Learning "Basic" Building Design

The title might be misleading, but I’ve never been terribly good at titling things. I had an idea to design a simple monastery, one that I thought could provide for a small number of hearthlings. My design includes 6 small rooms, a space for an infirmary/herbalist, a dining hall with adjacent kitchen and pantry space, an annex with small divider to provide for a carpenter and mason, a central field capable of an 11x11 space of tilled land, even a spare room upstairs for either storage or a weaver or something. Happy with the general look of my design, utilizing all vanilla parts I believe, I decided to see how readily a group of six hearthlings could actually build this monastery.

Oh boy.

I selected Ascendancy as I used carpenter’s furniture pieces in the original design, in the Temperate biome, and on Normal difficulty. I didn’t spend overly long on getting “the best” hearthlings, though I did roll a couple of times to get a Divine Soul from Kaimonkey’s traits…that may or may not have been a mistake. I tried to get near both water and stone since I had built the walls out of stone and have BrunoSupremo’s Archipelago mod for a fisherman to help feed them. I embarked and immediately had them clear some trees and started the construction. This job was not so simple as I had initially surmised.

They embarked at the beginning of the Spring season and by early Summer construction was well on its way. But they were cold and upset that they had nowhere to sleep so I diverted attention just long enough to build a shack large enough for six beds and some tables to eat at. All told, with that distraction, regular entlings and stonelings and even wolves! my enforced 6 hearthlings took until the end of the 1st day of Autumn to build the monastery and furnish it. My carpenter had long ago reached level 6. My fisherwoman helped keep us alive, but provided little else. She could only fish and haul things to the storage zone. My divine soul did keep everyone safe and alive during attacks, but likewise could do nothing to assist the building efforts. Without the auxiliary sleeping shack my town worth (monastery, a scattered few unused chairs, and lots of left over ore and wood logs) was 7470. Plenty enough, if I’d had the food, for way more than 6 hearthlings.

So I suppose the lesson is, if you think you’ve built something “basic” for your hearthlings to start out in, maybe take a longer look at the actual scale of the project. I think there’s a reason some of the tier 1 buildings are one hearthling shacks approximately 7x9 blocks inside (or thereabouts, I haven’t actually measured). I think what I designed fits more readily as a “town center” size build. I still enjoy it and may actually work on a township that utilizes it, but…man…did I ever misjudge how quickly it would be built.

Upside, the hearthlings never actually got stuck! So…you know…kudos for a solid build I suppose XD


Yeah, bigger projects require a lot of pre infrastructures. My biggest city was all already planned in my head, but it was only when I got around 20 hearthlings that I started the first proper house. Before that, I would build little slum houses for each new person, with just enough room for a bed and a chair. It ended up looking nice and very organic, and was fun seeing the progress replacing the slums one by one with proper bigger houses.


I always fall into the trap of “Oh, I’ll just build a little camp/temporary shelter here, put down a few roads and then build houses for everyone right away.” The reality is more like I’ll have a sprawling open-air workshop beside a large “tent”/marquee with a roof on poles and no walls, beds for all my hearthlings crammed in around the campfire, and piles of crates and other containers nearby. Once I get to around 15 hearthlings I start building houses properly, but usually there’s a mad scramble to complete other “defensive” structures (walls etc.) and workshop buildings first.

In my most recent town which I would call “developed”, I’d completed all the major campaigns including Gary and had a fully-fledged army of max-level soldiers (mix of types), full-level crafters of every variety, food stockpiled for almost a year, and some 20,000 gold stored before I finally got my housing and roads finished :rofl:


I have this really bad habit of spending hours upon hours building a large city from the start, so I never try to build ‘basic’

It’s either grandeous or nothing xD

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That’s me as well. But the most interesting design I went for was making a hole in a mountain and then using the outer part as a wall with a loggia-like Rayya’s city in the middle, it was very convenient to work with because I could use the caves I created while digging as temporary shelters. This was in A23 I think so things were very buggy, I’ll try something like that again and post screenshots when I’m done with Archmod and next release of Lostems (and I have to look at how ACE team implemented autoharvest, they altered it a lot so if it is faster than mine I’ll try to rewrite that monster for standalone edition).

As far as I can read in outnumbered in my building habits. Then again Im on building design nr 17 of the same building… Kerbal space program mindset at work there: build it, make it better… A 2 person 13x13 house thats low, A-frame and thus takes less blocks (faster to build) but because I dig Into the floor slightly it’s still nice for the hearthlings. Also, functional chimney to make use of my fireplaces… At one point I even had a seperate roof and walls blueprint from the floor, so I could have different prefab Insides…

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That “build as you go, replace later” approach would work a lot better, if it were possible to change buildings without tearing them down entirely though :frowning: