On the main menu screen there’s New Game, Load Game, Settings, Mods and Extra Content, Give Feedback and Quit. Upon starting a new game you’ll be given three options for the game's difficulties: Calm World, Exciting World and Dangerous World.
Calm World; a more relaxing game experience where you can express your creative base building ideas over combat and survival. Your colonists will suffer less damage from injures, start with one hundred meals, eat less food, and watered plants yield higher harvests. Your colonists can still die if you don’t take care of them.
Exciting World; This is the typical Founders’ Fortune game experience, a mix of base building and survival. Colonists start with forty meals and although you’ll do your best to keep them alive, they will die.
The Dangerous World is a harsh, unforgiving place for those who want a challenge. Colonists take fifty percent more damage from injuries, they start with ten meals and become hungry much quicker. Catastrophes happen more frequently and any colonists who are fragile and weak won’t survive here very long.
Once you’ve chosen your poison, it’s time to select your starting colonists, from whom you may choose two (there are two randomly chosen for you should you wish to go with the hand your dealt; you can hit the Random Colonist button for different options). Each colonist will come with some basic information on them, such as Name, Personality and Experience. A colonist’s personality may be classified as good or bad, including likes and dislikes, and traits such as Experienced in Battle, Pessimist, Optimist, Hates Winter or their Favorite Foods. A colonist’s Experience indicates the type of jobs they can do: Farmer, Forester, Miner, Craftsman, Doctor, Scholar or Soldier. These jobs are rated from one to three stars. You're able to have more than one job to start with, so hitting that random button may just help as your adventure begins.
After selecting your colonists and starting the game, you’ll find yourself on an island. You’ll receive a couple tips on what you need to do to help you on your way. The first thing you must do is build a signal tower so that migrants and traders can find your settlement. You’ll need to find somewhere close to the coast to place your signal tower while also placing it close to where you think will be the best place to build your settlement. Next you must build a couple of sleeping bags for your colonists, otherwise they’ll become grumpy from sleeping on the ground.
Now that you’ve had a good night’s sleep in your sleeping bags, it's time to start building your colony. You must select your colonists and give each of them a job to do. Even if they don’t have a specialized skill set, they can still cut down trees, mine for stone or collect other resources. You can make them miners, foresters etcetera which will help increase production and unlock new skills as they gain experience in new fields of work. Some colony members aren’t going to gain any experience in any job or combat; these colonists are those who are a sandwich short of a picnic. You can still give them a job, it’s just that they won’t gain any experience points or level up in the job you’ve chosen for them.
You can upgrade a colonist’s job by three levels, and you’ll gain experience points as your colonist progresses in their job type. You will need a certain number of experience points before being able to promote that member. When you promote a member, they will be able to craft, build, farm or tend to other types of injuries etcetera that they couldn’t do before. Once you’ve reached level three with a colony member, you can choose another trade for them to take on; the more jobs a person can do, the better it is for the growth of your colony.
As you only have two members to start with, you’ll have to spread the work between them. You will need to build a home, so you will need wood for the walls (sausages) and floor. Your home doesn’t have to be a palace now; a simple wooden hut with doors and a floor will keep your colonist happy for the time being. They will wish for better things as you progress, and you can see what a colonist wishes for by selecting them and then selecting the green smiley face. This will then give you some information on how that member is feeling, their Mood, Friendship, Hunger, Stamina, Health, Expectations, Wishes and Thoughts.
Expectations are what your colony members expects to have so that they may be happy with life in the colony. There are six categories here, and these will become unlocked as your member progresses. The first is Good Food, and you will unlock this once you’re able to build a campfire and cook your food rather than eating it raw. Having a good home to live in, being very happy with life, mastering your trade are all expectations your colonists require from you.
Thoughts will tell you about a member's state of mind, if their wishes are being fulfilled, their likes and hates and anything which is bothering them such as having no floor in your home. Anything bad or bothering them will add negative points to their satisfaction while good and positive thoughts will increase their satisfaction. Making sure your colony is happy is a must; if they feel down in the dumps, there’s a good chance that they will stop working and helping the colony. If this happens then it will take a random amount of time before they have finished having a paddy and start helping in the colony again. To help keep them happy, have them interact with other members, talk, hug, tell them to enjoy the campfire or go and relax somewhere.
