Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

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factoriouzr
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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by factoriouzr » Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:42 am

aubergine18 wrote:I think the biters should stay. Ditch the alien artefacts, but keep the biters. They make expansion more challenging especially in the early-mid game. Also, pollution would be somewhat meaningless without them. Some conflict with biters is inevitable, but shouldn't be a major part of the gameplay.

Occasional asteroid impacts might be a nice addition to the game, with a rare chance of hitting the factory or starting a forest fire, etc. It would give added incentive for player to build the rocket to escape the planet. Those asteroids could leave behind loot - extremely rare, but otherwise unobtainable resources for example. This to me would make far more sense than alien eggs that we currently have, because it just doesn't make any sense that alien eggs would help make better modules and so on. Unique resources from asteroid impacts, on the other hand, make far more sense. And then the player might be thinking "well, I need more of these resources, maybe I should mine some asteroids that are floating around in space near Nauvis"... In fact, it could be one of those asteroids that caused the player to crash on Nauvis in the first place, so it could turn in to a nice link in the game story.

Interesting idea, but I don't like the idea of having parts of my factory randomly destroyed. This is especially bad early - mid game before construction robots. Even late game if you storage of factories and/or inserters is destroyed by a meteor, even your robots won't be able to repair it without manual player intervention. This would just be extremely annoying in my opinion. I don't like things in games that I can't defend against. They just feel cheap. Like let's make the game harder by destroying part of your factory and you can't do anything about it. It's like disasters in city building games.

Please don't misunderstand, it's a cool idea but personally I would not enjoy it the way you described it of having random asteroid strikes destroy your base. I also don't play this game to finish it, I want to enjoy the end game and do cool things with weapons, biters, RTS style stuff (right now the end game gets boring after a while, which is another reason why I think it needs more variety in weapons, biters, player upgrades etc to keep it interesting). I personally like to keep playing with my finished factory that I spent many hours on (possibly 100 hours maybe more with mods). My goal isn't to escape the planet but to build an awesome factory and become really powerful, then have fun in other ways.

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by aubergine18 » Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:48 am

There could always be a new asteroid defence turret - wouldn't consume much ammo because asteroids would be rare, and could have long range due to line of sight making incoming asteroids easy to spot.
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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by ili » Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:49 am

As a lot of players I also think that:

1. Game need to have an option to be finished without Artifacts/Killing Biters (Add "No Biters" option in the map creation in addition to "peaceful mode").
2. Artifacts drop rate reduced dramatically to less then 1 per biters nest (So it's not so annoying to collect and is more valuable).
3. Artifacts used in non rocket launching essential stuff (like temporarily boosting production, exotic war technologies, enriching fuels, biological technologies :?: , power Matrix style :lol: etc).

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by y.petremann » Sat Oct 29, 2016 1:14 am

TomyTheBest wrote:- The map would contain lost factories where the bitters are win before. Like in the Jurassic park :D It would be fun to discover a woodchest with some stack of red circuit. ;)
Would really be exciting, having the ruins of old factories that could show us some interesting design, they could also be placed on good spots so you don't need to tear them down but to make them running again

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by y.petremann » Sat Oct 29, 2016 1:19 am

aubergine18 wrote:Glad the artefacts are going, but hope the "loot" dropping ability of entities remains for mods to use. Would be great if loot drops could have a time-to-live to automatically remove it if not collected.
Time to live if not collected would be really good, I would add collected by any mean (so also by inserter or transport belt).

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by y.petremann » Sat Oct 29, 2016 1:21 am

factoriouzr wrote:
y.petremann wrote:
matheod wrote:I have an idea : artifact could be used to speed up research. You could put artifact in lab and it would increase speed research by 10% for exemple, while slowly consuming artifacts.
For my part, as already said, keep the biters, they are really useful :
  • They are bugs in your factory and that force you to add a way to automaticaly fix your factory
  • They add a little fun in exploration
  • Their attacks represent the time you passed on your factory and the consequence of the polution you emit.
For alien artifacts, I thin that it's a great thngs to have them removed from critical line to win the game, also it's a good idea to keep them away of recipes you do only once and military recipes that could mostly get used for getting more alien artifacts, what the point of spending alien artifact to get them.
But as already said, I think that it could be good to keep them to allow a sort of consumable module for factories, for me it would need to be a good buf (energy or production related) and something you want to have on transport belts to transport to your machines (or by robots). This add variation to the game (else you could remove trains, robots, modular armor and circuit networks, they are not needed for the critical line to win the game).

For the loot mecanism, I think that there is too much of them, it would be definitely great to have less of them by spawners, but I like the bob ways, having small alien artifacts from biters themselves and getting way to add them.

