From Unofficial Stationeers Wiki
This page is a work-in-progress, add Tips to the bottom 😎
This should be a crash-course primer to getting started in Stationeers. You can find more guides in the Steam community, several of which are linked from the front page of this wiki.
While reading through this guide, remember that Stationeers is a game about surviving in an inhospitable world. It's extremely common for new players to take too long and run out of time before solving their power, water, air, and food needs. Try not to take your first few games seriously, and feel free to restart an unsalvageable world until you get a feel for things.
- 1 Getting Started
- 2 Your First World
- 2.1 Quick Reference: Priorities
- 2.2 Power
- 2.3 Water
- 2.4 Shelter
- 2.5 Air and Food
- 2.6 Wrapping Up
- 3 Multiplayer
- 4 Tips
Stationeers has a selection of tutorials accessible from the main menu to explain the basic concepts of the game. It is recommended to do the tutorials progressively as you encounter new mechanics in your game instead of tackling them all at once. To start in Stationeers, the Basic Skills, Construction, and Mining + Fabrication tutorials will give you a solid foundation for the start of the game.
This is a cheatsheet of the content covered in the Basic Skills tutorial.
- Players interact with the world, items, and structures in Stationeers with an active hand system.
- Your left and right hands are represented in the bottom middle of the screen.
- WASD movement
- Left Click interacts with the world using the current hand or tool in the current hand (ex: you can't interact with buttons while holding an item)
- Right Click starts placement mode when holding a structure (ex: Iron Frames or Autolathe) or toggles the power switch on handheld devices
- Holding Alt enables the cursor for interacting with the UI
- F1 opens the "Stationpedia" for in-game recipes and guides
- Mouse Wheel
- With an open inventory - changes active slot
- When placing a structure - changes the mode for an item in placement mode (use this with Cables to change their shape)
- When using some consoles or computers - scrolls the active menu
- E swaps current active hand
- R opens the item in the current hand, or goes to its options
- F swaps between held items and items in your inventory on the side (accessed through the number keys)
- Q drops the currently held item in the active hand, holding Q will cause you to throw the item
- 1-6 will open menus for worn items similar to pressing R, holding 1-6 will cause it to swap with the item in the current hand, or simply go in the current hand - don't do this with the helmet or suit in a vacuum
- Delete, End, Insert, Home, Page Up, Page Down rotate the item in placement mode. C is useful for autorotate when placing cables or pipes.
- G grab - not the same as drag, which is triggered by clicking on a portable item's handle with an empty hand
- I quick open the helmet - don't do this in a vacuum. You can lock the helmet in its menu to avoid this.
- O or Right Click turn held item on or off
- J turn jet pack on or off. The propulsion tank will last for many hours use, use it freely for building or mining. Still, make sure you turn off the jet pack when not using it, as the jet pack will continue to drain the propulsion tank.
Selecting a World
The first decision you have to make is where to set up a new colony. From the main menu, select the New Game option to come to the world select screen.
For a burgeoning stationeer, there are two main worlds to choose from: the Moon, and Mars. The other worlds have unique challenges which are beyond the scope of this guide. Although either choice is suitable for this guide, it's important to consider the differences between them.
- The Moon
- The Sun is closer to the Moon than Mars, so solar panels work more effectively here
- The solar angle on the Moon is 0°, which means that solar panels are easier to set up
- The Moon has lower gravity, which can make it easier to navigate without burning through your jetpack fuel
- The Moon has no atmosphere, so all gas must be collected by hand and can easily be lost in the environment. This demands more knowledge of Stationeers atmospheric systems to thrive on the Moon
- Mars has an unlimited atmosphere ripe with CO2, making it easy to set up hydroponics
- Mars has an Earth-like atmospheric temperature during the day
- Mars has storms that can ravage the surface, placing higher importance on shelter
- The Sun is weaker on Mars and is at a slight angle. This requires more complicated solar panel arrays or a loss in efficiency
Ultimately, both planets are good for beginners. Pick one and adjust the guide to match the specifics of your environment.
Selecting a Difficulty
For the purpose of learning the game, make sure that you select the Easy difficulty. The main differences between the Easy, Normal, and Stationeer difficulties are the resource usage rates. Higher difficulties mean that you run through food, water, and oxygen more quickly. Furthermore, the easier difficulties are more forgiving when respawning. If you die in the harder difficulties, you only spawn back in with emergency tools, or with no tools or suit at all. To survive these difficulties you need a safe zone to spawn back into along with backup suits and tools. Critically, the last difference of note is that on Easy difficulty you can eat and drink through your suit, while in the harder difficulties, you must open your suit to the atmosphere around you to eat and drink. This demands that you must have a working base before you get too thirsty or hungry, or else you will asphyxiate while having a snack.
Although these harder difficulties are a fun challenge once you learn the game, the ability to eat and drink through the suit gives us significantly more leeway when starting out.
Your First World
Quick Reference: Priorities
This is a quick reference sheet of what you should focus on in order to survive indefinitely. If you're ever not sure what you should be doing, see if there's anything on this list that you don't have a reliable source for yet.
- Shelter (on Mars)
When you spawn into the world you appear outside of your lander. There's a lot to do to ensure your visit is not a short one, but you have some time to get things set up. Your first priority is setting up a starting platform to set up your machines. You've landed with a variety of crates and a portable oxygen tank. You can use your wrench in your tool belt to disconnect them from the lander so you can drag them around. The supplies you need on your first day are in the two yellow construction supply crates.
Find a suitable spot to build your starting platform. We're looking for a relatively flat area near the lander, away from any hills that might block our solar panels. Find your iron frames in your construction crate and build a 4x3 platform. Swap your iron frames with the iron sheets and pull out your welding torch in your other hand. Construct your frames with your welder until they reach their second of three stages in the construction process. This makes them walkable, but not airtight.
Next, we'll set up the solar panel, area power controller (APC), arc furnace, and autolathe. Place the solar panel on the platform with the power port facing towards where you want your machines to go. Complete it with the glass sheets found in the crate. Place the APC down next to the solar panel at least a cable's length away and with the power arrows facing away from the solar panel. Connect the two with the cables found in your toolbelt. Open the APC with your crowbar to expose the internals. Grab one of the large batteries from the crates and insert it into the APC. Make sure to flip the power switch to turn the APC on: you should see the LED on the APC start blinking blue to show that the solar panel is charging the battery.
Finally, we'll set up the arc furnace and autolathe. Place them on the platform, complete the construction stages for the autolathe using the resources in the chest, and finally connect them to the other power port of the APC using your cables. Note: you can splice in new connections to old cables by holding the wire cutters in your off-hand. This allows you to add a junction in an already existing wire, for example. You should now be able to turn on the autolathe and arc furnace to check your setup, but make sure to turn them off when you're not using them to save power!
Optionally, you can set up the solid fuel generator too, which burns coal to produce a considerable amount of energy in a pinch. Connect the power cable from the solid fuel generator to the solar panel side of the APC to fill up its battery. Remember that the generator will burn all of the coal that you put in it regardless of if your battery is full or not - only place the fuel that you need into it.
You've now tackled your first priority: power. With this setup, you've extended your lifespan from around one day to around five. Congratulations! Although one basic solar panel will not be enough to sustain anything more than our starting base, this will power a spare battery to keep your life support going as you tackle the other tasks at hand.
The next thing you'll run out of is water. You start with a water bottle in your suit, a few spare bottles in the crates, and a small liquid canister of water. Altogether, you'll run through these supplies in about a week. Our next goal is to set up an ice crusher and a water bottle filler, but to do this we need to set up some more infrastructure. Our next direct tasks are to create an electronics printer and a hydraulic pipe bender. Together, your autolathe, electronics printer, and hydraulic pipe bender form your fabrication bread and butter: they can produce everything your need to tackle your starting priorities.
Note, you need to open your helmet to eat and drink on some difficulty levels. On hostile planets where breathing in the atmosphere, even briefly, is dangerous, like Venus or Vulcan, note that you can survive for a short time in a vacuum without a helmet. In the early game, you can use an Airlock to create a temporary vacuum in order to eat and drink.
From here, split your time between day and night to take advantage of the sunlight. During the day, we can collect resources for our base through mining, and at night we can work on improving our base. The sunlight makes it much easier to find ores in the world, but if you do need to go out at night, consider setting up the tracking beacon at home to find your way back with your tablet with the tracking cartridge. Alternatively, you can create the GPS cartridge and write down the coordinates of your base so you don't need to remember to turn on the beacon before you leave. We are aiming to collect at least 3 stacks (150g) of iron ore, 3 stacks (150g) of copper ore, and 1 stack (50g) of gold ore. Smelt all of these in your arc furnace. After we set up our machines, we'll also need a stack or two of water ice (Note: not Ice (Volatiles), Ice (Oxite) or Ice (Nitrice)!), and at least 8g of silicon to construct our water setup.
Once you have the supplies, use the autolathe to build your electronics printer and hydraulic pipe bender. The electronics printer can print out extra cables as you need them, extra batteries to add a buffer to your power setup, extra solar panels for power generation, and a variety of other tools and supplies. The pipe bender allows us to handle atmospherics and liquids. We can now partly build our water setup. At this point, it will be useful to complete the in-game Hydroponics, Hydration + Food tutorial to understand our next steps.
After our prep work, we can print an ice crusher, a portable tank(Liquid), a tank connector, a water bottle filler and the liquid pipes needed to plumb it all together. Go ahead and set these up on your base, connecting the bottom pipe on the back of the ice crusher with liquid pipes to your tank connector. Afterwards, hook up your water bottle filler to the pipe network, though note that you might need to place the filler on the side of a constructed iron frame (known as a structural wall as opposed to a normal iron wall). Finally, we can place a water bottle onto our filler, place ice into our ice crusher, turn on the crusher, and refill our old water bottles!
If the bottles are not filling, it's usually one of two issues: either the water is too cold, or the water bottle filler is not turned on. For the latter, make sure that the water bottle filler is connected to power and that the power switch on the filler itself has been flipped on. For the former, hover the cursor over the filler. You may get an error in red text, something like "Water must be 0-100". This is because ice generally struggles to flow through pipes. To dramatically lower the viscosity of your water, hook up a liquid heater over one of the pipes, hook it up to power, and turn it on. You can use your tablet with the atmos analyzer cartridge on the pipe to measure the current temperature of the water. Be careful, because the pipe heater draws a significant amount of power! Once you have the temp of the pipe over 0 degrees your water bottles should now fill with water.
By this point, we have extended our lifespan to multiple weeks.
Note: This section only applies to players on Mars.
Although you landed in a safe weather window, storms can start on planets with the atmosphere after seven days. The storms can damage some items in the game like solar panels, reduce visibility to anything in front of you, and blow anything not bolted down hundreds of meters away. This includes your starting crates. To prevent losing your progress, it's critical that you prepare for upcoming storms. At a minimum, your starting gear should be secured. This can be done by creating container mounts to attach your crates to the wrench. Better yet though, you can create a large locker and empty your crates inside of them.
Additionally, consider making your base airtight at this point. This will prevent the inside of your base from being affected by the storms. You can add an extra iron sheet to your iron frames to make them airtight, and use the iron walls (which can also be constructed into windows by cycling with the C key) in your construction crates to build the sides. Finish it off with a door that you can open and close during storms or even a full airlock if desired. See the Airlocks tutorial for an example, but note that on Mars an advanced airlock must be used to avoid contaminating your base with the Martian atmosphere.
Finally, consider walling in your solar panels with glass windows to protect them from storms. You will lose a slight amount of efficiency from the sunlight being blocked by the iron edges, but you will not need to repair your solar panels anymore.
Air and Food
The last two resources that we need to have stable sources are food and air. However, around this time is when a myriad of other problems also start occurring that may need to be taken care of. For this section, you can either tackle side-projects first or come around to the side-projects as they come up.
These are projects that won't threaten your survival if not completed but can make your time in the solar system much more comfortable.
See the in-game Alloy Smelting tutorial for more information.
Steel is the first alloy that most stationeers need to make. Alloys are resources made from a combination of the more basic resources in the game such as coal, iron, or gold. Alloys are usually made in the furnace once the base resources are inserted and the furnace reaches a specific temperature and pressure range. Using values found in the in-game stationpedia, the recipe for steel is 3 units of iron to 1 unit of coal, placed into the furnace when the furnace is between 1 MPa and 100 MPa, and the temperature is between 900K to 100kK.
Steel can be used in a variety of more complex machines. This includes stationary batteries which hold 12.5 times the energy of large battery cells, or the orientatable solar panel which can track the sun to provide near 100% efficiency while the Sun is up. The process for creating steel is similar to the process of creating solder, used in creating new APCs. Or, more advanced, creating constantan, invar, or electrum, which are used for mid to late game parts and structures.
To start, create a furnace using the autolathe, along with a pipe valve and a passive vent using the hydraulic pipe bender. Place it somewhere outside of your base with the large input/output arrows to the left and right, this will orient the input/output pipes towards the back away from the player. Complete the furnace using the tooltips. Finally, on the backside of the furnace, add a pipe and a valve to both the grey output/input ports. The output port is your gas output port, which can be used to purge the furnace of waste gases after use. Continue the pipe to a wall or floor where you can place the passive vent. When set up correctly, you can open the output valve to off-gas the furnace to the passive vent, and safely vent the waste gas to the atmosphere. The input port allows for fuel intake in more advanced furnace setups, but we'll be manually fueling our furnace for now. In the future, it might also be worth collecting the off-gases into a tank for use in pressurizing your base. This is especially important on the Moon where no ambient atmosphere exists.
As listed in the stationpedia, there are two types of fuels: one is a 2:1 mix of volatiles to oxygen (volatiles is essentially hydrogen in Stationeers, so you can remember this by remembering H2O), and the other is a 1:1 mix of nitrous oxide to volatiles. The nitrous oxide-based fuel is more efficient (the same amount of nitrous oxide burns hotter than the same amount of regular fuel), but it's usually harder to source nitrous oxide than oxygen. The main source is nitrice, which also contains large amounts of nitrogen which must be filtered off first before combustion can take place as opposed to the pure Ice (Oxite) and Ice (Volatiles). Although using nitrous oxide fuel can be advantageous later in the game once you have more infrastructure set up, we will be using the simpler oxygen and volatile mix of fuel throughout this guide.
You can manually fuel the furnace by placing a ratio of 1:2 oxite to volatiles into the furnace. Note that any form of ice will melt at and above 0 degrees Celsius, so it may be necessary to fuel your furnace at night to avoid the ice evaporating into the air. You can check the external temperature using the "External" section of your HUD in the bottom right. On planets without an atmosphere like the Moon, the sunshine itself can also melt the ice, even if there is no listed external temperature. The amount of ice that you need is relatively small. Around 3 oxite and 6 volatiles will raise the temperature of the furnace to nearly 2000K, well above the temperature needed for steel. Place iron and coal into the furnace in a 3:1 ratio after the furnace has heated up to produce steel. Right now, 200g of steel (made with 3 stacks of iron and 1 stack of coal) will last you for quite a while. Once you have your steel, consider using steel frames and sheets instead of iron frames and sheets. Not only are they stronger, but they use less resources overall too.
Refrigeration and Spoiled Food
Unpreserved food slowly spoils and decays in Stationeers. By this point, depending on how fast you've completed the rest of the guide, items like your starting chicken eggs may have already decayed into spoiled food. Seeds and preserved (canned) foods do not decay, so the rest of your starting seeds and food should still be safe. Decay is accelerated by warm temperatures, harmful atmospheres, and improper storage. These can be resolved by lowering the temperature (down to around -140 Celsius: colder than that and the decay rate increases again), replacing the atmosphere with nitrogen or carbon dioxide, and making sure the kPa is above 101 as food needs atmosphere equal to Earth's pressure or the effect of the preservation will be de-buffed by the low pressure, and placing food in a large fridge. For a beginner setup, simply use some steel to create a large fridge, power it with the power switch, and place any unpreserved food inside. You should see the time to decay increase by several hours, sometimes triple or more than the original time limit. Large fridges attempt to keep the food at a low temperature, and also automatically remove 70% of the decay rate of anything inside of a powered fridge. This will become especially important once our greenhouse starts producing perishable food.
One constant issue that a stationeer faces is power shortages. As you add more machines, your power needs will grow. While the problem can be ignored during the day by simply adding more solar panels, turbines, or generators, a reliable way of storing energy is critical to uninterrupted power through the night. Up until this point, we've been storing excess energy in a large battery cell in the APC. However, this can only hold a small amount of power: a single, constantly powered wall heater will only be powered for a few minutes before drawing all of the power in our large battery.
To resolve our power storage needs, consider making a station battery in the electronics printer. The regular station battery can hold 12.5 times the amount of power as the large battery cell we've been using, and the more expensive large stationary battery can hold over 30 times the amount. The large station batteries require advanced alloys, so for now we'll be focusing on the regular station batteries. Both the regular and the large station batteries require steel to make, so ensure you have a furnace set up and a batch of steel made.
Once your kit is constructed in the electronics printer, place it somewhere in or near your base. Connect cables from your power generators to the front power port of the battery. Use more cables to connect the back of the battery to your APC. Make sure that you do not connect the front of the battery with the back of the battery to avoid short-circuiting your electrical supply: you will need to disconnect your generators from your APC to ensure that there is a clean flow of energy from the generators to the battery to the APC to your equipment.
As your start to scale up your power usage, be mindful of the amount of energy that you are generating. Normal cables can only handle 5 kW of energy at any given time before they burn out. As your power production starts to scale up, you run the risk of burning out normal cables between your power generators and your battery. Consider replacing these cables with the more expensive, but more robust, heavy cables. These heavy cables can sustain 100 kW before frying. Similarly, as you scale up your power usage, you might fry your cables on the output side of your battery or APC. As batteries and APCs do not have a maximum output if there is a large draw of energy they can put out more capacity than your cables can handle. Consider using a heavy cable between your battery and APC, and possibly a small transformer after your APC to limit usage to 5 kW. You can analyze your power usage by using your tablet with the network analyzer cartridge by pointing your tablet at a cable in your network. Note that APCs, batteries, and transformers isolate networks from one another, so analyzing the cables before your battery will only show your power generation.
Automated Solar Panels
Although a couple of basic solar panels can sustain a small base for a while, as power needs grow stationary solar panels become grossly inefficient. To resolve this, we can switch to programmable solar panels which track the sun. With this setup, solar panels can have nearly 100% efficiency throughout the day. To begin, construct some regular solar panels (as opposed to basic solar panels) in the electronics printer. These new solar panels require steel. Three or so will be sufficient. Place them in a line in an open area on some frames, away from any nearby buildings to avoid shadows with power and data ports facing east and west as opposed to north and south. Note that these solar panels have both a power and a data port. Complete the solar panels with glass, and run cables from the power port of the panels back to your battery to collect the energy they generate.
On the support column of solar panels are a series of grips. You can manually tilt and rotate the solar panel using your wrench to track the sun. The more that the solar panel is facing the sun the more power it produces. We can use the data port of the panels to automate the process. Connect all of the data ports of the solar panels together using more cables, taking care to not connect the power side with the data side. At this point, we need to set up the logic to automate the orientation of the solar panels. Although not yet complete, the in-game Logic tutorial will cover the basics of this process. We will be following the guides listed in Solar Logic Circuits Guide to do this automation. Reference the six-chip dual-axis tracking design for construction on any planet in the solar system, or the simpler two-chip single-axis tracking design for planets with 0° solar angle like the Moon.
Construct the chips listed in the What you need section of the respective guide on the electronics printer, and find a suitable place near your solar panels to set up your logic. Place the chips as listed in the guide, cycling through the different options using C to select the right chip. For example, the sensor kit contains the daylight, motion, and gas sensor. Take note of the orientation of the daylight sensor as this impacts the output. Connect your chip network to the data port of the solar panels, and connect the power output of the solar panels to the power ports of the chips to keep them powered. Consider making a new APC (using solder as described in the steel guide) to keep your circuits running even when the Sun is down.
Use the labeler found in your starting crates to rename the chips to make them easier to use. Additionally, you can set the value of the memory chips directly by using the labeler on the screw terminals of the memory chip. Then use your screwdriver on the screw terminals of the chips to configure them as shown in the guide. Finally, double-check your configuration, and turn on all of the chips (save the memory chips which are always on) by pressing the red LED to turn it green. Ensure that your setup is correct by making sure that your solar panels track the sun effectively. If anything is off, make sure that your daylight sensor is oriented in the right direction, your solar panels data port is oriented in the right direction for your chip setup as detailed in the guide, that the individual chips are connected properly, and that everything is powered.
See the in-game Gas Mixing tutorial for more information.
Your welding torch runs on a pressurized fuel canister consisting of either 1 part oxygen to 2 parts volatiles or 1 part nitrous oxide to 1 part volatiles (just like the furnace fuel). As stated above, nitrous oxide fuel is slightly harder to produce, so we will focus on the standard fuel in this guide. Usually, welding torch fuel will start to run out for the first time around this stage of the game, so it's important to be able to create more fuel soon. If you run out of fuel before creating a steady supply of more fuel, it can be difficult to recover.
In general, we need the following:
- Someplace to produce the gases
- Someplace to store produced gases
- A gas mixer
- A pressure regulator
- A canister storage slot to be able to place our fuel tank
Find a place to set up your fuel creation station. In general, a 2x3 or 3x3 platform outside works well. Also, take care to make sure that your creation station does not get too hot if you do build it indoors. Fuel can explode over around 32 degrees Celsius. We can collect volatile gas from volatiles in an ice crusher, and oxygen from oxite in an ice crusher as well. Alternatively, on Mars, there is a small amount of oxygen in the atmosphere. There, we can use only one ice crusher for volatiles and use a filtration system to filter oxygen from the air using a small amount of power.
For the ice crusher, set up a new ice crusher on the platform and connect a gas pipe to the top output pipe to collect the gases from the ice. This is very similar to the water setup except using the top output instead of the bottom output. When the ice crusher is turned on and ice is inserted into the input slot, the ice crusher will convert the ice to gas and pump it into the connected pipes. If using the filter approach, create an atmospherics kit, two passive vents, and two small oxygen filters in the hydraulic pipe bender. Cycle the atmospherics kit to the filtration unit, and place it down on the platform. The filtration unit has five slots, an input pipe, a filtered output pipe, an unfiltered output pipe, and two filter inserts. Add a passive vent to the input pipe and to the unfiltered output pipe - you may have to space them a pipe's length away from the filtration system for them to fit. Connect a pipe to the filtered output pipe and place your two oxygen filters into the filter slots. When powered on, the filtration unit will suck atmosphere through the passive vent, pass it through the filters, and continue oxygen down the pipe while releasing all of the other gases like carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere.
Now that we have a method of producing our gases, we can store them permanently inside some tanks. Create either a portable tank with a tank connector or a small tank for each gas to store your gases. The amount of gas that can be stored in either tank is several times larger than what we need for our fuel, so either size will do. If using the portable tanks, place the connector down, then drag the portable tank onto the connector, and use your wrench to attach them. If using the regular tanks, simply place them down on the platform. In either case, connect the pipes from your gas creation systems to the tanks, making sure not to connect the two pipe networks. The tanks will equalize pressure with the piping system, allowing for several MPa of storage.
Next, create a gas mixer, pressure regulator, and canister storage in the hydraulic pipe bender. Place the gas mixer on the platform and connect the oxygen and volatile gas pipe networks to the two input slots. Without powering it on, click on different parts of the wheel to adjust the ratio of the gas mixer to 34% oxygen and 66% volatiles. Input 1 is in line with the output pipe while input 2 is to the side of the mixer. Next, build a pipe off the output pipe of the gas mixer into a pressure regulator. Again, use the wheel to adjust the desired pressure to 1950 kPa. Finally, connect the pressure regulator to the canister storage. Now, when we turn on all of the machines, oxygen and volatiles will flow from their respective storage tanks, through the gas mixer to produce a fuel mix, and then be pumped into an awaiting canister until it reaches 1950 kPa.
Whenever more fuel is needed, ensure that you have enough oxygen and volatiles to produce 1950 kPa of fuel, then remove your fuel canister from the welding torch and place it into the storage receptacle. Turn on the gas mixer and pressure regulator, and wait until your canister is full. Then turn everything off, and you can remove your canister and insert it back into the welding torch. You can use your tablet with the atmospherics chip to ensure that your canister is at the right pressure, and that the mix is at the correct ratios.
Note that the gas mixer is volume-based, therefore they rely on the two gases being at the same temperature. If you have your oxygen much colder than your volatiles, for example, you'll find that the output ratio is not the same as what you set on your gas mixer. Practically, this just means that you should wait until your gas tanks are at the same temperature before mixing so you don't have an incorrect fuel mix. However, your welding torch will still operate with an improper ratio, just less effectively. As a last consideration, even though 1950 kPa is well below the maximum limit of how much fuel your welding torch canister can hold, consider the downsides of carrying several atmospheres of explosive fuel around everywhere you go before increasing the pressure.
A stable source of air is one of our last concerns and is solved similarly to our water setup. Oxygen is found ambiently in the atmosphere of Mars, or can be created from oxite ice in an ice crusher. The setup mirrors our setup for the welding fuel.
If on the Moon, use an ice crusher with a pipe connected to the top output of the ice crusher, and place oxite into the crusher to produce oxygen in your pipe network. Note that Oxite partially contains nitrogen. This is fine for breathing in a room (Earth air is approx. 78% nitrogen), but if you put it in your personal air tank, your helmet will eventually fill up with nitrogen and you will take lung damage. To prevent this, you have two options: 1) build a Nitrogen Filter in the hydraulic pipe bender and put it in one of your filter slots alongside the CO2 filter(s); or 2) use the filtration kit in a similar setup for the welding fuel described above to get pure oxygen into a pipe.
If on Mars, since a small amount of oxygen is in the atmosphere, you can place a filtration kit down outside, with a passive vent or pipe cowl on both the input and unfiltered output ports. Place two, small oxygen filters into the filtration unit, and connect a pipe to the filtered output port. When powered on, the filtration unit will suck in the atmosphere through the passive side, pass oxygen into the filtered output pipe, and release all other gases into the atmosphere.
Now that we are producing oxygen, connect your oxygen producer to a tank to store excess oxygen. Your lander came with a white, portable tank of oxygen that we can use for this purpose. If you have not already done so, disconnect it from the lander using a wrench, and drag it over to your production setup. Create a tank connector using the hydraulic pipe bender, place the connector near your production, drag the portable tank on top of the connector, and use your wrench to connect the two. Connect your production machines to your tank with pipes to store excess oxygen. Finally, create a pressure regulator, a canister storage, and also a new gas canister so that you don't run out of air while waiting for your canister to fill. Hook up the pressure regulator to your pipe network, and use the wheel to set around 5000 kPa of output pressure. Connect the other side of the pressure regulator to the canister storage, and place your new canister inside.
When you need to replace your suit's oxygen tank, you can use the ice crusher or filtration unit to produce more oxygen, turn on the pressure regulator until your spare tank is around 5000 kPa of oxygen, and then quickly switch your suit's canister with the spare. To take care of your waste canister, a simple way is to simply vent it into the atmosphere. When you get a warning that your waste tank is too full, simply click on your waste tank in your suit, and hit Open to vent it into your surroundings. Alternatively, you can swap your waste canister with your propellant container in your jetpack. Despite its name, the jetpack does not actually burn fuel: it uses pressurized gases to propel you around the world. As you use more propellant in your jetpack, you are replenishing it in your waste tank. Note that since the Moon has no atmosphere, it can be advantageous to vent your waste tank into your pressurized base for use later; e.g. plants will consume your CO2 output.
See the in-game Hydroponics, Hydration + Food tutorial for more information.
See the farming guide on the wiki for basic plant needs.
In order to survive on the planet for any length of time, any extraterrestrial base needs a greenhouse to grow new food and a kitchen to prepare meals. Plants in Stationeers are demanding, and require adequate water, light, and atmosphere to grow healthily. Furthermore, plants can take several real-life hours to grow. Because of this, it's usually easiest to jump straight to some light automation to ensure that you're not babysitting your plants for hours at a time. Specifically, we need to make sure our plants have:
- A place to grow (Hydroponics Tray)
- A connected supply of (melted) water
- A temperate atmosphere, somewhere around 20 degrees Celcius and around 100kPa of pressure
- Carbon dioxide present in the atmosphere
- No Volatiles and Nitrous Oxide in the atmosphere
- 10+ minutes of light a day (days are 20 minutes by default)
- 5+ minutes of darkness a day to rest
For some needs, just hovering your mouse over a plant will tell you whether or not the plant is struggling or thriving. The tooltip on the plant may even mention that the atmosphere is not correct, or that the plant has no water. However, some needs, like darkness, are a bit harder to keep track of. Thankfully, the plant analyzer cartridge allows us to see all of the plant's needs right on our tablet. By printing one on the Electronics Printer, we can make sure that we are adequately taking care of our plants.
Different plants have different pros and cons. Some plants, like tomatoes, take a long time to grow initially, but they continually produce fruit that can be harvested again and again without replanting. Other plants, like wheat, need extra processing in a reagent processor. The plant we'll be focusing on is the Potato plant. Potato plants grow the quickest of all the plants, but in exchange are not as filling as the other plants.
Water is the simplest need that the plant has. The requirements are the same as the water bottle filter. We simply need some supply of water connected to our hydroponics via pipes, and we need to make sure that the water is above 0 degrees and below 100 degrees. We can easily hook up our existing water bottle filler pipe network to some hydroponics trays to satisfy this requirement. Note that the hydroponics trays can store a very large amount of water. Therefore, a greenhouse with several hydroponics trays can actually be an effective way of storing water without having a tank.
