The game is split into three social classes: workers, engineers, and children. What can we learn about each of them from Frostpunk? I made several observations – following will be conclusions I've drawn, as well as what led me to that conclusion. This is, of course, all speculation at best – feel free to challenge them or add your own observations. Some of this stuff is more obvious, while others are more speculative.
Engineers are generally educated, much more so than workers and children, and can perform complex tasks with minimal to no instruction.
- Engineers are necessary for any building requiring technical, medicinal, or psychological know-how. An engineer attempts to educate three workers in one of the Order events. During The Fall of Winterhome, engineers are the only ones who can discover the captain's lie of their own accord.
Engineers are generally the go-to problem-solvers, and will generally take initiative in looking for improvements or addressing emergent problems.
During A New Home, an engineer is the one who informs you about the difficulties of keeping the mines running, and the technical reasons as to why. The dialogue suggests that he sought out the captain himself after identifying a problem. During The Fall of Winterhome, engineers are the ones who identify and track the status of the generator.
After building automatons, an engineer may be inspired to perform further improvements on them, and requests your permission/assistance in doing so.
At least some engineers consider themselves to be above workers.
- When you sign the Foreman law, one of the possible comments is an engineer remarking that workers may need someone to guide them, but they don't. (Incidentally, the workshop and the factory, both exclusively staffed by engineers, can be boosted by foremen.)
Most engineers were probably wealthier than most workers prior to the events of Frostpunk.
- Engineers generally wear more proper clothes, such as beaver hats, and will often have eyewear of some sort. Workers, in the meanwhile, generally wear rags.
Workers are generally more hardy than engineers, and more adapted to be out in the Frostland – likely due to their background of manual labor.
- Only workers can be hunters or scouts, with the exception of The Arks. In the Frostland, you will almost never see engineers without workers – and with one exception, they're always in a camp or other prepared shelter of some sort when you find them. (I can't make a case for their general physical strength compared to engineers – engineers can be employed in any non-Frostland jobs workers can be, but at the same time, so can children with the right laws (with the exception of guard/Faith Keeper), and all three will perform a job with equal efficiency as far as the game is concerned. Therefore, no conclusive evidence on that front.)
Workers generally have high faith in engineers and their abilities.
- Evacuating all of the engineers in a timely manner in The Fall of Winterhome will give a hope bonus for the workers left behind – even without said engineers to run important functions.
Many workers have mechanical or technological know-how to some degree.
- Scouts can often disassemble what they find into usable components – including salvaging precious steam cores. Scouts are able to reprogram an automaton they come across in A New Home to direct it towards New London.
Workers are about as likely to foster and share rebellious ideology against despotic rule as the more educated engineers are.
- Workers and engineers have an equal chance of being put to death when using the execution platform.
Workers may practice medicine, presumably with some instruction or direction.
- Workers can staff houses of healing.
The lives of children are valued much more than that of adults, despite not being able to do as much.
- Child deaths cause twice as much hope loss as adult deaths. Sacrificing a child to keep the generator stable will cause drastic effects on hope and discontent, while sending adults to the mines during the storm in A New Home, knowing many of them will freeze, will cause only the hope loss incurred naturally by the deaths. People want to prioritize the evacuation of children during The Fall of Winterhome (and get a hope and efficiency boost once all children are out.)
Children can practice medicine under instruction and tutelage.
- Child shelters allow you to use children as medic apprentices. Children can staff houses of healing.
Adults feel children should be doing something, at the very least, though most would prefer not to see them work.
- One of the comments after signing Child Shelters is "And what are they going to do all day, watch the snow fall?" There are other comments which mention having them make use of their time. There are many positive comments after implementing Medic Apprentices/Engineer Apprentices.
Children may resent the captain for the death of their parents.
- One of the events which can cause you to lose is having everyone but children die. The remaining children will kick you out, blaming you for the death of their parents as some point weapons at you.
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