While some of nature’s dangers are obvious, taking the form of animal attacks or severe weather, but others are invisible, and more nefarious. Diseases can debilitate the population and fill graveyards if not handled properly.
A severe outbreak of an illness can have a knock-on effect, with bed-ridden villagers not working and thus not producing critical resources such as food and firewood, which can lead to starvation and exposure to the elements, and further death.
Ultimate Guide to Health
Illness can strike villagers in many forms. Drinking water from a nearby lake can increase the risk of acquiring parasites or developing dysentery. Malnutrition from lack of Vitamin C can cause villagers to develop scurvy. Others are seasonal, such as the flu or common cold.
Some conditions are not illnesses at all, but occur from injuries. Villagers living without shoes can develop foot injuries or sprained ankles. Workers in mines are at higher risk of breaking limbs. Soldiers risk their lives in combat as every injury has the potential to become a dangerous festering wound.
Not all ailments are deadly and can lead to an eventual recovery, but some can progress into more deadly conditions, for example flu turning into pneumonia or untreated hypothermia developing into gangrene.
A house with a sick villager is marked.
Some serious health conditions can cause villagers to become bed-ridden. This is often a temporary state as the villager recovers from whatever ails them, but it can also turn into a permanent crippling disability.
Villagers that are bed-ridden no longer work and are not contributing to the town’s productivity.
There are a number of methods to minimize and even treat illness in Farthest Frontier. The best solution is of course prevention.
You can avoid water-borne pathogens by providing clean water with Wells. Clearing homes of waste by employing a nightsoil man at a Compost Yard will prove critical to maintaining cleanliness. Likewise, a steady supply of soap will ensure clean conditions and minimize the spread of disease.
Outfitting your people with shoes can mitigate the risk of worms and tetanus; meanwhile, hide coats reduce the risk of developing hypothermia when out in the cold, or rabies from wolf bites.
Rats, if allowed to spread, inevitably lead to bites that can cause rat bite fever (yes, that’s a real thing!). The fleas they carry can lead to an outbreak of one of the deadliest diseases to ever strike the human race: the bubonic plague. A rat catcher and properly stored grain can ensure this tragedy never blights your settlements.
When these measures fail and villagers do get sick, there is still hope for a remedy and eventual recovery.
A Healer’s House helps treat sick villagers and get them back on their feet.
A Healer’s House is not only a place for villagers to seek treatment and medicinal herbs, it is also a means to quarantine sick villagers away from the general population and minimize the spread of contagious illnesses.
Sick villagers will seek out the nearest Healer’s House if there is a sick bed available. Villagers that became incapacitated in combat cannot make the journey on their own, but their fellow settlers will see that they are brought to the healer as soon as possible. If the healer is at capacity, they will have to fend for themselves, where they face not only diminished chances of recovery but also the risk of spreading contagious diseases.
A Healer’s House can be upgraded to a Hospital, which has a larger capacity and can provide medicine, a much more effective remedy than herbs and snake oil.
Without a healer in town, villagers have to rely on self-treatment in their homes, which not only increases the risk of complications but makes it more likely for a disease to spread to others.
Note that a Healer’s House requires at least a basic education for a villager to work in it.
An Apothecary Shop can process Willow and Medicinal Roots into Medicine.
While some conditions can be treated with time and rest, many benefit from medicine to soothe pain and facilitate the body’s ability to heal.
Herbs are a natural remedy that can help reduce the risk of death in some cases, but they are not potent enough on their own to treat severe conditions. They are the best tool a starting out settlement has, however.
More potent medicine can be produced at an Apothecary Shop using Willow, Honey, and Medicinal Roots. Access to Medicine can often spell the difference between a lethal combat injury and a full recovery.