Is sawdust secretly OP?

frostpunk 1 - Is sawdust secretly OP?

Playing endless on extreme difficulty and testing new strategies, i tried signing the sawdust law, instead of the soup law, like i always do. But that proved to be crucial on making that one my most successful playthroughs yet. Hear me out:

Sawdust makes 6 rations for every 2 raw food, being a 50% increase over the default ration, while soup only increases it by 25%. To counteract that, it has a "worse" downside of making people sick more often. However, that is pretty easily to handle, since:

Sawdust, unlike soup, doesn't raise discontent. I never realized just how much discontent the constant use of soup generated until now. Yeah, moonshine is a law (and i still don't know how effective it is), but you need to sign fighter arena and public house beforehand. On endless, especially, i find that other laws, principally ones of the purpose path, are much more essential than those.

Because of that (no discontent, unlike soup), i was able to use emergency shifts every night on workshops (and made sure to pick the "emergency shifts cost food" pop up, since it stops the emergency shift deaths entirely). Because of that, my researches were advancing very rapidly, and i easily managed to keep the sick at bay with medical apprentices, shrines, organ transplants and researching the medical post upgrade relatively early. With that, i had almost double efficiency on each medical post.


Because of the emergency shifted workshops, i only needed 2 of them until later, and all of the other engineers were on medical posts. I thought i'd need to sign the overcrowding law, but extra rations for the ill sufficed, since i had a food surplus due to sawdust.

Also, because it makes way more food that regular rations, you need less people working to get the raw food itself, be it with hothouses (my usual choice) or hunter's huts (my choice for that game). So you indirectly have a productivity boost, even more than with soup.

Read:  I Did it!

So, to wrap it off, i concluded that sawdust creates a problem but, unlike soup, indirectly helps solve it:

Sawdust > more sick, more food, same discontent > more research > better healthcare > no more sick > ??? > profit

Am i completely wrong and don't see it? Because after all this time playing and always picking soup (and always seeing other people picking soup), i found sawdust way more effective.

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