If you recently bought the History Collection or are just generally playing with the thought of trying out The Settlers 6 – Rise of an Empire, we got just the right guide for you! Read on to get a brief overview over the game and a few tips to get started.
You will notice several differences to previous games which will require a different approach to creating a prosperous settlement. You will not only need basic building materials like wood and stone but also a regular supply of food for all your settlers, no matter the profession. Your people have various additional needs like clothes, cleaning supplies or entertainment.
Only if these are fulfilled you will be able to unlock new buildings and military units. Roads are important to speed up the delivery of materials and building upgrades increase productivity.
Expansion is done by conquering new sectors of the map – these sectors may also have resources you don’t have in the one you started in. This will mean a big part of the economy will be scattered throughout several sectors and need to be kept safe from enemy raids.
Let’s take a look at some topics in detail.
When starting you always have your store house, church and castle directly connected to the marketplace. The first thing to do is to place two woodcutters to secure sufficient buildings materials and either hunters or fishers for basic food supply. Your workers will deliver the raw products to the store house, but fish and meat will have to be turned into smoked fish and sausages before they can be consumed by the settlers.
Check the map for symbols for each resource to find out what you can produce in your first sector.
With basic food supply taken care of, it’s time to tackle the next of your people’s needs: hygiene. For this you will have to either place a soap maker (who uses the same resource as the butcher) or a broom maker who needs wood. You can of course also place both types of buildings depending on what kind of –and how many – resources are available.
After this you should keep an eye out for stone and iron as well as more building space: time to explore.
Select your hero and send him or her to one of the nearby sectors. As soon as you enter it the map will be revealed and you can see what kind of opportunities the sector offers. If you found what you were looking for, place a tower via the menu in the bottom right corner (while having selected your hero).
Make sure to connect this tower (and generally all buildings) with streets for faster transport.
When you got your basic settlement set up and explored a sector or two for further expansion, it’s time to focus on your heroes. Not only are they a lot stronger than your average soldier, each of them also has a special ability: Elias the trader for example can provide additional food while Alandra can cure sick settlers.
You also need your hero for various interactions in the world itself. Be it to be able to build towers to conquer new sectors, interact with AI players for certain missions or to investigate ruins, mines and similar places on the map.
To unlock more buildings and units you will have to promote your hero which means granting him a new title. For this you will have to click on the button just above the minimap. There you’ll see which requirements the new title has, e.g. a certain amount of settlers, your castle at a specific level and a sufficient amount of a certain good. If you fulfil them you can then click the appropriate button and your hero as well as your settlers are happy.
Since each title gives you access to new buildings and products, it is vital to focus on these requirements right from the start to at least progress fast enough to be able to build walls and recruit soldiers.
Not only will new buildings improve your possibilities and production capabilities, one very important gameplay mechanic are building upgrades. These will not only allow an additional worker to move in (and therefore increase your productivity), higher building levels also unlock carts, allowing your settlers to transport their goods faster.
If you combine this with a good road network and upgrade your basic paths to roads later, you make sure all resources reach the city in time for further processing. Be it delicious bread, comfortable clothes or swords for your army.
When building your city and all your production buildings it’s important to keep an eye on the landscape. Make sure you use all available space and place related buildings close to each other. Since you will want to build a wall around your core city later, make sure to choose the right places for it.
And talking about right places: The Settlers – Rise of an Empire features different seasons. In winter you won’t be able to harvest any honey or wheat – and rivers freeze and can be walked on. Make sure to not rely on rivers as border protection too much, depending on the map you’re playing.
Military and reputation
And since we’re already at it: The military.
You can build swordsmen and archers in their respective barracks as well as three different kinds of siege engines. The latter need to be manned with one group of soldiers to work. Keep in mind you may have to first get a new title for your hero to access the respective building.
The higher your city’s reputation (top left corner), the higher your soldiers’ combat power. If it drops too far or one of your main buildings (castle, church, store house) gets destroyed, you lose the game.
To increase your reputation, upgrade your main buildings, offer your settlers different kinds of clothes, food and decorative objects and provide them with special activities like festivals, church sermons and rare commodities like salt or dyes.
Enemy attacks, a lack of food or a high tax have a negative impact on your reputation. Therefore, try to have enough goods in store to satisfy your settlers’ needs and get your hands on some rare goods via trading.
If this is just too much theory for you and you want to practise a bit more, go and play the singleplayer campaign of The Settlers 6 which doubles as a tutorial. There you’ll be slowly introduced to all important game mechanics.