Video Game / Banished

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/banished_pc_image.jpg
Banished is a city-building strategy game with survival elements and the first game from Shining Rock Software. You're in charge of a group of people who have been banished from their homeland with only a few months worth of supplies and the clothes on their back.

Tropes present in the game:

  • Absurdly Youthful Mother: Averted most of the time. Citizens can move in with a spouse as young as 10, when they become adults. They won't start having children of their own until their later teens though. However, it's certainly possible for a parent to be only ten or eleven years older than their children; the random number generator just doesn't roll them quite as often.
  • Acceptable Breaks from Reality:
    • Every citizen in your village can be seen walking around. Yes, even those children that are literally 0 years old. Your population also ages three times faster than they would in real life, mostly because realistic aging would make the early game interminably boring even at ten-times speed as you wait for your population to slowly expand.
    • You start out with four to six families, depending on your difficulty settings. Even if every parent in that starting population is entirely unrelated, your people will be horribly inbred within a few generations (and if you keep the simulation going long enough to get the achievements, your family tree will almost definitely be quite tangled). Thankfully, none of them seem to suffer any sort of issue from this, as simulating the effects of having a population with dozens of genetic problems would probably put a damper on the fun.
  • Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: If you specifically request an item from a merchant, it'll cost more than it would normally.
    • Justified in this case due to the nature of the barter system - they know you need the livestock or seeds (it will generally be one or the other) more than they need what you're trading, so they can get a better deal out of it.
  • Anachronism Stew: Corn, pumpkins, potatoes, and squash are all available as crops. These didn't become available in Europe until after the discovery of the Americas, so your citizens' stew is literally an anachronism.
  • Arcadia: a successful settlement can look like this, though please ignore the mines and quarries.
  • Awesome, yet Impractical: Farming in the early game. Gatherer's Huts produce far more food relative to a farm with the very wild and overgrown terrain you deal with in the early game, and farms only produce food once, in Autumn, and only if they're planted in Spring. Their labor-intensive nature also means they're less useful when you have a low population relative to a Gatherer's Hut or Hunting Cabin. Later on, once you've got a larger population, farming becomes vastly more useful, as they produce far more food for a much smaller space, and farmers with nearby homes, markets, and storage can produce massive harvests.
    • Farming becomes essential for getting higher-end items in the Colonial Charter mod. Unless you specifically trade for them, which can be hit or miss, the only source for some of the raw materials to create ropes, cloth, tobacco, alcohol, or mulberry leaves (for silkworms) is through farming non-food-related crops.
  • Babies Make Everything Better: In a gameplay-related sense, as young children are capable of going to the market by themselves and getting food and firewood for their households, meaning their working parents only have to come home when they're hungry or cold and don't have to bother with shopping. Yes, even toddlers and newborns are capable of buying household goods by themselves. It's unknown how your villagers actually feel about babies, since their thoughts aren't tracked and people never get divorced, so you can't tell if having children helps or hinders the couple's bond.
  • Boring but Practical: The Gatherer's Hut. Unlike farming, gatherers are able to find food during any season. When a gatherer's hut is placed in an area completely surrounded by trees it produces an insane amount of food. What's more, since Gatherer's Huts produce four different foods unlike any other structure, it also automatically increases food diversity which is important for your people's health. Placing one of these adjacent to a forester's lodge it produces a large amount of food in addition to unlimited logs and a continuously replenishing forest. Put a hunting lodge next to them and you'll get an infinite source of meat and leather as well. The three aforementioned buildings used in tandem are reliable enough that one never even needs to use crop fields, pastures, or orchards.
    • Firewood is by far the most profitable trading resource, and it is obtainable in large quantities using the above-mentioned strategy.
    • The Shoreman's Hut and Tidal Pool in Colonial Charter. Small, cheap, one-man structures with a very small footprint on your shoreline. The former produces several extremely useful raw materials such as reeds (useable in fire bundling and ropemaking), clay and sand (used in brickmaking and glassmaking, respectively, essential for high-end structures) and can catch frogs and turtles during lean times for food. The latter structure produces huge amounts of varied seafood relative to its size, as well as pearls, which are a valuable trade item.
  • Cheat Code: Currently disabled in the retail version, can be enablde via a mod found here
  • Crystal Dragon Jesus: You build "chapels" that are staffed by "clerics", but grave makers can take the form of a Christian cross.
  • Command & Conquer Economy: Every building is placed by the player. Your villagers only use supplies as they need them.
  • Death by Childbirth: It fits perfectly to the main theme of survival.
  • Didn't See That Coming: The need for food, shelter, and firewood are obvious enough, but running low on things like tools, clothing, ale, and even places of worship can just as easily doom your village.
  • Do Not Touch the Funnel Cloud: In-game tornadoes work this way.
  • Endless Game: According to the developer, he's never built a city that couldn't be expanded further. The game only ends when everyone in your town is dead.
  • Duetothe Dead: People want to bury their dead. If you don't have a graveyard, people dying of old age will bring your population's happiness meter down from the Excessive Mourning due to fact that they didn't get to have a proper funeral (people dying of accidents will always hurt your happiness, since it wasn't their time yet).
  • Fight to Survive: Your two main enemies are bitterly cold winters and drought-stricken summers; the former will freeze your face off if you don't have enough firewood and the latter will dry up your food sources. Blights can sometimes strike your crops and livestock as well, making food hard to come by if you're relying on agriculture to sustain your populace. After that, it's just the occasional accidental fire or tornado.
  • Firewood Resources: Harvested wood (either left lying in the open or stored in a stockpile) is represented in-game by a pile of medium-sized logs. They both serve as a primal resource for building or to be converted as firewood; firewood itself looks like similar logs with a Palette Swap (though if you zoom in to the max and squint, you can see that the firewood has been split, while regular logs are round).
