Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Regular reports on Factorio development.
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Megafish40
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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Megafish40 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 9:40 am

I think that Factorio and Satisfactory will be like TF2 and Overwatch: both are in the same genre, but different enough that one will not "replace" the other. I can easily see myself playing a bit of Factorio one day and Satisfactory the day after.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Luaan » Sat Jun 16, 2018 9:41 am

I don't think Factorio is in much of a danger. The top-down perspective gives many opportunities you just don't get in a first-person game, and building a nice and clean base is much easier in a grid-based system than on "freeform". And yes, I'm pretty worried about the performance too. The lack of procedural generation makes sense, but it's also one of the things that will probably limit the modding community quite a bit weaker than in Factorio - which is a decent part of the popularity of the game.

FortressCraft Evolved on the other hand... if the Satisfactory guys manage to deliver a solid and reliable game, FTC is in serious trouble I think. There's just so many things that make FTC tedious and somewhat painful, and even in the trailer, there seems to be a few hints that Satisfactory is going to avoid that. We'll see :)

For the guys who seem to think that it would be easy to use Factorio's assets in a 3D version of the game... I doubt it. Even when 3D models are used for rendering 2D sprites, the process is quite different for pre-rendering and real-time rendering. Just look at how long it takes to render those 2D sprites. And don't forget that a top-down view is great at limiting how much you have to render at any time - first-person is pretty much the worst. This is especially relevant in games with generated and/or modifiable terrain - most 3D first-person games use a lot of design tricks to limit how much of the world is visible at any time (not to mention how hard it can be to hide the "loading" of the terrain), which isn't really possible if you allow arbitrary terrain modification. This is even worse in multiplayer. And then there's how incredibly hard it is to make sure the game runs well on all the different machines - look at any studio that transitioned from 2D to 3D, and enjoy the horror stories. Did you really ever think "this game would be way better in 3D"? Whenever I think about making a Factorio-like game in 3D, it includes changing a whole lot of the game mechanics, because they just don't work well using a different perspective and especially abandoning the grid-based system (and not abandoning the grid-based system is rather annoying in a 3D game).

Keeping the roughly top-down perspective would help avoid many of those issues, but there's still a lot of effort on managing things like lighting, terrain transitions, detailed things like trees or grass, even things as stupid as path finding - we're really good at 2D path finding nowadays, but 3D path finding still sucks horribly (and usually is done with massive help from map designers that pretty much tell the AI which way to go; though this is of course not a big deal if "Factorio 3D" stays a fully grid-based 2D game, just with 3D rendering). While also making it harder to mod the game. There are some ways in how it could improve the performance of the game, but in practice, it will much more likely make it significantly worse - and even worse, it might improve it on some computers while making it it worse on others. In the end, the question is - would it improve the game? And I'm pretty sure the answer is "not at all", just like with many other games that transitioned from 2D to 3D. There are some benefits you can get with things like zooming or animation, but those aren't really too useful for a game like Factorio (it might cut down a bit on the memory needs especially in "high-res", maaaybe).

3D-accelerated games are hard. Even today.
There's nothing more satisfying than building a cool mountain/ocean/jungle base.
Indeed, finding your way to use the terrain in your building is one of the very nice things about Minecraft. Building absurdly complicated constructions just for the aesthetics, bridges that span ravines, homes built into the faces of mountains, railroads that follow the contours of the terrain... It's a thing sorely lacking in most Minecraft-like games, and even very different sandbox 3D games like e.g. Ark. Sadly, it seems that most people think that the way to get better graphics than Minecraft is just by increasing the texture resolution. It seems to be surprisingly hard to build a game that makes you love playing with the terrain, and yet even just mods for Minecraft make this much more awesome (RTG in particular produces gorgeous terrains). I suspect this is also going to be the case with Satisfactory, though - at least it really seems that way when you look at the trailer and the screenshots they post.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by POPISowyNumer » Sat Jun 16, 2018 9:47 am

Satisfactory has no chance of being fugtorio killer for one simple reason

NO MODS

I mean, wth dudes, half the appeal of factorio is that you potentially can end up controlling a catgirl building massive candy and soda pops factory.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by vanatteveldt » Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:03 am

Jovus wrote:
psihius wrote:Satisfactiory overshadowing Factorio? Gimme a break :)
One of Satisfactory's weaknesses I haven't yet seen discussed:

Factorio's landscape is serviceable, but no great beauty. It gets the job done by breaking up the background of the world a bit and changing some of the (more implicit) challenges faced by the player, but if we're honest it's aesthetically nondescript at best, and the inhabitants are downright ugly and annoying.

Meanwhile, Satisfactory's landscape is beautiful, judging by the trailer. And at least some of its inhabitants look cute and sympathetic.

Unfortunately for Satisfactory, this means that were I to start a game, I'd feel rather reticent to ruin it all by building a factory. Whereas in Factorio I really don't care and just want to get the factory running ASAP. And when I do get the factory running in Satisfactory, by the mid-game (or whenever you're supposed to get those cool-looking vehicles) I'd be thinking to myself, "This is fun and all, but it just used to be so much prettier."
From the trailer it looks like an absolutely unplayable eye-candy game to me. Factorio is about logistics, planning and design, not about walking around and interacting with the world through some sort of 3D nonsense.

(and now get off my lawn ;-) )

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by eradicator » Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:05 am

Satisfactory FAQ wrote:Will there be mod support?

This is something we have seriously considered but are instead focusing on getting the game finished and running smoothly. Mod support may be added in the future.
Wth? I'm sure this wasn't there when i read the FAQ for the first time. And if the game wasn't engineered from the start with mods in mind then why even bother. Meh. I guess it'll be good for one playthrough and then we're all back to factorio.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Volley » Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:18 am

Regarding Satisfactory:

Lets for a moment forget about all the optimisations we could read in FFF over the last years that added up to Factorio becoming as capable as it is now, able to simulate huge bases.
Lets for a moment put aside multiplayer, linux support, modding, etc ...
Lets for a moment assume it would be technically possible to do a Game like Factorio, but with graphics like Satisfactory.
Now think about what you do most of the time when you play Factorio, the essence of why you play it.

Could you actually do that in 3D?

If Factorio would be in 3D, i probably would be like "ok, it's nice to watch, but i hope i can build in the map view, because doing it in 3D sucks!"

I have no idea if Satisfactory will be successful, i can't even tell if i will like it.
But i'm quite sure that it will be a totally different type of game where the player has a totally different motivation for playing it.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by luc » Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:53 am

I don't understand the GOG thing. They were selling your game cheap, so someone bought a bunch of keys and re-sold them at $20 or something right? I can understand the ethical issues with that, but why were the keys not working? They were legitimately purchased from GOG right?
rbos wrote:Satisfactory is not planning a Linux port, so it's an automatic 'no' for me.
Oh, thanks for mentioning that. Now I know there's nothing to look forward to :(

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Neemys » Sat Jun 16, 2018 11:24 am

luc wrote:I don't understand the GOG thing. They were selling your game cheap, so someone bought a bunch of keys and re-sold them at $20 or something right? I can understand the ethical issues with that, but why were the keys not working? They were legitimately purchased from GOG right?
rbos wrote:Satisfactory is not planning a Linux port, so it's an automatic 'no' for me.
Oh, thanks for mentioning that. Now I know there's nothing to look forward to :(
They were gog key, so they can't use it to get a steam key.
Last edited by Neemys on Sat Jun 16, 2018 11:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
Want more space restriction ? Or maybe you want to be forced to use train for other thing than ore and oil ? Try Building Platform Mod !

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Klonan » Sat Jun 16, 2018 11:34 am

luc wrote:I don't understand the GOG thing. They were selling your game cheap, so someone bought a bunch of keys and re-sold them at $20 or something right? I can understand the ethical issues with that, but why were the keys not working? They were legitimately purchased from GOG right?
The keys will give you a full website membership for the mod portal, MP etc.

But they will not be able to redeem a Steam key like if you buy directly on our website

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Ghoulish » Sat Jun 16, 2018 11:46 am

The trailer for satisfactory is well done (just like Factorio's) It certainly peaks your interest, will be intriguing to see how things pan out. I do wonder how smooth it'll play however, especially when the factory starts to grow, and as for the whole multiplayer thing.. It seems every game has to be multiplayer these days. At least CD Projekt Red is out there! I'm more stoked for CyberPunk 2077 than I am for satisfactory by a considerable margin because I already have Factorio, and that benchmark is set pretty dam high indeed, satisfactory has a very long way to climb, we'll see, time will tell.

* Gets out crystal ball * Can't wait for next weeks Friday Facts where you'll discuss the changes to the Electric Info screen in 0.17!

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Meddleman » Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:18 pm

Wow, that trailer for Satisfactory is pretty nice. Kudos to Wube for highlighting it despite it becoming a potential competitor; I might have never come across it otherwise.
Reminds me a little of ARK: Survival with a little NMS thrown in. Well, everything NMS tried to pack into the base-building aspect but way too late.

Wube may actually benefit, as it set the benchmark for this kind of game. Other developers know they will know have to match and aim higher if they want to make something worth a damn in this genre. Also its nice to be able to play the same genre, but a different game to give ones head a break from either after playing several hours straight. People will buy Factorio looking for a different experience than Satisfactory, and vice versa.

Good thing the price-exploit was picked up in its infancy, things could have gone south real quick with customer dissatisfaction regarding resold keys becoming a hassle for both sides to deal with.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by pleegwat » Sat Jun 16, 2018 1:07 pm

Quite apart from whether satisfactory could simulate and render a megabase, I am unsure on whether it offers the tools to build one. If there are no blueprints, or terrain is too irregular to deploy them at scale, building a megabase will get quite impractical.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by quaker04 » Sat Jun 16, 2018 1:37 pm

I've found the Satisfactory trailer too "eye candy" to say that it would overshadow Factorio, but as other said, designing a game in 3D will get the attention because the graphics but also the challenge to make something really good. And in my opinion the trailer immediately reminded me No Man Sky, which, you know, is not a really good reference at all.

But I do think that Factorio could use this announcement to improve the game. Not sure if that's the intention of this game or at least without a DLC, but interplanetary bases and a good way to manage between them would add a level so big to the game that replayability would be better yet.

Factorio showed me a way to thing of games without too much graphics. Factorio can be simple to run in my laptop while I'm travelling and still be complicated because the game needs you to solve logistics and stuff. Still, I think that the rocket & bitters, as the "challenge" of the game, is really superficial and it's not what makes me want to play the game. I think there is room for improvement on the "goal" of the game, but I'm not sure what is it yet, too.

Despite the results of Satisfactory release, you guys should know that Factorio is a hell of a game. Every one of you that works with Factorio should be really proud.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by h4rr0d » Sat Jun 16, 2018 2:40 pm

Ok, I have to ask. Since you are located in the Czech republic, which is unarguably one of the poorest countries of the EU, why on earth is it possible that you are selling the game on GOG for ~$8.30, but for 24.29EUR in the Czech republic. I was really rooting for you. But after disclosing this information, I'm not sure what to think anymore.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Loewchen » Sat Jun 16, 2018 3:25 pm

h4rr0d wrote:Ok, I have to ask. Since you are located in the Czech republic, which is unarguably one of the poorest countries of the EU, why on earth is it possible that you are selling the game on GOG for ~$8.30, but for 24.29EUR in the Czech republic. I was really rooting for you. But after disclosing this information, I'm not sure what to think anymore.
$8.30 is not the GOG price, it is the Russian equivalent of $30. How would you define the price, CZK is not a steam currency and EUR prices are global by law?

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Masterfox » Sat Jun 16, 2018 3:31 pm

h4rr0d wrote:Ok, I have to ask. Since you are located in the Czech republic, which is unarguably one of the poorest countries of the EU, why on earth is it possible that you are selling the game on GOG for ~$8.30, but for 24.29EUR in the Czech republic. I was really rooting for you. But after disclosing this information, I'm not sure what to think anymore.
Well, prices are defined per currency and Europe is on average one of the wealthiest regions in the world, so if you are in a poor region of the Eurozone, bad luck. If you want to see more prices throughout the world: https://steamdb.info/app/427520/ has the all.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by h4rr0d » Sat Jun 16, 2018 3:46 pm

