In Frostpunk surviving is the same as winning the game. You will probably have amputees and a lot of sick people, but it is possible to wait out and survive the storm although you might be forced to resort to some extreme measure, like public executions.
Get as far ahead as you can in research. Before the Storm hits you need to store enough food for your citizens to last it out, rescue all survivors, research the Generator Power Upgrade III and Overdrive Couplings. You also will need to dismantle all Outposts and recall all Outpost and Scout Teams.
As soon as you research the Stereoscopic Lens you’ll know “what looms ahead” and be told to prepare for the storm. You will be given the goals of:
- How much food to store, which is a least a week’s worth for all your citizens
- What to research in the heat category
- The location of any remaining survivors who need to be rescued
- Dismantling all outposts and recalling all Outpost and Scout Teams.
- You’ll need enough coal stored to last a week as well.
The Frostpunk Storm
Before the Storm arrives, you’ll need to deal with your city’s sense of Hope. When you discover Winterhome has fallen you need to decide which set of laws to use to deal with that issue. I’ve always had better luck with Order and Discipline. Then you need to deal with the Londoners.
Read More: Faith or Order? You get to decide! You can also use the customized menu at the top of the page to find all the Frostpunk articles on this site.
Once the storm is within days of arriving it will show up on the day counter strip at the top of the screen if Stereoscopic Lenses are researched. As the Storm progresses the temperature continues to drop, all the way down to -238 degrees F.
Once the storm hits all food gathering and producing abilities will be disabled, it will simply be too cold to send anyone out hunting or to grow plants in Hothouses. One high priority item once this happens is to recover all the Steam Cores you can. Dismantle the Hothouses and any Infirmaries you can’t get operating and use them to build Automatons. Automatons will be unaffected by the cold and will continue to produce resources 24 hours a day without becoming sick like citizens would.
Since any Beacons and Outpost Depots you’ve built are useless once the teams have been recalled dismantle them to regain some resources
I’m always short on food because I take in all refugees and not just the healthy ones (your situation could be different) so I build Hunter’s Huts as fast as I can and staff them. Whatever your biggest shortage is is what you should focus on.
Read More: Worried about those tents? Don’t be!
As the Storm rages on you’ll be faced with Discontent rising to unmanageable levels, almost to the point where people would rather see you on Executioner’s block than anywhere else. Sometimes all you can do is beg them to hang on for a few more days.
It’s always darkest before the dawn and the temperature will drop to -238 degrees Fahrenheit shortly before the storm ends. When it ends the temperature goes up to a balmy -22 degrees Fahrenheit.
If your city survived you’ll be told how well you did. The city started with a small band of 80 people and in my last game that became 544, simply because I accepted all the survivors and not just the healthy ones. I guess as a dictator I’m not too cold-hearted after all.
We resorted to public executions of enemies, spies, propaganda to brainwash the populace and prisons, which in my case meant I had “Crossed the Line.” My sense of order evolved into Despotism. My city survived but was it worth the cost? Could I have even survived without taking these measures? Another aspect to explore the next time I play the game!
Frostpunk Strategy For Surviving The Storm
At the very start of the game assign all but 10 Engineers to gathering resources. Having 10 Engineers free to build the Workshops gets them built just a little earlier, enabling you to get research done on the Beacon the very first day, plus build it, create a Scout team, and be able to send them out on exploration, all on the very first day. The very first buildings to construct are two Workshops in the second ring.
Use the Generator sparingly, only turn it on at night from 2 to 4.
Since Hunter’s Huts only operate at night I thought it would be a good idea that once their shift was over the Hunters should be reassigned to other tasks, like coal gathering. This would take a little micromanagement but would be well worth the extra effort since it essentially gives you some extra workers is what I thought. What I did not take into account was that these workers take time out to eat and rest. By constantly reassigning workers I was actually losing production. By the time they ate and rested the Hunter’s Huts got off to a late start which meant they ended their shifts late. When they were reassigned to something like coal gathering I was only getting a few hours work out of them, if any at all, since they once again rested, ate and got off to an even later start.
Read More: There is a more detailed page about all this at my Build Order page.
As soon as the Workshops are built fully staff them and start research on the Beacon. As soon as the Beacon is researched build it in the second ring.
The first Law to pass from the Book of Laws is Emergency Shift. This allows you to work your facilities a 24-hour shift, which will cause Discontent to rise, both when you pass the law and when you use it, but you will get a significant boost in output from that facility, but use it very sparingly.
Contrary to what you might think wood will be your most sought-after resource at first and not coal so begin research on the Sawmill as soon as Beacon research is finished.
During the first five days you also need to get food coming in so build a Hunter’s Hut, then build a Cookhouse to turn all that raw food into something edible. Food will last twice as long with a Cookhouse making food rations from raw food.
You’ll also need to build:
- Medical Post
- Two more Workshops
- Three Sawmills
- Child Shelter once the Child Shelter law is passed.
- 12 tents
- Another Hunter’s Hut
- Another Medical Post
- Two gathering posts
Read More: I have a page totally dedicated on what to build first in Frostpunk.
Other laws you need to enact from the Book of Laws:
- Sign extended shifts into law. This allows you to extend a work shift to a 14-hour day.
- Child Shelters law. This will eventually allow you to train and use the kids as apprentices in either the medical or technological field. I like using them in the research field, researching as much as you can as fast as you can is one big key to surviving and winning the game. I think it’s a better strategy than putting the kids to work.
- Radical Treatment Law. This allows the gravely ill to be treated at Medical Posts which could lead to up to 30% of all patients being amputees, but at least they will be alive. You can later pass the prosthetics law, which allows them to be fitted with artificial limbs and be put back to work.
Frostpunk Research For Surviving The Storm
After the Sawmill research:
- Coal Thumper
- Finish the first level, then research Drawing Boards
- Start research on additional scouts as soon as Drawing Board research is completed. The more you explore and discover other sites the better off your city will be.