Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Regular reports on Factorio development.
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factoriouzr
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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by factoriouzr » Sun Oct 16, 2016 11:12 pm

ChurchOrganist wrote:
Limit turret creep as it is way too powerful now (especially with personal roboport) with a turret activation time. As it makes the expansion harder, the resource growth from the center should be higher.
Maybe the way forward here would be to link laser turret upgrades to biter evolution. At the moment it is possible to use fully upgraded lasers on medium biters.

If it was only possible to upgrade lasers at certain points in the evolution cycle, it would have the effect of restraining the amount of OPness without nerfing them completely as an offensive technique.

Introducing a delay would simply make biter clearance in late game even more tedious than it is now; and unless you clear entire land masses now, biters will attack trains, powerpoles, rail and even solar panels, which make transport of materials from outposts very difficult.

This, coupled with the relative weakness of vanilla walls against behemoth biters and spitters means you are spending more time managing biter attacks than you are building your factory once you are travelling more than a few tiles to transport resources.

Consequently those of us who favour widely spaced resources with heavy use of rail to transport them will be at a disadvantage at normal biter settings.

Perhaps you could even make laser turrets a purple science research requirement. After all, it is possible to use normal turrets with equal effectiveness in the early and mid game for turret creep, if you can work out how :)

Or link biter evolution to laser turret upgrades. If you kill x biter per minute, or x biters overall, they evolve a little faster from pollution because the threat from the player is greater. Or better yet, they increase their attack party size slightly and over time increase the number of simultaneous attacks from different sides etc.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by Antaios » Mon Oct 17, 2016 1:12 am

factoriouzr wrote: Sorry, I probably just missed it, but why can't you see the rail being placed? Is it because you have to click and then move over one space and click again? Doesn't it show you what it will look like as you drag out, or is the issue that you have to keep dragging until the planner has enough space for a curve and it's this guessing part that's annoying? If it's this dragging part then I see what you mean. When fine tuning and doing custom stuff it can get annoying.
It's dragging/guessing that's frustrating. If I get it wrong with an old curved piece, I just move the mouse one tile. With the rail planner a lot of the time I'll have to reset and grab a different start point, or I'll have to add another rail over the top of an existing one to shift the start point.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by kovarex » Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:57 am

Stevepunk wrote:It's nice that they've focused on the mechanics so much in this game and have removed a lot of tedium.

But I think at least one person there should start focusing on the rest of the game. The game only has 2 biomes and they don't contain any different resources (only the trees look slightly different in desert and there's less of them).

There is only 1 enemy faction (the biters) and only 3 enemy types (biters, spitters and worms). Even the evolution system is limited to a few stages.

The world is infinite but there's no point to exploring it if everything is the same. And there's no point to different research paths if everything is the same.

Other games solve this problem by having different biomes and different rare resources limited to (or more common in) different biomes. Of course different biomes also feature unique terrain (such as impassable mountains), and often different wildlife (sometimes neutral and sometimes agressive).

There are often remnants of ruined civilizations lost to time and possibly ancient technologies.

Give us a reason to explore. A reason to make use of all the other parts of the game. A reason to research a particular line of tech or use a specific weapon based upon our starting location or which enemies are nearby.

Give us a reason to play the game more than once and take advantage of all the mechanics you've lovingly polished over time.

Games which I feel do level design well are:
Minecraft (biomes, ruins, unlock new areas through tech )
Civilization (biomes, ruins, rare resources, enemy variance, research choices based upon all of the above)
Rimworld (the best ruins - would like to see these type of ruins in factorio)
X3:TC/AP (not procedural but still features many of the above options)
Mount and Blade (the map is quite dull but different areas do produce different resources like X3, and the different enemy factions do make the game a lot more dynamic like Civ)
I actually don't want the people to explore much. It just makes the map huge and this game is not about exploration, it is about building a Factory.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by Andrzejef » Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:08 am

kovarex wrote: I actually don't want the people to explore much. It just makes the map huge and this game is not about exploration, it is about building a Factory.
Well, sure. But those are connected.
You can't build a huge factory on a small plot of land. Also, what when you finally exploit starting resource sites? Exploration is a twin brother of building, in each kind of craft-the-world-type game.
And, obviously, the bigger the factory and it's "output" the bigger the "input" must be. Huge colossus, spewing, say, 2k drones per second, needs a lot of supporting utilities, and thus needs a map to be vastly explored, to provide necessary resources.

The good thing is, if the map is properly explored, it's also properly infrastructurised, which means it's technically part of your big, badass factory. So, I think it's safe to assume, exploration is factory building as well :)
Stevepunk wrote:It's nice that they've focused on the mechanics so much in this game and have removed a lot of tedium.

But I think at least one person there should start focusing on the rest of the game. The game only has 2 biomes and they don't contain any different resources (only the trees look slightly different in desert and there's less of them).

There is only 1 enemy faction (the biters) and only 3 enemy types (biters, spitters and worms). Even the evolution system is limited to a few stages.

The world is infinite but there's no point to exploring it if everything is the same. And there's no point to different research paths if everything is the same.

Other games solve this problem by having different biomes and different rare resources limited to (or more common in) different biomes. Of course different biomes also feature unique terrain (such as impassable mountains), and often different wildlife (sometimes neutral and sometimes agressive).

There are often remnants of ruined civilizations lost to time and possibly ancient technologies.

Give us a reason to explore. A reason to make use of all the other parts of the game. A reason to research a particular line of tech or use a specific weapon based upon our starting location or which enemies are nearby.

Give us a reason to play the game more than once and take advantage of all the mechanics you've lovingly polished over time.

Games which I feel do level design well are:
Minecraft (biomes, ruins, unlock new areas through tech )
Civilization (biomes, ruins, rare resources, enemy variance, research choices based upon all of the above)
Rimworld (the best ruins - would like to see these type of ruins in factorio)
X3:TC/AP (not procedural but still features many of the above options)
Mount and Blade (the map is quite dull but different areas do produce different resources like X3, and the different enemy factions do make the game a lot more dynamic like Civ)
I actually like the idea of biome exclusive fauna/flora and minerals. I could say, I dig it :D
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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by wolfmanrawrs » Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:49 am

factoriouzr wrote:
Adding an artilery train is cool, but what about laser turret trains, what about logistics wagons?

What about improving the existing player vehicles like the car and tank? What about new vehicles that shoot lasers (perhaps the spider walker that was shown)? What about vehicles for the player with longer range? What about artilery turrets? Seems strange to have a train capable of artilery fire but no building that is capable of it.
I second this. It irks me that I can wade through armies of biters in my armor, but my tank has trouble with trees, let alone biter nests.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by PacifyerGrey » Mon Oct 17, 2016 9:01 am

I really do like most of proposed changes but not one with merging damaged items. Make this an option if you like but generally its a bad idea.

As to vanilla roadmap. I do agree that the game looks like it is reaching completion and is pretty feature rich for vanilla. However there are at least several things that imo should be in vanilla.

1. Early-game blueprinting. I really like you want it implemented. I think it could be in a form of armor module or a separate armor set that would let player automaticly build stuff from ghosts in his common building range (which is really small) but still you can make use of blueprints. This tool can be unlocked along with Automation 2 research. I would not suggest it to be a simple feature (as opposed to wearable item) as you need a way to turn it off. I do not like the idea of using any kind of bots as this is going straight against research logic as you will research those later on and they will be an extension to this mechanism as they can reach much wider area.

2. Train functionality like renaming trains/ grouping trains ans train stops should still be in vanilla as those are really required by most of players out there. Also this features do not require major development time investments while bringing really much comfort to the game.

3. I like the idea of reducing craft time on red circuits as currently red circuit area reminds a huge field. What to say - to make a single blue belt of red circuits we need how many? 320 unmodded assemblers? I do understand that full belt of red circuits is A LOT but still... Even not in megabases red circuit production is huge compared to any other production area. So I would say 4 seconds is more adequate. I also do agree with engine times. Cause now it really takes too much time to make your first locomotive especially if you opt for a double headed train.

4. Its awesome to hear you are planning for mk2 versions for boilers and steam engines. I would really like to see concept changes in them and not only replacements. For example boilers should be bigger to line up with steam turbines in size and could make use of modules to increase effectiveness or to decrease pollution.

