RimWorld – What to Build First in Your Colony

You are currently viewing RimWorld – What to Build First in Your Colony

When you start a new game of RimWorld, the first thing you have to do once you see your starting spot is to plan what to build first.

There are so many things you need as soon as possible, but you don’t have the manpower to do anything.

Recommended Read: How to Do Research in RimWorld

In this situation, you will have to prioritize building the most important buildings first and then start planning your amazing futuristic colony.

So, to make sure you don’t die in the first raid, here is what you should build first in your RimWorld colony.

Table of contents

Understanding the Colony Structure in RimWorld

There are three types of colonies you can make in RimWorld:

  • Base-type Colony
  • Village-type Colony
  • Mountain Colony

Base-type Colony

The Base-type colony is the most popular among RimWorld players, as it allows your pawns to spend the least amount of time going from one task to another.

A Base-type colony is a colony where all your structures are stuck one next to another. All of the rooms are connected by hallways, and there is no outdoor space between them.

You will have roofs everywhere, and all the temperatures inside the colony are controlled. This type of colony is really good when you want efficient pawns. However, it is quite restrictive.

Village-type Colony

Probably the most beautiful colony structure type, the Village-type colony looks like a normal village. Almost all the rooms are separated, and pawns will walk outside each time they leave their houses to go to work.

Though this looks really nice, and it will make your pawns very happy, it is extremely hard to do successfully.

You will have to pay extra attention to temperature, as it will be very hard to control each room, and you will need to prepare more than the other colonies for raids.

The other two can easily make a killbox to solve all of their problems, but villages will need to take extra precautions.

Mountain Colony

One of the safest ways to play RimWorld is to make a mountain colony. Everything you build is inside a mountain.

That is where you live and where your colonists spend most of their time. You will spend most of your time mining rather than building.

Though a mountain base is great for protection, it is really bad for food and electricity. If you prefer solar power or river power, then you will need to build these outside the base.

Farms, at the start of the playthrough, will also be placed outside the mines, which will put them in danger and make your pawns spend a lot of time away from the colony.

Planning Your Colony in RimWorld

You will have a lot of rooms and buildings to make in RimWorld before your colonists will be truly happy and safe in their homes.

Luckily, there is a special planning tool in the Orders Architect tab that you can use to make the outlines of your base before constructing it.

Once you know all the necessary rooms that you will need to have, you can start planning accordingly how you envision everything will look.

No matter what type of colony you want to build, the rooms in all of the colonies are generally the same:

  • Storage
  • Bedrooms (or Barracks)
  • Freezer
  • Kitchen
  • Dining room
  • Rec room
  • Laboratory
  • Workshop
  • Hospital


Most items in RimWorld deteriorate if they are left outside. They will slowly break down and you will lose them forever.

This is why you will need to create a storage room where you place your items and keep them safe from rain and deterioration.

Bedrooms (or Barracks)

Unless you have created some interesting xenotype that doesn’t sleep, your pawns will most likely require sleep.

At the start of the game, you probably won’t have the time to make some amazingly big room, so making a barrack where all your pawns sleep is a good idea.

Since you can reposition beds at any time, you won’t lose anything by making a temporary barrack for your pawns.

Otherwise, you will have to make bedrooms for all of your pawns. If you want babies, you will need to set up bedrooms where you can make couples sleep together, as well.


Unfortunately, you can’t deposit your food, soon-to-be-slaughtered corpses, and medicine in the storage room along with all your building resources.

Food deteriorates incredibly fast outside, and it will still break down even inside a normal storage room.

To fix this, you will need to build a special room where you deposit these vulnerable items and bring the temperature below 0 degrees Celsius (32 Fahrenheit).

In a freezer, nothing will deteriorate. You can deposit food, body parts, medicine, and anything that doesn’t usually last over 1 to 2 days in any other room.


Players will need to build a special room where their cook and make some food. The kitchen needs to always be clean. Otherwise, your pawns easily get food poisoning.

So, you will have to make a kitchen, usually positioned right next to the freezer, where you can make good food for your pawns. If it is positioned too far from the freezer, the chef will have to walk a lot to get the resources for meals, which will be a huge waste of time.

