Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

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Mike5000
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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Mike5000 »

With different difficulties, different entities, different costs, different restrictions, different escalations and a magical assistant ... this is a tutorial/demo for a different game.

A different game which I would never have bought.

Frankly I don't like anything about this new tutorial/demo, although I can see why parts of it might appeal to deathworld aficionados.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Ranakastrasz »

Mike5000 wrote:
Fri Mar 01, 2019 8:39 pm
With different difficulties, different entities, different costs, different restrictions, different escalations and a magical assistant ... this is a tutorial/demo for a different game.

A different game which I would never have bought.

Frankly I don't like anything about this new tutorial/demo, although I can see why parts of it might appeal to deathworld aficionados.
That seems.... A bit harsh.
Difficulty, yes.
Entities, kinda, but only for the first step as an "Ignore power for now" and "Inserters are apperently too complicated even though you already use them to unload furnaces".
Costs, yes.
Restrictions, Dear god no, why no splitters or underground belts.
Escalations. What?
Magical Assistant, Die in a fire. Seriously, why does anybody think helpers like that are a good idea. People hate Navi, Clippy, Cortana, and the Guide. Why would this frikkin thing be any different?
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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Killcreek2 »

Nice write-up of the design thoughts behind the introduction not-tutorial, thank you for yet another excellent FFF.

Though I am rather surprised and concerned that the biter threat is going to be worse than in the old "First Steps" campaign.
They were the #1 reason I quit the 0.13 tutorial in disgust as a new player. (I almost gave up on Factorio due to them!) But thankfully received some great advice: "Learn the game in freeplay with peaceful mode enabled instead of the campaign" ~ this was 100x better environment to learn in, & much more fun than the First Steps campaign.

So I'm looking forward to see how you address this flaw, to include non-combat-orientated new players into this introduction campaign, rather than potentially discourage them, as in the past. (I know you can delay competing the mission objectives, but that is counter-intuitive.)

0.17 is looking sweet, keep up the good work!


Darkhogg wrote:
Fri Mar 01, 2019 6:57 pm
Even the developers misquote "the factory grows", there is no hope.
Yeah, reading that in the FFF made me wince with mild disappointment. The Factory Grows (is the original review that started it). :roll:
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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by humblegar »

I love the new ideas, and that you guys try to evolve the combat part of the game.

Just be open about new players being diverse. Guessing what they will like and how they will play is, well, difficult.

And most of the complaints, including from me, is only about the part in something called "introduction". It would be a bit weird if the hardest part of the game is completing the introduction. There are after all scenarios and settings for these things.

Thank you for another great FF. I will give the introduction another go for sure, but now to my rail world 8-)

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Selvek »

Just gotta say I'm super excited to give the intro campaign a try and finally need to build the ammo infrastructure I've always been disappointed to not need :lol:

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by bobucles »

My task for the next weeks is go over the massive amount of high quality feedback and start testing some tweaks.
But what am I supposed to do with all my low quality feedback?

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Mike5000 »

bobucles wrote:
Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:47 pm
My task for the next weeks is go over the massive amount of high quality feedback and start testing some tweaks.
But what am I supposed to do with all my low quality feedback?
Upgrade?

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Ranakastrasz »

Mike5000 wrote:
Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:59 pm
bobucles wrote:
Fri Mar 01, 2019 9:47 pm
My task for the next weeks is go over the massive amount of high quality feedback and start testing some tweaks.
But what am I supposed to do with all my low quality feedback?
Upgrade?
Much like burner mining drills, you can't just upgrade low quality feedback, You have to put it in a chest, blow it up, and just build a new, better one.
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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by DaemosDaen »

I would like to mention that it is VERY hard for new players.
Had my wife try it and she not only cussed me out during the last research, she threw something at me when she died.. and again.. and again.
I made her quit after the third try.
She cussed me out as she closed the game.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by 5thHorseman »

I don't understand how the tutorial being harder for experienced players is a good thing. Experienced players are - presumably - playing the game more correctly than brand new players.

Rewarding brand new players for playing the game incorrectly seems a bad thing, no?

(And no I'm not saying there's only one correct way to play Factorio. I'm saying that there are things veterans all do because those things are better, and teaching new players to not do those things seems wrong).

Disclaimer, I've not played the tutorial. From all the feedback I've read here I don't really want to.
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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Lithane »

To anyone saying the biters are too hard, I killed all the biter bases with my pistol, wood chests, and stone furnaces...

And for the final bit I just setup all my iron to be made into ammo, it really wasn't hard to setup 4 turrets with 200 ammo each next to where the biters spawned.

