Dredged from the Depths: The Isola Experiment


I feel your pain! I’ve tried doing this kind of journal-thread so many times before; but I keep running into small issues (major invasions happening while I purposely haven’t built walls yet, or a bugged building, or the dreaded moment when there’s an awesome new alpha out but I’m right in the middle of a story but I also reaaaaaaaaally want to start a new game to make sure I get all the new features… wait, what do you mean those are “mostly my own fault”?), so I have a ton of aborted journal playthroughs. I really need to go clean out the remnant screenshots from a couple of different folders…

I made the choice ages ago to do the playthrough first, keeping a rough outline of the story preserved in the screenshots, and only start uploading once I’d actually “settled down” – i.e. built up my walls and planned where my major buildings would go, demolished my starting “tents”, and started working on the township quests. Otherwise, I’d also be starting a new journal every couple of days; and I really want to try and make the first one I post into a story with a bit of a conclusion.

A few things which have made my life (and my hearthlings’ lives!) easier:

  • I always pause the game before saving. I find that this helps to prevent the game “forgetting” anything (i.e. maxing out the processor) when I load it back up, because it’s able to load everything first without any tasks actually happening at the time. It also gives me a chance to have a quick look around and remember what was in-progress when I last played, because again, once the tasks are in-progress my own processor can max out and I end up doing silly things like forgetting that I promoted a cook just before saving and I go five days without getting them set up to cook delicious stews (and wonder the whole time why there’s so many veggies that the storage is full…)

  • I have a “dream team” of hearthlings to embark with, and I spend a lot of time re-rolling hearthlings before starting so that I can get something close to that dream. I want a little bit of randomness still, but I also want to know that I’ve got a solid core to get started. This usually means at least a strong footman, an herbalist, a couple of highly intelligent crafters so I can quickly unlock advanced recipes (mostly the larger storage items, since I want to be able to move my early-game camp to its final position in as few trips as possible), a dedicated worker with a reasonably high body stat, and a trapper with a fairly good mind and spirit so they can level up into a shepherd – while the shepherd may not be a great early-game class, when combined with a weaver they allow production of tons and tons of high-value items for trading purposes, and the eggs from poyos are great for feeding a large group of hearthlings easily. Now that traits are a thing, the job of picking the dream team has actually got a bit easier for me – my farmer candidate has to have Green Thumb, my guard/footman has to have a trait which makes them better at defending, and I try to get passionate professionals so that merely doing their day-to-day jobs gives a morale boost. I find that this effort invested into setting up a solid party will pay off once the story starts, since it makes them that much more resilient. I don’t have to worry about an unhappiness spiral killing productivity with slow walk speeds, or not having a defender when the world starts to fight back against my settlement., or so on.

  • When taking a screenshot I pause the game, line everything up nicely, and then start spamming the screenshot key (I use Steam’s F12 function for convenience) as I set the speed to “regular.” This means that during action scenes I have a choice of shots to use, so I don’t run the risk of missing the all-important moment (e.g. when a footman performs a jump attack against a stone golem.) If I ever get motivated enough to do it, then it also means I have the opportunity to make GIFs of key moments.

Those ideas may help you, or they may just make everything more complicated hahaha! Either way, I hope you can find a method to streamline your journal process – I love what you have created so far, I just want to see you get a bit further for your own happiness. I know how frustrating it is to start again and again and again lol. Remember though that we all keep coming back no matter how many times you start again… so you’re doing something right!


Gather around, and hear the tale of a madwoman…

After several of her initial experiments had fallen prey to misfortune, the Benefactor decided to do the rational thing and end them…
HAH! Of course she actually just decided to go on them herself alongside what few brave souls she could rally to accompany her.

We should give them proper introductions. It only seems right:

Tinao Xao: Engineer prospect
Mind: 6, Body: 5, Spirit: 4; Trait: Featherweight
A brilliant and capable young woman who’s light on her feet

Marwen Lewulf: Captain of the Guard
Mind: 3, Body: 5, Spirit: 6; Traits: Charismatic, Courageous
An old soul from the Capital city, given the choice of retirement or accompanying the new settlement. Don’t ask about his eye. No, seriously, please don’t ask him, the story never takes less than an hour…

Brother Sun Badger: Naturalist
Mind: 3, Body: 6, Spirit: 4; Trait: Green Thumb
Found wandering the forest, claims to be good with plants, so taken in to the community in exchange for doing the agricultural work

