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A book which describes technology and methods for using it. Reading schematics can help unlock new technologies.

Base Stats

Exotic itemBook
Market Value
150 Silver
Stack Limit
0.5 kg
Deterioration Rate

Schematics are a type of book that provides recreation while generating research points.


Schematics, like all books, can be purchased from trade caravans, orbital traders and faction bases, or earned through quests.

When starting a new game, there is a chance for your starting colonists to carry books as possessions based on their traits or backstory.


Schematics can be read by colonists as a recreation activity, with a recreation power of 1. All books will also train intellectual at a rate of 250 XP per in-game hour.

Each schematic has one or two associated research projects. Whenever colonists read the schematic, they will also generate points towards those projects.

The rate at which points are generated depends on the quality of the schematic. The rate is not affected by the colonist's research speed, meaning that schematics allow intellectually-impaired colonists to contribute to research.

ChildrenContent added by the Biotech DLC of any age are able to generate research points by reading schematics.

The game will actively try to avoid generating schematics with research projects that the player has already completed. It is also impossible for schematics to contain projects that require techprintsContent added by the Royalty DLC, or that are mechanitor-relatedContent added by the Biotech DLC, with the exception of the Wastepack atomizer project, which can be generated without meeting either of the requirements to receive a Nano structuring chip or even having a Mechanitor pawn in your colony. In theory, if a single masterwork level schematic is read constantly without pause at normal game speed, it would take a around ~80 minutes to complete the project (Divide the 8000 point requirement by the 70 points per in-game hour gained by the schematic for how many in-game hours it would take [114.29 RW hours], multiply by 42 [how many real seconds in a RW hour, according to wiki] for 4800 real world seconds, or 80 minutes. Additionally, upon finishing the project using this method, the "Ultra Mechtech" project becomes available for normal research, assuming you meet the usual requirements minus the chip. This is most likely a bug, but it would be funny if it was intentional.

Schematics have a 25% chance of generating with two research projects instead of one. Reading the book will progress both projects at once, but the number of points generated will be divided by 1.6. Completing one of the two projects will not negate this effect, making the schematic less effective overall.

Colonists will try to avoid reading schematics that have been fully researched, unless no better book is available.

Effects of Quality on Research
Quality Points
1 project 2 projects
Awful 20 / Hour 12 / Hour
Poor 30 / Hour 18 / Hour
Normal 40 / Hour 25 / Hour
Good 50 / Hour 31 / Hour
Excellent 60 / Hour 37 / Hour
Masterwork 70 / Hour 43 / Hour
Legendary 80 / Hour 50 / Hour

All books can be efficiently stored in bookcases, allowing them to provide a bonus to any reading and research activities taking place within the same room. Each book stored in a nearby bookcase will increase the effectiveness of reading.

When reading for recreational purposes, colonists will choose which books to read at random. You can use the assign tab to specify which types of book a colonist is allowed to read, but you cannot assign a colonist to read any one specific book automatically.

You can manually force a colonist to read a specific book by selecting the colonist, right-clicking either the book itself or the bookcase containing it, then issuing the "read" command. The colonist will then read the target book for an hour before putting it away.


Schematic research is impressively fast compared to research performed at a research bench or hi-tech research bench. Even an awful-quality schematic is on par with a researcher with an intellectual skill of 8, and a good schematic can surpass even a level 20 researcher. The clear drawback is that you actually need to find a schematic first, and there is no guarantee that the schematics you do come across will actually contain useful projects.

Unlike textbooks and novels, schematics lose all of their additional utility after their research project is complete. However, schematics are always useful for filling out bookcases to increase reading speed bonus.

It is worth noting that schematics with two research are generally better for buying compared to single project ones




Version history[edit]