In general, you need 4 things for atmosphere management. A way to add atmosphere, a way to remove atmosphere, a way to heat atmosphere, and a way to cool atmosphere.
Plants need somewhere around 100kPa of atmosphere around 20 degrees Celsius. The atmosphere must be at least partly carbon dioxide and must not be contaminated with volatiles, nitrous oxide, or pollutants. If you are sharing an atmosphere between your greenhouse and the rest of your base, you need to set up some form of gas mixing (see the welding fuel section for more information on gas mixing) to ensure that you have both oxygen and carbon dioxide pumping into your base. Otherwise, you can simply pipe carbon dioxide into your greenhouse.
In order to add atmosphere into the greenhouse, use a pressure regulator set to around 110 kPa to add CO2 (or CO2 and O2) into the room, then use a back pressure regulator on the other side of the room set to 108 kPa to remove atmosphere. The idea is that the pressure regulator will try to pump in CO2 until it's at 110 kPa, and the back pressure regulator will empty the room until it's 108 kPa. This lets you have a small flow of air through the room so oxygen or pollutants and such don't get stuck. Pipe the air leaving the room through a filtration unit (from the atmospherics kit) with CO2 filters, expelling waste gases into the atmosphere or somewhere else while letting the CO2 pass into a storage tank so you have a buffer and then back into your intake pressure regulator. This forms a closed loop to make sure that we're constantly scrubbing the gases in the greenhouse.
For heating, use 2-3 wall heaters in the room (be careful, they're extremely power-hungry!). For cooling, use a wall cooler. Feed a pipe from the gas port of the wall cooler to the outside, put a bunch of radiators on it so it can leak heat into the atmosphere, and then fill it with a few hundred kPa of some kind of air, possibly by using an active vent set to inward. The idea is that the wall cooler will heat up the air in the pipe, and then the air in the pipe will radiate the heat away in the radiators.
Wire everything up, and then we'll use some logic to automate it. The intake and filtration are automated by the pressure regulators so that just leaves us with the heating and cooling. Use a gas sensor in the room to measure temp, a logic reader to read the gas sensor, two logic comparators to compare the gas sensor to your min and max desired temp, two memory chips to hold your min and max desired temps, and then two batch writers to write to your heaters and cooler for when they need to turn on. Basically, use the comparators to check if the temp is below something like 300 Kelvin, and if so, turn the heaters on. If it's above something like 305 K, turn the coolers on.
The last need we need to take care of is lighting. Plants differ in their lighting requirements, but in general, they need to be lit for at least half the day, and they need to be in darkness for at least a fourth of the day. The Moon, and to a lesser extent, Mars receive plenty of sunlight during the day, so most plants can simply be planted underneath a window in order to satisfy their light requirements. However, other worlds like Europa or Mimas lack sufficient sunlight to grow plants through a window alone. Additionally, plants may not grow as well under sunlight on planets like Mars as they would with a dedicated lighting system. In these situations, setting up a grow light can help our plants thrive. You can reference the grow light automation guide for an example of how to automate your grow lights. The basic principle is to use a daylight sensor to mimic the rise and set of the sun with your growlight.
Once all of these needs are taken care of, you can safely plant your potatoes. Use the atmos analyzer cartridge and the plant analyzer cartridge to check up on the health of your plant. Don't worry if your plant isn't always thriving. So long as they're not dying, your plants slowly growing.
The final challenge we need to tackle is cooking your food. While we're waiting on our potatoes to grow, set up and power a powered bench using one of the two Kit (Tables) located in your starting lander. Afterwards, grab the microwave out of the lander and press T to place it onto the powered bench. Finally, plug in the microwave into the powered bench the same way you would in real life: by using the wrench in your toolbelt. Once that's complete, we simply need to wait for our potatoes to finish growing. All plants have at least three stages. First is the juvenile stage where they are still growing and have produced nothing. Afterwards is the fruiting stage, where their product is ready for harvest. Lastly is their seeding stage, where they make more seeds that can be harvested on top of their produce. For your potatoes, wait for the plants to fully mature and produce seeds. The seeds will make sure that you can always plant more potatoes in the future if there's ever an issue with your crops.
Once the seeds from your potato plants have been harvested, you can harvest the potatoes themselves to get two potatoes per plant. Stow your seeds for the future, use half of your potatoes to plant another crop, and reserve the final half of the potatoes for food. To start off, we can survive The Martian style on a diet of baked potatoes. Please review the following recipe for a gourmet, baked potato:
- Place 1 (one) potato in the microwave.
- Close the microwave and turn it on. Cook until a loud ding is heard.
- Plate and serve immediately, or refrigerate for later.
Although it's possible to survive completely off of baked potatoes, we can prepare more food by making more complex recipes and by canning our food. Other plants, like tomatoes or corn, take longer to grow but can immediately be cooked and canned for long-term storage. We can also create more complex foods, such as french fries, which are more filling and can also be canned for long periods of time. To can foods, we need to make a basic packaging machine in order to can goods. Once the packaging machine has been created, place it on the powered bench the same way as the microwave. To make tomato soup, simply place an empty can along with 5 cooked tomatoes into the top of the machine, close the hatch, and turn the machine on. Note that all ingredients must go into the top of the machine! Cans placed on the bottom portion of the machine will not work. Once the one can and five tomatoes are placed in the input, you can hover your mouse over the input to verify that the recipe Tomato Soup is listed before continuing. For other canning recipes, use the in-game stationpedia to look up the required ingredients and processing steps.
