|The Oregon Trail Guide
The Oregon Trail Home / Itens to buy
There isn't a very good in-game tutorial for your first time... so here's what you need to do, to set off on the trail. First, look at the to-do list on the left, there are 4 steps you need to do before you're ready to go.
Go into the General Store. The left pile is supplies, the right side is wagon upgrades.
for your first trip, I recommend not upgrading your wagon, save the coins for food and supplies. Pay most attention to the food, get as much as you can. Don't waste coins on clothes at this point. Once you've picked what you like, leave the store.
Each profession has different advantages, but most won't be available to you until you've leveled up a few times. Doesn't hurt to click them and take a peek at what each does, though. Pick one that is available to you, then move on to the next step.
(scroll one screen to the left)
This is where you choose the rest of the people in your wagon.
(scroll one screen to the left)
You should now see your wagon, and the people you chose, sitting at the exit of Independence.
And now, you're off! You should see your wagon clattering along, with your people next to it, and you're ready to follow my below advice.
Location Miles Notes Independence MO 0 jump off point, General Store Shawnee Mission 40 landmark only Kansas River Crossing 42 landmark only Alcove Spring 100 landmark only Big Blue River Crossing 33 landmark only RAFT down the Big Blue River to Rock Creek Station Rock Creek Station 25 General Store, resupply if needed Ft. Kearny 75 General Store, resupply if needed Platte River Crossing 150 landmark only At this point you can take either the upper or lower route to Ft. Laramie (same mileage). Just make sure if you take the upper route you don't go to Courthouse Rock after Chimney Rock. Ft. Laramie 165 General Store, resupply if needed Ft. Caspar 100 Friend locked route - General Store, resupply if needed. Independence Rock 60 landmark only CHOOSE TO RAFT down the river to South Pass South Pass 10 landmark only The Parting of Ways 10 landmark only Soda Springs 150 landmark only Ft. Hall 52 General Store, resupply if needed CHOOSE TO RAFT down the river to Shoshone Falls Shoshone Falls 125 landmark only Salmon Falls 25 landmark only Three Island Crossing 50 landmark only Ft. Boise (By the South Shore) 125 General Store, resupply if needed Blue Mountains 100 landmark only Whitman Mission 85 General Store, last chance to resupply before the end. The Dalles 85 landmark only CHOOSE TO RAFT down the river to Oregon City Oregon City 90 THE END! - Make sure to stop in the Emporium for Oregon Only items!
Remember, not all stops will have stores, so watch your food carefully, and click the traveling peddler, or shoshone indian man when you can.
The rest of this will be basic "How-To" information,
filled with my personal opinions for handling events/money/etc...
If the river is 1-2 feet deep, Ford the river.
If the river is 3+ feet deep, Caulk the wagon and Float across.
These are the best options for those depths, but your mileage may vary, and accidents can happen, even when you try to prevent them.
Use the arrow keys to navigate, the mouse is too touchy. Be careful to only click each arrow key once, as multiple clicks can be hard to 'undo' to turn the other way. At this point in time, I can't tell you if the coins you catch are yours to keep or not, they are supposed to go to your coins, but there are reports of this not working. The crates are only there to add score. If you have difficulty steering as it is, don't try to go for them, just focus on keeping the wagon in the water and away from the rocks. Try NOT to go into the currents, as the speed boosts make the wagon really hard to control.
In the beginning, trail notes seem hard to get. Don't use them on the trail to heal people, or to wait out bad conditions. Don't use them on the trail at all. Save them for the cool stuff in Oregon.
Getting more isn't too hard, once you get the hang of the game.
- 5 Trail Notes every time you get to Oregon City (this is way more than getting them each time you level up!!)
- 2 Trail Notes if a baby oxen is born, and you choose to sell for notes. (a *rare* random event)
- Click the gold nuggets as you go, as those equal 5 coins each. If you can't click it while moving, then, click the mini games icon to stop the wagon. Close the mini games pop up, and click the gold nugget on the screen.
- You will get more coins on completing the trip, especially if carrying trade goods (bankers make a boatload of gold with trade goods!)
- You can also find items to use for coins in the mini search game.
