Medieval Dynasty – Beginner Tips
Things I wish I’d known when I first started Medieval Dynasty
This guide is being written during Early Access. Some of what is said below is subject to change, and may change before I have the chance to update it. That said…
You won’t have much income early on, and everything is expensive. Immediately follow the first quest to get the ball rolling, claim your land and start to build a home, which will provide you storage. That storage will be needed greatly, as you can only carry so much.
Until you’ve got storage, don’t fall into the classic gaming trap of picking up and hoarding everything you come across, or you’ll soon be unable to move.
Fun fact: As of this writing, if you’re at the second of three overburdened phases, you move a bit faster if you move diagonally.
Icons In Your Compass: Exclamation Points indicate a Quest. Bags indicate a Merchant. An official looking document indicates Unigost, who in addition to offering the Main Storyline Quests, is also who you must pay taxes to each Spring (more on this in Prepping Your Village section)
There are a couple of quests to be had in the town you spawn near. The Castellan, Unigost, will offer you the Main Storyline Quests.
Of chief importance beyond Unigost is a young man named Alwyn – following his chain will eventually lead you to your first Bow, and following it further, is perhaps the easiest way to get your first Longbow which works much better.
Fun Fact: When engaging in a friendly archery competition with Alwyn as part of his quest chain, the distance you are from the target is how many points you’ll receive for a bullseye.
Dynasty points will be very important a bit further in the game, so completing any “!” side-quest you come across that awards them is recommended. A recent patch increased the Dynasty Point reward for quests.
Early Game Cash-Flow
Allow me to reiterate: Everything is expensive! It really drives home the frustration of being poor in the middle ages, even if by our modern understanding of money some of the values seem ridiculous (example: If you purchase thread to make pants, you’ll spend 1,000 coins to make pants…)
Prior to earning Survival Sense, the easiest income generator is to gather sticks and stones and make Axes and Knives to sell. You can sell spears as well, but they’re just so darn useful!
There’s a bit more info on each of these below, but If you’ve got naturally keen eyes, St. John’s Wart and Broadleaf Plantains abound and can easily create big stacks to earn one or two hundred coins easily. If you don’t intend to use Berries for food/water in Summer, you can harvest the unripe berries in Spring for cash as well. Fall is a good time to spend an entire day simply gathering Mushrooms of all kinds to sell.
On the road to the hunter Sambor, who you’ll meet in the course of the Main Quest line, there is an abandoned cart that has been pushed down the hill (the fence is broken, showing where it went off the road). There is a waterskin there, and perhaps bolts or a hat.
There is a skill in the Survival tree called Survival Sense which will highlight what you can forage along the ground in yellow when holding the Alt key. Its use does drain stamina, so be cognizant of this.
Pick up Morels for quick-fix food, or sell them in bunches for early cash-flow.
Unripe berries can serve as cash-flow as well, but don’t eat them as they’re poisonous. Unless you desperately need the cash, leave them until summer.
Pick berries for on-the-go quick-fix food to both hunger and thirst. They don’t provide much, but a single minute spent picking all in the vicinity can fill you up well.
Mushrooms abound during fall. Pay close attention to the details when viewing them in your inventory, as it’ll tell you if they’re poisonous or not. Hopefully by fall you’ll have done some hunting and cooked some meat, so you can treat all mushrooms as cash-flow.
There’s really no gathering to be had in Winter. Hunting will be your only food source during this time, if you don’t wish to pay at various taverns for food.
There is a Hunting skill called ‘Tracker’ that will highlight animals in Green (passive) or Red (aggressive) within a certain radius of you when you hold Alt (It is similar to the Survival skill called ‘Survival Sense’ that highlights forage-able plants on the ground in yellow).
Note: Holding Alt for either of these skills drains your stamina.
It is worth investing in both of these skills.
Other than the rabbits which can be one-shot with arrows, other animals can generally survive the first arrow. If you can land a spear (this can work with arrows too, the spear is just visually larger), it makes them easier to track as they flee since you can hold [Alt] and see the spear. Just ensure that you throw a spear that is at least 66% durability, so it doesn’t break on contact.
Carry a knife with you, so that you can skin the animal afterwards and acquire the meat. if you do not have a knife in your inventory, you will not be able to harvest the carcass.
As of this writing, animals do not currently attack NPCs.
Rabbits are most easily hunted with a bow. Because they’re low to the ground, they can be hard to notice in spring and summer when the vegetation is lush. Until you land a bow, you can get lots of practice in throwing your spears. Use Ctrl (default) to sneak, but be aware you’ll still need to stop some distance away or be noticed, and the rabbit will flee.
Similar to rabbits, but easier to spot due to both their color, and the squeaky sounds they make. They can be very erratic with their movements, making throwing the spear difficult sometimes as they dart to and fro.
A headshot with a spear from cover is the easiest way to take the deer down, as they’ll flee with erratic movements if you land your throw anywhere else on the body.
Aggressive. Early game focus on headshots with your spears . Carry plenty of spears.
There is another guide as of this writing that highlights areas on the map to find these animals.
Quick-start and on-the-go crafting can be accessed anywhere by pressing ‘Q’ to bring up your crafting radial menu.
Within this menu you can craft basic tools, any buildings you’ve unlocked, traps, etc. When you hover over a selection it will tell you in the center what materials you must have in your inventory to complete the crafting.
Beyond the basic tools available in the ‘Q’ menu, more advanced ones are only available through their respective buildings, merchants, or by stealing them. A pickaxe, for example, is crafted via a Blacksmith. Waterskins at the Sewer. Arrows can be made in the first crafting hut you build.
When you place your first house, you’re establishing the location of your future village. Villagers need easy access to water. You will absolutely want to be close to a densely populated forest as well, as the buildings require a lot of wood. If you want to get into mining/excavation you’ll want to also be near rock formations/mountains/mines/clay.
I personally went to the fork in the road just West of Gostovia, where the bridge leads across the water, and built there. River, woods, rock formations, clay, close to the town where the Main Questline is, and relatively central to the whole map. I have to hike a bit to hunt, but frankly that’s always going to be the case in some way.
Once you place your first and all future buildings, you’ll only have the basic framework present. You’ll need to have crafted a Hammer to see the various parts, their requirements, and to construct them once you’ve got the inventory required.
Before completing a wall/roof, you can use the Hammer and click ‘E’ to change the type of wall it is – Wattle, Wood, or Stone (or for a Roof, Straw, Wood, or Wood-Tile). It may change the requirements some (for example a Wattle wall may require 1 log and 8 sticks, whereas a stone wall may require 2 logs and 12 stones)
Right-click with your Hammer up to change it’s mode between Build, Repair, Upgrade, and Destroy. You’ll use Build most often. Upgrade will only be used when you’ve advanced far enough in the Farming Tech tree to purchase the Daub schematic (it’s currently available when you reach the building to house geese). Destroy will remove whichever piece of wall or roof you’re looking at when you click. Walk your village with your Hammer set to “Repair” periodically, as walls that need repairing will show in Red. Thankfully, they also visually show damage if you’re paying attention.
Note: As of the 9/20 patch, you can now use the Delete function on the Hammer to delete Fields.
Note: As of the 9/30 patch, you can now permanently remove tree trunks with a shovel.
Building Layout Aesthetics
User iMalachi pointed out some tips for those seeking an aesthetically pleasing layout, where buildings are oriented to align with the invisible grid that farm fields snap to. Farm fields are free to place, and can be deleted with the hammer – so you can place strips of farm land before placing buildings, to create consistent walkways and paths, rather than seemingly random, more organic ones, if that is your desire. The concept of a city-grid system is a bit more modern, and those seeking historic immersion may want to forgo this technique.
Fields will also wipe out vegetation and rocks, so you can place one, then remove it, to “mow your lawn”, so to speak.
You can create strips of fields to form ninety-degree angles if you’re seeking parallel and perpendicular layouts as well.
Thanks, iMalachi !
Your buildings will degrade over time. Each roof and wall part degrades at its own pace. You can easily see damaged buildings in your Management tab, when viewing your buildings. You can also equip your Hammer, Right-Click and select “Repair” mode, then take a quick walk around your village. Most structures should show green, but sections of wall or roof that need repairs will show red. Additionally, if you’re paying attention, the actual graphics for the walls and rooftops change to reflect wear and tear, which can key you in to the fact that you may need to check the rest of the buildings as well. Building sections need to degrade to a certain threshold to change from Green to Red, and cannot be repaired until then.
Traps have approximately three uses before they fall apart and you’ll need to craft new ones.
The Rabbit trap makes getting meat pretty easy early on. Set it and forget it for a few hours to a day (make sure you actually leave the area). Head on back, and you’ll have a dead rabbit to collect.
