Ideally you’ll want to build your base out of stone, Wooden bases can catch fire and in certain biomes Wood is a rare commodity. It’s fine to start with your base being made of wood, but you’ll want to switch sooner rather than later so you’ll need to rebuild less of your base.
Try to get a farming area started immediately, growing is actually fairly easy skill for most colonists to level up, and you don’t want to exhaust all the animals and berry bushes on your map too early on in case things get desperate during the winter or some other event. Rice is a good crop to grow early on since it can be harvested very fast and lasts a long time, and also plant a decent amount of cotton, you might need warmer clothes if you’re in a biome with a particularly harsh winter.
You’ll want a to build a generator and have a room to act as a freezer, since food will spoil over time, especially meat, and if you kill something big like a bear it’s doubtful you’ll be able to use all the meat for your meals if you don’t have a freeze them, also you can freeze meals so you can batch cook a bunch of meals for your colonists.
Construction / Production Tips
- Minimize distance between production/growing and stockpiles. Movement time adds up fast.
- Setup material stockpiles next to construction workbenches. Crafters shouldn’t spend their time running to stockpiles to gather materials, dedicated haulers should do this.
- Set production bills to ‘Drop on ground’ instead of taking them to the relevant stockpile. Again, crafters should be crafting, not hauling.
- Don’t build floors for most rooms right away. Floor in your hospital and production rooms. Floors are labor and resource intensive, and they raise the wealth of your colony with minimal benefit in most cases. Build them when you have excess and a proper military.
- Separate volatile materials from general materials. Do not keep your chemfuel next to your valuables.
- Cleaning, hauling, and doctoring are the 3 most valuable skills in the game. Without them, your colony will collapse. You want colonists dedicated to those jobs as soon as you can.
- Research is important, and the number one way to progress in the game, but you can put it off safely for awhile while you sort things out. The game is pretty nice to you even on higher difficulties and won’t just instantly wipe you out just because you haven’t gotten to assault rifle research yet.
- Colonists die and get injured all of the time. Don’t freak out because someone got brained. If you’re really attached to them, store the body in a freezer and wait until a quest offers you a Ressurector Mech Serum. Healer Mech Serums can also be used to repair other serious injuries that cripple colonists, such as brain scarring.
- Take advantage of cover and prevent enemies from taking advantage of cover. Hiding behind a wall will save you a lot of bullet wounds. Ordering your gunners to target enemies outside of cover will let you shred them.
- Keep your colonists happy. It really doesn’t take much to make sure they’re content. Build a hoop for them to play with, give them their own nice little bedroom, and make sure there’s always food to eat. Colonists that are having constant mental breaks, or teetering on the edge of breaks, aren’t working or otherwise keeping your colony afloat.