from his head appearing separately, to him only attacking players who aren't in corruption...you name it.

I found several forum threads, the most recent being this one (From Thursday, January 5th) with 2 people describing 2 different bugs.

The OP of that thread mentions still getting the message though, which prompted someone else to say

if the message appears, it is not the same bug as the multiplayer bug. the multiplayer summoning bug only introduces the noise. if you get the message - most likely he spawned and something made him despawn or you are experiencing a new type of bug.

(Emphasis mine)

We don't get the message, but AFAICT do get the noise, so it looks to me like we may be encountering "the multiplayer summoning bug".

Additionally, James had a very good run spawning him over and over again in both singleplayer and multiplayer, so it would appear that if there is a cooldown timer, it's too small to be noticable, and definitely not what's affecting us now.

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All this is mainly speculation, of course. I could be wrong and there actually might be a cooldown timer for the EoW. Although, with no source code, and it being too buggy to test, I'm not sure we'll ever know. –  John the Green Jan 10 '12 at 0:58
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I can summon him repeatedly over and over again in single player with only enough delay to pick up what he dropped. I have also summoned him atleast 3 times in a row on a multiplayer server. Whatever the bug is, I do not believe its a cooldown between summons. –  James Jan 10 '12 at 16:49
    
@James Good to know, thanks. –  John the Green Jan 10 '12 at 17:09
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Eater of Worlds has always spawned for me, although I typically would fight him in the Corruption proper, instead of creating an artificial Corruption biome. I just built my arena there instead of elsewhere.

The official Terraria Wiki doesn't mention a cooldown, although the Terraria Wikia entry for Worm Food states that it's possible for him not to spawn due to a "bad server connection or a game bug." They also mention that you have to be able to hear the "corruption music" sound track for the summoning to be successful, so you might check that as well.

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Yup. We hear corruption music, we built our arena over a corruption biome also...it's not artificial. Still nothing. Sometimes. –  John the Green Jan 10 '12 at 0:47
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