I read that having storage barns and homes close to working areas increase the efficiency but in the case of a gatherer's hut, the storage barn and homes eat up the forest, which is again bad for efficiency of a gatherer's hut. So, is it worth it to build storage barns and/or homes near gatherer's hut?

2 Answers 2


I've seen many people giving advice who have become slaved to the "Paths" tool. While it is interesting information for most occupations, I've found it to be mostly useless for Foresters, Hunters, Gatherers & Herbalists. Why do you ask? Because the building that anchors their work space is the one place they should not go.

These occupations' work sites are each and every little square inside the yellow circle anchored by their "office" that is not otherwise occupied. But don't be misguided into believing that "area" is the only important feature here! Also important is the average distance between each of those available squares. "Forest workers" will work several squares before needing to drop off their goods. If you don't litter the forest with unnecessary obstacles, they should be able to complete about 3 work cycles between meals.

So, what happens when you put a house in the middle of your forest cluster? Well the walking distance for the average lunch break for its residents may be reduced to 1/2 it would be if they had to walk to the edge of their workable land. Yay! But we've also made sure that 16-20 squares in the middle of the work area are no longer available for working, thus increasing the average walk between work sites for all the workers who are not eating lunch. Given that forest clusters are so labor-intensive, the cost of convenient lunch breaks for each widowed 70 year old gatherer or forester can prove immense!

But you say you don't only want to minimize lunch breaks but drop-offs too? Fine! Barns are relatively cheap. Don't place one at the valuable center of the forest cluster, build 3 at the edges. Average drop-off distance is reduced and we haven't lengthened the walk between work sites.

It is rather easy to find forest cluster layouts on the internet that have been optimized for short lunch-breaks and quick drop-offs but that have the citizens crisscrossing a paved wasteland while "working" a thin border of Forrest. If you really want to sacrifice forest Area in the name of worker efficiency, eat away at the edges of the Forest.

The question is, what do you want to optimize, their occasional lunch break, or their work day?

If you really want to build a non-forest-cluster building in the center of your forest, consider a well. It takes up only 1-9 squares, increases happiness, and attracts idlers. You could do much worse than having idling laborers & forest cluster workers hanging out in the middle of your forest instead of at the local market.


Even though the area of gathering is a little bit smaller, it wouldn't matter that much. Especially if you position them all next to each other (and don't add paths between the buildings)

That said, in the time they would have to walk to and from the nearest, out of the circle, house or storage barn it long enough it affects the gathering more than the storage barn + 2 houses do. So yes, do it!

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