Survival Guide - Dust Settles: Laboratory
One of the most important buildings in the entire game, laboratories give you
the ability to open many other buildings
throughout the game, multiple improvements
to your actions and production, and allow you to get to advanced
structures that exploring and recruiting just will not produce. They are
a tad bit costly, especially at the beginning, but these buildings are the only
way your camp can move from merely surviving to thriving. You will have to build
at least one lab before you can open the Learn page.
Once you have enough people that you can spare 4 for research instead of sending them out or using them to staff gardens or fire pits, you will want to seriously consider building a laboratory. One of the most important strategies for playing this game in the beginning is balancing lab research and disposables cost, especially before you can produce your own disposables. As long as you keep yourself in check as you are building and staffing your labs, you should be able to open your first few buildings with little to no problem. After that, you should have a very easy time researching all of the different topics that you see from the beginning and the ones you will open later. For more details on how to research and the limitations and cautions involved, please see the information about the Learn page.
You will build labs through the Construct screen as with any other building.
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Laboratories are a starting building. You will use this building to research
the basic research topics and open other, more advanced buildings.
The only real improvement you can have for a lab is a research bonus that you
get by setting your class as Nerd when
you sign up for the game. Otherwise you
will just have to rely on building enough labs to hit the max. daily research
limits whenever possible.
Your primary limitations for labs will lie in the daily costs, both staffing
and resource. Population tends to be one of your most valuable resources. You
have to have people to do anything in this game, and that include to do research.
If you do not have enough people to staff your labs, they will not run. Also
labs require disposables, after all the scientists need matches, filter paper,
writing paper, pens, etc. to do their research. You must be able to provide
these buildings with the disposables they need or they will not remain active,
and thus will not add to your current research level. There are many different
methods for doing this, ranging from sending a small recruiting group and throwing
everyone else into research for three turns and only feeding them on the fourth,
to producing your own food through gardens and sending out daily exploration
teams for disposables since both structures use that resource. It is up to you
how to run your camp, though, so think carefully and plan well. Also, you will
want to keep an eye on storm reports in
your end turn displays. Labs are fairly vulnerable to storms and may be destroyed
if it is powerful enough.
Your primary display for labs will be on the Learn page. This page will show
you all currently open research topics and what level each one is currently
at. This is also where you will change what your labs are researching.
You will never reach a limit on research. Between the overall improvements
that research can provide to many of your buildings, the number of advanced
items that require high research levels,
and the goal of mastery, you will want to
keep your labs around. If you feel that you don't need the extra research you
can demolish as many as you would like, but you should keep at least one active
in order to keep the Learn page open and other advanced
research related actions running smoothly.