FOOD AFTER YOU'RE ON THE TRAIL:
- Click the little food piles on the trail, they give +5 food.
- Buy rations from Forts and Missions when you can.
- Buy rations from the traveling peddler woman and shoshone man.
- Hunt for food, squirrels = 5, rabbits = 10, coyotes = 25, bears/bison = 100.
HUNTING FOR BEGINNERS (WITH THE BEGINNER GUN)
(Note, not all prey are available every time. In fact, for the first few stops, there are only squirrels, so stock up on food prior to leaving Independence!)
To successfully hunt:
- BEARS (100lbs) / COYOTE (25lbs) - Take 2 shots to kill, will attack without you shooting them.
Shoot them as they appear on screen. Take 5 steps in a 90 degree angle from where it is coming, when you've reloaded, shoot it again. Walk over to pick up the meat.
- BUFFALO (100 lbs) - Take 3 shots to kill, will not attack you unless you shoot at them..
Shoot the first shot as it appears on the screen, take 5 steps in a 90 degree angle from where it is coming. Once reloaded, shoot the second shot, and try to move another 5 steps 90 degrees from where it is now coming. If you get hit, it's okay, just keep your aim on the buffalo. Once you hear the click of the reload, fire the third shot. Walk over and pick up the meat.
- SQUIRRELS (5lbs) / RABBITS (10 lbs) - Take 1 shot to kill, will not attack you.
Wait until these are closer to you, and stop moving. Shoot. Walk over and pick up the meat.
- EPIC PREY (no food value) - Take a minimum of 5 shots to kill (unsure if these attack without being shot at.)
When you're in the hunting screen, you see little red arrows warning you of approaching prey. With the Epics, not only do you get the warning arrow, you also get the words "Epic Prey" flashing by the arrow, to warn you that it's not just any animal on its way. When the animal pops out, it should be at least 1 1/2 times the size of normal prey. For the most part, the "shoot, then dodge at 90 degrees" is going to be your best chance. You're most likely to see the Epic Bison/Buffalo in a stampede. Otherwise, in normal hunts - I've been on the trail 11 completions, and only seen one epic rabbit, and one epic bear, in all of those trips, so the Epic Prey animals are fairly rare.
SEARCHING THE TRAIL:
This seems really useless in the beginning. The reason it seems this way is because you're at lower levels. As you level up, more items unlock, making them available in searches, or in shops. Until you unlock it, that item can't be found, making it more likely to have nothing found in searches. Reports are that the best items are usually found in out of the way trails, dead end loops, and trails that are friend-locked. The following is a broad spectrum list of things you can find...
- Items that give 15-50 energy
- Items that give 15-50 stamina
- Items that give both 50 energy and 50 stamina, with some having a speed boost
- Items that give 10-100 coins
- Items that heal illnesses and injuries
- Items that can upgrade your wagon
- Rocks... these give 2 coins
REPAIRING THE WAGON:
- This is a game, with Tetris shaped pieces that fit into holes. It's a drag and drop game. Pieces can be rotated or flipped before you drag them to your wagon. No, there's no way to throw out a piece, you have to use pieces available to you. Some games, you just can't do it in 8 pieces. If you overlap anything (borders or other pieces) you won't have a perfect game.
- The scores for repairs are +40 for a perfect game (doing it with 8 pieces), or +20 if you do it with 9 or 10 pieces.
- If you have the Apprentice's Tools (Carpenters Only), or the Journeyman's Tools, the bonus those add happens AFTER the game is over and you've closed it - you are getting the bonus, you just don't see it with the game open.
- If your wagon has reached a critical stage, it can break down completely, and you'll have to repair it, or wait for a passer by to help repair it. This can delay your trip immensely if you have mulitple break downs, so try to keep your wagon in "Poor" or better.
- The better your wagon condition is when you arrive at stops, the better your XP gain for that leg.
GETTING MORE STAMINA
- Stamina is used by traveling on the trail. It is expended at approximately 1 point per mile, with speed not making much of a difference.
- The only time you will travel without using stamina, is by rafting a section of the trail.
- Occasionally you may find fruit on the trail (a pop up), if you eat the fruit, you might get the benefit of a stamina boost.
- If you click a crate on the trail you'll get a stamina boost.
- If you're completely out, look at your friends, to see if they have you in their wagon party. If they do, 1x a day, you can either hunt for them, or fix their wagon. Not only are you helping them, you're building up XP for yourself. With enough XP, you'll level up, and get a refill on your stamina.
- If you have energy points, use them on mini games, since these will also boost your XP, and hopefully helping you level up.
- Otherwise, leave the game for a little while, and come back.
You don't have to wait the full length that the timer shows. If you come back in a few minutes, you'll have some stamina points. Keep doing this until you get enough XP to level up and get a refill.
GETTING MORE ENERGY
- Energy is used for Mini Games. You use various amounts of energy as you play a game.
- Pick up little green bottles on the trail for a little energy boost.
- Occasionally, you may find fruit on the trail (a pop up), if you eat the fruit, you might get the benefit of an energy boost.
- Energy is refilled about 1 point per minute, whether you're traveling or not.
- Energy refills quicker than your stamina, so when you have enough energy, you can do mini games while you wait on your stamina.
- If you run out of energy, there are several items for sale in the stores, at the shoshone man, and the peddler woman, that add energy.
- If you're completely out, look at your friends, to see if they have you in their wagon party. If they do, 1x a day, you can either hunt for them, or fix their wagon. Not only are you helping them, you're building up XP for yourself. With enough XP, you'll level up, and get a refill on your energy.
- Otherwise, leave the game for a little while, and come back. If you come back in a few minutes, you'll have some energy points.
SICK/INJURED PEOPLE & MEDICINES
Members in your party are going to get sick or hurt. It's inevitable, and just when you think they're better, 5 steps later they're going to get sick again (my opinion, not actual fact).
Here's how to deal with them:
- When you are first told about any illness, continue on - don't rest, and most certainly don't spend trail notes to heal them if you can't afford to.
- When you are first told about an injury, continue on if you can, try not to rest, and again, don't spend trail notes on healing if you can't afford to.
- If you have medicine in your inventory (either found in searches, or purchased from a shop/peddler) and choose to use it on someone in the party, you can use it by clicking your inventory, clicking the medicine, and clicking the 'thumbs up' icon that appears above the item. If someone in your group can benefit from that medicine, they will 'glow' green. Drag the medicine to that person, and click them. You'll get a pop up saying whether it was effective or not.
THE DOCTOR ON THE TRAIL
You will occasionally find a travelling doctor on the trail... He has 3 options:
- have him improve your party's health (gives a small health boost, but NO cures)
- Pay 3 Trail Notes for him to 'heal' your party and give you medicine (restores full health, does NOT cure them, & gives you a medicine)
- Continue on without his aid
(My personal opinion, skip the trail note investment. It's not a cure, so your people are going to still have the illness/injury.)
SICK AND SPOOKED OXEN
- Spooked oxen will give you a speed boost, but will become ill after. You'll get a great speed boost, if you choose to 'hang on!'
- Sick Oxen will slow your wagon down if you choose not to rest (and really, don't pay the trail notes to replace the sick one!)
- There's a medicine in a shop that is supposed to help with their illnesses, but it's not in all shops.
- Farmers have an option to treat/calm the oxen in these events.
- Yes, there's a gross animation of projectile poo nearly hitting the person at the back of your line when you stop moving.
(Personally, I ran with spooked oxen for a while, which then had the projectile poo, and I didn't find much reason to slow down or stop for them.)
WINTER = SUDDEN DEATH OF THE WHOLE WAGON PARTY
This only happens when the date of the game reaches December 22nd. It's officially winter, you didn't make it.
- you can toggle the date in the upper left corner, to get the date to read how long you have until winter.
- you will get a warning in October, letting you know that winter is coming - this is your warning that you need to hurry up if you want to make it!
- It is possible, if you run out of time to spend 5 trail notes to turn back the clock three months. Failing that...
- If you've hit winter, and your party has died, simply start over in Independence, and try again.
- You're not the first person to have had this happen, and you won't be the last. Odds are you weren't on Grueling long enough, you left too late, or you stopped too many times for events.
