Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

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unobtanium
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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by unobtanium » Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:43 pm

I still dont understand why we are not having a file explorer for the blueprints and collapsible/unfoldable blueprint books instead of this weird row-by-row grind. Stuff shifts around constantly in that it is annoying. In a list it would be between two specific items and if I scroll past them I know where I am in the list and know where to stop. Also: opening a blueprint book to get a specific blueprint requires me to leave the view of all the other blueprints and I have to click on a return button to get back to the overall grid menu. The grid is just hideous compared to a simple list with collapsible/unfoldable entries. A list would also allow you to display text information (like the name of the blueprint) next to the blueprint icon instead of just the icons. Furthermore, you would also have space for all the edit/delete/ect buttons right in the list as well (like under the name)(they could also appear once you hover over an entry in the list in order to not clutter the list with buttons). There are so many opportunities to using such a list, yet here we are with this complicated UI. Not sure where this UI choice even comes from (maybe you want to create a specific feeling when using blueprints), but I feel like when you are reworking the whole system now, then you should rethink that specific aspect as well.
Last edited by unobtanium on Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Oktokolo » Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:54 pm

Nice to finally read a sane aproach to the blueprint topic. Make it so. ;)

I also like the option to disable the crippled discussion board "feature" in the mod portal, but would also like to completely get rid of the entire discussion tab.
Post in the mod portal discussion forum about that

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by HalfPastZulu » Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:57 pm

Option Zero isn't perfect !
I don't think there is a single solution that will make everyone happy.

But its definitely the best option presented so far.

I could live with this option very happily ! :-)

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by ikarikeiji » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:11 pm

Just want to say I'm loving this proposal!

This should really make blueprints much easier to work with, and I'd really like to see the action bar in the game too.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Tcheko » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:24 pm

One feature I'd really love is dropping a blueprint in the request items in inventory. Dropping the blueprint would simply request whatever is required for building with construction bots and personal roboports.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by TigBits » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:30 pm

So, can we still get the persistent action bar from proposal 4? It's really the only thing I actually cared about from FFF #249.

Also, being able to put deconstruction planners into blueprint books would be great.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Duglz » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:33 pm

unobtanium wrote:I still dont understand why we are not having a file explorer for the blueprints and collapsible/unfoldable blueprint books instead of this weird row-by-row grind. Stuff shifts around constantly in that it is annoying. In a list it would be between two specific items and if I scroll past them I know where I am in the list and know where to stop. Also: opening a blueprint book to get a specific blueprint requires me to leave the view of all the other blueprints and I have to click on a return button to get back to the overall grid menu. The grid is just hideous compared to a simple list with collapsible/unfoldable entries. A list would also allow you to display text information (like the name of the blueprint) next to the blueprint icon instead of just the icons. Furthermore, you would also have space for all the edit/delete/ect buttons right in the list as well (like under the name)(they could also appear once you hover over an entry in the list in order to not clutter the list with buttons). There are so many opportunities to using such a list, yet here we are with this complicated UI. Not sure where this UI choice even comes from (maybe you want to create a specific feeling when using blueprints), but I feel like when you are reworking the whole system now, then you should rethink that specific aspect as well.

I agree with this 100% as someone who plays this game mostly with blueprints it's always felt cumbersome to keep everything organized and moving them across saves. Being able to hover over a BP or tags/sorting or a file explorer style feels like the best option.
/r/FactorioBluePrints Mod

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by wolletd » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:35 pm

unobtanium wrote:I still dont understand why we are not having a file explorer for the blueprints and collapsible/unfoldable blueprint books instead of this weird row-by-row grind. Stuff shifts around constantly in that it is annoying. In a list it would be between two specific items and if I scroll past them I know where I am in the list and know where to stop. Also: opening a blueprint book to get a specific blueprint requires me to leave the view of all the other blueprints and I have to click on a return button to get back to the overall grid menu. The grid is just hideous compared to a simple list with collapsible/unfoldable entries. A list would also allow you to display text information (like the name of the blueprint) next to the blueprint icon instead of just the icons. Furthermore, you would also have space for all the edit/delete/ect buttons right in the list as well (like under the name)(they could also appear once you hover over an entry in the list in order to not clutter the list with buttons). There are so many opportunities to using such a list, yet here we are with this complicated UI. Not sure where this UI choice even comes from (maybe you want to create a specific feeling when using blueprints), but I feel like when you are reworking the whole system now, then you should rethink that specific aspect as well.
I would imagine multiple view options to choose from in the library, including a tree view of blueprint books. Much like file explorers have.
Also, I don't see a weird, self-expanding, manual placement grid. We could just have a scrollbar and sort options. Including books as folders, should be fine.
That solves the "transfer everything and its unsorted" issue as well.

When you think about it, we could have this view option and sort stuff maybe in more inventories, not just the blueprint library.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Whackjob » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:36 pm

Cooldude2606 wrote:
The blueprint library button will be disabled until bots are researched
In my opinion this is a great idea but will this apply to the copy paste feature as having that before bots would still be nice and to help you copy what you have already build or help to plan your base. Personally I find it more fun to use blueprints to copy what you have already build so once there is the copy and paste feature I may never need anything but a decon-planer. Also to note is that it got very boring for me and some others I know as every map we did would always have the same blueprints, limiting it to copy what is already present on the map will bring back some creativity for multiplayer builds.

I like the idea of not being able to construct with robots right away.

I imagine this could be solved fairly easily. Enable the copy paste feature and allow people to build ghost factories as we can now, but to allow robots to builf it, you could be required to have a communication device in your armor. I imagine an item like radar+red circuits+blue circuits, and you need that to have construction robots fill out the blueprint. You could even make a "reverse" deconstructplanner that you can use to select the area you want your robots to construct. Click and drag to select the area. As for priority what to build first and last, use the mouse movement to decide. If you click and drag from left to to the right and down, the robots will build from left to right, followed by the next line in the grid, I that makes sense. Start from right to left going upwards, robots Will fill out the blueprint starting from right to left and work upwards. Obviously if some robots have to go far to get items those items won't be placed first, but it it would enable laying down a big blueprint and build it in sections. There would still be a priority which I imagine would be super nice.

Besides that, big thanks to the development team for listening to ideas and suggestions!

Also to the community for being a bunch of awesome people.

Whackjob

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Oktokolo » Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:50 pm

wolletd wrote:Also, I don't see a weird, self-expanding, manual placement grid.
The user-filled 2D grid is well-suited for displaying small to medium amounts of items (that is why the inventory grid is such a common thing in gaming). For Bklueprint(books) it is important to be able to place them manually though. I would place mine in clusters (keeping the upper left free for incomming unsorted stuff). That makes remembering their positions easy. I would not need to read the actual names of the books because i would just keep using carefully picked icons.

An additional tree view for the hoarders would be nice too of course. But the 2D grid is best for less than a hundred objects.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Uristqwerty » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:07 pm

I really like the idea of being able to organize things spatially, including leaving blank areas for clarity. To expand on that, though, I think it would be convenient to have named pages in the library as an extra organization option (for example, separating blueprints by mod set). Also, a blueprint name search, with two display modes: Either temporarily sort matches to the top, or grey out non-matches to retain the benefits of spatial memory.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by PacifyerGrey » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:19 pm

Personally I do not see anything good with blueprints staying as items. None. But it is acceptable.

But I absolutely do not like the idea of inventory-like blueprint library.

Library is meant to help you storing and SORTING massive amounts of different items. Plain item heap just fails on sorting part. Manual placement of items is absolutely inconvenient and ultimately fails when you try to sort serious amounts of stuff. You have also mentioned how things can get messy if you accidentally add some items to it.

I never used manual placement of items in personal inventory or chests. I do use autosort which keeps stuff grouped at least. With blueprints it is even worse. You might consider autosorting it alphabetically but it will definitely get inconvenient too soon. It becomes even worse if you want to sort stuff based on several parameters. Usually you can go either tree structure or tag based filters.

I thing the most simple and convenient way to keep it sorted and simple is a tree structure. In this case you can remove the idea of blueprint books replacing it with a link to a folder in your tree and if that folder contains subfolders this can still be linked as a whole subtree. This would be a perfect tool for sharing parts of your library with others both using in-game tools like chat links or using cloud tools for sharing folders reflecting the library in your game folder.
Also tree structure allows having duplicate folder copies (ex books) with the same name under different parent folders which are sorted somehow. And you will ultimately fail this in the case or inventory system.

I do understand that this can be quite complex to implement but the end result would be really nice IMO.

In the zero proposal you will still have dramatically limited tools for organizing your library so I really hope you will think about tree.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by T-A-R » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:26 pm

Thanks for providing us such deep insight in development, here are some thoughts from my own:

TLDR: An conclusion is a bit early. Please add a tree viewer in the library. and dont remove the gallery type of in game blueprint sharing. Pre-bot blueprints have a real value in sandbox-mode.
full
Much love!

