I struggled with this scenario quite a bit, and I noticed others have too. I have gotten it down to a science and can always beat it 100% with no deaths and accepting all the lords. Here's a short guide on how to do it.
Step 1: Enact child labor for safe jobs. Do this immediately – press Escape and Space in quick succession as the cinematic camera focuses in on the crater at the start of the mission. You should be paused at 8:00 or 8:01.
Step 2: Assign 9 people to steel, and the rest to wood. This will get you the right ratio to have the materials to build things later in the night.
Step 3: Build out like <
This is the key to the beating the scenario on hard. You have to find the canning workshop ASAP, then scout for the Frozen Forest/Coal Mine. In the map "1.1" means the first stop for the first scout group.
- When you search the abandoned camp, the SW discovered location will either be empty (description will say something like "Nothing stands out here except this hill") or will be some other kind of resource stop. If it's an empty stop, that's very very good because it means it will take you right to the canning workshop. If that is the case, you can skip building a hunter hut entirely as people can hold out until your scout is back. If it's not an empty site, you will need to operate a hunters hut to keep people from starving as you have another hop to the canning workshop. Just stay southwest, but don't explore the fishing village yet.
- Always send the scout back after canning workshop. That will buy you several days of your people eating like kings. I send the first scout group north in the patten shown to find the second outpost site. Either a coal mine or forest. If you get a coal mine, you will be able to get by with just outpost coal for a while. If you get a forest, you will need to build a thumper. As soon as you see "frozen forest" as the discovered location, start planning for thumping. If you get the coal mine, take the stored coal and head back to the city. This will give you enough coal to get by until your outpost team brings more.
- Send the second scout to the fishing village. You will have enough food (especially with an outpost team) that you can keep them scouting out for a while before coming back.
- This is very important: The names and types of locations change a bit, but the geography is always the same. So you can always find the key sites quickly.
- There will be a lull where you have extra workers, I like to put them on extra gathering posts (3 total) on the resource cluster that starts out as 2 wood + 1 coal + 1 cores; by this time there will only be coal+cores though. Gather completely before the cold front so you can deconstruct the gathering posts before the colder weather sets in, and you don't need to heat them.
- Use coal thumpers. If you get the coal mine outpost you can get by on one fully-upgraded thumper. You will have plenty of children to work the gathering posts and you can place them by the steelworks so you can use one steam hub.
- Use hothouses when you need more food. One industrial hothouse (working extended hours) plus the output will be fine.
- Use overdrive. It gives you a boost to heat with no extra coal that lasts about a day. This allows you to save coal, put off generator power research for an extra day, or weather a 1-day cold front.
- Notably, you can get through the day 7 cold snap by using overdrive while still researching outposts (as you won't have researched generate power 2 yet)
- Use steam hubs, never research generator range upgrade. Steam hubs are much more efficient. Don't forget to set them to 6:00 to 20:00 shifts by your workplaces.
- You don't need infirmaries, just shove about 10 medical posts around a steam hub and shrine. They'll be at 154% efficiency and will heal people plenty fast.
- To meet the end-game discontent requirement, turn off extended shifts.
- Keep an eye on who's arriving at your city, build workshops ahead for the engineers
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