If you’re a busy man and want to get both relevant Winterhome achievements in one go, this guide is for you.
100%ing Your Dreadnought on Winterhome Survivor
This is a detailed walkthrough. You will spend a lot of time at normal speed. You will have to micro. It won’t get easier until the very end. Enjoy.
Chapter One: The Bare Essentials
I’ll assume you played Winterhome before – if not, go do it, don’t start a campaign by looking up a walkthrough, you wimp. The long, long list below reiterates all the essential things that need to be done on the first day.
Enter construction mode and go on a road deleting spree. By the time you’re done, you should have over 200 wood without disconnecting any active buildings.
- Make a scouting party immediately. Send it south in search of food.
- Dismantle the three useless steam hubs in the southeast, that’s free 45 steel.
- Build six or so gathering posts. A few good spots are uncovered by deleting roads.
- Man all working posts except the sawmill. Dismantle it, you’ll need heated space.
- Turn on the generator. Start with level one plus overdrive, switch to level two without it once the coal transport arrives.
- Start researching medical post upgrade.
- Relocate the snow pit.
- Get Radical Treatment ASAP. With the pub active you should be able to get it by 07:00. With a little luck none of the gravely ill will die, it’s not the end of the world if they do.
- Get everyone working on the heated ruins near the generator. You’ll be drowning in resources soon.
- Make 3 steam hubs near largest clumps of unheated homes. This is not optional. If you don’t do it on day 1, you’ll get 150+ sick, and they WILL die.
- Start making more medical posts and hunter huts once you have enough wood. Get the latter done before hunting starts. A couple more workshops won’t hurt either, but don’t waste heated area on them.
- Switch the generator back to level 1 plus overcharge in the afternoon to avoid running out of coal.
- Once the day is over, go through the list of buildings. Build extra tents in heated zones and delete cold tents outside them.
- Sign overcrowding around midnight.
Are you done? Congratulations, you’re now ready to deal with the 100+ overnight sick. It’s not going to get better for a while.
Chapter Two: Getting on Your Feet
Now that you made it through the first day, things will get a tiny bit more freeform. Your main two foes for the next few days are cold and hunger. Neither discontent nor hope are an issue unless you screw up badly and get to 0% hope early. Here’s a handful of hints how to make it through the next 3 or so days.
Utilizing your economy
You have massive amounts of labor available. You should employ as many people as possible at all times. Once ruins near the generator are all gathered up, send as many workers as you can out to hunt. Research hunting tactics ASAP so you can send even more hunters out. Build gathering posts on the outer ring to employ all children and make space ASAP. Once you get enough space, make coal thumpers and heat them with a steam hub. Make resource depots so that you never stop gathering.
You have a ton of coal income, 800 coal a day from the outpost and coal thumpers from the get go. Make use of it. You want to run level 2 heating as often as possible, switching to level 1 plus overcharge once you start running low. Get that overcharge bar as high as you please – you need to do everything you can to stop people getting sick. Eventually you’ll want to have enough coal income to run level 2 all the time without the coal outpost.
You have 4 steam cores which need to start working for you ASAP. Get a wall drill since wood reserves dry up quickly. Get 2 hothouses so you can employ children in them, you probably won’t fit a third anywhere. Use the last one however you please, I like keeping it until I can get a steam coal mine.
Stretching resources thin
You’ll get more sick than you can stuff inside fully manned medical posts, even with all the heating and overcrowding. Don’t be afraid to staff your posts with just 4 or 3 engineers, or build extra posts with just one. Getting barely healed is still much better than getting gravely ill and booting out the regular ill, or dying and tanking your hope. Make sure you don’t make matters worse by making people work in very cold places, unless it’s a ruin with people buried underneath.
All the engineers you employ to keep sickness in check will eat into your research, so make sure you focus on the stuff that matters.
- Steam coal mines are nice to have so you can relocate your outpost, more scouts are good, steam steelworks get you better insulation and more precious steel, flying hunters can help achieve a food surplus. Getting advanced steamworks early is a great idea.
- Some stuff can wait, like heaters, faster gathering or insulation.
- A bunch of techs are not worth it IMO, your opinion may differ. Infirmaries, overdrive upgrades, steam thumpers, industrial hothouses, automatons, repair station upgrades are all a waste of time.
Laws are extremely important to get right, given the limited time you have to raise hope. I’ve only ever done Winterhome with order, all the production bonuses are awesome.
- Discontent reduction, soup/sawdust, organ transplants should be avoided. If you’re forced to pick any of these laws, every single more useful law gets passed later. Good use of medical posts and plenty of hunter huts should hold off starvation and sickness just enough.
- Ideally you want to get extended shift right after overcrowding. That boosts all the stuff that can’t be boosted any other way – research, wood/steel, food via hothouses, coal via coal mines.
- After extended shift, beeline propaganda center. This will easily boost your hope to 50%. Get agitators right after for a boost to absolutely everything, then beeline foreman and patrol.
Scouting has three goals: get the steel outpost set up, get the extra engineers, get the steam cores. You can grab observatory engineers first if you want to, I managed without them until I got the other group. Faster scouts shouldn’t be necessary given how few scout locations there are. You also don’t need the risky extra steam core.
- Make sure you cleaned all the special building spots of ruins, you’ll need these, especially the second steelworks.
- Never let your steel / coal production reach a cap. Make those resource depots.
If you’ve done everything right, you should complete your first quest with a day or two to spare and the city back in order.
Chapter Three: Smooth(ish) Sailing from Here
Ideally, by now your city should have a good stockpile of coal, a large surplus of food, both productivity laws and patrol law passed, both engineer groups in town, everything well-heated and sick numbers down to 50 or even 20. Just in time for the generator to start breaking down and the temperature to drop. Things get much more freeform from here on.
You want to complete the coal and food dreadnought requirements ASAP so you don’t have to worry about these ever again. With shrinking population, you might find you’re set for the last week with no production of either.
Steel production is vital in this stage. Get your steelworks heated properly so nobody gets sick, build your agitators, stack emergency shift with foreman, counter discontent with patrol. If stars align, you’ll have your steel right on time, right as the last two-day countdown starts.
Start dealing with your amputees. You’ll need useful labour once you start sending everyone away.
You can afford to keep your repair station adequately staffed for the first two breakdowns, since foreman accelerates repairs a lot. For the last two, make sure you’re fully staffed or you’re going to have a bad time.
Temperature will start dropping to -70, and it gets more brutal as your generator continues to break down. Get that insulation, housing and heaters researched. Expect numbers of sick to climb. Don’t let your medical posts stop working until the very end. House insulation is one of the few highest tier techs worth considering just for this.
Evacuation is the usual deal. Send children, then workers, then engineers. Dismantle the city to save on heating and recover steel. Stop teching at some point and dedicate engineers to medical posts and the repair station. Resolve crises however you want. Dismantle steam core building at the very end and send steam cores in the last transport. If you’re missing steam cores, recall the automaton, but keep in mind it takes two days to reach the city.
If you’re done everything correctly, you should be a proud owner of a fully decked survivor mode dreadnought. Congratulations, and shame on you for needing a guide for that!