Seeking Advice: Early Mistakes with Repercussions?

Hello all!

I deliberately dropped off the beta after a few months as I wanted to come to the final product in all its glory, and I am loving it! One thing, though, is that I suspect (within an individual run) it’s easy to make certain choices and not realise until much later that they impact you massively. Maybe some of these are less of a problem than I feared, but I’d appreciate experienced captains’ advice on Things Not To Do, Even Though They Seem Like A Good Idea.

Ones that come to mind for me:

  • Passing on your map if it’s good, as now you have almost no Secrets in your next incarnation.
  • Using all your Secrets for stat upgrades, as now you can’t make the Zong of the Zee.
  • Cashing in Admiralty’s Favour too much (it’s the sort of thing that looks like it’s really needed for things later).
  • Turning off lights to save fuel except in emergencies: Terror is much more expensive to drop than what you’d save on fuel.

Anyone care to disprove these, or add a few more?

Exploring certainly gives you a Secret boost in the early game, but you’ll keep getting a feed of them steadily as you go - especially if you anatomise creatures you kill, and make a point of visiting islands like Visage, the Mangrove College, and so on. So, they never really run out, even if they come slower.

Visage isn’t a significant source of Fragments anymore; I figure FBG thought it was too grindable, because just before release, they replaced most of the Fragment rewards with other stuff.

I was disappointed by that change in Visage as well, echoes are good but secrets are better :)

I normally never turn my lights on - I found managing terror by returning to London was better than running out of fuel on long trips? The hold space is always an issue for me, and for nightmare’s strength, the event to reduce it frequently comes before it can mount up too high - I’ve only seen it get above five a few times, and then (if you have unaccountably peckish) I just go to the well in the chapel of lights to reduce most of it.[li]

[quote=Asclepius Unbound]

  • Using all your Secrets for stat upgrades, as now you can’t make the Zong of the Zee.
  • Cashing in Admiralty’s Favour too much (it’s the sort of thing that looks like it’s really needed for things later).
  • Turning off lights to save fuel except in emergencies: Terror is much more expensive to drop than what you’d save on fuel.[/quote]

[ul][li]The Zong of the Zee is actually a pretty terrible ROI, stat-bonus wise. You dump a ton of secrets into it but the stat boosts you end up with are way lower than you’d have gotten than if you had just used them (unless you’re capped I guess but by then you’re well past needing any advice). Holding off on the stat upgrades now so you can get an item that gives you less stat upgrades later doesn’t seem like a mistake unless you have the ambition.[/li][li]The Admiralty’s Favour can be built by fetching him information about the places he asks and it’s an incredibly helpful early-game crutch. Hanging onto it isn’t terribly helpful, especially if by hanging onto it you make your early game harder.
[/li][li]This is generally true, except in a couple of cases. First, if you’re skirting a coast/islands/lightships/other things that drop your terror generation, you should turn it off if your terror circle-thing is empty. If you have lights on while next to the coast, your terror will actually drop, so you can keep your terror at the same level by toggling the lights. The other case where you might want to turn it off is if you know you’ll ‘overheal’ your terror soon - for example if you have 10 terror and are returning to London while having a spouse; adding on five extra terror won’t hurt you because you’ll get a big lump sum reduction when you land.[/li][/ul]I’d add one:

[ul][li]Attempting to set up early-game trade routes. Trade routes are hilariously unprofitable until you get a bigger ship and a good idea of the specific sets of actions you need to take to make it work, but for players just starting out it would seem like the obvious thing to do to get some starting money so they can begin exploring. This is a mistake - there are no early-game trade routes that will give you more money than they’ll cost you in supplies, fuel, and terror. If you try you’ll just run out of resources and slowly die.

I gave out some advice for new captains during my launch day stream which I’ve now uploaded to youtube. Its a four video series for new captains, and the information is pretty basic, but it might be worth a check if you are totally new to the game: Sunless Stream 14 - No Legacy - YouTube

Running Sphinxstone to London over and over once you discover the Salt Lions until you have enough echoes for [expensive item/ship of your choice] while putting further exploration on hold. This is a tactic commonly advocated by new players who later announce that they are quitting the game because it’s too boring. (That said, if you’re homeward bound anyway and have extra cargo space then stop there by all means).

Related: adopting an excessively risk-averse play style in Merciless mode (or simply getting too attached to your current captain). Knowledge is power. The job of your current captain is to find out as much information as possible to make your next captain more effective. If your current captain survives the experience, that’s a bonus.

Selling your last item of type X to the Alarming Scholar before you have found out what other uses it might have (generally a bad idea unless you really need the echoes).

Ahh, thanks for divvying up your stream VOD, NiteBrite. That is so much more manageable.

Regarding Sphinxstone, IIRC what I did when I was starting this captain was to find it and incorporate it into all of my return journeys – so I’d go and do stuff, then make sure to stop by Salt Lions on the way back. Other than being a bit of an exercise in cargo space management, it wasn’t particularly tedious.

As far as mistakes go, I guess I’d also add trying too desperately to upgrade your ship. For noncombatants, what you start with is probably the most cost-effective option and will remain so throughout the entire early game; solely exploration-focused players might be fine with it for quite a while longer than that as well. I learned that from my second lot of captains, who starved and drifted in the fancily fitted-out boats on which they’d foolishly lavished their meager savings.