Loewchen wrote:
h4rr0d wrote:Ok, I have to ask. Since you are located in the Czech republic, which is unarguably one of the poorest countries of the EU, why on earth is it possible that you are selling the game on GOG for ~$8.30, but for 24.29EUR in the Czech republic. I was really rooting for you. But after disclosing this information, I'm not sure what to think anymore.
$8.30 is not the GOG price, it is the Russian equivalent of $30. How would you define the price, CZK is not a steam currency and EUR prices are global by law?
Nope, Czech republic uses its own currency (CZK), at the rate of about 26CZK for 1 EUR, with the average (not median) salary being about 27000 CZK. The situation here is kinda fked up if you ask me. Germany (our west neighbor) has 3-4 times the average salary. The food prices in supermakets there are kinda the same (even cheaper in Germany on occasion), but the services and overall living costs are way lover over here (figures). Yet, somehow we are classified as the 'western world', so when it comes to buying games and stuff, we are paying the full '1st world' price, while the salaries for the common man are closer to the Russian federation kind of deal... I understand Russia is it's own place, but being stationed in the Czech republic, and complaining about (or even mentioning) people abusing your non-global pricing policy, when people from the country you are developing from have to pay relatively about 3 times as much for the game as the rest of the developed world just doesn't feel right.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by BLuehasia » Sat Jun 16, 2018 4:53 pm

I am excited for Satisfactory, but with all 3d rendered games it can be taxing on the pc and massive bases can lag the system.

i think factorio will have that beat since the game doesnt have to render a 3d engine also.

i just can not see megabases in Satisfactory like we can build in factorio

and especially with multiplayer. i know many games have issues render non player positions in real time to every player on the server i just cant see it done well when building big bases with all those items moving about for a server and it not choking in FPS drops

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by Ripshaft » Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:09 pm

Factorio is already well established in the list of games that will never fail to be relevant and enjoyable - it stands on its own merits, it's not a 'mere trendsetter' or 'fad type thing' in the same way Metroid or Diablo wasn't.

I think the more amazing thing is that most people seem to understand that intuitively. I am wishing Satisfactory all the best and hope it is a great success as well, but it won't diminish Factorio's legacy in the slightest - especially since Factorio continues to improve, expand and gain awesomeness =p

I had commented earlier on their trailer that the greatest accomplishment of Factorio is the invisible one - the coding is phenomenal - it is ludicrously difficult to have a large scale simulation running with undetectable loss of fidelity. I think this will be a bar that will be extremely challenging for Satisfactory to overcome, but I wish them the best in their efforts.

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Re: Friday Facts #247 - Pricing and its exploits

Post by RamsesIV. » Sat Jun 16, 2018 10:04 pm

h4rr0d wrote:
Loewchen wrote:
h4rr0d wrote:
Ok, I have to ask. Since you are located in the Czech republic, which is unarguably one of the poorest countries of the EU, why on earth is it possible that you are selling the game on GOG for ~$8.30, but for 24.29EUR in the Czech republic. I was really rooting for you. But after disclosing this information, I'm not sure what to think anymore.

$8.30 is not the GOG price, it is the Russian equivalent of $30. How would you define the price, CZK is not a steam currency and EUR prices are global by law?


Nope, Czech republic uses its own currency (CZK), at the rate of about 26CZK for 1 EUR, with the average (not median) salary being about 27000 CZK. The situation here is kinda fked up if you ask me. Germany (our west neighbor) has 3-4 times the average salary. The food prices in supermakets there are kinda the same (even cheaper in Germany on occasion), but the services and overall living costs are way lover over here (figures). Yet, somehow we are classified as the 'western world', so when it comes to buying games and stuff, we are paying the full '1st world' price, while the salaries for the common man are closer to the Russian federation kind of deal... I understand Russia is it's own place, but being stationed in the Czech republic, and complaining about (or even mentioning) people abusing your non-global pricing policy, when people from the country you are developing from have to pay relatively about 3 times as much for the game as the rest of the developed world just doesn't feel right.
Germany has several more time higher GDP. Why would you set up prices based up on average salary? Things in supermarkets costs about the same because they are produced by the same manufacturers. They cant sell things that much cheaper in poorer countries.

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