Scenario system

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Default scenario choosing window, with the Biotech DLC installed and one custom-set scenario.

The scenario system allows you to choose, randomize, and customize special situations to play in. Determine the starting situation, type of community (tribe, colony), permanent map conditions, starting items, animals, health conditions, traits, and change special rules. In the image on the right, you can see the window for choosing scenarios and the "Open Steam Workshop" button (if you are using the steam version of the game).

New Tribe vs New Arrivals[edit]

Starting scenarios can be roughly grouped into one of two types, determined by the faction type the player will inherit. These are:

  • New tribes: Inherited by the "Lost Tribe" default scenario, and selectable in the scenario editor.
  • New arrivals: Inherited by the "Crashlanded", "Rich Explorer", and "Naked Brutality" default scenarios, and selectable in the scenario editor.

There are some significant differences between the New Tribe and New Arrivals scenarios.


The most significant difference is the starting research and the long term effects on research speed. New Tribes begin with a different, and lower tech, set of research projects already completed, as described below. Note that custom and default scenarios may also add additional technologies to these lists.

Furthermore, new tribes start with a tech level of "Neolithic", while new arrivals begin with a tech level of "Industrial". This increases the research needed for new tribes to research technologies above neolithic, with the penalty increasing as the tech level does. Note that a great majority of techs on the research tree are classified as Industrial or higher.

Starting Research
New Tribe New Arrivals
Project tech level Research cost multiplier
New Arrivals New Tribe
Neolithic 100% 100%
Medieval 100% 150%
Industrial 100% 200%
Spacer 100% 200%
Ultra 100% 200%

Other differences[edit]

Default Scenarios[edit]

These four scenarios are in the base game. Each offers a different set of challenges, and encourages different playstyles to a certain extent. For example: you could start off as a 'rich explorer' who came from a high-tech glitterworld but yearned to explore the universe, or you could also start as a desperate tribe that's on the brink of starvation after fleeing from a devastating group of 'blood machines'. On the other hand, you could be managing a few crashlanded civilians who barely escaped an assaulted passenger liner with their lives.

Here are the four scenarios listed in order as shown in game:


Summary: Three crashlanded survivors - the classic RimWorld experience.
Description: The three of you awake in your cryptosleep sarcophagi to the sound of sirens and ripping metal. You barely get to the escape pods before the ship is torn apart. Some time later, you land on this unknown rimworld.

Lost Tribe[edit]

Summary: Five lost tribespeople attempt to rebuild. Difficult.
Description: Your tribe was destroyed by the great blood machines sent by the gods. Five of you managed to escape. Now, it's time to build up a new home. Note: Since you'll start poor and research slowly, this is a difficult scenario.

  • Start with five people, chosen from eight
    • They will be a New Tribe
    • They have a 50% chance of starting with malnutrition
      • Severity ranges from 20% (minor) to 40% (moderate)
    • They have a 100% chance of having a less satisfied 'food' need
      • Satisfaction is set to 0-10%
    • All potential options will have backstories from the "Tribal" category.
  • Start with 3 random pets
    • Has a 100% chance of being bonded with random colonists
    • Has a 100% chance of being bonded with the starting colonist
  • Start with technology already researched
  • Start with 6 weapons
  • Start with basic supplies
  • Start near basic building materials
    • 500 wood

The Rich Explorer[edit]

Summary: One rich explorer out to experience the universe. Extra difficult.
Description: People called you crazy for leaving your glitterworld home, but you always yearned to explore the stars - outside the neurosimulator. Now you're at the end of your long journey in cryptosleep, landing on an unknown rimworld to see what it's like. Note: Since your starting character will lack some skills, this is an especially difficult scenario in the early game.

Naked Brutality[edit]

Summary: Naked, alone and utterly unprepared. Can you survive?
Description: You went under anesthetic for a minor surgery. Now you've awoken in a drop pod crashing into a distant planet. You're naked, alone and utterly unprepared. Can you survive?

The Mechanitor[edit]

Summary: One mechanitor and a few servant mechanoids.
Description: You knew you could only achieve greatness with help. People were too unreliable, so you chose to take on mechanoids as your servants, workers, and warriors. As you gained strength, others became fearful. It became clear you needed to get away from the influence of humanity. Now you've migrated to this sparsely-populated rimworld with some of your metallic helpers. Finally, you have the space to grasp your true potential!

Note: Since your starting character will lack some skills, this is a difficult scenario.

The Sanguophage[edit]

Summary: One crashlanded sanguophage needing blood to survive, and one human colonist.
Description: When a dark stranger offered you a cure for your cancer, you were ready to agree to anything. He made you into a sanguophage - an immortal blood-drinker hated by a thousand religions. You hid your condition for years, but eventually a hunter tracked you down. Stowing away on the first starship leaving the system, you barely escaped alive.