Lokiat Betrunkene: Physician
Mind: 3, Body: 5, Spirit: 5; Traits: Charismatic, Excitable
At least, I’m fairly certain he said he’s studying to be a healer within that very verbose introduction he gave…no, before the story about the kitten gave his sister for her birthday, after the speal about how amazing the caravan looked…

Emmie Schnee: Whittler
Mind: 6, Body: 2, Spirit 4; Trait: Animal Companion, Fox
There is a little suspicion regarding the concept that Tom truly brings her wood to carve and wasn’t just playing a game of fetch, but that will be reviewed later…

Miaxu Lynx: Animal Specialist
Mind: 5, Body: 1, Spirit: 5; Trait: Charismatic
While a bit fragile, Miaxu insists she is quite capable when it comes to trapping and herding animals. Despite some skepticism, she is being given a chance to show her skill.

The Benefactor: The Reason We’re Here
Mind: ?, Body: ?, Spirit: ?; Trait(s): ?, ?

(Actual: Mind: 2, Body: 5, Spirit: 4; Traits: Cultist, Pack Mule)

Our supply caravan:

Our destination map:

After a great debate between the Bard and the Benefactor - which included a great deal of name calling and incoherent rambling in what is hoped to be another language, it was decided that this was the best looking starting area of the new region:

It was a compromise; the Benefactor wanted to start directly in the valley, but the Bard rationed that it would be a better idea to find a starting “camp” location, and hold the valley as a “promised land” of sorts for once they were ready to establish a true town. Scouring the outer areas, the Benefactor saw the two Stone Rabbits of this area, and would hear no concerns regarding following a smaller area that would be easier to secure. So we settled down here, reasonably content with the amount of berries, and the nearby lake for fishing.

As the campsite was being set, another argument ensued between the Bard and the Benefactor, and the former decided to take leave; though with promise to return once we were a bit better established, wishing us luck. As well as a comment about needing it for our survival…it was rather concerning.

And now I, your glorious Benefactor, will save a record of everything in my journal, lest we forget one detail that I can rub in that over-dramatic storyteller’s nose when she does return!


(Roughly here, I think)


Ehm…the Benefactor wishes to know if anyone has any idea what this is about:

release-763 (x64)[M]
std::logic_error: 'Calling iterator method on non-iteratable: find’
stack traceback:
[C]: ?
[C]: in function 'load’
stonehearth/components/fixture/fixture_component.lua:10: in function <stonehearth/components/fixture/fixture_component.lua:6>
[C]: in function 'resume’
stonehearth/services/server/threads/thread.lua:469: in function '_do_resume’
stonehearth/services/server/threads/thread.lua:74: in function 'resume_thread’
stonehearth/services/server/threads/thread.lua:26: in function ‘loop’
…nehearth/services/server/threads/threads_service.lua:11: in function 'instance’
radiant/modules/events.lua:291: in function <radiant/modules/events.lua:285>
[C]: in function 'xpcall’
radiant/modules/common.lua:265: in function 'xpcall’
radiant/modules/events.lua:285: in function 'trigger’
radiant/modules/events.lua:398: in function '_trigger_gameloop’
radiant/modules/events.lua:446: in function '_update’
radiant/server.lua:61: in function <radiant/server.lua:58>
release-763 (x64)[M]
c++ exception: lua runtime error
stack traceback:
[C]: in function 'create_entity’
radiant/modules/entities.lua:24: in function 'create_entity’
stonehearth/ai/actions/produce_crafted_items.lua:136: in function '_add_outputs_to_bench’
stonehearth/ai/actions/produce_crafted_items.lua:26: in function <stonehearth/ai/actions/produce_crafted_items.lua:21>
[C]: ?
[C]: ?
[C]: ?
[C]: ?
[C]: in function ‘run’
…tonehearth/services/server/tasks/run_task_action.lua:143: in function <…tonehearth/services/server/tasks/run_task_action.lua:141>
[C]: ?

