The Colonists Guide: Tips, Tricks & Cheats to Build a Thriving Robot Colony

The Colonists for PC is a charming little city building sim that hasn’t been out for long. We’ve talked about it in our review already, but now it’s time to focus on the actual gameplay and share some tips and tricks for The Colonists.

In our complete guide for The Colonists, we’ll focus on the basic mechanics and shortcuts that you can take in order to improve your game’s experience. And, of course, complete the missions faster in order to see what’s in store next.

So let’s not waste too much time as we have a lot to talk about! Check out some The Colonists tips and tricks in our guide below.

1. Always start by building your road network
Whenever you start a new mission, the first thing you should do is pause the game and do some landscape planning. Decide where the main points of interest will be (mines, resources, expansion) and decide how you’ll go about this.

Then, build the roads! Always start by building the roads and try to anticipate future road blocks. Creating a solid road network with multiple potential routes for multiple types of resources is vital for having a thriving colony.

I would always recommend you to try and build a road network in squares: this seems to work best in terms of optimizing delivery of resources. And in order to make this work, you have to take some time and build as much of your road network as possible first.

2. Always start with 2 lumberjacks
Wood is one of the most important resources early on and you’ll speed up things a lot by building 2 lumberjacks instead of one. Getting the Forester is not mandatory early on, but eventually you will have to build one as well and have it replace the trees that the two other lumberjacks cut down.

This will speed up your progress and, with proper research, you will find that it’s enough to have 1 Forester for every 2 Lumberjacks.

3. You will always be able to build level 1 structures
When you get stuck – or you seem to be stuck, remember that you will always be able to build level 1 structures, starting with the basic ones and moving up. So retrace the route and see why you are stuck and create a level 1 building to fix the problem.

The game currently keeps the higher level building that you have unlocked as the default option. So if you have unlocked a Lvl 2 house, that’s what the game will try to build by default. Make sure that you actually select the required level of the building you are trying to build and everything should work smoothly.

4. Try to complete missions ASAP
Every mission that you complete gives you some ratings based on the time needed for you to get it done. The faster, the better so always have that in mind.

In order to complete everything faster, don’t hesitate to take the speed of the game down (or even pause it) when you start building a lot, during the planning and structure placement phase. Although you don’t really win anything from getting more stars in the game, you want to get them all from your first try as repeating a mission is time consuming.

5. Focus on military research after getting there
Starting with mission 4, military research and action will become an important part of the game and competing against the AI will bring a new breath of air to The Colonists.

However, you must always make sure that you’ve got the upper hand in the game – and that is achieved by focusing on military research when encounters with the AI are expected.

This means that you should focus on researching arrows as soon as possible – the AI seems, as far as I can tell based on my experience, not interested in getting that research first. And once you get the arrows (and the AI doesn’t) you basically have the fate of the game pretty much decided.

6. Take advantage of those storage buildings
The storage deposits (or whatever they’re called) are vital in the game, just as a solid road network is. Not only that they can make building new structures or items a lot faster, but they can also save you a lot of trouble and getting stuck eventually.

Therefore, you should take the time to build several storage deposits in key areas of the game and take the time to manually assign the important items that they should accept (as well as the number). Instead of having them accept whatever items you have in excess, instruct the deposits to only receive items that you need in the area or items that go through the road network you have build, according to your rules (we’ll talk about this in our final tip).

7. How to fix road blocks (resources not being delivered)
If you have read my review, you know that I got this early on in the game, at the 3rd mission. A road block ruined my game and in my case, no matter what I tried to do to fix that road gridlock, nothing worked and I had to restart.

But usually, roadblocks are fixed a lot easier and the only thing you have to do is to delete some roads in order to destroy the route the game has assigned for the delivery of the resources that are responsible for the blockage. When you do this, you force the game to find a different route and things are automatically fixed. You can even rebuild the roads you have destroyed and you shouldn’t have problems in the future.

Of course, this won’t always work – as it didn’t in my 3rd mission – but it’s worth trying since it’s easier to do than restart the whole thing.


8. Keep an eye on production / resource requirements
If you don’t pay attention for even a short while, you might find yourself in a complete mess due to the lack of resources. And one lacking resource can have a snowball effect on all others, resulting in time wasted to fix the problems – when preventing them would’ve been a lot easier.

So always keep an eye on production, looking not necessarily at the amount of items produced and required, but at the potential total production and requirements. If those numbers are equal (or production is higher), then you should be fine. If not, consider building structures producing that item ASAP.

9. Try to find a permanent deposit of Stone ASAP
Even though not as important as logs are early on in the game, stone is vital in The Colonists and the biggest problem with it is that the deposits you’ll usually have around your starting point will deplete over time.

The best bet you have is to find a deposit of stone that won’t deplete (requiring a mine shaft) and expand there ASAP. Another resource taken care of! And this will help you progress a lot faster when you’ll be able to start upgrading the roads to stone roads.

10. Micromanage resource transportation
This is not a fun thing to do, but you do have to do it if you want to have thriving colony. Micromanage the routes that your resources take and do it to the bone!

Using the first tip that I shared, you will have a road network that will allow you to have at least two ways (two roads) heading in the same direction. Starting from here, create rules for items that can and cannot be carried over those roads by setting specific instructions to each Road Post.

Combine this with smartly placed deposits where you only allow those types of resources and you will be surprised to see how fluid the whole thing will get. Sure, it takes time to set-up (and you have to constantly update them as new items are unlocked), but it’s worth it!

11. Keep multiple save files for the same game
You should be prepared for the unexpected at all times. This means that a road gridlock can happen at any moment, forcing you to start over. But you can prevent that from happening by keeping multiple save game files – I recommend keeping at least 3, so that if something really bad happens eventually, you won’t be forced to start over, but load a previous save game file and fix whatever got broken before it happens.

This would be everything that we have for you right now. With a game as complex as a city building sim, there’s definitely a lot more to think about and do, so if you have some other important tips and tricks to share with the world, don’t hesitate to do so by commenting below.

2 thoughts on “The Colonists Guide: Tips, Tricks & Cheats to Build a Thriving Robot Colony”

  1. i don’t understand what some of the resources are that it is showing me, i have looked everywhere and i can’t find a resource list and i feel it would be really helpful to me and lots of other players that don’t know what the required resources are that it’s asking for


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