Note: Sanguophages have unique strengths and weaknesses, which makes this a difficult scenario.

The Anomaly[edit]

Summary: Three researchers and a ghoul investigate an ancient monolith.
Description: Your research expedition has finally arrived at the source of the anomalous signal: an ancient archotech monolith on a distant planet. As you survey the structure from orbit, the scanner's audio feed forms garbled syllables which repeat your own name over and over. Your crewmate screams as her flesh begins flowing and reforming. A blinding beam of energy reaches up from the planet and tears your research vessel apart. You have disturbed something ancient and inhuman.

Note: This is a difficult scenario and is not recommended for new players.

Scenario editor[edit]

Scenario edit mode

The scenario editor looks somewhat like the default scenario choosing window except for the left side of the page has changed, there are now three buttons: Load, which you can use to load your previously saved custom scenarios. Save, which is used to save your custom scenarios. And randomize seed, which is used to randomize the scenario. Under these buttons is the Edit mode, which you can toggle to open a window like the one on the bottom-right.

Edit mode[edit]

In this mode, you can change a scenario however you want. Each of the parts on the right of the window is explained below, including the possible inputs.

Mandatory parts[edit]

  • Part name Description Possible inputs
    Title The title for the scenario. Text
    Summary A short version of the description for the scenario. Text
    Description The description for the scenario. Text
    Player faction The type of faction you will run. (changes what research you have and don't have) New Arrivals
    New Tribe
    Starting people The number of people you will start with. Number (max 10)
    Starting people Content added by the Biotech DLC The number of people you will start with and what kind of xeno races. (More can be added) Number (max 10)
    Required? (Cannot go below 1)
    Arrival method How your colonists will arrive. Standing
    Drop pods
  • Voluntary parts[edit]

    Part name Description Possible inputs
    Allowed age range The biological age range of your starting colonists. Number slider (min 15, max 120)
    Characters explode on death Self explanatory. Number determines radius. Number (max 1000000000) and type of explosion (bomb or flame)
    Create incident Creating of an incident for the colony, with the option to repeat every X days. Number (max 1000000000)
    Repeat checkbox
    Disable exostrider remains Content added by the Biotech DLC Disable chance of exostrider remains showing up. Recommended not to start without Mechanitor as this disables the ability to get the required implant for Mechanoid control. None (Only can be added once)
    Disable incident Disabling of an incident for the colony. Any incident
    Disallow building Disallows a building from being built. Any building
    Forced health condition Forces the characters specified to have a specific health condition. Type of health condition
    Severity of the condition
    Chance for having the condition
    Who will have the condition
    Forced trait Forces the characters specified to have a specific trait. Trait
    Chance for having the trait
    Who will have the trait
    Game start dialog Text shown at the start of the game Text
    Naked Chance of colonists or planet inhabitants being naked Chance of nudity
    Who will be naked
    Permanent game condition Forces the world to have a constant planetary effect Game condition
    Permanent map condition Forces the map to have the specified map condition permanently on Map condition
    Planetkiller weapon incoming Makes the game end after a specified amount of days Number (max 1000000000)
    Scattered randomly Makes the game scatter the specified items randomly around the map. Item
    Number (max 100000000000)
    Set need level Sets the starting level of need until the characters can restore themselves. Need
    Severity of need
    Who the need is applied to
    Start near Makes the game spawn the specified items near your starting location. Item
    Number (max 100000000000)
    Start with Makes the game drop the specified items to your starting location. Item
    Number (max 100000000000)
    Start with animal(s) Makes the game start you with the specified animals as pets. Number (max 100000000000)
    Start with mechanoidContent added by the Biotech DLC Makes the game start you with the specified controllable mechanoids Number (max 100000000000)
    Start with research Makes the game start you with the specified research. Research
    Stat multiplier The multiplier for Stats Number (max 10000)

    These parts are self explanatory and require no input: Cannot mine, cannot sow, cannot tame and cannot hunt.

    Version history[edit]

    • 0.12.906 - Colonies now start with a pet.
    • 0.14.1234 - Scenario system added. The previous default experience is now the Crashlanded scenario.
    • 0.19.2009 - Naked Brutality scenario added.
    • ? - Crashlanded scenario's starting packaged survival meals increased from 44 to 50.
    • 1.4.3555 - Fix: You can start as a psychically deaf mechanitor.
    • 1.4.3563 - Fix: ChildrenContent added by the Biotech DLC generated at tribal game start don't have natural meditation focus.Content added by the Royalty DLC