I'm good with this but the aliens should be farmable for their artifacts (this game is about automation) and the artifacts should disappear after 10 minutes to avoid save game bloat. This was an issue I noticed with stock factorio and more so with Bob's mods. You get a ton of them accumulating around your base with the mod (which isn't that bad since they are somewhat localized and you run around and collect them) but even then it's an issue if you don't check on a part of your base (walls and turrets) and when you come back, the entire screen is filled with artifacts. Also it's a chore to collect them without a mod that auto collects items in a certain radius. Also in the base game and with mods, destroying biter bases and biters (with bob's mods) would leave a ton of artifacts, and after a point you get tired of picking them up and don't need them so you skip some and they are so easy to miss. Then every artifact ends up making your save file bigger.

What if you go on a killing spree for fun (late game) or to expand or explore? You will leave tons of artifacts behind that will bloat your saved game. Having a 10 minute or so timeout on artifacts would be great because then they would eventually disappear and your saved game won't get bloated.

Another cool idea I had was to unload generated map chunks if the player hasn't built anything near them (within several screens maybe) and there is no active live radar feed of the area. Also if the player hasn't mined any resources in that chunk (to avoid exploiting having infinite resources close by without a mod). This way players that explore and go on biter killing sprees in end game for something to do won't bloat their saved game. The reason this makes sense is because if the player can't see it and isn't near it, biter bases will spawn anyway and the next time the radar scans that section you will see the base. Also map chunks are generated based on a seed, so re-generating the same chunk will yield the same map. Thus it won't remove anything from the game and keep the save file size down.
I think that saving the chunk is not a problem, but having to keep them loaded ingame while there is nothing more than trees, doodads and resources is not really intersting

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by Rseding91 » Sat Oct 29, 2016 1:51 am

Item entities account for very little of the save file size. Trees and decorative entities make up far more of what needs to be saved. Making them time out just sounds like a huge pain. I've dealt with item-death in Minecraft and haven't met one person that likes it.
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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by Light » Sat Oct 29, 2016 2:15 am

Mixed thoughts on this.

When I first played the game, I thought there were going to be a lot of neat things involving biters and artifacts. However, it later became clear that the biters seemed more like an afterthought as there's nothing really interesting about them or the mechanics surrounding them.

In the early game, biters may cause some issues, but for the most part they're just a complete joke. Especially mid-late game when upgraded laser turrets and your power armor just absolutely melt through them, hence the mass accumulation of artifacts. It's rather disappointing to charge into 50 biter nests and walk out with shields still standing and 500+ artifacts stuffing the inventory from the quick genocide without giving it a second thought. It's not even a strategic challenge, as they hardly scratch your defenses or suit so there's often little reason to care about them.

So in my opinion, removing artifacts only further takes away from what little the biters do in general. The biter/combat elements need more work, more use for artifacts, varied enemies, and some better strategical elements instead of being pushed away by restricting or removing what little they have already.

Removing artifacts from research is a great move, but there are many other things that could benefit from them being around. Especially if they're made more rare and the biters are worked on further to make it challenging to earn them. (Perhaps creating a biological/acid ammo type that seriously harms them so guns and gun turrets become useful again, as they also seem to lack much love in the mid-late game.)

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by xtertristl » Sat Oct 29, 2016 2:20 am

I don't think I like the idea of completely removing artifacts from the game and as some others have suggested modders will be able to add them in. Perhaps one of the things you can do with the new science tree is add an alien technology branch and only use them in that branch and with items that you can produce from that branch. Have a 1st technology in that branch be "Harvesting Alien Bio-matter" and once you've researched that then start having the aliens artifacts drop or instead of calling it artifacts maybe the different parts of it like claws, skin, bone, organs, brain, (hatchery materials).

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by aubergine18 » Sat Oct 29, 2016 2:55 am

Rseding91 wrote:Item entities account for very little of the save file size. Trees and decorative entities make up far more of what needs to be saved. Making them time out just sounds like a huge pain. I've dealt with item-death in Minecraft and haven't met one person that likes it.
It's not really about save size, it's more about decluttering the map. Currently the loot lasts forever, so if player doesn't pick it up you end up with loot strewn all over the map.

For example, there are some tree mods that drop seeds when trees destroyed - a single forest fire can create hundreds of loots. If player runs across that area their inventory is now filled with all that loot... there's often no way to get rid of unwanted loot (or any unwanted items for that matter) other than to just store it somewhere which can become annoying for player (much like alien artefacts in late game, same issue applies to any loot).

IMO a TTL for item-on-ground (or whatever loot is) would be very beneficial to players and modders. I think there's lots of potential for modded entities to drop loot, but not until the loot can be given a TTL. Loot TTL would ensure that player inventories / containers don't get swamped with unwanted loot. If player wants loot they can grab it quick while it lasts, otherwise it will disappear after its TTL expires.
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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by Kryptos » Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:15 am

I don't like the idea of removing alien artifacts, as it is used for some of the high end gear, which creates a bit of a bottleneck which is fun to work through. Personally, I don't go out of my way to collect alien artifacts, and I don't mind coming back to my central factory with three stacks of them, as I just cleaned out my inventory building an outpost anyway.

