Hard mode tweak. More health for footmen

I’ll be honest. Hard mode is challenging. A bit too challenging for footmen. I can barely have more than 5 villagers because of wolves or heaven forbid 2 varanuses (that was fun…) just charge you when you start out. Even with 4 stone mauls and padded leather breastplates, once the 4th trader rolls around day 3. Boom pack of wolves. Footmen fight and I still lose 2 footmen after the battle.

I would like to propose a health tweak for hard mode for footmen or offense/defense classes so they are equally or just a tad more matched with hard mode characters. I’ve gone through save after save. Ascendancy after ascendancy. Varanus after Varanus. And my footmen (or in one instance, 4 villagers) die once wolves or a Varanus comes along. Once I get fences up. Then I’m safe until I forget to grab wood and berries. Then we starve until they despawn.

I so far have one save where everyone is 50% or lower on health. We have food and drink. But my footmen can’t go out because then I have to put the tombstone on cemetery Hill… I don’t want to do that. And the next villager I got couldn’t run inside in time… I would love a small tweak. But if I can figure out a way to get footmen from dying. Then no tweak is needed. But this has plagued me for about 50 saves. I need advice please.

I’ll be doing a review of the different difficulties some point in the next few months, including how hearthlings heal and die. I’ll be sure to take a specific look at Footman health once I get there. Thanks for the feedback!

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Just adding health to footmen only means that they take even longer to heal back up to full. That’s why knights are so much better than footmen for soaking damage - their pools of health are roughly similar in size (knights are a bit higher) but because of their armor, they take much less damage and can be effectively healed by a cleric during battle.

Perhaps you need to avoid using footmen? I’ve played a couple hard mode games, and I didn’t have too much trouble with this setup: Take herbalist staff from initial buy-up. Get two farmers on day one, and as soon as one levels up, plant herbs. Make two footmen while rushing cleric. You should have the cleric by about day four (day 3 might be possible), and two footmen should be able to keep up with fights for the first four days, especially if you use the town militia soft-cheat (keep a bunch of shields and wooden swords laying about, and if a fight looks at all tough, go into town defense before the fight starts to get everyone together, then change your workers to footmen for the duration of the fight). Assuming you had a 6 Mind crafter crank a few levels of carpenter then pick up mason and blacksmith, you may actually have a knight before you get a cleric. Then you can split your footmen to knight+knight or knight+archer; but generally, I tried in my hard mode games to avoid keeping footmen around for any length of time.

Your experience may vary, but to me, footmen are totally useless. They only exist as a stopping point on the way to a class that isn’t terrible.

I handle this by just getting my footmen+villagers to fight the early waves of enemies. Might be annoying but it works.

I also rush archers like nobodies business. 3 footmen+2 archers can handle it until at least day 20-25.

Update: Ive been horribly using @Aviex’s strategy, my footmen even though they have 6 health, they don’t fight, and eventually die before the “Miltia” can get to their aid, I just need to develop a new strategy, i like @MostlyLost’s strategy, I will consider that, my recent save just got corrupted, so ill test a new world with these strategies, thanks!