5. What you are forgetting is a combat rework. It kinda works now but as mentioned many times - it gets worse when it gets bigger. We do definitely need artillery (first of all stationary and mobile only as an option for lulz). I do like an idea from Ion Cannon mod (first of all the autotargetting part) which can be preceded by conventional stationary artillery cannons using tank ammunition (which is not widely used right now but already is in the game) which can only attack biter nests. This topic is really big to discuss it here but I hope it will get to 0.16 and we'll have more time and focus to make it happen.

6. I would kindly ask devs to consider introducing 3x3 storage units to the game. A simple and obvious thing but it can really make things easier. And 3x3 size can really simplify interactions with 6 tile wagons and open up many interesting design options as you basicly allow many consumers from a single container. And yes I know there is a mod for that.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by factoriouzr » Mon Oct 17, 2016 11:02 am

Also along the lines of biter rework, the biters don't attack in my games unless I am near them. This used to work in previous majour versions. Also the biters don't move on my map even when they are in radar range unless I go about a screen away from them. Basically this makes the game even easier then before and also makes the live view of radar's useless. There is no reason to see a live view if the biters don't even move when the player is not near them.

I would like the biters to get harder with optional sliders to adjust their settings, not easier.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by Maja153 » Mon Oct 17, 2016 1:12 pm

The tutorials are a MUST. I, for one spent a good hour before getting my trains working.
Either way, keep up the good work, loving the game - re-ignited my interest with the in-game mod portal.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by Andrzejef » Mon Oct 17, 2016 1:34 pm

Maja153 wrote:The tutorials are a MUST. I, for one spent a good hour before getting my trains working.
Either way, keep up the good work, loving the game - re-ignited my interest with the in-game mod portal.


Yes, interactive tutorials are love, life and pure goodness. However they are kinda redundant if you already know the stuff. That's why they should be toggleable on map start (or even game settings; default on), AND also gathered in some place (some kind of library) for ease of access later, should the need come (i.e. that I don't have to start new game and place 100 rails to be able to check one particular trick with rail signals)
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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by mrvn » Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:17 pm

loganb wrote:Hello, just wanted to leave a few comments on this:
Figure some way to have low level personal construction robots earlier in the game.
Very much this. Maybe blueprints are researchable from the beginning of the game. Instead of robots, there's an auto-placement mode where items are auto-placed in tiles adjacent to the player. That would make it just as time-intensive to place structures in the early game, but cut down on error.
Or at least placing an item on a ghost would keep the orientation and recipie and so on of the ghost. Maybe even allow placement only on the ghost if a key is held (or not pressed) while clicking / dragging. This would also be usefull later in the game when you do have construction robots but they are missing one assembler or on request quest that you happen to have in your inventory. Now you place it and then you have to reconfigure it, And you can't even ghost place modules so they are a total loss.

So the idea would be to place the bluebrint, take out assemblers, place them, take out belts, place them, take out inserters, palce them. All with just dragging them over the area of the blueprint. No manual rotation or clicking at specific fields required.

Note: Having items placed just because you are near them could be anyoing because for larger structures you want to palce items after you walked through them, not before, or they will block the way to the interior where you still have to place stuff. Think an array of solar pannels. No way to place the substation in the middle if the solar pannels get placed when you get near.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by suaig » Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:39 pm

The turret merging sounds like a terrible idea to me. They should just slowly repair over time as long as you have repair packs.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by Metebacsi » Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:42 pm

Please don't do the automatic item merging. :/

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by Llama » Tue Oct 18, 2016 12:59 am

kovarex wrote: I actually don't want the people to explore much. It just makes the map huge and this game is not about exploration, it is about building a Factory.
Exploration is a major part of Factorio though, big factories need vast resources, particularly with multiple depleted oil sources (nice improvement there btw). I've been playing with the Marathon mod lately and that's increased my resource hunger a huge amount, which in turn has required a much more substantial base that really feels like a massive factory, but requires much more exploration. Generating doodads and tree types (within a certain class) on the fly could alleviate a lot of save-file data relating to the natural world, but I think you (the team) may have mentioned that already.

Could using a repair pack on the floor be a good way to fix inventory stuff quick?

Some improvements I've pondered include:

Special properties in biomes, besides speed and pollution absorption. Deserts are hotter, maybe make solar panels more effective there? Reasons to visit a biome - maybe deserts naturally have richer copper sources but poorer iron sources?

I'd also like randomised solar outputs to emulate cloudy days - nothing too severe, just to add a little domestic drama. Would having pollution affect solar output be taking things too far? I like the idea, but it'll hurt. Some of the best things hurt though.

