We finally survived the wilderness by becoming a bustling settlement after 25 years of steady growth. And completed our seedling stores in 1629.
Having survived the first decade, Stonehearst burst into life in the second decade. Although the first few years of the second decade was kind of slow, due to the expected lack of babies (since only 1 newborn girl during the first decade).
This is what I like about the game, even after two pretty straightforward games in the previous posts, the game throws you a curveball with this lack of female genes, resulting in a stagnating population. But I had foresaw this problem and had my Town Hall up and running early. Unfortunately, it took until the Spring of 1613 before three nomads showed up. 3?!
With the lack of manpower, my Trading Docks went up late, I only had one until the end of 1615, before finally adding another two more.
OK, hopefully this will be the 3rd time lucky after I learnt a few things in my second game with the town of Ranson.
It is the year 1600, five families had just been banished from their town for being deemed as ‘cultist’, as the black magic fever gripped the country. They were forced onto three boats and were given coffins filled with stone. Hoping that they would sink to the bottom of the river and never to resurface.
However, luck had other plans as their boats got caught in the eddy and pulled up next to a serene lake. Having survived the rapids, the oldest of the group decided to start afresh and named their new town — Stonehearst. A play on the word hearse and heart. The boats were torn down for scrapwood and the first project was to get a Schoolhouse up and ready.
Well, this is just a round-up of what happened to the town of Ranson after 30 years since it was established. But before that, a quick comparison between the perfect outpost and an ordinary one, with a woodcutter around.
Well, after learning a few tricks in the previous game. And also finding out how to update a patch to the game on the iMac and installing a bunch of mods to the game, I back to start a new game. On the same map. (Map Seed : 19800415)
Before I start, I would probably like to highlight a couple of mods that I have added to the game. First and foremost are the ones that change the visual graphics of the game. I don’t want to see rain nor the indistinguishable seasonal changes. Added the Fountain Lite mod. I actually liked the full mod, but the icon changes and added items skewed the menu format.
Then I added an Apiary (bee-keeper) and a lettuce seed into the game. Things that hacked the game in which I modded was the road speed. Now walking on dirt roads will be 2x faster, and on stone (3x). Another thing that I modded was that schools can now hold 2 teachers.
1) Build During Autumn-Winter
During this time, all the idle workers that you have around, will automatically switch to being Labourers for you to assign them to work and to build up any expansion you have, so that you can use them come springtime.
2) No Forester Hut Near Orchards
Maybe this has been patched out but I’m playing a vanilla Banished game, so this is a major no-no. Didn’t realise it until I found out why I wasn’t getting the harvest that I needed. The forester has been chopping down the Apple trees. Bad Washington!
3) Maximise Crop/Herd Yield
This I learnt after reading crop strategy online. Seems like the alignment/orientation of the crop field is a factor and so is the number of workers. The take home message now, despite the previous posts.
Pastures : 20 x 20 (only 1 herdsman)
Crops : 11 x 11 (also 1 farmer)
Orchards : 15 x 4 (1 farmer; orientated on a east-west axis or horizontally)
4) Gatherers Rather Than Hunters
Gatherers are better at producing food. Hunters will only hunt 6 deer per year. Max. Although they give you 200 venison and some hides, that’s all they do. I expanded with Hunters in my Devonport game, sad but true.
5) Trial And Error
Despite committing all the above mistakes, I manage to survive just fine, despite a rather lot of over wastage of resources. But this is the beauty of the game, there are so many videos, strategies, tip and tactics online, and yet, you can survive on your own without any help.
So stay tune as I boot up a new game, using the same map.
I forgot all about explaining what I did during the second decade while I was babbling about the game in the last post.
The Second Decade, as I have mentioned before, will make or break your town. Aggressive expansion in the last decade will start to pay off by now. But most of the time we might have expanded wrongly and this is where you play catch-up. I went for the Market and followed it up with Pastures/Crops. It seemed fine until I found out that the Traders don’t come stock with the necessary seeds/animals. That left me with a whole lot of unused space. Which necessitate a change in plans, I had to expand into the hinterland, with Forester Huts, Gatherers Huts and Hunting Cabins. Surprised to say, these bring in the most food than the Pastures/Crops which takes time. Not only that, if the farmer was away during the planting season, you don’t get to harvest. And if he’s not there during harvest season, everything goes to waste.
Don’t forget about Firewood too.
The next issue I like to highlight is the building of Stone Houses instead of Wooden Houses. There are pros and cons to both. Stone Houses uses up less Firewood, so you get to use them to purchase seeds and livestock. But on the other hand, it uses up your Stone and Iron stockpile. Don’t be surprise to find yourself running out of both while aggressively expanding your township. You might be asking me, why then do I expand so fast? Houses are required for couples to get babies. Maybe you can stay alive with the number of families that you have now, but if they don’t start producing babies, your population will grow old and soon you will find yourself without any workers. It’s all about balancing. And you need a lot of workers once the Crops/Livestock comes into play.
I’d give you an example, remember Herbertrude? The first baby to be born in Devonport? He lasted until Year 14. Yes, the ageing system in the game, is the only one that doesn’t follow real life. I think your people age according to the four seasons, a year for each season. So you will need to replace him in 14 years’ time. Say you didn’t build that house, and he doesn’t get born. By year 10-11 when your initial population dies, you don’t have enough youths to get into the workforce.
The Second Decade will see you juggle resources. You need enough of the basic to start building, and before you can do that, you need enough Labourers. Then when you start to specialize, i.e. Having Blacksmiths, Tailors, Farmers, each one of them takes up a spot in your population unless you want to flip them back and forth. The initial advantage that I had while building the Schoolhouse finally paid off as all my citizens are educated.
If you have any questions, ask away in the comments below.