Things I believe should be high priority after next update and why.
By now I've played 250 hours in Factorio. Some of you most definitely have much more. It was more than enough time for me to gather information and see how most if not all mechanics and aspects of the game play out to judge what they add to the game and whether they are in a good state or not.
It's a collection of topics, not a collection of suggestions. I want to focus on the problems more than the solutions, as I want to leave the latter for the devs to figure out, because they are much better at that than players like me.
1. Missed opportunities
There are quite a few things in Factorio that are simply missed opportunities. They could be fun, engaging, meaningful game elements, but they are not.
Energy is boring. Binary problem - "I don't have enough energy" with one answer: "build more energy sources". No decisions to be made, just two solutions with one being clearly superior (and probably not expensive enough).
Look at Starcraft 2 and Crimsonland to borrow mechanics to improve Factorio's combat.
1.2.1. Combat mechanics
- Aiming - in Crimsonland you need to aim with everything
- Reload - while short for most weapons, it exists and it is fun, because you need to account for it
- Bullet speed - most weapons have not that fast of a bullet speed in Crimsonland, so you need to aim slightly ahead, it makes the whole experience even more cohesive and fun
- Enemies are slower
More weapons, more variety between them, and clearer strengths/weaknesses for each
1.2.3. Other mechanics
Let's go towards Starcraft 2 and what you can borrow from it.
1.2.4. Turrets & Enemies
Use Starcraft 2 as example for stregnths and weaknesses in strategic combat games done right. Make biters evolve traits from a pool of traits each game to add variety and the need to build different defenses each game.
Terrain is way too open in Factorio, so enemies tend to come from every direction, making building defenses feel unrewarding and awkward. Additionally it forces you to build huge walls which is tedious, instead of forts at choke points , which would feel great.
1.2.6. Turret Creep
Construction time for turrets placed by bots - should be simple enough? I actually don't get the problem with turret creep, because I haven't encountered an enemy base I couldn't kill with ease with just destroyer capsules and a flamethrower. And I destroyed bases that yielded 3000 alien artifacts alone. Can someone bring me up to speed with the problems of turret creep?
2. Mechanics/Items with limited use
There is quite a few things in Factorio that have very limited use cases. Some have upgrades that make them obsolete very quickly, some just don't have many uses to begin with.
2.1. Wood and Coal
Wood is the resource we all love to hate. You get so much of it due to the abundance of trees, yet you need so little of it, even early in the game. Later is has no use at all but to serve as bad fuel or if you manage to die in multiplayer and need a new shotgun. There is mods that allow you to make coal out of it, which is nice but...
Coal has not many uses either. It is used for plastic - and that's pretty much it's state in the game. As furnace fuel it becomes quickly obsolete, just as boiler fuel, due to solar panels being so cheap and accessible so early. Some mods allow you to process it into oil, which is good, though in the end it would just be replaced by solid fuel then.
2.2. Car and Tank
Car/Tank machine guns should have bonuses to seperate them from the player submachine gun and make them feel good to use. Trees are too abundant to make car really usable. Tank needs upgrades or be available earlier to have more than a niche use.
Since we are at vehicles - I just want to say that trains are great. They underwent a lot of development and they turned out great. So why not give the car and tank some love?