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Giving up after catastrophic mistake


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After playing for one full day I will not continue with the game anymore, out of frustration with one mistake. I think a better game design could have prevented this frustration. I've been playing on tutorial mode, I wasn't aware that I'm no longer in a tutorial but now apparently playing at easiest setting. After maybe 6-8 hours, I had 90 villagers, a super happy Onbu, nobody ever dying, and the tech tree pretty much explored. And never drilling into Onbu, obviously. 

Here's where it all went south: Onbu wanted to sleep on "high" toxic ground. The map didn't show when it would get safer, and I assumed I could get him moving before things got really bad. That was a huge mistake but the game gave me no indication how catastrophic it would be.

I watched Onbu's and the villagers' health, and it seemed OK at first. When a person died, I woke Onbu and let him move out of there. I pretty much stopped all production (I had plenty of food on reserve) and switched everyone to herb production, doctors, and fighting poison spread. Ultimately I got it under control, but almost half my villagers died (went from 90 pop to 50). Now my engagement is gone - it seems all I can do in the game now is walk around until I find 40 nomads and then re-enable all the infrastructure I already have. Research is done (I have only Onbu-harming things left to explore), so it seems there is nothing interesting left to do.

Out of this experience, here's three suggestions on improving the game design:

  1. Clearly separate tutorial from game. That the tutorial would lead me into a lowest-difficulty game was not clear to me until very late.
  2. Indicate catastrophic mistakes when the player makes them. The message "letting Onbu sleep once on toxic ground can wipe out your village" would have been very helpful. Alternatively make it absolutely clear that something horrible is going on, essentially the village was already doomed when the first villager died and I started countermeasures.
  3. Ensure there is a way to recover from catastrophies other than spending hours to retrace your steps and hoping for nomads (essentially that's a "Getting Over It" experience)


I hope this is helpful in improving the design. Because other than this event, I really enjoyed the game and got very fond of Onbu (and would never do anything to harm him).


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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi aliq

Yes, the separation of the tutorial and the difficulty is not ideal. especially since we have the option to disable onbu/villager death in the two harder modes but not the tutorial. This will be improved / fixed!

Thank you for your feedback! I'm sorry this was frustration for you.


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