Intermediate Midgame Guide
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In some ways, Midgame is vastly different from early game in RimWorld. Sometimes the point comes that you have to use devious tactics when your colony is helplessly outnumbered, or drastically change the priorities of your colonists.
What you must have in a midgame base:
- Large-sized freezer with enough food to make it past the growing season + 10 days more
- Cover and other defense structures around the base
- Self-sufficient food supply + kitchens to cook food
- Sufficient power supply + Backup Power
- Medium-grade Hospital
What you should have for a decent midgame base:
- Private bedrooms for your colonists
- Dining room
- Rec room
- Prison with personal cells
All of these should be Decent or above impressiveness, not factoring in filth.
Geothermal power is an important source of power from mid-game onward, as it is constant and high-powered. You will need to research Geothermal Power first before you can unlock it, and the generator itself is quite costly (though affordable in midgame). However, once researched and built you can have a constant power supply; you can even have some excess power until lategame.
Make sure your geothermal generators and their connecting conduits are well-protected as they often have to be placed far from base.
Giving your colonists a table to eat on is an early game thing; now you should consider building something better for them.
A dining room should be built as close as possible near the freezer/ food storage so your colonists will actually use the dining room, instead of eating on the floor of the storage, giving them a -3 mood debuff. This is especially true for larger freezers, in which colonists retrieving food from the far end may simply give up searching for a table and eat on the floor.
You may need to expand your freezer compared to your starting one, as now you will need to be prepared for incoming events.
You can now afford to build more joy facilities such as chess tables or billiards tables, or Tube televisions, which provide different kinds of joy for additional variety. In addition, you can also obtain additional joy sources from exotic goods traders, such as telescopes or flatscreen and megascreen televisions, which are more joyful than the craftable tube television.
Similarly to the dining room, decorating it can improve the mood bonus from using the room.
You should upgrade to a decent bedroom for more comfort.
Bedrooms should be at least be 3x5; this gives you enough space to squeeze in a bed and a table, without making the colonist feel cramped. Tables are important as colonists often carry food with them, and without a table, colonists will resort to eating their breakfast on the floor. Turn off the 'Gather Spot' option, otherwise colonists will go off into the bedrooms to chill off on their own.
For better comfort and rest effectiveness, make sure all beds are of Normal quality or above, otherwise deconstruct and try again until you get it.
A midgame hospital should have sterile tiles as flooring as they provide a cleanliness buff that increases surgery success chance and reduce wound infection chance. Hospital beds and vitals monitor brings boosts to treatment and immunity gain, so you should definitely have some.
To provide joy, you may also build or buy televisions to install into your hospitals. Patients lying in hospital beds within the viewing area will watch TV to entertain themselves when they are bored, and you won't need colonists cheering them up as their only joy source.
If you have even more resources you can build a separate room for each colonist. While they don't mind sleeping with others in a hospital, they do get disturbed by them walking around, and dirt can more easily affect cleanliness as well.
You may need to expand your workshop to accommodate more workbenches.
It is an excellent idea to put decorations such as sculptures inside the workshop, as a beautiful environment gives up to +15 mood, improving colonists' productivity.
Switch the flooring to sterile tiles for flooring to reduce the chance of food poisoning. The butcher table is best put elsewhere due to the heavy cleanliness debuff.
Shelves or small stockpiles can really improve cooking efficiency when placed right next to your stove, set to accept only berries and vegetables as these do not spoil in a matter of days, unlike meat which should always be in the freezer.
You may want to have a room dedicated to research, with hi-tech research benches, multi-analyzers to increase research speed and unlock new research, as well as sterile tiles to keep the room clean, increasing research speed. For even better cleanliness, restrict the lab to your researchers and janitors only, reducing traffic and hence the amount of dirt in the room.
Like colonists, prisoners will also suffer from the mood penalties associated with being kept together in a prison barracks. In addition, prison breaks are also more serious should they happen, for every prisoner locked up in the same room will simultaneously break out, while prisoners in different cells may choose not to join. Thus, you should keep them separated.
Each cell should have a table with a chair, a bed, and a light source. This is the bare minimum you need for a prisoner to be decently kept. Decorating the cell and making bigger cells also increase mood bonuses for easier recruitment. They can't use any joy items put in the cell, but you can add them anyway for a better cell.
