How a completely new player struggles with the game. [Video]

Hello there,

Someone on Reddit posted a couple of videos of how he played Stonehearth for the first time and it perfectly shows what problems new players encounter. It’s nice to look at how he figures out the most basic stuff we all already know for years, but it also shows that this game really needs a tutorial overhaul. Shortly after the tutorial endet, he was completely lost and didn’t know what to do. Sure, there are players who are willing to spend their time pocking around and see what happens, but there are surely quite a lot players who might feel not so explorative and quit the game frustrated.

I think the developers can learn a lot from videos like this and see where they can guide the player better so they don’t feel lost so early.



Wow. I take so many aspects of the game for granted.

It’s good that the devs have started making a tutorial phase of the game. although I think it would be a bit better as it’s own separate game mode in a microworld like what they use to test features. A small tutorial that shows game controls, a break-down of what the different stats mean, how to harvest, build, defend but you can only progress so far before it’s done. Maybe limit it to just 5 hearthlings that the game prompts you to turn into a carpenter, farmer, trapper, footman and lets you know that you should keep at least one as a worker for gathering and building. Farm one plot, set up a trapping zone, craft something, complete just one small house, defend against one small invasion, and done.


I watched the video and kept wanting to tell him, what to do next.

@Wewius, thank you so much for sharing this! As @Shurakai and @Geokhan stated, it is really hard for those of us who have been playing for a long time to really see how first-time players interact. I can imagine that this will be huge for @Linda the next time she works on the tutorial. My first takeaway was that the tutorial doesn’t start until after you launch a game. Until then, you have no idea what the stats are (he thought 5 was the highest), how the store works (he tried to drag and drop the trapper’s knife), and what the map stats are. Many games put you right into a tutorial on first launch, perhaps that could happen with Stonehearth?

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Thanks so much for sharing this! We’re passing it around the internal Slack as a team.

In terms of tutorialization and micro-goaling, I definitely agree that those are areas we need much better conveyance on as a whole. Making sure the game is approachable is of high value for me for sure, so I’m hoping we can make continual forward progress on this with each Alpha. Reworking the tutorial will be a bigger task, but also something that likely needs to be done.


I’m happy to see the positive response to this post from the staff. It really shows how everyone can contribute to make this game the best it can be.

The game is intuitive and easy to play. I think a lot of the problem is when people make videos they worry about people getting bored so they don’t take the time to actually read the tooltips and menus. We all know it can be hard to carry on a conversation and think critically about any task you are doing and any video maker is doing that constantly. With that in mind I don’t think that this series should be seen as the “typical” new player experience.

LOL so did I, it was a trip trying to urge him this way or that and his stockpile at first :sweat_smile: