As we have discussed previously, the primary tool for augmenting a building’s function in game is a module. Modules include things like doors and windows, and come in two categories: required and optional. Required modules are those which are needed to get your building up and running at all – in the case of a workshop, this would include a workbench, a desk for your Artisan/Overseer to manage their paperwork with, and a door. In the case of a Lower Class House, you need one cot, and… well, again, a door. Doors are good things to put on buildings.
Optional modules are those which upgrade the effectiveness of your building. For instance, a carpentry workshop can have a Power Saw installed. The power saw lets you perform certain tasks (such as making planks) faster, and you can have multiple power saws. You can also have multiple carpentry workbenches, and this might be a good idea as each person can only use one carpentry workbench at a time. If you have a particular desire for planks, which are Useful (for instance, for building more carpentry workbenches), you might want to spend some resources building power saws.
Until recently, the power saw was not particularly hard to come by. Finally, however, we have implemented module costs. Each module in a building is installed individually by labour teams after a building is complete, and each module has their own costs. This adds an additional wrinkle for a power saw: power saws require iron plates and a Bucket Of Cogs in order to become functional. (They also require a power source, in the form of a spring-loaded power coil (which must occasionally be recharged) or a dedicated mechanical power line. More on this later.)
Now, we have a feedback loop. If you want to upgrade your carpentry workshop to a power saw, or multiple power saws, you need a metalsmith to lovingly hammer out those beautiful, beautiful cogs. Your metalsmith will require raw material to work with, which require mining, and a refinery to smelt the ores… and now, we have a city-building game.
Refining a mineral, using the same system of Semi-Realistic Metallurgy from Dredmor that you know and love, requires the application of Smelting Crucibles to convert Hematite (or whatever) into Iron (or whatever). Smelting crucibles can be left alone to cook a mineral, requiring the artisan workshop labourer to simply come by and remove the finished good from the machine once it’s done; therefore, simply having more of a required module (the smelting crucible) makes your refineries run faster. Crucibles, of course, require brick to make… and so, you have another exciting feedback loop. Ah, life is good.
As part of this work, you can now also decorate buildings! This is good. Things that can be attached to buildings include lamps, paintings, rugs,
unnecessary piping, barometers, and maybe even the occasional cog [No. -Daniel]. Some buildings, such as the barbershop, have their own decorative elements – barber poles, for instance, are optional, but will fill citizens with Civic Pride and Leeches. Obviously these things also need to be manufactured, but decor will make you feel better and your subjects happier – so go make some rugs for the Empire today!