  • Game Mod: There are many since the author released the modkit. The mods that merits notice the most is Colonial Charter, that adds a buttload of new buildings, items and resources.
  • Gender Is No Object: Despite the Medievalish setting, there are no gender restrictions on professions. Women can be blacksmiths, hunters, merchants, or miners just as easily as men. The only place where this is averted is that women can die during childbirth.
  • Ghost Town: What you're trying to avoid.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Those rocks you see on the map that are about the size of your laborers? They all produce just 2 stone each, which the game gives a measly 30 weight. Now consider that each citizen can carry up to a maximum of 100 weight in items.
  • Improbable Age: You can have 10-year-old blacksmiths, farmers, clerics, physicians, and so on. More averted if you build schools; citizens will be 16-17 before they finish their education.
  • Incest Is Relative: You start off with four to six families, meaning that after a few generations, everyone will be related in some way or another. Siblings aren't usually paired off by the system note , but cousins are practically unavoidable. You can occasionally take in nomadic families, which will briefly increase your people's diversity in partner choices, but these events are rare and you aren't required to take them.
  • Low Fantasy: The game is set in a generic medieval world totally devoided of supernatural elements (no magic, no fantastical races, etc). The only clues which could implies that Banished isn't set in our Middle Ages are the chapels (which are used by "clerics" instead of "priests"), the weird names of the citizens, and the anachronistic available crops.
  • May–December Romance: The game will ususally pair up citizens of similar ages, but if the demographics of your town don't enable that, one partner might well be half (or double) the age of the other.
  • Medieval Stasis: It's technically possible for thousands of years to go by, but the village will always remain a quaint and low-tech society. The Colonial Charter mod can have you advance from a medieval to a colonial society as you obtain the materials needed to construct the more advanced buildings.
  • No Antagonist: Unlike many civilization-building games, there are no other civilizations to oppose you. No one will swoop in and raze your city if you don't keep watch. There isn't even dangerous wildlife; all that's out there are deer and fish, and they're both harmless food sources. Since we don't even see the person or government who banished your starting colonists, the conflict that kicks off the game itself is outside the story.
  • Noodle Incident: It is not explained why your people have been banished from their homeland.
  • One-Gender Race: What you're also trying to avoid. Get hit by a very hard winter and see a certain gender drop in numbers will result in population dwindling at high speeds.
  • Pregnant Badass: There is no maternity leave in this game. Pregnant women are 100% capable of walking miles through a snowstorm to chop down trees or quarry stone with their husbands.
  • Randomly Generated Levels: Each game is set in a scenery randomly generated from a seed which can be manually edited by the player. Some settings (whether it is set in a mountain or a valley, the harshness of the weather, and the presence or absence of random natural disasters) can also be chosen by the player.
  • Refining Resources: Most resources are used in their raw forms, though there are some simple production chains—logs=>firewood, logs+iron=>tools, fruit=>ale, and so on.
    • Colonial Charter greatly lengthens the simple production chains into a full-on economy where the colony takes in raw materials and refines them into valuable trade goods, building materials, and refined food supplies. For example, wheat is taken to a mill, which converts the wheat to flour. Flour goes to a bakery, which can make hardtack bread, or use other resources like sugar (grown from sugar crops and refined at a sugar boiler) to make sugar cookies, or cheese (milk extracted from cattle and taken to a dairy to be refined) to make cheese bread. More advanced structures can take the resources from many different buildings to assemble, such as lumber (refined from wood at sawmills), bricks (refined from clay and furnace fuel at a brickworks) and glass (refined from sand and furnace fuel at a glassworks).
  • Ridiculously Fast Construction: Averted. Every building must have the supplies for construction carried to it and the building must be constructed by people with the Builder job.
  • Schmuck Bait: Farms or Orchards in the early game. The tutorials teache you about farming and you start with some seeds (depending on the difficulty). It's natural to assume that you should get farms started right away - but farms and orchards take time to produce food. It's entirely possible for half of your village to starve to death while you have a field full of potatoes nearly ready to harvest.
    • Gatherer's huts, hunting lodges, and fishing docks are great for quickly procuring subsistence-level food resources, as well as diversifying available food resources. Farming is better for building up food surpluses after you've got a tidy settlement going, which can come in handy when you suddenly need to feed a lot more mouths because you just couldn't bear the thought of turning away those nomads who were requesting citizenship (or wanted to employ them to quickly expand your town)...
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: Listen to soothing guitar and harp music...while your population starves to death.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: It's entirely possible for a student to be married to their own teacher.
  • Teen Pregnancy: Very common, as it would have been in medieval times. Building a school delays marriage and childbirth, just as it does in the real world (but, unlike the real world, Banished women don't have children out of wedlock).
  • The Wiki Rule: As per usual
  • You Require More Wheat and Venison:
    • 41 resources, divided into rough categories—food, raw materials, finished goods. Note that different types within the same category are not necessarily substitutes for each other—beans won't replace fish as a source of food.
    • There are also specific subtypes of food: proteins, grains, fruits, and vegetables. Your villagers are happier and healthier based on how varied their diet is, which is what makes markets so useful. Because your markets collect food from all around the city, villagers who go to the market will be able to get a good variety of food and other essentials.
    • Colonial Charter dramatically increases the number of resources hundreds, ranging from raw materials to finished goods, creating a complex production chain.
  • Wise Beyond Their Years: If you build a school and assign a teacher to it, it's possible they will end up being the same age as the students, as everyone becomes a laborer (and therefore a perfectly valid teacher) at age 10. The same goes for any physicians who heal the sick, or clerics who give spiritual guidance to your citizens and help maintain their happiness levels.
  • Worker Unit: Basically every citizen is this with some exceptions.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/VideoGame/Banished