Right now I have the feeling, that it’s not really worth getting better or even cooked food. Yes, your hearthlings feel more comfortable when you give them enough luxuary like housing, comfortable beds/chairs and a good viarety of food. But at some point you easily manage to get 7+ comfort (have forgotten how that stat is called) and it will take very long until you need more then that in order to get more hearthlings.
So I thought: How would a cool food system look like?
I think there should be food achievements and as long as you fullfill the requirements for the food achievements, your hearthlings should have certain benefits. To give an example:
Vegetarian: Have your hearthling eat 3 or more different vegetables
- Hearthling gets 10% movement speed
Meat Eater: Have your hearthling eat 2 or more different meat types
- Hearthling gets 10% slower hungry
Balanced Eater: Have your hearthling eat 3 or more different vegetables and 2 or more different meat types
- Hearthling gets 15% movement speed and 20% slower hungry
Advanced Eater: Have your hearthling eat 2 different cooked food types
- Hearthling gets 20% movement speed and 30% slower hungry, needs 20% less sleep and recovers health double as fast when recovering/sleeping
These achievements do not stack! Only your best Achievement will work.
Those numbers and stats are just examples, but it would make it really worth to have a cook or two, since those stats can really make a difference!
Another option would be, that every food type has it’s own buff and that these buffs last 2 days. For example:
Carrot provides 10% more movement speed
Corn provides 10% more health
At Day 1, hearthling eats a carrot. Buff lasts 2 days.
At Day 2, hearthling will prefer to eat corn, since he already got the carrot buff
At Day 3, hearthling will eat carrot since the buff is gone and corn buff is still active
This way, food buffs can stack, but only to a limited amount. It also gives the player the chance to focus on specific food types to get those specific buffs. If you are a military focused player, having carrots and corn at the beginning is very useful, since movement speed and health is really nice. On the other side, other food types could enhance building/crafting speed etc., which is better suited for players who focus on ernlarging their town and have a focus on producing products.