In this chapter, you will learn how to build your base, what to do first and what to focus on.
Which sector should I choose?
One revealed sector and the map in front of you is all you need to calculate what you may lack to develop your colony. Check Resources section to learn more about resources and Interface - map to find details of a given sector.
The most important thing is to locate water and concrete deposits - the more, the better. It's also recommended to look around for metals, however, you shouldn't worry if you don't find them. It is possible to find metal even on the surface of the Red Planet. Remember to select sectors which are rather flat - it's not possible to build on uneven terrain.
Drone mechanics and priorities
Drones are units that perform their tasks automatically - they transport resources, maintain buildings and they can also demolish buildings. Drones require their base to function - drone hub, rocket or RC rover. without these, they are completely useless.
All tasks you perform and buildings you build in the game are of standard priority. The only exception are malfunctions of cables and pipes - drones will try to fix these as soon as possible. To look up priority allocated to a building, you can click LMB on a building. A details window will pop up - the arrows icon displays the priority. You can change by clicking on it. The higher the priority, the sooner drones will be dispatched to performing the task. Note that there is a difference between prioritization and accessibility of resources - changing priority to higher will do nothing if there are no resources available. You can also assign tasks manually, by selecting the drone and dispatching it to a building or malfunction with RMB. Unfortunately, you cannot dispatch groups of drones to a task. An important factor affecting the speed at which tasks are performed is drone workload, which is the number of tasks they are to perform - transportation of resources, mining for metal within their range, maintenance, building and receiving resources from extractors. Make sure to expand your number of drones - which is a sure way to avoid that. Drone workload can be looked up by clicking on their base - this is also the way to look up the number of drones the base commands and the maximum number of drones the base can command. Also, this is the way to look up which drones are assigned to a unit, building.
What should I build first?
The Drone Hub is what you need to focus on. Although drones can have their own station on your spaceship for some time, the Drone Hub has greater range. Build it in a place where you will be able to reach deposits of concrete, metal (if available) and water.
Your next step is to build Solar Panels/Wind Turbines and batteries. This way, you will charge your Drone Hub and any future production buildings.
Next, build a concrete extractor and water extractors along with a water tower. Remember to attach your water tower with water extractors via pipes. Try to maintain excess power. Prepare some storage space - concrete/metal depots, universal depots and dumping sites. At this point, you can build another concrete extractor and facilities that will generate and store oxygen. Keep collecting resources and you should be able to build your first dome with buildings inside, and welcome your first colonists.