3-weeks FF experience feedback

Hi, I’m sorceresslulu, I’m playing city-builders a lot and I would like to share my feedback on 3-weeks FF experience. I spent my vacations playing FF and I have no regrets, it was truly amazing, fresh and solid city-builder experience. Also please don’t mind my English, no C2 but I do try my best.

As far as I have 1000+ hours spent on Banished, I would like to not treat FF as “better Banished” and I did all the best to not compare FF with Banished during my playthroughs. I would like to admit and r8 10/10 how deep FF actually is. It took me several towns abandoned to learn basics and advanced mechanics, I truly believe that I still not learned some mechanics here. This is really great to see how spoilage system works really great, how resource limits allows to tune up the town and many and many more. Thanks a lot to devs for a great game they are developing, it’s truly amazing even with Early-Access state!

There are some points I would like to share, but please don’t mind if these points could be wrong.

1. Taverns should not allow visitors to wear weapons

There are two issues with taverns:

  • Drunk soldiers can destroy half of town
  • There are no non-cheesy ways to deal with drunk people

A drunk soldier wearing plate and heavy weapon may randomly massacre in the middle of town. I got 31 ppl record on some of these soldiers once, not sure why he got so angry, but the problem here that it’s not possible to shutdown him - he’s not a hostile target and it’s not possible to kill that guy. Last time I just sent drunked soldier to the very long road somewhere and it’s kinda resolves issue sometimes.

EDIT: IMO there could be 2 options:

a) Drunk person should not be allowed to be controlled by player, but it should be allowed to kill him. Sending guards to eliminate a treat seems as balanced solution here
b) Drunk citizens should not use weapons, i.e. “no weapons allowed in tavern”

2. Graveyards and sandbox experience

As I experienced with 1200 population (yes, I used a mod for it), graveyards become a real issue. Every year it’s about +30 new graves appears even when no one dies from raiders / diseases / anything else. Currently graveyars fills too quickly and my town will be a great placing soon for another Dark Souls game.

This issue may be resolved by graveyards freeing space over time. Only truly real heroes will be rembered for more than 150 years and we have statues lol. This suggestion will allow true infinitive sandbox experience + it will not hurt gameplay, because we should anyway maintain more than enough graveyards.

3. Maximum population limit as perfomance option

There are very solid reasons to have maximum population limit for Early-Access and I completely agree why it’s here, but I strongly believe that this should be a performance option in game settings. The main reason here why IMO it’s good idea is basically I don’t see how drastically it could be optimised due of huge amount of calculations, events in event loop or how it actually works, not sure. Also Soft Limit on population seems as solid feature actually which is very like a good thing to have, it works very correctly (not sure how it does not mess up with numbers and birth rate, but it works!) and it will be awesome to have it later for future playthroughs. Please allow us to decide which population will works for our PC specs, and we also would like to provide feedback on 1000+ playthroughs - this could be very useful, because many new issues or suggestions appears on truly lategame playthroughs.

4. Gameplay issues with non-monocity playthrough

Surprisely FF works fine in scenario when running 2-3 smaller towns instead of singleton metropolis. As far as raiders attacks from different directions with multiple groups, small towns will not be destroyed because game decided that it’s 1000+ ppl hyper town and 250 raiders will not try to destroy a 300 ppl small town which was built for coal reasons. Dealing with enemy army is also quite easy with multitown scenario, as far as it’s possible to deploy troops.

The only gameplay issue here I would like to admit that roads between towns became a perfect farm spot for raiders. I built two towns around local resource-rich mountain and both towns are connected with east and west roads. It is not possible to restrict visiting areas and labors don’t care about my opinion which way they should use. And of course these roads became a very much solid farm spot for raiders, which is basically allows to wipe halth of population during raider events. During raider attacks instead of mindlessly beating walls raiders ignores towers or sit somewhere outside of turrets range and just making some massacre activities on the east or west road which are connecting my two towns. Yes, it’s possible to deploy guards to protect the area, but guards walks so slowly like wounded turtles.

I end up with building a huge Chineese wall to protect west and east roards and this resolved an issue for me, but I’m sure there should be any other options provided instead of just building megawalls. If there will be a toggle option for towers to also works as alert system, i.e. force labors to leave hostile area, it will be a perfect solution for multitown playthroughs.

5. Towers and walls

I personally really like how raiders are implemented. They are smart enough and mostly prone to destroy player attempts to cheese them in any other ways. Hovewer, I think that towers and walls should works differently.