Better solar panels would be nice, I spend SO much time laying solar farms the size of a small country to feed my beacons, I'd happily pay 4x the materials for 2x the power. Maybe more?

Unique resources - something rare to get really excited about when we find it - natural gas springs, more potent coal, non-essential higher-tier metal ore. Rare materials to make special ammo? That could be a good non-essential reward, or rare&unique modules.

More rewarding biter base clearing - have some items that the biters have hoarded which the player may enjoy liberating. If you're not happy about primative aliens hoarding items, maybe spin it so you weren't the sole survivor of the ship crash - at first - other escape pods bailed from the ship and parachuted down, your buddies tried to set up their own camps but were overrun by biters.

Late combat / auto combat - I refer to Supercheese's Orbital Ion Cannon mod, it's amazing! We spend all this time researching and building a rocket silo to launch "something" into space, earning yourself a massive laser-satellite fits into the game really nicely, especially with radar-based auto-targeters. Expensive in regards to science, material cost (and power drain for target scanners), adds a useful reward for doing the rocket.

More Rocket stuff - one thing I live in hope of seeing is Factorio with the ability to slowly build a space station, space platform or colossal spaceship (also with tiles, a really big ship) and something special about space. The ability to trade with other aliens? The ability trade for rare (unobtainable) resources? Ha, this is Factorio. Why trade when we can conquer - other planets to colonise, but different in some way. The ability to fly back and forth via rocket, or ferry materials by rocket (that's going to burn through some serious rocket fuel)

Alternate/additional objectives - someone mentioned a biter queen, that's an interesting idea. A biter so strong that she's practically invincible. The challenge then is to figure that one out - take out the nearby nests one by one to weaken support, to disrupt food supply, poison with pollution until she is vincible.



You're quite right that content can be added by modders, and they're doing a great job so far, coming up with some really creative and sometimes well-balanced additions. You run the risk of doing a Mojang though - getting so far into developing a great game and just... stopping. Yes it's possible to mod things in, but searching for mods can be a harrowing task when similar mods pop up - do we go with one or the other? Weeks later we find major imbalances, or incompatibilities. How do we search for something we don't know exists? I don't expect you to add outrageous quantities of new stuff, but if there are some good ideas it would be great for everyone if they were incorporated officially, for example power-hungry deep infinite (and slow) mines or dirty mining would be a valuable addition.
Last edited by Llama on Tue Oct 18, 2016 12:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by rbtcollins » Tue Oct 18, 2016 5:51 am

So I know its been noted already, but I really don't fancy losing full items just because two of them need more than 50% repair. In vanilla thats tolerable, but do that to me in marathon and I'd be in ragequit territory!

Re: the inventory use - what about just preserving the health of the items in the stacks, and ordering the stacks in strictly decreasing health. Perhaps with a hard split between full health and damaged. Then when you place an item from the damaged set, you get the least damaged, next least etc etc. I realise its probably a modding API break, since it moves from homogeneous stacks to heterogeneous ones, but from a usability perspective it seems pretty obvious and unsurprising (vs deleting items!)

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by komrade_toast » Tue Oct 18, 2016 8:05 am