Prisons should have doors facing towards your base, so escaping prisoners will go towards your base instead of away, giving your wardens time to deal with the break.
You should have some backups ready in case things go down.
One thing you can do is to have emergency power, such as backup batteries or generators. Panic rooms, with multiple layers of durable wall, can help protect colonists during a raid if you can't defeat the raiders. Nutrient past dispensers can efficiently convert raw food into edible nutrient paste.
Useful resources include:
- Medicine to heal wounded and sick colonists
- Glitterworld medicine for successful surgeries
- Stone Blocks to make your base
- Components and steel to make non-primitive things
- Plasteel for durable constructs and high-end equipment
- Silver to barter for nearly anything
Besides plant-based foods, you should also have a source of animal products and meat so you can make better meals for your colonists.
Some female animals produce milk. They can be milked regularly by a handler to produce their needed milk.
If you want meat you should raise some chickens. They rise in numbers extremely fast, laying eggs rapidly and growing in the span of a little more than 1 season. Raising chickens requires some heavy population management but is rewarding if done right.
At this stage you should have solved your food problems (mostly). You should have the space to grow more other crops to provide other resources.
Devilstrand is an excellent choice as a mid-game fabric, providing good protection and can be farmed. It can net a large amount of silver for every harvest, but it's very slow-growing.
Psychoid can he harvested and made into drugs, which can sell for a lot. Be careful with drugs as colonists with the chemical interest or fascination traits will binge on drugs if given access to them.
Smokeleaf can be harvested and rolled into smokeleaf joints which can sell for quite some as well. It's also less dangerous than hard drugs which can cause immediate addiction, but smoking it carries quite some debuffs.
There's only so much metals on the surface, but there's much more beneath your colony.
Deep drilling should be the main source of steel and plasteel for your colony at this stage onward. It's best to spare the remaining compacted steel deposits for emergency if you find yourself out of steel to build deep drills out of.
You need a large supply of components for building and crafting.
The best way to obtain components is by trading. Call friendly factions to send bulk goods traders, which always sell components and also buy a lot of your raw materials. Some other traders also sell components at an increased price.
Even after you've researched it, making them at the component assembly bench is not a good source as it is cost and labor intensive (25 steel and 134 work required for just 1 component). It does train your craftsmen very fast though, so you can consider making some for practice, while solving your shortage at the same time.
Once you've taken care of your food supply, you can spare some more land to grow plants to make drugs out of. They can provide a boost to colonists' mood, improve their performance at work, protect against disease or sell for a lot of silver.
Be careful with drugs, especially when you have colonists with the Chemical Interest or Fascination traits; you will have to keep drugs away from them, or they will binge on them and get addicted or die from overdose.
Beer is a social drug that improves mood and can provide joy.
To make beer, you need to have Brewing researched. Then, you will need to grow hops. Next, you will need to build a brewery and some fermenting barrels Your colonists will turn hops into wort, a precursor to beer. They will then haul wort into the fermenting barrels and wait for the beer to be made.
Colonists can enjoy a beer occasionally (every 2.5 days or so) without risk of addiction. They can also drink quite a lot in one go without getting addicted, but then they will need to wait longer before their next drink, and they risk getting a hangover.
A social drug smoked to provide joy, and provide a decent mood boost. However, colonists stoned on smokeleaf suffer from quite some debuffs so it's not a good idea to smoke it unless you need it.
All you need is some smokeleaf leaves and a crafting spot. The process of rolling leaves into joints is quick and easy.
Colonists can enjoy a joint every 2 days without risk of addiction.
While they provide a good buff to both mood and stats, they are extremely addictive.
Besides this, they are highly profitable. Being very light, you can carry lots on a single caravan trip, and net you a ton of silver in return.
A synthetic combat drug made at the drug lab. As its description says, it's suited for your soldiers to take a hit before combat to boost their effectiveness.
It's highly addictive however, and soldiers that frequently use it will quickly find that they are hooked to it and will need to regularly take a hit or suffer from its horrible withdrawal symptoms.
While high on it, your soldiers will move faster, shoot and fight better, and also be more durable than normal- they take a lot more damage without going down, because they don't even feel much pain at all. This also means your colonist will have a much higher risk of death as they don't go down safely unless they take serious brain damage or have their spine or leg destroyed.