The Bird trap is the easiest way to collect feathers prior to building a chicken coop. In the same manner as the Rabbit trap, set it and forget it. Return later for some meat and a bunch of feathers.
You heal when you sleep at night.
You can also heal with plantains, a green-leaf, brown-flowered plant found close to the ground. It can be hard to see. Keep a stock on hand, and the rest you come across can be used for early-game cash-flow.
Don’t eat raw meat, or poisonous mushrooms. They will give you food poisoning. If you contract food poisoning, St. John’s Wart can be consumed to help cure it. St.John’s Wart are small yellow flowers found all over. Keep a stock on hand, and the rest you come across can be used for early-game cash-flow.
The skill ‘Survival Sense’ will make both of these, in particular the plantains, much easier to forage.
Once you’ve hunted and have some raw meat, you’ll need to cook it. You can cook meat at a campfire, your cooking fire inside your home, or the always-on fire in a Tavern, once you’ve advanced far enough to build one.
To light your campfire or cooking fire, first craft a torch. You will only be able to light a fire if you’ve got a torch in your inventory.
If you’re using a cooking fire or are in a tavern, do not aim your cursor at the cauldron – instead, aim at the fire/embers. The fire/embers will allow you to cook your meat. The cauldron is used if you have other ingredients (cabbage, onions, etc) and want to cook a more robust meal. Simply right-click the cauldron to bring up a list of recipes you can cook with multiple ingredients.
Tavern II includes schemes to unlock various breads, as it’s “cooking fire” becomes a stone oven and stove when you build it.
Regarding curing meat/fish with salt or a drying rack: I’ve not developed that technology yet to verify, but I have heard tell that the Hunting Lodge II and Fishing building II have those options available.
In addition to the obvious sources such as rivers, lakes, and streams, you won’t always be within a few feet of a natural thirst quencher. You can carry a Waterskin, which can either be bought, stolen, or crafted in the Sewing building. It has 4 uses before it needs to be filled back up. Unlike a natural water source, which assumes you’re drinking until satiated, and thus fills the bar no matter how low it is, the waterskin fills it partially with each use.
If you haven’t found one to steal, don’t yet have the ability to craft it, and/or agree that the cost is completely absurd, then Berries make an excellent on-the-go water source as they provide a point or so per berry, and its quite easy to get 100 to 200 from one batch of bushes. Some cooked foods also provide small amounts of water, but their effort and weight compared with the boost doesn’t make them particularly worthwhile as a water source. You can (currently) store Berries in Food Storage to halt their degradation.
Skills & Tech Trees
Both Skills and Tech are advanced by doing things associated with them. Highlighting various areas of the trees will show you on the right what you need to do in order to advance.
Increase your crafting skill by crafting. Increase excavation by chopping down trees. Etc.
The easiest way to increase farming early on, is to craft a hoe, plot some farmland, and cultivate it. Over and over, until you unlock the Barn building. After that, hoeing is a bit slow.
As of this writing (Early Access launch), farming is not yet well-balanced. A lot of farming requires manure, which cannot be easily acquired as early in the game as you start your farming, and need to level the tech tree for. I imagine this will be addressed as the game continues to be developed.
That said, once you can recruit villagers and assign them as farmers, they supply their own Seeds and Manure – you simply need to delegate what to plant where, using the Farming subtab on the Management screen. The skill gain via Villagers is slow, so be prepared to invest a few years into waiting for the Farming Technology skills to accrue.
Life in Your Village
The main character is male and one of the gameplay mechanics is to marry and create an heir that can continue running the village when the main character is too old. It can take a significant amount of time to court a prospective woman and your dialog choices will determine their affection level toward you. You will want that affection level to be as close to 100 as possible before asking for their hand in marriage. Some dialog options will increase affection level, others will decrease it.
If you choose a dialog option that increases affection, you can continue the conversation up to two more times, at which point you will need to wait until the next day to pursue more.
If you choose a dialog option that decreases affection, no further courtship dialog is possible until the next day.
Because it can take an entire year (or more, depending on whether you choose poorly during dialog), it is worthwhile to start the process early and devote a little bit of each day to courtship dialog.
Once married, your wife can provide healing as well as help you reset your skill points.
You will also be presented the option at some point to create a child, an heir who will continue the gameplay after your character has aged beyond the point of adventuring. My character’s son is now 1 year old, so I have not reached a point to witness the mechanic of the heir taking over. Some folks have encountered bugs and not received the dialog option to create an heir.
