I’d like to discuss a few ideas around making NPCs slightly less useless when they’re not being used as cannon fodder.
- Assignable jobs based on skills. ( Mechanic, Blacksmith, Electrician, etc )
- Each job gives either a task like tree-cutting or a list of pre-built crafting recipes.
- Crafters use nearby equipment. (maybe inside crates if that gets too messy)
- None of them actually move or do anything for optimization purposes. Timers determine everything.
- NPCs on guard duty can move from their guard position to chase targets.
- Badly hurt NPCs run from combat.
- Assistants reduce construction time ( time / npcs + 1 ). Construction with one helper should take half as long, two helpers one third, etc.
- Each assistant reduces batch crafting times to ( batch / npcs + 1 ).
- Mechanics too, maybe?
- NPCs lose morale when hurt or starving. Extreme morale loss may cause mutiny.
- Idle chatter between NPCs.
- NPCs learn from nearby books.