Originally by Gerontius
Completing the Economy Overview Quests
There are some quests where you have to balance various buildings in your economy.
These quests include: “Making Production Chains Perfect”, “Important Pinewood”, and “Look Out For the Tools”
They always seem to give people loads of trouble. The point of them is to learn to use the economy overview.
An excellent guide for the economy overview is available here:
This guide will fill in some of the gaps to actually completing the quests themselves.
First, what are the quests actually asking you to do? Let’s look at the requirements for “Making Production Chains Perfect”. The three requirements, which have to be fulfilled simultaneously, are:
“Have a production value of at least 0 every 12 hour(s) for Pinewood”
“Have a production value of at least 360 every 12 hour(s) for Pinewood Planks”
“Have a production value of at least 0 every 12 hour(s) for Pinewood Desposits”
It isn’t totally clear what these requirements mean.
“Have a production value of at least 0 every 12 hour(s) for Pinewood” means that you need to be producing more pinewood (ie logs) than you are using, or exactly the same amount. That’s the simplest way of thinking of it.
It DOES NOT mean you can just have zero production and zero consumption - stopping ALL your buildings won’t work. You have to have some production going on, which must balance out in the require way.
It also DOES NOT mean that you have to wait 12 hours for the quest to complete. The economy overview averages current production out over the next 12 hours, but updates almost immediately.
“Have a production value of at least 0 every 12 hour(s) for Pinewood Desposits” is the same, but for pinewood deposits (ie trees) rather than pinewood (logs)
OK, what about “Have a production value of at least 360 every 12 hour(s) for Pinewood Planks”. That should be easy to understand given the above. You have to be producing that many Pinewood Planks. Since nothing consumes planks directly, this just means you need enough sawmills running to make 360 every 12 hours. Again, you DON’T have to wait 12 hours!
So what produces pinewood desposits? Pinewood foresters! What consumes pinewood deposits? Pinewood cutters!
What produces pinewood? Pinewood cutters! What consumes pinewood? Pinewood sawmills, bowmakers and cokers.
These are the buildings you need to balance out. First, since you the quest doesn’t require you to be producing bows or coal, you can stop those buildings to make things easier for yourself.
Here’s what a stopped building looks like
When you’re doing “Making Production Chains Perfect”, you probably won’t have bowmakers or cokers yet. But for future quests you’ll have lots of different buildings using your resources. And your economy overview will look something like this.
But for now, let’s look at the economy overview in more detail for pinewood vs pinewood planks
Here, you can see I’m producing +522 pinewood logs, and the pinewood sawmills are consuming -379 of them, so I’m producing +143 overall, or more than zero, so I’ve completed that part of the quest.
The 379 logs that are being consumed are being turned directly into planks so I’m producing +379 planks as well, so I’ve completed that part of the quest, too.
Let’s look at another example for my pinewood deposits vs pinewood logs
Oh, no, I’m cutting down more pinewood deposits than I’m using. So I’ve failed this part of the quest.
The question is, and where most people get stuck on these quests, is working out what can be done about it?
There are a few options.
Option 1. You can turn off some of the pinewood cutters to reduce your consumption of pinewood deposits. But this will reduce your pinewood production, which might mean you’re not producing enough of that. Try stopping and starting different buildings and checking the effects in the economy overview. Remember, that’s the point of these quests: to learn to use your economy overview.
See, in the image below, turning off a pinewood cutter means that my pinewood production is now in the red at -137.
So sometimes turning off buildings can work, sometimes it doesn’t. Let’s look at the next option!
Option 2. You can buff buildings with fish platters, or sandwiches, or baskets, or get a friend to do it. If you’re a low level, you won’t have access to buffs yet, but if you’re a high enough level or have high level friends, they can help out. Remember, buffing buildings double production, but doesn’t change consumption.
See the image below for an economy overview with a buffed pinewood cutter
Buffs will normally solve your problems and help you to complete the quests. But really, they’re only a temporary measure and, in the long term, you’re going to want to try to balance your economy better. That’s what the next option is about.
Option 3. Build more buildings! If you’re short of pinewood deposits you can just build more foresters like this. Two more foresters (one off the bottom of the scroll list) and I’m back in the green!
If you’re short of pinewood logs, you can build more cutters. But remember, you’ll probably then have to build more foresters as well to compensate for the increased consumption! And if you’re short of planks, you’ll have to build more sawmills and more cutters AND more foresters.
If you’ve got the resources, you can upgrade existing buildings instead of building new new ones. A level 2 building is the same as two level 1 buildings (but uses one fewer building licence, of course). In the long term, you’ll be able to upgrade everything and destroy some unnecessary copies of buildings.
But, for now, and to complete this first quest, you only need 3 foresters, 2 cutters and 2 sawmills arranged something like this.
Later, when you can build storehouses, you’ll be able to build one near the foresters and cutters to decrease the walking distance and production time, making your economy even more efficient!
The later economy overview quests are harder as you have more resources to balance, but the principles remain the same and your three options for resolving problems are still Stopping Buildings, Buffing Buildings, and Building/Upgrading Buildings!
Good luck and happy settling