Preparing your Village for Villagers
NPC Villagers require some basic necessities in order to survive. In addition to housing, you should also ensure you have a Resource Storage and a Food Storage before inviting anybody to join your village (more on the invitation process in the Villagers section below).
Initially, you’ll need to stock the chests with food and wood yourself, until you’ve got the Villagers assigned to professions that will help in this regard (Namely Field Hand, Hunter, and Lumberjack). Cooked Meat does well to fill up the chest in the Food Storage. For wood, absolutely convert logs into firewood through your ‘Q’ crafting menu. It fills the need for wood significantly better than logs and sticks (Note: A lumberjack will only provide Logs and sticks. It will fall to you to periodically hop into the chest and convert the logs to firewood).
Have at least one small house in addition to your own. If you’ve been spending time raising your Approval with NPCs in preparation to invite them to your village, you may want more than one house ready. Keep in mind, the number of buildings you can have at a given time is capped by your Dynasty Point score. Your buildings, and your maximum, can be viewed on the Management tab.
When Villagers join your village, you can use the Management tab to assign them housing and professions. The chest in whatever building you assign a Villager to will need to have the proper tools for them to do their job. For instance, a lumberjack needs an axe, so stock some axes in the Woodshed chest. A farmer will want a hoe, scythe, and sack for seed, so place these in the chest in the Barn (note: “Field Hand” is the profession that actually sows and harvests).
Once your village has enough Dynasty points and buildings, you’ll want to invite villagers to move there. Villagers require a house, a constant supply of wood via the Resource Storage building, and food via the Food Storage building.
Much like courtship dialog, villagers seeking a new home will require their opinion of you be at least 70% Approval (default upon meeting them is usually 50%). You will want to begin talking to them early on, even before you’re ready to invite them, as like courtship dialog, you can at most have 3 successful dialog attempts with a person before having to wait until the next day.
Once you meet or exceed 70% in their opinion of you, you can invite them to your village. Provided you have enough Dynasty points, they’ll agree.
Taxes are due to the Castellan, Unigost, each Spring. I don’t know the equation, but the total is based upon land farmed and number of villages (it is visible on the Management tab). If you are unable to pay the tax in a given Spring, you will incur that tax as a debt. That debt, plus your normal tax, will be due the following Spring. Being unable to pay incurs a Dynasty Point penalty (I do not know how much). Receiving -10,000 Dynasty Points will have you exiled from the valley and you will lose the game.
Fun fact: If it’s the last day of winter and you simply don’t have the coin to pay your tax, make a bunch of Knives and sell them. It isn’t super profitable but it’ll work in a pinch. If you’ve got the goods to cook, dipping into your food stores and cooking a stack of meals will also earn some decent coin. If you’ve been selling to the merchants so much through the winter that they’re out of coin, you’ll have to hike to another town – the good news is their inventory and purse reset each season.
The number of buildings you can build, and the ease of attracting new villagers to your town are based on your Dynasty Points. Initially you will only be able to build 8 buildings. At the 500-point mark, that will increase to 16. At the 1,000-point mark, it will increase to 20.
You earn the first five hundred or so Dynasty Points simply by advancing through the game’s Main Quest line.
After that, additional points can be earned by completing the ‘!’ quests that pop up. They award very few points (2 to 5 in my experience), which can make the grind from 500 to 1000 (a main quest requirement at one point) a bit long. Like other things, I imagine this will be addressed as they continue to develop the game.
When you go to deliver your taxes for the THIRD time, the Main Quest line will continue as Unigost asks you to help him collect these taxes. Upon completion, you’ll be awarded 200 Dynasty Points. Depending on your choices in conversation with him, you may lose 50 of those points.
I gained an additional 100 Dynasty Points either as a result of that conversation, or by completing Alwyn’s quest to give him a Recurve Bow. I did it immediately afterwards, and forgot which one awarded me that additional 100. I bought the Recurve Bow for 700 coins in Lesnica.
Fun Fact: As of 9/21 I am at 880 Dynasty Points.
If you aren’t noticed by anybody, stealing is a legitimate way to acquire some hard-to-craft items early game, and even to complete quests. For example, if someone needs a bucket and you can’t craft one yet, you can steal one.
Keep in mind, if you are seen stealing, you will receive negative Dynasty Points. If you hit a certain negative threshold of Dynasty Points, you are cast into exile from the region and the game is over. Save before stealing, and pay attention to your surroundings.
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