I haven't read through the whole thread, as I do not have the time to; But I would still like to leave a few of my opinions here:
  1. Item Merging:
    Instead of merging items with low health, or using an item on the floor. Why doesn't repairing an item become a recipe? Assembly machines could use it, and you could throw all your unrepaired items into a provider chest to have them taken to an assembly machine, or you repair them straight in your inventory. The recipe could call for a repair pack + any damaged item. We already have repair packs, why not utilize them for item repair?
  2. Exploration / Biomes:
    This is actually something I have wanted in the game for a LONG time. I would love to play in a snow biome, or have a swamp biome that is hard to traverse because of the large amounts of small ponds/puddles. Having resources be exclusive to a few biomes would also be amazing, as it would make resource searching a bit tougher, and require you to expand further. Maybe spawn one of every biome type close to the starting area to ensure all resources are available. I also like the idea of having the ruins of a previous civilization (maybe another engineer crash landed on the planet and built a factory of their own before being overwhelmed by biters), in which you may be able to find "special research files" that will give you an exclusive research for another technology. The special research files could be extremely rare, may not even spawn, and can give some very nice researches.
  3. Laser Creep
    While i agree this does have to be nerfed, I actually don't even use turret creep anymore. The flamethrower is so OP that I can walk through a biter base with MK2 armor, 4 MK2 shields and just melt everything in a matter of seconds. And i can do this repeatedly. My shields get low? Just stand back for a second and wait for the fusion reactor to do it's thing. I love the idea of a artillery train. Maybe more offensive / defensive measures should be added, in addition to the nerf. Things like artillery turrets (which would have a super-long range, but very slow firing speed), maybe a sonic turret to slow the movement of enemies approaching your base walls by blasting immense amounts of soundwaves at them, or a missile turret that is mid-range and deals massive AOE damage with a slow firing time. Instead of a MK2 tank, or anything like that, just use vehicle equipment grids; You could place personal laser defence in them , etc...
  4. Enemies:
    I do agree that the enemy forces need a bit more variety. At this point I get excited when I start seeing behemoth biters (and even then not that much), anything other than that is basically chump change. I can defeat them with ease. Maybe add a few more types of biters. I like the idea of flying biters, which would require AA (Anti-Air) Defence systems to bring down (flak rounds, anyone?). Maybe add a "Biter Queen" that can be a boss that is found in a random area, but has an enourmous base surrounding her, with defences brimming to the teeth so you can only take her down in the late game. Don't make it a requirement to beating the game, maybe just add an achievement called "Jewel in the Crown" or something (Jewel in the Crown is a phrase used to represent the best or most valuable part of something, in this case the best enemy there is, the Queen). Any way we have it I would love to see ALOT more expansion in the enemy mechanics, even to the point of diplomacy with them. Maybe add infighting between different enemy bases, and if you go and set up defences around a biter base, then they will be grateful to you for defending them from their enemies; and maybe they will fight with you. At this point I actually feel pretty bad after have elimanated 5+ biter bases and see their dead bodies laying everywhere. I want a way to not feel bad about being the only human on the planet, a way to NOT massacre the aliens (and maybe this way requires quite a bit more work to accomplish, and biter allegiances can change at any time).
  5. Bounding boxes:
    I am totally in line for this. But maybe just decrease the bounding box of ALL entities. I have trouble sneaking past substations sometimes.
  6. Stack Sizes:
    I agree 100%, carrying around belts, walls, rails, and pipes can be tedious when building a new outpost as you need TONS of these resources. I usually load them in to my PAX train and carry them with me, but running back to my train car to grab new materials is quite annoying. A caveat of mine though: Please increase concrete and stone brick stack sizes. Flooring a factory takes thousands and thousands of tiles. Increasing the stack size to 1000 seems about right. I use a mod that does this, and I still have to carry around about 5000 concrete or stone bricks on me if i am building a new outpost, or want to floor a specific part of my factory.
  7. Crafting Times:
    These never actually bothered me. After getting Assembling Machine 2 or 3s, and some modules, crafting time is almost irrelevant.
  8. Low Level Bots / Mk2 Roboport:
    I support this, but not if you get them TOO early. Maybe just make bots easier to reasearch and add 2 tiers of bots - Mk1 and Mk2. Mk1 would only be able to construct items (no logistics at Mk1) and would have a low movement speed, and no inventory size upgrades. Mk1 would require the Mk1 Roboport, which instead of refueling the bots electrically, would actually have to have the bots dock to recieve their fuel, which would be coal. This also fits with adding a personal roboport Mk2. On a sidenote, I find the fact that roboports hold the repair packs that construction bots use to be annoying. Why not just have them pull repair packs from the network? Filling a robo-network with sufficient repair packs requires quite a bit of resources, depending on how big your network is, on top of that: If you only insert repair packs in to one roboport, you need to rely on construction bots to distribute them throughout your robo-network. Currently I have a assembly machine that inserts directly in to a roboport, but I have still had instances where robots couldn't repair a wall because a repair pack was in a different roboport.
  9. Concrete & Blue Science:
    Thank you for making it green only, but also: Why not use iron bars as the rebar in concrete, instead of iron ore? It fits better with real life (which, i know the game isn't a life simulator but still, using ore in concrete sounds insane). Iron bars make WAY more sense, and makes it so the player doesn't have to have a dedicated iron ore supply line for concrete (be it rail, belt, or logistic).
  10. Belt Building Mechanics:
    Not sure what is meant by "building by dragging makes continuous belt". It already does this to my knowledge. Or is it meant that if you drag to a tile next to the belt you just placed, the previous belt will automatically link to it? Either way, please add a "Belt Brush" mechanic. Where an arbitrary number of belts can be dragged out next to eachother. Building a 4-Belt bus can get tedious with the current mechanics.
  11. MK2 version of boiler and steam engine:
    100% support. Mk2 of both of these is needed. Maybe make the Mk2 boiler powered by electric, so you would be required to have a few Mk1 boilers and engines to provide power to your Mk2 boilers. The Mk2 Steam engine should provide as much power as 10 Mk1 Steam engines, while the Mk2 boilers should provide enough heat to keep the ratios in-check. Right now it is 14:10 Boilers to engines, it should be the same for Mk2. This would provide easier math if you wanted to mix Mk1 and Mk2.
I'm pretty sure that concludes my thoughts.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by AndrolGenhald » Tue Oct 18, 2016 8:46 am