[C]: in function 'run’
stonehearth/components/ai/ai_component.lua:607: in function <stonehearth/components/ai/ai_component.lua:591>
[C]: in function 'xpcall’
radiant/modules/common.lua:265: in function 'xpcall’
stonehearth/components/ai/ai_component.lua:591: in function '_thread_main’
stonehearth/services/server/threads/thread.lua:273: in function <stonehearth/services/server/threads/thread.lua:270>
[C]: in function 'xpcall’
radiant/modules/common.lua:265: in function 'xpcall’
stonehearth/services/server/threads/thread.lua:270: in function 'f’
radiant/lib/env.lua:15: in function <radiant/lib/env.lua:14>


Aside from that very…odd message that appeared in the middle of our work, today has been a most productive day!

Under my great guidance and leadership by example, we have carved out a little spot; the trees cut down, the bushes moved over to an easily accessed harvesting location right next to our new stockpile, and the crafters have their work stations down.

In fact, I had to take a pause in the mining task I was assisting with to congratulate Tina on her hard work!

Miaxu and Emmie took a short break to chat; it seems Miaxu has some thoughts about the use of clay. I wonder if she’d be interested in a hobby in pottery…

And everyone stopped to dine on berries, enjoying the evening sunset. Even me!

The beginnings of our wall. It’ll be a great wall. To keep out all the nasty, mean things out there. Especially stupidhead goblins. And wolves; bitey, growly rude beasts…

Oh, as well as a makeshift resting area. Just a temporary setup, but Sun Badger kept yawning, which would make Marwen yawn, and get me yawning…so I agreed it would be a worthwhile investment. For now.

But if they’re going to be sleepyheads, then I shall continue to work on my first grand design myself!

…after a quick snack

…and a short nap

A nap does sound like a good idea. Game saved for now (double slot) - more to come!


Aha, still no signs of that silly Bard! Though, also no signs of anyone else. Hmm…perhaps I need to take some special measures to start attracting more people! Yeeesss…
…what do you mean “food might help”? Bah! Fine, we shall start amassing more food as well…

I have laid down the directions for our first temporary abode! A lovely little place for our hard working carpenter; isn’t it precious? Hopefully our building team can do it justice!

But we ARE quite the amazing team, so I am certain it is going to turn out just glorious~

It seems Sun Badger is quite fond of little Tom! How nice.

You also really have to appreciate such a hard working crafter! Well done, Emmie!

This abode really is quite the project. But it’s a labor of love. I know Emmie will appreciate it as much as we appreciate her!

Oh, my! Tina! Why didn’t you tell me sooner how much of an expert you were becoming? This is fantastic! We’ll have better material than stone for you to work with soon, but for now, do keep up the wonderful work!

It came out like a dream! :heart: Let’s get you moved in, Emmie! Tut tut!

As the sun is starting to set on our second day here, I can’t help but reflect on how much we have already started to accomplish…and how much more there still is to do.

Jesse Vexed, a Rugged Survivalist, stopped by. We traded some of Tina’s finely crafted furnishings to her and purchased some lovely pelts for the artisans to work with :smiley:


Had a brief morning chat with the other ladies. They questioned the mandatory Bunny Pendants for all female residents. I…I do not understand.

Tom! Foxes do NOT belong on the bed!!

Oh, right…that food thing. I should have someone start on that. SUN BADGER! GO GRAB A HOE AND START PLANTING SEEDS! Hehe, he seems eager to start farming, just look at him rushing off! :smiley:

Good to see your new home/workshop has inspired you, Emmie!


The next few days will involve much drudgery; building up Tina’s masonry shop in the same fashion as Emmie’s carpentry one, and digging out the area for the Inn, where everyone else will stay, as well as digging out our first mineshaft. Between the mineshaft and our new farm fields, we will begin to build up supplies for our journey towards our true destination, in the heart of the Valley.

With any luck, more travellers will come and join us before we relocate. …maybe even including that blasted Bard. I’m actually starting to miss her, if just to have someone other than Tom to argue with…


Uh…apparently we all truly hate stone golems, for EVERYONE rushed over to punch them at least once each despite the town alert - well, except for me. I was busy;

What do you mean, things look different? Nothing is different! It’s not as if we used some kind of temporal magic to go back to the first day of our expedition to do things over again. That’s crazy! You’re crazy!

…okay, I confess! I used the Reload spell to return us to the first day! I just was discontent with the layout of our little encampment and wanted to start it again. Please don’t tell the others, they don’t realize I have such power! :cry:


If you use the latest versions of PawelAPI I guess I’ll just sit in the corner and start crying. I thought this bug is gone.


Um, oh dear, let me check my version!