Stimulant drug that improves consciousness and reduces the need for sleep.
It does not provide any mood buffs but it isn't as addictive as other hard drugs. Colonists can take 1 every 3 days without getting addicted so it's good for occasional use.
It can be used every 5 days to prevent diseases from being contracted.
Most useful in tropical rainforests where disease is rife. Not so useful in cold or arid areas where disease is of little threat.
A performance-enhancing mechanite concoction. It provides good functional buffs, and given enough time can heal old scars (including dreaded brain injuries) but doesn't help at mood at all. It cannot be made and must be bought at traders or found occasionally.
One of its most significant features is that withdrawal from luciferium is fatal and incurable. Luciferium needs to be taken every 6.667 days in order to prevent withdrawal symptoms, and if the need is unmet the colonist will die in a mean of 10 days.
Due to its high price and constant need, at this stage you should only give it to colonists who need to recover from brain injuries or serious scars. Colonists with a destroyed part (e.g. a shot off leg) cannot recover without installing a new part.
Once you've researched the electric smelter you can smelt weapons or steel slag chunks for metallic resources.
Steel slag chunks are an unreliable and rather uneconomical source of steel. Smelting should serve to get rid of them more than as a major source of steel, except in extreme survival situations.
For melee weapons it's best that you smelt them as this returns more resources than if you sold them. Weapons don't sell well, at only 20% of base value.
Ranged weapons, on the other hand, are best sold. If you smelt them you'll gain less, especially if any components making up the weapon are destroyed.
However, if the weapons are of low quality or are worn-out it's always a better idea to smelt them.
The smelter allows you to destroy non-smeltable weapons but it's best to keep them as you can sell them, even for a paltry price.
While in early game you may need to scavenge what equipment you could, or craft some very rudimentary equipment such as tribalwear or shivs. Now that you're in midgame, however, you should have the ability to manufacture your own equipment. Good equipment means that you stand a chance against raiders, even when outnumbered.
You should have a fueled smithy or an electric smithy to craft melee weapons, electric tailoring bench for sewing clothes (faster than a hand-tailoring bench), and a machining table for armor and guns.
You should always craft button-down shirts over T-shirts, as they provide better insulation and coverage than simply T-shirts. It's always worth it spending a little more cloth than a replacement arm.
- Jackets provide additional protection against attacks or the cold.
- Dusters provide protection against both heat or cold, as well as additional protection. Has a larger coverage than the Jacket, protecting the neck and legs as well.
- Parkas provide very good insulation against cold, but are uncomfortable in hot areas, slow down work by 20% and provide minimal protection. It should only be worn when actually needed.
Devilstrand is the best for protection; though it isn't as protective as hyperweave (which is hard to find and very costly), it can be farmed and produced in mass amounts.
Wool is best for insulation.
For your soldiers, you should always have armor vests and advanced helmets. Just this can protect against a large part of the damage taken. If you're short on materials you can always use the simple helmet, which is significantly cheaper though providing less protection.
Melee fighters should have shield belts, though these may be harder to obtain as uranium is rare and raiders don't come with shields that often.
Power armor should wait until later as it costs a lot, either to buy or to make.
You can choose which kind of apparel your colonists will wear. Go to the Assign tab then you can change the outfit worn by colonists under 'Current outfit'. You can also go to 'Manage outfits' and chance the settings of each outfit.
- 'Anything' isn't recommended as your apparel will not be allocated properly.
- 'Worker' allows colonists to wear casual clothes, but not armor. Best for your workers who don't engage in combat much.
- 'Soldier' allows colonist to wear armor and some clothes beneath them.
- By default, jackets and dusters aren't allowed; you should allow them as they can provide extra protection on top of your armor vests.
- 'Nudist' makes them wear nothing other than headgear, and obviously is intended for your nudist colonists only.
Once you set them, colonists will automatically switch apparel when needed. They will switch low-quality apparel or worn-out apparel for better ones.
You can also force colonists to wear apparel. If forced, they won't replace it automatically; you have to manually direct them to remove them. Choosing 'Clear forced' in the Apparel tab clears the forced status on apparel allowing colonists to replace them if needed.
Obviously, you should give your best fighters your best and most skill-based weapons.
