Stephen is a former dinner theater actor, humilitarian, unemployed mascot, and general home cuisine meth lab technician.
Choose Your Adventure
Valley - Plentiful vegetation, fertile soil and clay. Moderate amount of limestone. Lesser amounts of gold, silver, iron and salt.
Hillside - Uneven terrain, suitable for a good defensive position. A fair amount of limestone and clay. A moderate amount of fertile soil and vegetation.
Mountains - Plentiful limestone, gold, iron and silver. Lesser amounts of fertile soil, clay and vegetation.
These descriptions are somewhat fair to what you care about as a player, however I would add a few caveats.
Fertile soil and clay don't affect my gameplay much. Even the most rugged, hairy mountain biome I've seen so far has had enough soil to farm without trouble.
The big thing is vegetation. Mountains are a great place to starve because there's not a lot of redcurrant and mushrooms growing wild. The animals are a pain to get to often times because they love climbing onto a plateau and hiding up there. If you shoot at them, they blast off down the slope and your guys have to slog after them for miles of switchback paths.
Your first year in the mountains is food-centric in a way that the hillside and valley won't be.
That's looking pretty green. You can even see redcurrant next to my starting location ready for the picking.
Trees are plentiful, so wood is going to be easy to come by.
Plant anywhere you like; it's all dirt.
Good news, dirt is as easy to dig as it is to farm in.
Bad news, that limestone castle is going to take a while. You've gotta really hunt that stuff down in the valley. It's too bad clay has such low hitpoints.
Also green. Also heavily forested.
You can see some limestone. Iron is scattered here and there at surface level around the map. There are terrain features, but not any that affect my gameplay much.
Dirt is easy to put a cellar in.
Your limestone castle can find a home here, but it's gonna take some work.
I typically prefer valley or mountains, just because they're so vastly different. I tend to enjoy extreme things.
I took two photos of the starting location because the initial drop point is normally somewhat boring. However, around the edges there are stories and stories of terrain features.
You can live like a Pueblo and mine entryways and throw up clay entrances if you like.
You can climb the plateau and take the wolves hideout away.
It's cool. But your root cellar is going to take a lot longer because mining in rocky soil, limestone, coal and iron is a real pain.
You can plant most places, but some are simply not going to work.
Limestone is just sitting on the surface in piles, however. Thousands of limestone you don't even have to mine. You can have a limestone bunker on day 1 if you feel like it and you won't even have to mine any of it.
Wood sems plentiful, but it runs out quickly. You're going to end up farming trees before long.