Congratulations on making it this far! If you've reached this point, you've conquered all of the immediate threats on your life in the solar system. From here, you can survive an indefinite, if meek, existence on baked potatoes and recycled oxygen. Usually tackling all of these basic needs marks the end of the early game of Stationeers. From here, the game opens up into several different paths that can attract your attention. Feel free to start a new world and use your newfound knowledge to create a new base, or keep expanding your current base to reach the mid and late-game items. Here are some example goals and projects to continue with, and enjoy your time in the solar system!
- Upgrade your printers for more items
- Upgrade your tools, belts, and suit
- Build deep miners to automatically mine for you
- Set up chutes and centrifuges to automatically process deep miner "dirty ore"
- Use stackers and sorters to make an ore stockpile
- Use stackers and logic to automate batch orders of items, for example, 100 units of cable
- Create an IC Housing, IC chip, and a computer to learn about the advanced automation in the game MIPS
- Create a full atmospherics system that can handle every type of gas
- Automate the furnace using IC chips and the advanced furnace to make it easy to produce any kind of ore
- Create a logistics system that connects deep miners, the furnace, and your printers to ensure that you always have a full stock of materials
- Setup landing pads and satellite dishes to communicate with traders
- Create a more robust power grid with multiple types of generators to handle failures
- Automate planting and cooking with harvies and the automatic oven
- Create the hardsuit and install an IC chip that can give custom warnings, such as for storms
- Create alarms, graphs, and readouts for critical systems such as oxygen and power
- Tinker with plant genetics to make different variants
"tbd - but yeah, Don't grief!"
- For eating and drinking on dangerous hot planets, use an airlock airlock to create a vacuum, which is the next best thing to eat and drink in.
- Your starting Oxygen will last you for more than a week, so oxygen recovery can wait
- An Area Power Controller will effectively "split" a power & data network
Power and data are transferred on the same network - no need to run parallel power lines
- The waste canister can be used to power the jet pack - simply switch the canisters over for an emergency fix
- A locker holds 30 items and is very useful in the early game
- Ice will melt in hands, in the world, or in lockers - ice will 'not melt inside of a Mining Belt or in a cold environment. When playing on Moon, Space or Asteroid Belt, either wait for nighttime or move into the shadow if you want to split stacks or want to handle ice.
- Help, I can't deconstruct something! - Check that you are using the correct tool (the popup should inform you on how to proceed construction / deconstruction) and that your tool has power / fuel if it requires it.
- A battery will charge twice as fast in an Area Power Controller than in a Battery Charger (Nuclear is only 73% faster) according to this helpful Reddit post by u/Chrisbitz
- In high temperature environments, your suit will rush the contents of your Oxygen tank through your suit and into your Waste tank to keep your suit at the set temperature. This means that in a pinch, you can swap your Oxygen tank with your Waste tank for a few more minutes of uncomfortably hot and barely breathable air.
- If you feel you need to stretch your water / food supply; You will lose health when malnourished or dehydrated, but you can fully recover from that. Letting your health go below 50% before eating / drinking can effectively double your rations.
- Always keep duct-tape on you at all times. Even inside your own station, a sudden change of pressure can smash you into a wall damaging your suit. Also, note that your helmet and your suit have separate damage values, so should you need to fix them, be sure to fix BOTH (use the duct tape twice until the scratches on both icons disappear).
- As soon as you can make Steel, consider using some to make Pipe Radiators. Without ventilation (and even with), your station will accumulate heat in its environment, just from the machines in there, the sun shining through the windows, etc. A simple setup with a Passive Vent, a Pipe Valve, some Pipes and some Pipe Radiators can help you manage that with ease by periodically opening the Pipe Valve.
- By creating an airlock as described, holding your waste tank in your hand and opening it up and then dropping some Oxite on the ground, the ambient temperature will melt it and give you a breathable atmosphere. On normal and hard difficulties, this allows you to eat / drink since you are required to open your helmet at those difficulties.
- Pressing the left or right arrow on a printer (like the Autolathe) usually changes the recipe on the printer. The printer will finish whatever it was last working on and then stops to await the next command. This behaviour is very useful for controlling the number of items printed without babysitting the printer. For example, you could start printing a Hydraulic Pipe Bender, press the right arrow to change the recipe, and then go do something else. Once the printer has finished the pipe bender, it will see that a new recipe has been selected and stop printing, leaving us with our one pipe bender.
- The Road Flare produces a small amount of light and heat for a couple of minutes. Although the light is not normally very useful compared to our headlamp, the heat can quickly raise the temperature of an enclosed base. 10 lit road flares can heat a fully pressurized starting base by 100 degrees Celcius. This gives cheap starting heat, and is especially useful on very cold worlds like Europa.