By MikeLemmer 21 Comments
Over the past few weeks, Banished has slowly become my preferred side game: the game I launch and keep running on the side (or in the background) while watching streams or chatting with friends. At first, I thought it was too easy of a city builder to keep my interest, but bumping the difficulty to Hard and trying to keep my town alive & thriving forced me to analyze its systems and see how it all works together. To break down my interest in the game (and encourage others to try it), I've decided to make a new town, play it for one year each day, and post what happens to this thread.
The first step of establishing Burgeto is choosing the settings and the seed. Note that you do not see the map the seed generates; you can play the same map again later, but otherwise you go into each map blind.
Here's my starting position. Notice I have a bit over a dozen people, 9 of which are old enough to work, and a Supply Cart. First order of business is to scan the surroundings and figure out what I want to build where.
I pop open the Minimap and zoom out to look around. We've started right next to the main river with a huge forest on the other side. On this side, several hills and a stream will hamper my town-building. There's plenty of hills I can mine, but where do I want to place them so they don't get in the way of my food-gathering and town-building?
Here's my long-term strategy: build the town on this side, slowly snaking around the various hills and streams. Keep the other side of the river pristine for lumber & food to feed my growing town. I'm still not sure where I'll put the quarries & mines, but they'll have to be out of the way; they reduce the happiness of nearby houses and permanently use up any space they're put on.
First, though, I need to make sure my town survives the first few years. Shelter & food are my first priorities. I'll need to worry about tools & clothing next year, but for now those can wait. I plant a few initial foundations and pause them so work doesn't start on them immediately; I'll activate them one at a time as I gather the necessary resources.
Starting from the left, I've placed a Fishing Docks and two Houses next to a Storage Site & Barn. A Woodcutter, Tailor, and Blacksmith have been placed next to the Storage Barn, followed by two other Houses and a Trading Post. (The Trading Post is important once you no longer have to worry about initial survival; it's the only way you can get seeds & livestock on Hard difficulty.) I've also plotted a bridge across the river to the vast forests on the other side; they'll be a vital source of wood & food.
My first problem is the greedy townsfolk: the moment their houses are built, they snatch up a stash of firewood & food. The 2 houses on the right got shafted on the firewood & food, hence the Cold & Hungry icons over them. I need to give them a surplus fast, else they'll starve or freeze to death while their neighbors stay warm & fed. (I don't know why the townsfolk won't share a bit of food with each other; maybe they were banished for ruthlessness?) I quickly built that Fishing Dock and prayed they'd get some food before they starved to death.
Luckily, they managed to get some fish during the winter and hold off starvation for a bit. By the next spring, our food stores are still nonexistant, and 7 of our 10 workers are trying to gather food (4 fishers, 3 hunters), which will severely hamper constructing other buildings. By next winter, we'll need a Tailor and a Blacksmith to replace the rapidly depleting clothes & tools. With luck, we'll also have a Gatherer's Hut to diversify our food. (If citizens only have 1-2 sources of food, they fall ill.) We've survived the first year, but we have even more goals to accomplish next year.
In the meantime, I've planted a few more foundations in the town: several more Houses, a School, and a Well. It'll probably be several years before I get around to building it, though.