HOW TO UPGRADE YOUR WAGON COMPONENTS:
You can only change your wagon's parts fully in Independence. In other trading posts you can buy new parts but can't change to parts you have already bought
- Go to the General Store
- Click the right hand pile, that says wagon parts.
- in the screen that appears, click on the part you want to change (wagon beds, wagon covers, wagon wheels, oxen)
- you will now see a selection of parts at the bottom of the screen.
- click on a part to 'try it on' your wagon
- the part will appear on your wagon, with a 'Buy' tag hanging off of it.
- If you like the part, and can afford it... click the buy tag to purchase it.
- If you do not like the part, or can't afford it... click another part to try on from either the selection below, or by clicking a different component to see the selection for those items.
- If you found a part on the trail, instead of a price under it, it should have a leather 'briefcase' symbolizing it is in your inventory, click it, and it should select without you needing to pay anthing to use it.
- If you don't want to buy anything and just want to leave... click the back arrow on the upper left. You'll get a pop up asking if you want to leave without buying anything.
WHEN YOU MAKE IT TO OREGON:
- You will get 5 Trail Notes on arrival - buying the Iron Vest at this point would be a good investment. It will give you three extra 'lives' in hunting, so you won't get knocked out as easily by the large animals.
- Spend the coins on the Journeyman's Tools. This will add +35% to your final score when repairing your wagon.
- If you can afford it, buy as much Bacon as is available, to help with those 'out of stamina' moments for your next trip.
- If you have room, look into buying "Chicken Soup," as this item, when used, will give a health boost to all of your wagon party during travel for the next 48 hours, or until you make it to Oregon (whichever comes first.) If you play for long periods a day, 1 chicken soup is plenty, and once you use it, you'll have an empty slot again for trade goods.
- GUNS, If you've invested in buying Trail Notes, buy the Repeater Rifle, as it's the best gun in the game, and its effects are worth the expense.
And, if you don't have enough Trail Notes, and you still have a good amount of coins left, buy the Blunderbuss gun, as it will make hunting easier than other coin guns.
- If you are done buying, and have more than 300 coins, your exact amount of coins should carry over to Independence, if you have less than 300, you'll have 300 in Independence.
ON YOUR NEXT TRIP
WHEN YOU BUY FOOD IN INDEPENDENCE:
- If you have the option to be a Farmer, use it before going into the shop.
(Farmers have the absolute cheapest rations available - 250lbs for 20 coins.)
- After buying all of your food, go back and change to the profession of your choice, if you didn't want to be a farmer.
- If you do NOT have the option to be a Farmer, but have the option to be a Soldier, use that instead before going into the shop.
(Soldiers have the second cheapest rations available - 400lbs for 40 coins).
- After buying all of your food, go back and change to the profession of your choice, if you didn't want to be a soldier.
WHEN YOU CAN AFFORD TO DO SO:
Buy the Repeater Rifle in Oregon City for 30 Trail Notes.
Personally, I feel the benefits of this gun out weigh the cost, when you consider that you'll get those notes back in six trips.
You'll never see hunting as a pain again. (Epics = 2 shots, Buffalo = 2 shots, All others = 1 shot.)
Run the trail as an Explorer, and find a traveling peddler woman.
Pay her 1 Trail Note to see her special inventory.
Go to her tools, and pay 15 Trail Notes for the Spyglass.
On that same trip, when you get to Oregon, invest in the Survivalists Skins.
Combined, the Spyglass and Skins = 8 energy to search, when you're traveling as an Explorer in the future.
Run the trip as a Banker.
Either fill up all of your inventory slots with cotton (they stack 5 per slot), OR:
Find as many traveling peddler women you can.
Use your banker skills to see her special inventory.
Go to her trade goods, and pay to buy as many necklaces as you can (about $184 in coins).
Cotton/Necklaces will net you a hefty profit of coins in Oregon, at least 500 coins *profit* per full slot.
This adds up to a large sum of coins if you have a lot of trade goods!
On that same trip, when you get to Oregon, consider investing in the Fancy Suit.
Found an error? let me know in the comments and I'll fix it.