One other reason that I think they should be left in is modding. I'm guessing that there will end up being a few mods with alien artifacts, and some will be complimentary, and they will each introduce their own artifacts, and then the game will crash. In this case, they would both be using the game defined artifacts. I guess what I'm saying is it's sorta like a built in CALIBR/eXcalibur ammo library from the Fallout 3 days.

It would also make an interesting addition (keep-in?) to the new research tree. If it is becoming infinite anyway, then eventually people will burn through their artifacts. If they don't burn through them fast enough, then you could make a separate alien artifact processing chain which makes little production boosts. Make a recipe that processes artifacts into power units or something, then combine them with a bunch of other stuff like circuit boards and engines to make somewhat expensive and minor (5% ish) boosts, and then have either logistic robots or a new (expensive) dedicated robots deliver them to assembly machines with higher levels prioritized. If this has been discussed ad nauseum earlier, I apologize, I only read the first page and a half and liked the idea.
Last edited by Kryptos on Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by Rhamphoryncus » Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:17 am

ske wrote:
Ilirea wrote:I would like to see the Alien Artifacts come to use in some consumable items like powerful grenades or smth:
--> kill Aliens
--> get Alien Artifacts
--> build more powerful ammo/grenades
I like this idea. Make the alien artefacts really rare and enable some ridiculously overpowered weapons by using them occaisonally. This would enable having a whole range of different rare alien artefacts which can be used as kind of ammo for those fun weapons.
This hits on a strong point. Artifacts are currently a problem because you need them for normal stuff such as science packs and power armour, so if you disable biters your game becomes crippled. If instead the artifacts were used for weapons/ammunition it wouldn't matter, you wouldn't have anything to shoot at anyway!

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by DDDGamer » Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:26 am

I think overall the conflict with the bugs need to be improved, as evident from lots of various suggestions by others.

If we step back and take a look at the story and concept behind the game: We crash on the alien planet, and as I understand we want to build a rocket to escape (OR DO WE? I say this because we are lunching satellites into orbit -> why?)
So what is the intention with the game really, why are be building the rocket? I ask because it changes the way you think about biters. If we are trying to escape than, we are unintentional angering them by creating pollution, so we dont really care about hurting them , we just want to leave, but need to set up defenses.
If we are launching satellites into space, then what for? Are we trying to colonize the planet? Build a permanent base? Then the bugs are in the way and are a greater nuance if they keep attacking us.

Ok so how to deal with the bugs? Right we can shoot them down sure, but that gets really repetitive, as you are a one person army, committing genocide against the local population. The defense is completely offensive. What if we can use the artifacts to research shield/stun technology that targets the bugs? (or maybe to make it more effective?)
But perhaps there is a peaceful solution? We already have solar-panels for clean power, so pollution is somewhat reduces, but unless you use mods with things like air filters, you cant really eliminate the pollution to not have to fight the bugs, at all.
Perhaps the artifacts can help us develop a way of communicating with the bugs?

Point its the conflict needs to be deeper than running around and turret creeping all of the bugs.
If the player chooses the offensive route; then better destructive tech is needed to keep the bugs at bay with the expanding base.
If the player chooses the defensive route; then shields/stuns/communication/negotiation/pollution mitigation methods need to be developed.

The conflict between the local life is an integral part of the game imo, simply removing the alien artifacts actually lessens the depth of the conflict, and further makes the biters an even greater annoyance to deal with while playing the game. Unless this conflict is expanded on, the bug interacting will become empty and almost meaningless.

PS.
Are there any plans to expand on the storyline? I think it ended with us flying in a plane? Didnt even get to escaping the planet! This will tie in nicely to the main objective of freeplay to launch rocket into space. Also speaking of planes since they are already in the main story line, why cant we produce them in free play?

PPS.
Would like to thank all of the developers for their hard work, this is an amazing game even in early release, put over 500hrs into it already O.o

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by British_Petroleum » Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:37 am

Alien artifacts should be used to grow biters to use as a biological power source :D as someone else suggested. There should also be fewer dropped, as suggested by others.

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by MiloRK » Sat Oct 29, 2016 3:53 am

Great FF; I'm looking forward to the new fluid mechanics in .15. That art looks great, too. It's in style with other Factorio art made by Wube. I'm a big-enough fan that I would order a coffee table book or poster or something, that would be awesome.