…I’m not sure how to do that. Does the manifest info help?

Last Modified date in the file is October 15 (for the manifest)


It should be 1.0b which is the latest version. This means I need to re-investigate the bug :frowning:


A few seasons later…

The Bard had found the Benefactor buried in decayed, fallen trees and burnt out ruins; she dragged her away, scolding her and telling her tales on the way back to the city in vain hope that she may learn from the experiences.

When she got her next order to accompany a settlement caravan, the strung her lute and prepared for the trip with high spirits; they dipped slightly when she saw the unmistakable bright hair adorned by a golden bunny…

At least she wasn’t preaching to the other travellers or handing out pendants; perhaps she actually learned and has changed? She could only presume it was to be seen…for now, she decided to learn the stories of the others accompanying her

Yuwen, a dusky-skinned young man with an affinity for chasing down animals, including the one that he had befriended - a little squirrel he named Nutter. The Bard couldn’t help but chuckle a bit at the cute nickname, offering his fuzzy friend one of her berries.

Walking alongside the caravan’s wagon was Eishin, an excitable young man playing with his practice sword and shying away from conversations when addressed. With a little coaxing, the Bard learned of his family; the parents that took him in when he was very small, the sisters that he protected from bullies growing up, and how it inspired him to become a guard, with the dreams of becoming a knight someday.

Then there was Mishel Carsan, a former military man who lost his nerve after being stationed in a former colony that was overrun by goblins; the Bard had found him holed within one of the ruined buildings, having converted the inside to a workshop and used what scraps of supplies he could find to survive until he was recovered. She was happy to catch up with him, and was certain his work would benefit the town to be.

Wynaut Anders wasn’t the chattiest fellow, trudging along carrying the extra supplies. The Bard could see signs that he once was a much heartier fellow, which left her wondering all the more what his story was. But alas, he offered only token reactions to her jokes, and listened in without comment to any of the tales. A stoic fellow, she could only hope to hear more about him around the campfire.

Lokiat was an impressive man with a charming smile, fiddling with a quilt he was working on - he explained that each patch was from a significant memory or person from his life. He told the stories for the first two, and the Bard couldn’t help but notice the vagueness of most of them, along with the sadness in his eyes…

Kantrine spoke passionately about all things related to food - growing an herb and vegetable garden, cooking her own soups and stews, jarring fruits and juicing berries; it made the Bard smile listening to the passion with which she spoke…even when butting in on other’s conversations on other subjects, while her squirrel companion chased after Nutter playfully.

And well…there was her. She didn’t speak up often, but the others were always suddenly attentive when she did. It made the Bard a bit nervous, for she couldn’t help but think that the old tricks were still in play, just more subtly than on previous occasions…

The Scouts’ reports that Kitty the Bard had for the area in the Spires of the Spikey Biome. She looked forward to seeing the crystalline blue waters up close for herself.

The early camp was settled at the base of one of the Spires, of course, but it was on a shoreline. It looked beautiful at a glance, with lots of prospects based off scaling up to the ledges to build up properly.

And so, they set to work on the start of their new home; and Kitty the Bard prepared herself for the trip back to the city, to report in and request an extended stay with the settlers.


I’ve started a town in that biome, and I love it, though right now I’ve run into the limits of what Hearthlings can build and mine and I’ve had to cheat a little bit. And I’m always running out of wood since I decided to settle on/inside one of the mountains. I’m looking forward to seeing what you can do with a little more reasonable start.


@Kittyodoom @coasterspaul cant wait to see what you guys have made of my biome :3


The Bard reflected on those early days as she traveled back to where she knew the colony had first settled.

Beds had been setup right away, and berry bushes moved closer, along with some silkweed and flowers that were discovered nearby as well. It didn’t hurt to start building up resources right away, and good sleep was important.

Katrine and Nori started putting in a garden to get a better stock of food at the ready.

A well was put in to help keep everyone hydrated as well, albeit a simple wooden one.

Oh no! Stonelings! But fortunately, Eishin jumped straight into action, grabbing his basic sword and beating it against them!

The Bard must take a moment to appreciate how awesome this looks, and how much she intends to further build on it somehow.

Fishies! The Benefactor was going to make a fishing pier, but ended up with a bit of a fish farm courtesy of how the fishing currently works. It didn’t seem that surprising that the Benefactor was the one who took up fishing out of our number…