GWJ Strat Club Game 6: Frostpunk

The sixth GWJ Strategy Club is Frostpunk which we'll be playing from September to October, 2021.

Description: Frostpunk is the first society survival game. As the ruler of the last city on Earth, it is your duty to manage both its citizens and infrastructure. What decisions will you make to ensure your society's survival? What will you do when pushed to breaking point? Who will you become in the process?

Steam Link

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Looking forward to hearing about your experiences surviving the storm!

Quick reminder that because Frostpunk is on multiple platforms, feel free to play whichever one you're most comfortable with.

jdzappa wrote:

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Quick reminder that because Frostpunk is on multiple platforms, feel free to play whichever one you're most comfortable with.

And also a reminder that it was an Epic freebie at some point in the recent past so you might have a copy sitting there already.

I also just checked and saw it’s still on sale on Steam through the end of the weekend, including all the expansions.

I'm in.

Jonman wrote:

And also a reminder that it was an Epic freebie at some point in the recent past so you might have a copy sitting there already.

And that's exactly where I got my copy from. Funny, a number of club games I've played this year (Tyranny, and now Frostpunk) were all due to Epic freebies..

Unlike Into the Breach, I will actually play this. Honest! I just need to finish Disco Elysium for the RPG club first!

I aim to start playing Frostpunk next weekend. I've played it before but it's been a while, it was my game of the year at the time. I've now got The Last Autumn DLC which I haven't played, it's a prequel to the main game and I'm looking forward to giving that a go. I might just start with one of the smaller base game scenarios to remind myself how to play.

Surprisingly, Frostpunk was one of my absolute favorite games of recent years (along with Subnautica, Disco Elysium, Dishonored series, maybe a couple of others). I think it's the combination of city builder gameplay with a relatively short, focused, thematically interesting campaign. I've played through the base game's scenarios twice. This might be a good excuse for me to do the DLC ones a second time.

Fall of Winterhome is especially brutal, but it's probably my favorite of the scenarios.

Should I go with any of the DLCs?

Keen as a bean!

The DLC doesn’t add to or expand the base game. They’re basically a prequel scenario and a sequel scenario with new mechanics. Since it’s not on sale, you can hold off and just buy the season pass later if you want more Frostpunk.

They are pretty good though.

Robear wrote:

Should I go with any of the DLCs?

I would say beat the original game and then decide. The DLCs are great but won't affect your initial experience.

Now, I just have to decide if I try to replicate my "good" run at higher difficulty or turn EVIL. My current frustration with my tween son has got me thinking about which laws I want to enact this time around...

Just finished off my 2nd run through of The Last Autumn scenario. This time I sided with the engineers. I have definitely become a Frostpunk veteran now, since I had no trouble whatsoever keeping my work sites 100% safe and I was totally stocked up on supplies and building materials throughout. Next time I'll try a harder difficulty level.

Spoiler:

Things did get hairy at the end though when I thought I was cruising to victory. I didn't stockpile nearly enough coal and had to hurriedly tear down all the unused buildings and roads for wood to feed into the charcoal kilns that my research team spent 24 hour days researching. It got pretty tense for 2-3 days there.

One knock on this game in terms of replayability is that you'll never be surprised by events as much as you were the first time.

My final ranking of scenarios by how much I enjoyed them:
1. The Fall of Winterhome
2. A New Home
3. The Last Autumn
4. The Arks
5. The Refugees
6. On the Edge
7. Endless Mode

So just got laid off for a major bullsh*t reason and am looking for a way to stick it to the man. I heard in Last Autumn there’s a way to trigger a worker uprising and murder all the higher ups. Is that true? To be clear I’m asking as harmless catharsis and also cause I suddenly have a lot more time on my hands.

I’m not sure you can murder all of them, but there was definitely some murder in my first play through.

Geez, JD, sorry to hear it.

Robear wrote:

Geez, JD, sorry to hear it.

I appreciate it Robear. It’s all good I have a good severance package and job leads. Looking forward to having a little more time on my hands for a few weeks.

I've had a few failed attempts getting off the ground now, but I'm really enjoying the game. I think I might look up some quick build order tips because it can be quite unforgiving!

It's a beautiful game, and I'm impressed by the balance of accessibility and difficulty. Not too many games feel this good to play, while keeping you intrigued with the promise of new mechanics to come.

Good stuff.

Time to get those kids to work!

Having fun with Last Autumn but have no idea how to catch up when I get behind. Should I just start throwing workers at the problem or at a certain point just scum save? Also, food is a constant issue even with two forager huts and a fishing dock. Not sure how to improve that.

I definitely had to put the fishing dock on 24 hr shifts at some point. Also make sure you’re not giving people the high quality meals- it turns that on by default once you research it.

gewy wrote:

I definitely had to put the fishing dock on 24 hr shifts at some point. Also make sure you’re not giving people the high quality meals- it turns that on by default once you research it.

That did it - thank you!

Not to be too apocalyptic, but this game definitely hits different in a post-COVID world.

I didn't feel too uncomfortable when I was poking around in this game when I first played it, but after experiencing all these lockdowns and harsher COVID restrictions...Something about the hard decisions being made in this game hits a little closer to home now.

Not to imply that being told to live in your comfy home and not leave unless you're getting groceries etc. is in any way close to what's being depicted in Frostpunk, but I do feel a little more empathy for the NPCs this time around.

That’s my issue with it. I keep starting it up and the music just bums me out. I’ve done part of the first story in the past so I know some of the choices and story beats and it’s surprisingly daunting for me.

Robear wrote:

That’s my issue with it. I keep starting it up and the music just bums me out. I’ve done part of the first story in the past so I know some of the choices and story beats and it’s surprisingly daunting for me.

Last Autumn is particularly hard to play as someone who is unemployed. I want to protect my workers but the scenario seems designed to force you to work them to death in order to win.

I’ve heard the last DLC is a bit more optimistic but not sure if that’s the case.

I had a similar experience. I fired it up and started on the first chapter, but the atmosphere is just so darn oppressive, it's a little hard to play.

If you guys are burned out, we can switch up to Qvadriga early.

Sundown wrote:

I had a similar experience. I fired it up and started on the first chapter, but the atmosphere is just so darn oppressive, it's a little hard to play.

I didn't even get past the icon in the Epic launcher. Every time I hovered over it, I just found myself drawn towards literally anything else instead.

Slowly getting the hang of this game. My runs are smoother each time, yet the feeling of not being good enough is always there. It definitely nails that oppressive vibe. However, after playing for a bit longer I find myself just skipping through the dialogue and making choices based on the 2 hope and discontent meters.

I find that once you start getting scouts out to recruit more villagers, you can overcome the first few hurdles. I think my technology isn't quite fast enough, though, because I always end up getting banished soon after.

Tricky!

jdzappa wrote:

If you guys are burned out, we can switch up to Qvadriga early.

See, this is funny because I'm just now really digging into Planetfall lol. Didn't we do that a year ago?

Robear wrote:
jdzappa wrote:

If you guys are burned out, we can switch up to Qvadriga early.

See, this is funny because I'm just now really digging into Planetfall lol. Didn't we do that a year ago?

Earlier this year but that’s a great game too! I may go back and finish the entire campaign at some point.

Given there seems to be a lot of interest still in Frostpunk, I won’t mess with the schedule. We’ll start the second game in November as planned.

Yeah, it's only a month away.