komrade_toast wrote: Intead of merging items with low health, or using an item on the floor. Why doesn't repairing an item become a recipe? Assembly machines could use it, and you could throw all your unrepaired items into a provider chest to have them taken to an assembly machine, or you repair them straight in your inventory. The recipe could call for a repair pack + any damaged item. We already have repair packs, why not utilize them for item repair?[/list]
I kind of like that idea, unfortunately it would probably require significant changes to the way recipes work. You'd have to be able to have recipe's with variable requirements (which would be great btw, and I hope they figure out a good way to do that anyway), and you'd have to somehow integrate health into recipes. Also partial items, you'd almost always be using some % of a repair pack. It's significant enough I don't expect anything like it in 0.15, but still...I like it.
komrade_toast wrote: On a sidenote, I find the fact that roboports hold the repair packs that construction bots use to be annoying. Why not just have them pull repair packs from the network? Filling a robo-network with sufficient repair pack requires quite a bit of resources, depending on how big your network is.
They already pull from the network if the roboport doesn't have any, then when they're done they put any extra they were carrying in their roboport.
komrade_toast wrote:Maybe make the Mk2 boiler powered by electric
There was already a pretty long argument about that, to summarize:
On the one hand, physics:
Image
Think it through, you're never going to have a net gain in energy.
On the other hand, you could use solar power to store energy as hot water. Personally I'd prefer they implement something like a solar power tower so we're not turning heat into electricity then back into heat.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by komrade_toast » Tue Oct 18, 2016 9:39 am

AndrolGenhald wrote:
komrade_toast wrote:Intead of merging items with low health, or using an item on the floor. Why doesn't repairing an item become a recipe? Assembly machines could use it, and you could throw all your unrepaired items into a provider chest to have them taken to an assembly machine, or you repair them straight in your inventory. The recipe could call for a repair pack + any damaged item. We already have repair packs, why not utilize them for item repair?
I kind of like that idea, unfortunately it would probably require significant changes to the way recipes work. You'd have to be able to have recipe's with variable requirements (which would be great btw, and I hope they figure out a good way to do that anyway), and you'd have to somehow integrate health into recipes. Also partial items, you'd almost always be using some % of a repair pack. It's significant enough I don't expect anything like it in 0.15, but still...I like it.
I figured recipe changes would be an effect of this idea. However, having a variable health ingredient in a recipe would be awesome.
AndrolGenhald wrote:
komrade_toast wrote:On a sidenote, I find the fact that roboports hold the repair packs that construction bots use to be annoying. Why not just have them pull repair packs from the network? Filling a robo-network with sufficient repair pack requires quite a bit of resources, depending on how big your network is.
They already pull from the network if the roboport doesn't have any, then when they're done they put any extra they were carrying in their roboport.
I did not know this. I have always tried to fill my roboports themselves with repair packs. Never bothered having any in a storage chest, etc...
AndrolGenhald wrote: There was already a pretty long argument about that, to summarize:
On the one hand, physics:
Image
Think it through, you're never going to have a net gain in energy.
On the other hand, you could use solar power to store energy as hot water. Personally I'd prefer they implement something like a solar power tower so we're not turning heat into electricity then back into heat.
Well, in REAL LIFE a net gain in energy is definitely impossible, given the laws of conservation of energy. BUT, I did say the Mk2 boiler should be electrically powered, requiring the use of mk1 engines and boilers. This is pretty much how the game works now. I have my main power setup - which consists of reactors from GotLag's "Reactors" mod (that powers my whole base), then I have another power station powering my reactors, which is fueled by coal. In real life, net gains in energy are nigh impossible. But in Factorio, Net Energy gains are a small part of the game, otherwise the game would be incredibly tough to the point of un-enjoyability, or it just wouldn't be playable at all. The game already accelerates past the burner stage in to the electric age. Why not make the Mk1 boilers coal powered, and the Mk2 electrically? BTW, I originally wanted a solar boiler, but, what about when the sun goes down? Having solar boilers would be tough. The water temp in the un-heated pipes would drop during the night, AND your solar boilers would not function anymore. Using a regular 10:14 mk1 steam plant to power a 10:14 mk2 steam plant would result in a net energy loss, thus resulting in needing multiple Mk1 steam plants to power your Mk2 steam plant. The result would be a decrease in size needed for the energy generation, but an increase in the amount of resources needed for energy production.

