Some thoughts on chicken keeping

Since stonehearth isn’t the kind of game to let animal-care get too unrealistic (in the future, at least.) Let me put out my thoughts on chicken keeping, since Tom modeled those chickens on yesterday’s stream.

  • Make a chicken keeper class! The shepherd is not a chicken-herd! Plus, I’m pretty sure the shepherd is gonna have plenty of animals to look after in the future, so let’s not add chickens and other kinds of fowl to that bunch! Plus, at mastery level, I can see all kinds of fowl coming to town… (Chocobo’s and cockatrice? PENGUINS!?)
  • Chicken’s need coop’s, not just a fenced-in pen! Although they can have a fence around the front of the coop, they still need a coop, nevertheless. This is because chicken’s are birds, which makes them cold-blooded, which means they need a nice, warm place to stay during the night and winter. (Although I can picture a warm-hearted chicken keeper spending a cold winter’s night in the coop, with his birds, to make sure none of them get too cold.)

How will we designate building’s as coops, you ask? Simple. Chicken furniture. Putting any kind of chicken furniture in a building (As in piles of hay to sleep on, little gates and stairs, etc.) would automatically designate it as a chicken coop, thus, the chicken keeper will keep chickens in there at night, and will keep the chickens in fields you designate during the day. And although you can keep chickens and hearthlings in the same building, the hearthlings don’t like it too much, seeing as the chickens will sleep on their beds, flip out when provoked, mark up the place, and, yes, poo on things.

Tell me what you guys think, and I’ll see ya later!

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If you make a class for everything you’ll end up with no workers. People are absolutely the most important resource in the game…


I didn’t say make a class for everything. It’s not like I have anything to do with the 7+ workers I have by the point at which my game is to bugged to play anymore, which is long after the goblin campaign. People being the most important resource is indubitable, but chicken’s have special needs, and, eventually, when you’re at the point of the game (so far) where man-power is at a surplus, I think you could spare one person to care for the chickens.

I feel like that would take up a LOT of space. The way walls/roofs are done in Stonehearth, even a small coop would take up a massive amount of real estate, and be ridiculously tall. I think a better plan would be to simply do it in a “rabbit hole” style.

A Chicken Coop is an object built by a Carpenter, and is placed like any other object (like Crates and whatnot). It takes up a small amount of space, and can hold X number of Chickens. At night, Chickens automatically seek out the nearest coop for the night. If there’s no coop with free space, they sleep under the stars, but produce 50% of the normal number of eggs for 24 hours.

The key is to make the game rich and full without making it unnecessarily complicated.


I totally agree with you on a chicken coop being an object instead. It would (Obviously) take a smaller effort to make, and not take up as much space. The only issue is I wanted to look into the chicken coop… oh well! Like I said, a craftable chicken coop would ultimately be the best solution, but my only issue is the size of the coop. It would have to be small enough to be meant for chickens, large enough for the chicken keeper to get in so he can check on the chickens at night and get the eggs… So what say you? (and no, I haven’t a clue where I could find a picture of a medieval chicken coop.)

My grandma used to keep chickens. The coop was too small for a person. You just opened a door on the side to get eggs and stuff.

I heart this! I heart this very much! The mental image of a hearthling clad in feathers and leather, holding a feed bucket in one hand and a chicken tucked under his other arm…standing proudly on a rock over looking his chicken grounds as the sun rises and his cocks crow…and in a mighty hearthling voice he bellows, “I AM the chicken keeper! All shall fear me or go without hotwings!”

Personally, I’d like the chicken to be a low-level livestock that the Farmer’s able to take care of alongside crops. Obviously, having more of both will mean needing more Farmers, and if you have two workers perhaps you could set a priority for each of them to focus on one or the other. This way, the player won’t have to spread their classes and workers as thin at this early, demanding point of the game.

However, later on the player should have to level the unit in one direction or the other–crops and plants perhaps leading to something like an Agriculturalist and the livestock going the route of the Rancher (which was actually mentioned in the original mock-up of class progression from the Kickstarter).

Agreed. But if it DOES go this route, I’d hope for a few variations to fit different biomes (rather than one generic wood design). Perhaps a sandstone-esque coop for arid biomes, or more overgrown and natural for deep forests or jungles.


Honestly, I don’t think the chicken keeper should be accessible until later, when workers aren’t so thinly spread, for two reasons:

1: To prevent workers being thinly spread!
2: Because chickens actually produce a large-ish plethora of items, such as feathers for quills and arrows, chicken meat, eggs and so on.

(Although, I will have to edit some details on my chicken keeper class idea I’m working on!)

As for biome-based coops, I’m all for it, seeing as I do like myself some aesthetic flavoring! Perhaps classes like the blacksmith could eventually upgrade the coop with iron grating? Perhaps we could even have different looking coops for different races? (For example, the ascendancy’s would look a tad bit generic, Raya’s children could have a cute-mini pagoda, Goblins could have something that looks similar to their houses, The lagomorphs could have a little dirt-hill coop…)

Edit: I realized that if we are to have farmers that look after chickens, then we’ll need to fix the farmer’s productivity issue. Regardless, chickens shouldn’t be accessible until later into what is so far the game.

I whole-heartedly agree with atralane, I don’t necessarily think there needs to be a dedicated class for chickens but instead have the farmer do it, maybe there needs to be a level 1 or 2 farmer, and the coop would be crafted by the carpenter. To me that sounds the best and most realistic.


+1 to this, as my farmers seem to be sitting around 60% of the time, watching crops grow.

Not a fan of the coop, I’m more of a cow-briolet guy myself. Mostly because I picture chickens as being attackable by goblins, adding pressure to keep them somewhere relatively safe where they can still run from baddies!

Makes you wonder if foxes will become a nuisance later on.

The solution to that, is simple. Goblins could smash the coop into little bits and put your chickens on the run!

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The coop would be more of a way to keep the chickens safe from natural elements, not mobs like goblins (at least in my interpretation). So once weather like rain and cold get added, this structure would help regulate the chickens’ environment (with maybe some maintenance, like adding straw for warmth and occasional repair.

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Lots of people keep chickens. They are a lot less labor intense than “real livestock” like sheep or pigs. I like the idea of chickens being available fairly early rather than an upgrade from farmer or like shepherd is from trapper. Maybe you can keep chickens just by building the coop with the carpenter, but they only produce eggs until your farmer or perhaps shepherd learns the “butchering” skill to actually get meat. That doesn’t feel quite right either, but I think a coop that can be “harvested” for eggs by anyone just like a berry bush is the way to go.

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So what would be the problem of having the carpenter just make a chicken feed trough out of wood? This could be placed in any type of building you could imagine. *For a upgrade to having more chickens the blacksmith can make it metal. You could also have them construct a chicken nesting spot (just something for the chickens to nest in (small box shaped, able to place next to each other like beds n such, a place to gather the eggs - maybe feathers for a bed/clothing upgrade?!).

+1 to farmers taking care of the chicken