A guide to stockpiling

Last week, you got funked up with some video tutorials:

This week, we’re talking about stockpiles.

When starting a new camp, many people are tempted to just make one huge stockpile to hold everything.

This can work fine as a temporary expedient, but in general, it isn’t a good idea.

There are several drawbacks to very large stockpiles. It can get very difficult to tell what exactly is in a really big stockpile and how much space is left in it, and a big stockpile full of flammable things is a pretty big fire hazard.

The greatest drawback to large stockpiles is inefficiency. If possible, goblins and orcs will avoid walking on stockpiles, so whenever a goblin needs to get something out of a large stockpile, they have to spend some of their time walking around it. With a really big stockpile, this will take some time, and, worse, the ground around the stockpile will become more and more muddy. As the mud gets worse, the goblins end up taking longer and longer detours to get to things in the stockpile, increasing hauling time greatly. In the worst-case scenario of a single huge stockpile, there will also be a permanent traffic jam of goblins around it, especially at planting or harvesting time. Whenever two goblins have to move through the same square, they’re slowed down, so hauling times grow even more.

So having only a couple of huge stockpiles is an easy solution, it isn’t a particularly good one. Goblin Camp is a resource management game, and one key area of management is logistics. For greatest efficiency, you’ll want to have the raw material stockpile, the workshop and the finished product stockpile as close to one another as possible, to minimize time spent hauling things around. The stockpiles can’t be too big, either, so that the goblins can get to things in them easily.

Another consideration is items that are used, like food or drink; they need to be where the orcs and goblins that need them can get at them. This needs to be balanced with the other requirements, and the different production flows all need to fit into the same camp and be somewhat defensible, too.

When I lay out my camps, I usually end up with a grid pattern:

Very SimCity, don’t you think? In that particular example, the food stockpile is close to the totem pole and the fields, and the seed stockpile is right next to them. The blueleaf bolls go into a stockpile that’s right next to the weavers, and as bolls and cloth both go into crates, the finished product ends up in the same stockpile. The drinks stockpile is far from the river and close to my main gate, so the guards don’t have to go all the way down to the river to drink.

Here’s an extreme example of an economy in logistics:

I’ve outlined the farm plot in red so you can tell it apart from the filth around it. When I laid out the fields in this particular camp, there were a couple of squares of stone in the middle of them. I made those into one- or two-square stockpiles, made sacks for them and then designated them as seed stockpiles. Makes planting really quick!

As I said, that’s an extreme example, but on the whole I’d rather have a lot of small stockpiles than a few really big ones. They’re easier to keep track of, there are less inefficiencies and they’re even better for fire safety.

Whatever approach you take, managing your stockpiles is one of the key areas of the game. If your stockpiles are too big and the distances goblins have to haul things are too long, the entire camp will simply bog down. On the other hand, if your farm plots and stockpiles are well placed, even the most labor-intensive hauling jobs like planting and harvesting will be easy as your goblins just breeze in and out.

So think about your stockpiles!