How do I get started?

I’m really not enjoying this game so far and it’s frustrating.

I started a game, played a while, found some towns, did some trading, died. Got a new captain, died pretty quickly again. I thought that since this game has a lineage mechanic that that would all be fine, but my next captain started with basically no money. What can I even do? I’ve just got the basic weapon, enough supplies to get somewhere but no money to buy anything there to bring back to sell, and not even enough supplies for a round trip. Feels like I’m stuck and can’t make progress with this lineage, there’s nothing I can do.

I guess I’ll restart the game entirely, and make good use of the merciful setting so that I just reload when I die. That’s disappointing though because I’d made some progress, successfully found Avon and Magdalene, had a few quests, and now I have to do that again.

But it really hasn’t been much fun so far. Am I missing something?

It’s not easy to get started, unfortunately. All I can really suggest is try to get port reports and do whatever prospects become available to make cash. If Merciful mode lets you enjoy the game, by all means make use of it. Hopefully you can get into a better groove of making money from a new game. Things start to get a lot better and more interesting when you can afford better locomotives.

Another viewpoint: it’s not difficult to get started if you are a bit methodical in the beginning. Prospects will tell you the general location of some ports, which can be handy. You can generally find a few like Port Avon and Magelene’s fairly close to New Winchester. Collect some port reports from them; they pay a lot more than they did in Sunless Seas. Anything you buy on bargain from a satellite port will make you some money, guaranteed, in New Winchester, even if it’s not a prospect. Avoid going too far away from port so as not to wander in the path of bees and such until you get the hang of the combat. The game puts a few lucrative jobs in your lap at the beginning. Take that passenger to Port Prosper, and there’s a job in Port Prosper that’s easy to complete and gives you a whopping 800 sovereigns. You should be able to find your feet fairly quickly.

You absolutely do NOT need a new ship to make things more interesting. I’ve been to every port save two in The Reach, Albion and Eleutheria and am still rocking the original ship, albeit with some additional armor and hold space.

Yeah, that makes sense. It was just hard to be methodical when I didn’t really know where anything was. I can be methodical in the late game when I’ve figured things out, but the early game I just don’t know enough about how anything works to be methodical…

Anyway, I restarted and bumped all the difficulties to their lowest setting, it’s a bit easier to explore and get places now so it didn’t take too long to make up lost ground. Maybe even too easy. Oh well. I figure I’ll bump them up when I retire the captain.

On the topic of difficulty: I thought Merciful mode would allow me to manually save but, I gather, that’s not the case?

Correct. The game only keeps one save, an autosave, which it makes in ports (and maybe when you transition to a new area? Not sure about that one). Merciful mode allows you to resume from that one save if you die, whereas without it your captain is dead for good and you automatically move on to another one. Be aware that even on merciful, you can still choose to let your captain die… I’m a dummy, probably, but I clicked too fast once and accidentally killed my captain rather than re-loading the save. It was early on, but it still kinda sucked.

In transitions to new areas the game doesn’t save, i checked once. First time i went to Albion i left the game after just undock from the relay. When i came back again, i was back in Port Prosper. Also, the Albion Relay changed it’s place, so i guess the regions are generated only when you make the trasition to it.

Yeah, I think the only thing that locks port and spectacle locations in is discovering and docking at new ports. If you haven’t found a port you’ve been looking for yet, it’s best to check your Prospects, Journal or other information after reloading a save.

The map is generated the first time you enter the region. Ports and spectacles are locked the instant you discover the region. One time i took a really long trip around a border of Albion, discovered spectacles, The Well, The Storm that speaks, but had to leave the game before docking. When i came back, everything was in the same exact location.