Exploring the Map Without Getting Killed

If you have ever sent out rangers to explore the map, you will soon learn that there are a lot of dangers out there waiting for you. Every map will spawn with a number of zombies in the surrounding areas. Once you kill them they are gone forever, but that doesn’t mean you make it your mission to go out there and start killing them right away. Exploring the map in They are Billions is a very important thing to do. Here are some steps you should look over to do it without getting killed.

Rangers run very quickly and are silent

If you want to scout the map as quickly as possible, do so using rangers. They are the fastest running units you will have available and you have 4 of them at the very start of the game. They run faster than the zombies and a lot faster than soldiers. They suck at close range, so make sure they keep moving and never stop. Don’t waste your time trying to kill zombies when you are scouting the area. All that it will result in is your rangers getting killed.

Rangers use bows which might seem primitive, but they are silent. Killing a zombie with an arrow will not attract hordes of nearby zombies. Shooting a zombie with a soldiers machine gun will awaken everything nearby and bring a huge horde your way. You shouldn’t be killing enemies while out scouting anyway but if it happens by accident, it won’t be the end of the world if you are using a ranger.

If you attract a horde do not run back to base

In the early stages of the game, when you will be doing the scouting, you will not have the resources to deal with a horde. If your ranger stumbles upon a village or a large horde one of 2 things needs to happen.

  1. You accept the ranger is a goner and lure the horde in the opposite direction from your settlement and let her get killed.
  2. You keep running away and hope to eventually get away. This can waste some time but also can scout more of the area. No matter what, do not lure the horde back to your base.

Expand slowly

You are in no rush to conquer the entire map. This isn’t Age of Empires. Defeating all the zombies on the map is great, but it won’t make the final battle easier. You will just have resources spread too thin.

Use every bit of land available before you consider any major expansions. When you do expand, start by sending out a good group of units capable of defending themselves. Start building tesla towers to expand your construction area. Start building walls to defend this new area and send out more soldiers and towers to defend the walls. Once you are happy the area is secure, start constructing new houses and buildings in this area. If you rush this without properly defending the area, you risk the new colonists becoming infected and before you know it you have a horde loose within your defensive walls.

Best practice for upgrading your buildings

Think of your colony like a city. It is a lot cheaper to build out than it is to build up. Eventually you get to a point where building out wont work because there is no more space, in which case building up the best. In the early days of survival mode, do not focus too much on making sure all of your buildings are upgraded.

Sometimes a building upgrade comes with a resource drain or a daily cost. For example, an upgrade might consume some oil each day in order to function. Without it, it will stop functioning. Do not splash out on upgrades to much or it could hurt the economy and you end up finding you do not have enough resources to spend on more critical things.

Upgrading Houses

A wooden cottage will provide you with 4 workers and a tent will give you 2. This means a cottage is double that of a tent, but it costs way more than twice the cost. You could build 4 tents for the price of one cottage. Tents give the best bang for your buck, the drawback is that they take up the most amount of space.

Early on in the game, money and resources will be in short supply. You will have lots of space, so use all of this up first. This way you get the same results but have more money to spend on more important things without having to compromise on anything.

As time goes on, you will find you have excess gold and other resources. You are spread out across a lot of the map. Further expansions spread your defenses thin. At this point, it is much better to start upgrading your buildings. The space on the map has become more valuable. Maybe you demolish 10 tents and instead build 3 stone houses. You get the same end result and free up lots of space.

Upgrading Resource Buildings

Resource buildings are great to upgrade but often come with a catch. Upgrade a farm and you need to have 10 oil to spare. Upgrade from a windmill to a power station and you need to have 10 wood to spend. This is a constant drain on resources. If you find you are running low on wood often and have to wait for it to replenish, building a power station may be a huge boost to your energy production. You will now find you run out of wood even faster than before. In times like this, building a power station may not be a good idea and instead, the one off cost of building some windmills might be a better option for you.

Upgrading Defensive Structures

Upgrading towers and walls from wood to stone is a no brainer. Do this as soon as you can afford to. A stone wall can withstand much more punishment than a wooden one so make these upgrades when you can.

For the defensive towers, the upgrades are a little different. Not all towers can be upgraded in a tier. For example, a ballista tower can’t become a tesla tower. The towers do have their own upgrade options. Do you upgrade or do you demolish and build again?

Ballista towers are pretty good at holding off enemies for a large portion of the survival game. Whether you need to switch to a different type of tower depends on whether you are finding that the current setup isn’t working for you anymore.

As with the resource buildings, some of the high end towers come with a reoccuring running cost. You pay the upfront cost to build it and then have to pay a regular fee to keep it functional. If you run out of that resource, it shuts down. If a horde takes out your supply, suddenly all of your defensive towers that require this resource shut down too.

If you feel it is safe to upgrade towers, then do it, but do not upgrade your entire army. Keep some so that if things go badly for you, you are not dead in the water.

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