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by bman212121 » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:30 pm

unobtanium wrote:I still dont understand why we are not having a file explorer for the blueprints and collapsible/unfoldable blueprint books instead of this weird row-by-row grind. Stuff shifts around constantly in that it is annoying. In a list it would be between two specific items and if I scroll past them I know where I am in the list and know where to stop. Also: opening a blueprint book to get a specific blueprint requires me to leave the view of all the other blueprints and I have to click on a return button to get back to the overall grid menu. The grid is just hideous compared to a simple list with collapsible/unfoldable entries. A list would also allow you to display text information (like the name of the blueprint) next to the blueprint icon instead of just the icons. Furthermore, you would also have space for all the edit/delete/ect buttons right in the list as well (like under the name)(they could also appear once you hover over an entry in the list in order to not clutter the list with buttons). There are so many opportunities to using such a list, yet here we are with this complicated UI. Not sure where this UI choice even comes from (maybe you want to create a specific feeling when using blueprints), but I feel like when you are reworking the whole system now, then you should rethink that specific aspect as well.
So much this. The problem with icons is they don't represent anything consistently. You can't simply use a belt icon and know what it means for a blueprint, because it doensn't have any meaning. When you see a belt icon you know that it's a belt, but that doesn't tell you that particular blueprint is a specific type of belt setup you created. I can write "4 way balancer", and just about anyone who saw my BP would understand what it is. The grid is generally useless to me to even worry about organizing it, because I simply can't remember combinations of symbols and how to translate that into something useful. Was this train track, train stop, chest icon BP the one that loads stuff on the train, or was is the train track, train stop, inserter BP? Then hand that to someone else and it will be completely useless information to them, and they'll have to study the BP to understand what it is and what it's for.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Tev » Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:59 pm

Proposal zero sounds like much better and thought through solution! Especially with regards to the library.

I would maybe add different "sheets" (think excel) to the library for organizational purposes, but that might complicate things.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by bman212121 » Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:06 pm

T-A-R wrote:Thanks for providing us such deep insight in development, here are some thoughts from my own:

TLDR: An conclusion is a bit early. Please add a tree viewer in the library. and dont remove the gallery type of in game blueprint sharing. Pre-bot blueprints have a real value in sandbox-mode.

Much love!
I do have to agree with that. I do actually use blueprint long before I have robots to build things. I'm not importing blueprints, I'm making them in game, by hand and then using those ghosts to make it easier to figure out placement of items. I can understand wanting to shield a new player from them to help make progression more linear for them, but it also has that side affect where the progression becomes more linear for everyone. Once again it's going to come down to personal taste whether or not you want to use them, but I definitely wouldn't want to be forced into that decision than be able to make it on my own.

Having blueprint behind say a red pot unlock would actually be good for this though. That would hide it from view until you researched it. So anyone who researches it knows that something new should appear, and any who hasn't won't see it. If the blueprints are still on the "B" button be default, the game should either open up the menu and have a big text box on it that states, "Do blueprint research to unlock this" or have that message come up when they press the button. I prefer the menu still comes up but it would have some large text across it letting you know you need to do something to enable it. That's a lot better than simply disabling that button combination until the research as done, as that will just make things more confusing. "IE, the controls screen says "B" should do something, but I pressed it 50 times and nothing happened." I can see that becoming a very common point of confusion for new players, and even experienced players are going to be thrown off remembering they have to unlock something to activate it.


I do like blueprints as items, but really they are still like pseudo items. It would be cool if we did get a list/tree view, but obviously that means that normal chests wouldn't work well for that. The obvious answer is we just need blueprint chests. A chest that is functionally the same as the blueprint library that your player has, but it's map specific. That would still let players handle their own sharing, and choose whether or not they want to make their blueprints available on a map. But it also means that maps can store blueprints still, you could add mods later that controlled access to blueprint chests or link certain chests together so they contain the same items. PvP could really benefit from things like that because it still provides a common area for teammates to share items, but they don't have to worry about another team just cruising through a player's library that contains all of a teams BPs. You could make it so that a team would have to protect their BPs if they are in a blueprint chest, and another team would be able to steal blueprints, destroy them, place fake blueprints into another teams chest to mess them up, etc etc.

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by DarkMatterMatt » Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:33 pm

+1 to the Reddit idea (having a file explorer view without items)

https://www.reddit.com/r/factorio/comme ... blueprint/

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by sinsiliux » Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:40 pm

Proposal zero is acceptable.

However https://www.reddit.com/r/factorio/comme ... blueprint/ is just so much better!

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by ratchetfreak » Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:59 pm

At the very least allow us to create a blueprint directly from a quick copy on the clipboard

Also a search bar in the library wouldn't go amiss

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Re: Friday Facts #250 - Dead end conclusion

Post by Limdi » Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:24 pm

What about categorization based on
- starter packs: vanilla, modListX, modListY
- fun collections
- tryout collections
- Major category: power, production, mining, lights, sounds
- special collections with their own categorization
- Blueprint Iterations&Variants where both are still needed due to differing rail, bus layout which are not compatible but must interface with other blueprints.

I say the ListOfDoom is not enough. Well, not for me anyway. But who asks me... .

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