EDIT:
AndrolGenhald wrote:so we're not turning heat into electricity then back into heat
I don't quite get what you mean by this. To my knowledge - Coal is used to heat the water inside the boilers, which is then used to turn the turbines inside of steam generators. Where is heat converted in to electric energy and then back in to heat energy?

EDIT 2:
Nevermind, I just got what you were saying about heat -> electric -> heat. While it may not work this way in real life, it could work in the game. As i said, I power an entire nuclear setup off of coal. All the miners and chemical plants in the nuclear energy production chain are power by coal energy. It would NEVER work like this in real life, but as has been said before: Factorio is not a life simulator.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by AndrolGenhald » Tue Oct 18, 2016 10:10 am

Think about a system that has electric boilers providing steam to steam engines, to produce electricity for the boilers. Obviously there has to be some bootstrapping with another electric source, but once it starts, can it produce electricity? I mean, technically yes, but your electricity is coming from the hot water that was heated by the electric boilers. If you want to keep the system running, you have to use the electricity you're generating to power the boilers. Where does extra energy come from? If the efficiency is over 100% you're creating energy from nothing, at 100% you've got perpetual motion, if it's less than 100% you're basically just making a really complicated capacitor.
That's why the only use I see for an electric boiler is to take electricity generated by another system and store it as hot water in a storage tank (which is actually a viable alternative to accumulators). If you're using non-electric boilers you're already generating hot water anyway, so just store that, if you're using solar panels then you're using the sun's heat (or light, or both, idk I'm not a huge physics person) to generate electricity, to heat water, hence the heat -> electricity -> heat, which is probably a lot less efficient than using the sun to heat water directly.

Edit: On the practical side though, an electric boiler would probably be a piece of cake to implement, and I have no idea how hard it'd be to make a solar power tower. I'd rather have boiler MK2 use fuel and have a separate electric boiler though, since it really isn't useful for generating electricity, just for storing energy.

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by komrade_toast » Tue Oct 18, 2016 10:22 am

From the post you are referencing:
BlakeMW wrote:1 Offshore Pump to 14 Boilers to 33 Steam Engines
I might have to test more, but from my experience 1 offshore pump to 14 boilers to 10 steam engines is the correct ratio (or 1 offshore pump to 7 boilers to 5 steam engines). Either way, I feel if the values were set correctly, that a electrically powered boiler could produce enough steam to power a factory. Maybe make "steam" a seperate fluid, like the "Nucular" mod does. I do recognize that in real life there would be a net energy loss, but, how then do you explain transport belts needing no energy at all to transport items? (Even blue transport belts require no energy!)

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Re: Friday Facts #160 - Playtesting

Post by komrade_toast » Tue Oct 18, 2016 10:48 am

On another note, instead of logistics wagons, I support logistics rails. Passive provider rails, active provider rails, storage rails, and requester rails. Instead of using wagons, this would provide a lot more dynamicity to one's logistics network. This way an iron ore train could be both a provider AND a requester of iron ore, depending upon which rails it sits. (I'm pretty sure that dynamicity is the correctly spelled and massivley accepted word, but apparently that argument is still in the air)

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