I do agree with some of the critique other's have brought up about Alien Artifacts, though (maybe not some of the harsh words :)). The decision that AA clean-up is tedious in the end game is spot on. At first killing Biters for AA is a thrill. When you see a field of little pink orbs it feels like "loot", and, at least pre-research-changes, Artifacts are useful for all sorts of advanced stuff you want. But, eventually you upgrade your suit, and you research everything, and the build a massive store of Level 3 Modules, and the orbs start to build up, and oh my god I have 150k Artifacts wtf am I going to do with all this? The thrill is gone and you start walking right past them after cleaning out a nest. It's not even worth your robot's time.

All of this criticism I agree with, but I do think you should reconsider taking the route of completely removing Alien Artifacts.

I'm the type of player who love's to defend my base against an overwhelming sea of Alien Biters. When I go out on an excursion to search for oil, or expand my base, it's a big deal; I load up, switch out my Power Suit for my Super Suit, do I have 400 Cluster Grenades? Check. 200 Destroyer Capsules? Check. 10 fish? Oops I have 300. And so on. It's great fun, and I eventually dominate the Biter nests, and claim myself a new strategic patch of land. Like I said, at first it's good fun to collect the Artifacts in this process and it eventually fades, but why not consider ways to extend that excitement? There are plenty of ideas that keep Artifacts fun without sweeping changes or giant implementations. Here's a list of new ways to use Artifacts that I've seen so far, or came up with myself, or whatever:
  • 1. Artifacts can now be used as fuel, just like wood, coal, etc. Exploring the Wild in a vehicle or by train can be refunded by collecting AA and burning it as fuel.
    2. Artifacts can be combined with current resources to enhance, duplicate, or upgrade them. Iron ore could be duplicated by combining it with AA, creating some interesting logistic systems. Solid fuel could be combined with AA to create rocket fuel, perhaps.
    3. Alien Artifacts can be used in exchange for Research Packs, and will be consumed by whichever version is deficient. The rate at which AA drop from Biter bases is tweaked for balance.
    4. Like fish, AA can be consumed as health.
    5. Consuming AA increases your character's innate abilities. A new character upgrade window is available in the top-right-menu to manage your upgrades and abilities.
    6. Alien Artifacts are now bombs and cause huge damage on impact! Shoot them to detonate their gooey-pink payload. (Maybe instead they hatch into Worms eventually or something if they aren't cleaned up).
    7. Radar can now be enhanced by fueling it with Alien Artifacts. Placing AA in Radar allow it to scan faster, or further, but slowly consumes the AA.
    8. A Pheromone-Spray can now be created (using AA) which, when applied on the ground (somehow) will attract all Biter attacks within a certain radius to that point. The benefit of this being gaining confidence about where to invest your defenses. Instead of building a long wall, you could build a network of super-strong outposts with Pheromone-Spray applied to it (somehow). Biters too far away wouldn't smell the scent, though.
    9. In-game music is now Jukebox-operated. The Player must feed Alien Artifacts into the Factorio Jukebox to keep the music playing.
Ok, maybe that last idea isn't such a great one, but I hope that some of the other ideas might at least suggest that there could be fun ways to utilize Alien Artifacts in Factorio, even in the late-game perhaps.

Regardless, Factorio will still be my favorite game if you go forward with all the changes you're proposing. It's one of my all-time favorite games, and I'm confident in you folks to make it even better. Cheers.

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by nonstickfrypan » Sat Oct 29, 2016 4:08 am

BenSeidel wrote:Am I the only one that finds it disturbing that they are storing currencies as floating points?
I think you might be :) It's a game, not a financial application

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by ShredGuy99 » Sat Oct 29, 2016 4:44 am

One of two things needed to happen with Bug droppings: Decrease the supply or increase the demand. I would have opted for a little bit of both. Getting rid of them completely... Well that solves that debate! In the end, their removal will have little to no effect on how I currently play the game... I find the artifacts irrelevant. Now if they were being made more important in the game... That would be an entirely different story!

Art looks cool and changes to fluids seems to make sense.

Such a great game... Keep up the fantastic work!

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by deepdriller » Sat Oct 29, 2016 5:24 am

I think artifacts should have some use, even if it'S optional. That's because battling the roaches is, in my opinion, an integral part of gameplay. Sure, it gets boring after a while, but that's a solvable problem, right?
What htey should be used for is a different question. Like, do you use them for an alternate method of killing the roaches? Or speed up your factory with them? Heal yourself?

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by gacekssj4 » Sat Oct 29, 2016 6:16 am

Yes, game will now be playable without bitters at all! :)

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Re: Friday Facts #162 - Theme Art Again

Post by roidal » Sat Oct 29, 2016 6:57 am

... For instance, hot fluid is consumed by steams engines to generate power, so they would need to consume 10x as much fluid, yet only generate the same amount of power.
How was this done? By reducing the energy stored in 1 unit water (per degree)?

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