- Sniper rifles or bolt-action rifles are highly destructive in the hands of skilled marksmen. Perfect for long-ranged takedowns.
- Charge rifles dish out heavy damage at medium range, and is suitable for moderate-high skilled gunners.
- Assault rifles are suited for gunning down mid-long range targets, when handled by good soldiers.
- LMGs can mow down targets at medium range with a large burst of bullets. Best served in the hands of low-mid skilled colonists.
- CQB weaponry such as Heavy SMGs or Pump shotguns are optimal for regular workers for self-defense.
- Chain shotguns are not an effective weapon choice on its own due to their horribly short range. However, their high damage output makes them better at crowd control.
- Miniguns excel at point-blank destruction or crowd control. Accuracy is completely irrelevant for this weapon due to the forced miss radius, such that it's most effective when equipped by a trigger-happy colonist, disregarding shooting skill.
Note that it's best that you hold off crafting guns until you have a steady supply of components, as crafting them can quickly chew through your stock of components.
- Longswords are the must-have weapon for melee colonists, being the highest damage dealing melee weapon in the game.
- Maces are cheaper and deal blunt damage, best used by wardens for taking down escaping prisoners or berserk colonists without killing them. It's also more effective at fighting armored enemies as most armor protect poorly against blunt trauma.
Prosthetics & Organ Replacements
By now you'll probably have colonists missing fingers, toes, arms, legs or other body parts (especially captured people, prone to have lost limbs in combat). If you can you should get a replacement for them. All prostheses except the peg leg can only be bought from traders in the base game.
All prostheses heal like normal limbs, but do not bleed and never scar.
Your humble peg leg is for replacing a missing foot or leg. All you need is 1 log of wood, medicine and a doctor. At 60% efficiency, it's good for getting a colonist back up and running but not good for anything else. This should only be used if you can't afford better.
Simple prosthetic legs work at 85% efficiency, making it good for replacing a few missing toes.
Simple prosthetic arms, in comparison, work at 50% efficiency only; it should only be used to replace a missing hand or arm.
All bionics have 140% efficiency, making them superior to normal parts.
Bionic legs give +20% moving; two of them means a total of 140% moving. Good for caravaneers, kiters, first respondents or anyone who needs to move fast.
Bionic arms give +20% bonus to manipulation; they are good at a large variety of tasks, from shooting to mining to crafting.
Bionic eyes give +20% to sight; it's the only eye replacement so far, meaning you will have to depend on it to replace colonists' missing or damaged eyes. Sight isn't very important for most tasks, with bonuses from sight capping at 100% sight for most tasks (except medicinal or combat tasks), meaning that enhanced sight is obsolete in many cases. Shooting however relies greatly on sight, so you may consider giving your gunners (especially snipers or marksmen) bionic eye replacements before they actually need an eye replacement. Melee also depends on sight but the impact isn't so large.
Power claws are a good hand replacement for front-line combatants. It incurs a small manipulation penalty, but greatly increases unarmed damage, to the point where it can even rival a normal or good plasteel longsword.
Scyther blades can be removed from incapacitated scythers or occasionally found on traders. They are extremely specialized in fighting; 2 installed gives the highest DPS of any weapon in-game. However, with only 20% efficiency, it is terrible at nearly everything, combat included. You should reconsider before giving this to anyone.
You can buy natural organ replacements from traders, or brutally harvest them from colonists and prisoners. Harvesting them gives a mood penalty for the whole colony (except your trusty psychopath colonists), a dire mood debuff of -30 to the victim, and also affects Factions relations between yours and the one the victim belongs to. So think twice before harvesting organs from anyone. Never harvest from colonists unless in the direst of situations.
As of Alpha 17 there are no bionic organ enhancements in the base game, though mods exist to add them in-game.
Combat & defense tactics
When you are outnumbered, thinking smart with your combat tactics is also key to not losing colonists. It's also worth checking out Defense tactics with more in-depth detail in defensive strategy, Defense structures for building defenses and cover for how cover works.
Sometimes sandbags and your colonists alone are just not enough. Building "turret mounds" around the map in strategic locations can decimate a good number of raiders before they even get to the colony. Turret mounds are built on a 3x3 block of land:
O#O ### O#O
Where O is a turret and # is a stone wall. Remember, however, that turrets can be a bit expensive to build and repair. They also require a lot of electricity, so try hooking them up to a wire which is remotely turned on to save your batteries.