Wishes are another way of keeping your colony happy; each time you grant a member’s wish they’ll gain several Satisfaction Points. The number of points you gain will depend on the wish, anything from building a bed, chair, toolbox, clothes stand, chests, to talking to another colonist or giving them a hug, can fulfill someone's wish and earn you those satisfaction points. The points you gain will go towards leveling up your satisfaction level; upon reaching a certain limit, you’ll level up and gain Reward Points. You can use these reward points to remove any negative traits or traits you don’t like, such as removing the Dumb trait, which will then allow your sandwich-short-of-a-picnic colonist to take a job and gain experience. You can also trade the points for new traits, including good health and experienced in battle, or use the points to cure illness, gain a motivational boost, forget negative thoughts, or max your health. You can reset any traits which you’ve changed so far back to the default ones your colonists started with.
Every now and then you’ll receive traders or migrants who have seen your signal. You can trade any resources you currently have for coins, and any spare coins can be used to make purchases from the trader. You can also craft items if you have a crafting table and craftsman; the items you can craft depend on the level of the craftsman. Items such as picks, axes, swords or anything else you make can also be sold to bring in some pennies which you could then use to buy some of the more expensive things that a trader might bring to your shores.
Any migrants who find your shores can be recruited into your colony to help it thrive; just be careful who you invite to stay with you, as there are killers out there who could murder your colony members. You can remove the Killer trait if you have enough satisfaction reward points, although until you do, anything can happen. There is also another choice . . . you can kill them before they kill anyone; I haven’t tried this yet as I need my colony working their botties off as winter is currently on its way! I need to make sure I have enough provisions to get through, as last winter I only just made it on the merger provisions I had saved.
You’re not the only ones living on the island, there are also several tribes living close by. You can talk with them (in fact, talking with a certain tribe member may be a colonist’s wish). You can also trade with them, and every now ‘n then they will visit your colony. Sometimes they are polite and are like any other neighbours wanting to borrow some sugar, while at other times they can demand your resources. If you keep on the good side of them then the relationship between your colony and their tribe will improve. However, if you deny them what they want then any relationship with the tribe will decrease and may then lead to a fight. Again, currently I haven’t been in a fight with any tribe, as I’m useless at these types of games and so decided to go the easy route to learn the game and play in the Calm World. Although this isn’t going to stop you from getting into a fight with tribes, it’s not going to happen as often as it would in other game modes.
There are lots of things to craft and build to help you survive and help your colony grow. There are two categories, one for building your home (with subcategories for Walls (sausages), Fortifications, Floors, Doors, Windows and Pillars). The other is for furniture and other things, with the subcategories of Life Farming, Work, Military, Lights, Seating, Tables, Storage, Decorations and Rugs. You’ll be able to build weapons, tools and clothes storage and assign them to each colonist. Then you can fill their storage with the tools and weapons etcetera you have crafted and then when any colonist needs to use them, they can go and fetch them as they are required.
You can also learn and research new technologies; to conduct any research you’ll need to mine and collect crystals. You will also need to craft a bookstand, so that when you have selected a research category and have the required number of crystals, you can assign one of your colony members to research the crystals you’ve collected at the bookstand. Once a category has been researched, your colony can then take advantage of it.
In the settings you’ll find options to change: Video (Graphics Quality, Resolution, Display Mode and V-Sync), Audio (Total Volume, Sound Effects and Music sliders), Other (Language, Game Active Background, Mouse Edge Scrolling and Camera Speed). You can also find Key Bindings here, where you’ll find the key controls for Camera and Time Controls, Colonist Interaction, Furniture Handling and Miscellaneous. There is also a link for you to view any screenshots you may have taken in the Open Screenshot Folder.
As mentioned earlier, I have only played the Calm World so far, but I’ve enjoyed playing the game. I did have to restart from scratch after the latest update had wiped my game save, but this is to be expected for a game in early access. The tutorial doesn’t show you much but it’s easy to figure out what you need to do: keep an eye on your colony, maintain friendships, talk and give each other hugs to help keep everyone happy. Worth a bash!
Review written by Piston Smashed™ for Zeepond.com!
Positives+ Enjoyable to play
+ Easy to learn
+ Difficulty levels for all
+ Plenty of crafting options
+ Graphics and sounds are good
Negatives- Lost my first game save due to new update
- No achievements
- No cards currently
Build a thriving colony, create buildings, craft furniture, weapons, farm the land, research new technology and anything else it takes to survive.
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Zeepond Rating: 8/10
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