Currently towers itself are not viable solution for protecting area without being fully surrounded by walls. And like many other players already mentioned it, it’s quite strange that towers cannot be part of walls. Uh, and also most players ends up with double or even tripple walls to defend the city, and it’s not like a cheese - it looks like game is designed to force people to have double/tripple walls.

My very humble opinion on it:

  • Towers must be functional as part of walls
  • Towers should have a solid debuff when surrounded by walls (activated when there is a wall between enemy and tower)
  • It should not be allowed to build double or tripple walls, but walls upgrades should be in place. Of course it’s always a player choice to cheese or not to cheese game, but it will be better to have a game balanced around single sized walls.

6. T2 Cobbler Shop

There must be upgrade for Cobbler Shop. I have 10+ cobbler shops all over the map and people still complaining they have no shoes. I also don’t think that Tannery should have T2 upgrade, I don’t think that from medievel experience it is possible to somehow “upgrade” it.

7. Trading Center & Resources

I think that all suggestions and feedback is already made here, I just would like to admit and like how Trading Center is useful even for lategame. And I like how it could not be easily cheesed with “buy resources → sell goodies → buy more resources → …”, making you needing every single item someday from merchants.

The only thing that I would like to notice that it’s not possible to NOT build a “Jack-of-All-Trades” town in terms of resources, production or anything else. Game is forcing to roll a map with ALL resources nearby available, and is not quite should looks like IMO. There should be an option to build a town which is, for example, trade Iron for some missing resources from (roleplay moment) nearby towns outside of map. This will allow most of seeds playable.

Once again, thanks a lot to devs for a great game! I hope that my very opinionated feedback may be useful somehow.

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There are some additional feedback points I would like to provide:

8. Smaller / specialized depots

A masterpiece part for dealing with production chains is having specialized depots for storing different resources. As example, I would like to have a Wood → Lumber → Furniture chain. If there will be any kind of over-production on any of step, I will end up with depots full-filled with resource or goodies, and eventually it will broke production chain. If there will be not enough production of Wood, I will end up with empty depots.

Global resource limit will not handle it. You can have imbalanced resource allocation and from my experience I multiple times got a case when I had a one depot full-fulled with 27000 Wood while other depots were empty of Wood. This leaded to Lumber production issue later and some other issues around it.

The key how to deal with it is having specialized depots. If I will have Wood-only depots, I will not care about setting up production limit for Wood - I would like to have as much Wood as possible, but also have space for Lumber / Furniture in other depots. Currently it is possible to select which resources will be stored in depots, but problem here that depots itself are huge and designed to store 3000 items while I don’t need 3000 Wood stored in single place. I would like to have 3000 Wood total but allocated around my town.

My suggestion here will be have smaller depots or have more specialized depot options in game.

9. Gold issues

The whole Gold system looks IMO quite odd. We have a clear communist state here (lol), we have to provide Food / Cloth / City Services to everyone, but for some persons specifically we should pay with gold additionally. It’s illogical, but lets skip this part, the game is not supposed to follow strict real life cases.

From my PoV there is a huge balance issue with Gold:

  • If your city has access to Gold mines, you will have 1 billion gold at year 50
  • If your city has no access to Gold mines, you will constantly trade goodies for Gold and you will be still be lack of Gold even 256 years later.

The game seems balanced to “City has access to Gold mines” case, which is I think is not great. There are enough resources on the map we should take from map and one additional kinda forced Gold resource is not adding nothing good from gameplay experience. Currently running a solid town is not possible w/o digging Gold.

IMO Gold mines should be in game but:

  • City services costs should be lowered to allow maintain city in reasonable way (when no Gold mines available nearby)
  • Digging Gold should be an alternative option to production chains. It should provide enough Gold in comparassion with any other resources / production chains, but it should be an option, not mandatory thing

I’m not sure here, but some math here seems screwed anyway. Maybe there supposed to be Taxation system, because, very basically:

  • We collect gold from our citizens
  • We pay for schools / healers / other city services
  • But at the same time FF is roleplaying Russion Federation budget with constant deficit of money

Something is very wrong here with very basics

10. Additional points

  • 1x1 decorated tree please
  • Churches are must, really
  • It should be possible to kick boars from the land completely. Boars don’t like people, it’s true, so we don’t like them too.
  • Medicines production / consumption seems wrong, at least for healthy city. I never purchased medicines from merchants, not sure is it supposed to work this way or not.
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