Dining room

If you’ve played RimWorld for a bit, you will notice that your colonists get upset each time they eat without a table.

This is why you will usually need a special room, a dining room, where you have enough tables and chairs for your pawns to eat.

The dining room should usually be placed relatively close to the freezer where the food is deposited, so they won’t have to walk miles from one room to another.

Rec room

One of the main stats of pawns in RimWorld is the Recreation stat. You will have to keep your colonists happy if you want them to be productive.

So, you will need to make a special room, a rec room, where your pawns can spend time having fun. This is the place where you can build chess and billiards tables, campfires, and all the buildings in the Recreation category.

Many people make a combination between the rec room and dining room since you can make a huge, beautiful room that has both of the required items in it.

You can also make this room the temple for your main ideology if you have the Ideology DLC.


Research is incredibly important in RimWorld, and having a special room where you can place your research tables is mandatory.

Laboratories need to be clean for researchers to do their job faster, so this is why you will usually want only a few people coming in and out of this room.

Since you will also have to build a few more research tables to get the job done faster, you will need a special room just for these.


One of the last important rooms that your colonists will need in RimWorld is the workshop. This is where you use all of the resources to make new things, such as weapons, clothes, art, and other things.

Most buildings that should be placed in the workshop get bonuses from tool cabinets. So, it would be best to place them all in the same room.

Since your workshops will mostly use resources that are deposited in the storage room, these two rooms should be close to each other.


The last important facility you should have for your pawns is the hospital. A special room where you only place hospital beds for hurt colonists.

These can work as a barrack, where you have a lot of beds. This room needs to be very clean and full of sterile floors.

You can also make small rooms, like the bedrooms, which have hospital beds, where you can take care of patients in separate rooms. This will make the patients happier, but it will be more effort.

How to Build a Colony Successfully in RimWorld

Now that you know what type of colony you have and what rooms you need to have in it, the next step should be to tell you what you should build first in RimWorld.

However, you will need to know some things before starting the construction. The first thing you should be careful about is how you implement your plans.

Even if you planned out the whole colony and how it’s going to look in a year, you will need to take things slowly.

Prioritize the most important rooms first. Sometimes, at the start of the playthrough, you won’t even be able to make a quarter of the rooms.

You will have to make a huge room that will work as a storage, barracks, workshop, kitchen, and laboratory.

Also, don’t forget about security! As you start building an amazing colony in RimWorld, you will realize that you spent hours planning the base, but 2 raiders with sticks managed to kill all your colonists.

Security is the most important thing in RimWorld, so make sure that you don’t forget about it.

What to Build First in Your Colony in RimWorld

When you think about what you have to build first in RimWorld, you must first know what possible rooms and buildings you actually have to make.

At the start of the game, there will be three types of rooms that you will have to make:

  • Main Room
  • Storage Room
  • Bedrooms

This should be the priority in which you build these respective rooms. At the start, you will need a main building where you can store your resources, put down some beds, leave your production buildings, and increase recreation.

So players like to use the remains of ruins as a base structure and build some wooden walls to complete the room. You can make it a room for everything for the first day.

Once everyone is settled better, your second priority should be to make a storage room where you can deposit everything. Storage rooms are usually incredibly ugly due to the resources being left down.

This is why you can’t leave your pawns spending most of their time in the same room with the resources and bodies.

Once you have a place to deposit everything, get to making bedrooms for each one of your colonists. If you know the proper room sizes, then you will know that they don’t need a lot of space.

After that, the most important thing is to start researching the right things. Many people make the mistake of researching the wrong things at the start of RimWorld, which can ruin your whole run.

That’s everything you need to know about what to build first in your colony in RimWorld!

Have any input or suggestions for this guide? Let us know in the comment section below.

Adrian Oprea

Based in London, United Kingdom, Adrian Oprea is a Guides Writer. As a professional single-player RPG player, Adrian has often been stigmatized. He has decided to pour his frustration into writing guides!

Leave a Reply