Note that you will have to sacrifice some turrets this way as raiders often target the turrets before your colonists due to proximity.
Diffusing your opponent
Don't be too arrogant when facing a bombardment of arrows and pila - each can deal almost an equivalent amount of damage as a bolt-action rifle. Diffusing your opponent consists of separating the melee attackers from the ranged, and dealing with each of them with your melee and ranged colonists.
One way of diffusing your opponent is with a smaller version of an attention suppressor. This means that the majority of raiders will end up attacking the walls instead of your colonists. Those that come through can be easily dealt with using tactics from the next section. You can also use turret mounds as mentioned above surrounded by a nest of rock chunks to catch the raiders in the explosion radius.
Fighting in the small numbers
Once you have diffused your opponent's army, their forces will trickle towards you slowly so you can easily deal with each one alone.
Kiting is the method of using a colonist as bait for an attacker to run towards, and a second colonist taking shots off while the attacker is focused on the first. It does not work if the raider has a personal shield that protects them from bullets. Note: Colonists incapable of violence can still act as bait.
R C | v C
Diagram of kiting. C is a colonist, R is a raider and -> is the direction the raider is going.
When two of your colonists are being chased by one person and your weaponry is significantly poorer than the attacker's, you can conduct a split so that the enemy can only chase and down 1 colonist while the other escapes. If one of your colonists has ranged weapons, then you could split and then conduct a kite.
Rushing is the tactic of sending your best melee attackers to finish off the ranged attackers at the back. The ranged attackers who do not succumb to the attention suppressor could be a pain for your own ranged forces, so it's best to send your melee colonists with personal shields to distract the ranged attackers. Before battle, hide your melee attackers behind a nearby hill outside your base so that they remain hidden until all enemy melee attackers are engaged with either the walls or your ranged.
You can now dedicate more time to train your colonists' skills so they can perform better.
One way of training them is to have them dedicate all their time to a single task only. In the 'Work' tab, have them prioritize the job type you want them to be good at. Set the priority to 2 and prioritize other more vital tasks (such as Patient or Doctor for medics) at 1.
With more colonists in, the chance of you getting wanderers or escape pods become much rarer. From midgame onward, capturing and recruiting prisoners becomes the main source of new blood. Occasionally, you will still see slaves for sale, wanderers, escape pods or chased refugees, but don't count on them.
Attacking enemy bases
- For a more comprehensive list of strategies, see Offense tactics .
However, now that you have more colonists and better equipment, you have a new option to getting new blood: attacking enemy faction bases.
To do so, create a caravan with your soldiers, food for the journey and medicine to treat the wounded. Once the caravan is ready, set it to go attack an enemy.
Once you succeed in destroying the base, you will be given 24 hours to treat the wounded and rest before your caravan packs up and leaves.
The journey usually takes days so remember to bring enough food. There will also be people and turrets guarding the base so you should have enough soldiers. 12 well-equipped soldiers should be enough to take down any base without much problem, though sometimes you will still lose someone. The base also has food, drugs and medicine. They always have some food, but don't count on them having enough medicine to treat all your injuries.
Sometimes an enemy outpost event will also trigger, generating an outpost that is weaker than a standard base. Defeating this requires less manpower (around 8 will be sufficient) and will allow you to collect payment.
Note that attacking enemies does not seem to make raids happen less often and you will still need defenders back at base.
Besides raising them for meat, wool or milk, you can train an animal army for attacking, or a worker band for hauling. You will need food to train animals, which you can easily provide in midgame if nothing bad happens.
Hauling becomes a rather important job in midgame as you gather more and more resources and thus need more manpower to haul them to your warehouses, but can't divert colonists from other jobs to haul.
Wild boars are an excellent taming choice, one of the best available in RimWorld. They have Advanced training intelligence, allowing them to be trained in combat and hauling alike, and they hit hard. Their fast reproduction allows you to amass a large army easily. They can also graze, and are found in many biomes.
Ostriches are another good choice in place of boars, if you don't need more haulers. They hit even harder, are faster and more durable, but can't haul or rescue.
If not, taming cougars, wolves or bears provides great combat power, but will require a constant source of meat to train them.
