This page of the Humankind game guide explains what outposts are and describes the best locations to build them.
Outposts - basic information
Outposts in Humankind are a vitally important element in the expansion of your nation. Without them, you won't be able to expand or develop your cities. They are necessary to occupy new territories. Without them, you would be unable to take over new, unoccupied regions.
An outpost is a settlement that can be set up by any unit. This action can take up to several rounds (depending on the number of industry points from neighbouring tiles). You can place it in any territory unoccupied by another player. It costs Influence points, so it's a good idea to stockpile them. The further away from the capital, the nearest city or other outpost, the higher the construction cost will be. Be careful, because other countries can plunder and destroy your outpost. You will only be able to protect yourself by leaving your own unit on the outpost tile, annexing the region to the city or signing a non-aggression pact with your neighbor.
Where to build outposts?
Outposts should be built in neighboring regions, especially if there are many tiles rich in food and production. Even better if there are luxury or strategic resources nearby. The latter are necessary to produce better units and districts, so it's a good idea to annex such territories first. Keep in mind that outposts collect food and may have several population points that will become part of a new city (or join an existing one). Rivers, prairies and forests are always a good choice of location, because they provide a few more production points. Additionally, tiles with special features, such as geysers, waterfalls or caves, have an even greater effect on the yields from these tiles.
Having an outpost close to enemy territory also has its pluses. Set up an outpost in a narrow pass so that it is easy to defend. Tiles with outposts provide additional strength points to the unit located on them. Outposts can be relocated within the boundaries of a given territory, for example if its current location isn't great for building a new city. This action costs a small number of Influence points. You will be unable to do this once you annex the region to the city.
Why build outposts?
- Advancing to cities - this is one of the main purposes of building outposts. It's a good idea to build new cities in regions that are rich in food and production, contain valuable luxury or strategic resources, have access to the sea or have a Natural Wonder within its borders. Build several outposts, and once you have collected enough influence points, you will be able to select the best location for a new city. Often technological or cultural developments or choices made by other players determine the best location to place a new city.
- Adding outposts and occupied regions to existing cities. The first time you add them to a city, it will only cost a small number of influence points. This way, the territory will become part of the city. From now on, it's a full-fledged part of your empire. Other nations will have to ask your permission to move through your territory, otherwise, by violating the borders of your state, they will give you a reason to wage war. Sam.
- Adding a territory to a city does not affect the City Cap and increases the city's revenue! The outpost will turn into an Administrative Center and it will benefit from all bonuses from the Main Plaza. The outpost's population will become part of the city. Moreover, the city will receive all yields from the tiles neighbouring this Administrative Center. From now on, you can build districts in the newly annexed territory. However, there are still some restrictions - you have to build districts next to the Administrative Center or other districts. Some global or local bonuses (of a given city) depend on the city's number of regions. However, the more annexed territories, the greater the Stability penalty! Don't overdo the number of annexed regions!
- Constructing new outposts allows you to heal your units and gives you access to the special resources in the region. Sometimes, the main reason is to extract luxury and strategic resources. Special extractors can be built using Influence points, if you already have access to the corresponding technology. On the other hand, cutting off the enemy from a region rich in resources is also a good reason to build an outpost, even far away from your country. If you have signed a non-aggression pact with another player, they won't be able to affect these territories in any way.