Sometimes you will need to move around the world for various reasons, such as attacking an enemy base, trading at a faction base or starting a new base.
You can get a group of colonists to form a caravan to travel around the world.
Caravans are somewhat slow, taking days, or sometimes seasons to reach their destination; remember to pack enough food that does not rot easily. Animals that can eat grass/ other plants do not need food when grazing is availalbe, but all others do. You can speed it up by having faster colonists or animals in the caravan, this brings up the average speed of the caravan allowing it to travel faster.
Sometimes hostile random events can occur such as an ambush; remember to bring a suitable escort if needed.
This method is extremely fast; it takes up to 1 in-game hour at most to reach its destination.
However, it's also expensive; each pod costs 80 steel and 1 component, in addition to the chemfuel required to power it. It also requires research before it becomes buildable. Chemfuel can be produced by drilling at a deep drill, or researching Refining, this technology allows the construction of a Refinery, that needs wood logs to obtain the desired fuel.
Each pod carries 150 kg, just enough for 2 naked or barely clothed humans. If colonists land on an empty tile they will form a caravan. Remember to take into account the carrying capacity of its members as if you put too much inside the pods, the colonists will be unable to carry it all, and will be immobilized.
Unfortunately, there's no way to navigate over the deep sea. If you happened to have chosen your starting point on an island (intentionally or not), the only way to get to mainland is by launching transport pods. This case is vital for situations where obtaining the necessary materials to build a Multi-analyzer are lacking or the AI Storytellers of choice is Randy Random, who negates interaction with other Factions, blocking trade caravans from visiting you. As well as the player is still green in regards of settling other colonies, forming caravans and invading other settlements.
As of Alpha 16 (December 20th, 2016),, players can form and travel around in caravans, as well as transport pods. This greatly opens trade opportunities and enables the player to command multiple colonies (options) at once. It also raises the importance of Silver and economics in the game, as well as, inevitably, drug trafficking.
For the average colony, earning money mainly relies on either cash crops like Smokeleaf, stone sculptures or the brutal treatment of prisoners. It is important for every colony to select at least one of these options as their main income source, to obtain important resources like Steel.
With the comms console you are able to call factions to send traders to visit your base. It's better to do so than wait for them to send traders on their own, as they rarely do so without being prompted.
You should also send your own caravans to friendly bases for trade, as they are considerably better-stocked than their traders, and also offer a small discount.
Each world has 5 major factions, which you may have already seen before starting (their bases are littered all over the world).
Dealing with them can constitute a large part of running a successful faction.
The comms console also allows you to give gifts of silver to factions, improving goodwill.
To do so, call the faction, then select 'Offer gift'. As with trading, select your colonist best at Social to improve the goodwill increase.
Increasing goodwill allows you to call traders at a lower price and to call for immediate military assistance if you need help.
If tribals raid you should pacify them by capturing, healing and releasing their prisoners, as well as gift them. Turning them friendly will stop them from trying to raid your colony with their massive raider forces, which is helpful at long-term survival. You don't want to deal with 100+ angry tribals shooting arrows, throwing pila or clubbing your colonists all at once.
Pirates cannot be reasoned with; releasing their prisoners won't grant any goodwill, they refuse any kind of communication and they live just to make others' lives worse by raiding their bases and stealing their stuff. You can wipe them off the face of this rimworld by destroying ALL their bases but it'll take an immense amount of time.
Attacking members of other factions will degrade foreign affairs. Foreigners attacked by enraged animals in your territory will affect your relationships, but less.
You can attack a random animal and escape in-between visitors or a trade caravan so that the wild animal attacks them instead of you. If they die, all their belongings become available to you. If some survive, you can medically treat them which counts towards positive interaction between colonies so long as they can leave your map by their own in good health. They won't report any kind of awkward behavior by your people. Have in mind that angry animals due to manhunter will remain roaming until next day, so "saving" them might become difficult, and if there's anybody who is downed but not dead yet, he/she may recover during the night and start moving again. In case the enraged animal is still around, another attack is likely to end the survivor's life for last.
More difficult to perform in Tropical Rainforest biomes or when there's thick snow around due to plants or snow hampering movement.
- Advanced Endgame Guide: Ending your colony on YOUR terms
- Base Building Guide - building a successful base at any stage