And how did he get over 9000 biter kills, I only had 3000 lol.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Drury »

The inverse spawning of enemies towards the end of a timer is similar to a couple of silly games I've made. And just like with those games, people are now being really sour over the fact that they're having their victories snagged away in the last couple of moments :lol:

I find that all tends to be forgiven if you throw them a bone juuuust mere moments before things get really insane. Just before the last sliver of escalation, give them a really powerful weapon that can obliterate enemies as fast as they come. It'll feel like a reward for the mere accomplishment of making it just far enough to get it, and it will help them forget about the salt from their failed attempts.
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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by bluerock »

Spoilers ahead: I have over 1000 hours in factorio and enjoyed the new player experience. I played the new player experience before reading the FFF to avoid spoilers. All I knew was that some experienced players were having a hard time with bit biter waves at the end. So I suspected that it scaled with pollution (due to building up the base too much or overproducing items). Was right. I only mined as much resources and built as many smelters as I needed. I kept chests limited and slowly built up turrets, ammo supply and built double vertical walls on both sides. Most of the time I limited bullets to about 50-60 rounds in each turret in order to maximize firing rate with low bullet inventory over as many turrets as possible. It was tempting to build a lot of green circuits, but only very little are needed to meet the production goal and it can be shut off as soon as the goal is met. Some walls got damaged temporarily and had some temporary ammo outages in some turrets, but was able to get through without any walls or turrets getting destroyed.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Aardwolf »

I had the game hang (happened shortly after setting up a chemical process building, when trying to kill its process steam too got killed). Does it still create a crash report in that case, or how can you debug hangs?

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by CDarklock »

bluerock wrote:
Sat Mar 02, 2019 1:07 am
I only mined as much resources and built as many smelters as I needed. I kept chests limited and slowly built up turrets, ammo supply and built double vertical walls on both sides.
This is similar to what I did my first playthrough. How many turrets did you have? I made 12 to start, but upped it to 18 by the end.

My second complete playthrough (sixth playthrough overall, but I cut four of them short bc I wasn't really doing anything interesting) had only one turret and only had 62 biter kills. I wanted to see just how tame I could make it, if I cut way back and did as little polluting as possible.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by bluerock »

CDarklock wrote:
Sat Mar 02, 2019 1:33 am
bluerock wrote:
Sat Mar 02, 2019 1:07 am
I only mined as much resources and built as many smelters as I needed. I kept chests limited and slowly built up turrets, ammo supply and built double vertical walls on both sides.
This is similar to what I did my first playthrough. How many turrets did you have? I made 12 to start, but upped it to 18 by the end.

My second complete playthrough (sixth playthrough overall, but I cut four of them short bc I wasn't really doing anything interesting) had only one turret and only had 62 biter kills. I wanted to see just how tame I could make it, if I cut way back and did as little polluting as possible.
I started with two on each side, later doubled to four on each side and by the end I believe I had vertical line of about 10 turrets on each side equally spaced out. Stayed with hand feeding ammo vs automating ammo feeding.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Faark »

Just played the new tutorial campaign (v0.17.3), am disappointed. Not that it is bad, I just expected more. Some examples:


Short & No Story.
For it to replace New Hope, it is neither long enough yet nor does it have decent story / longer term goals except survival and research. No idea why green research was our goal or pissed off enemies.


It just ends.
I'd expect it to open up into the usual free play on an endless map. This seems like an integral part of factorio and hiding that makes for a ... misleading demo/introduction. Also other games usually incorporate the tutorial into the begging of their game and do not throw you back into the main menu with "and now start the real game". Not sure if all newbies playing on the same seed is undesirable, but sound easy to implement. As for the demo, just not including the remaining tech might be incentive enough to upgrade.


I miss ruins.
Even without text spelling out the obvious was the destroyed rail bases an awesome form of passive story telling and introduction to trains. I understand this is not an option on randomly generated maps, but it is nice for a tutorial level.


I also fell into the "veteran sets up big factory and gets suddenly overrun" trap. It's not a serious problem, since this might not affect the target audience. But it wasn't really enjoyable in the end... felt like I could not do anything to get out of that mess once i realized what's going on. Placed more labs... enough to get the ending screen before they had eaten power & labs. Got the finish screen in time, but the game was practically lost. No time to re-work the base to produce more ammo & strengthen defense (while that seems to be a vital part of factorio). This didn't feel like victory. Even more so since I didn't expected that to be the end.

Since then I replayed that part, but actually prepared a strong defense. Boring. "Prepare a lot" is kind of the opposite of general factorio gameplay, but I guess its hard to avoid with such checkpoint based events. Pollution based scaling of enemies is actually decent way to do this, if players can understand it and / or it would wind up slow enough to react. I'm torn on that issue...


Other stuff of note:
- Those biter hordes spawning from nothing felt kinda cheap. Hope that's just a temporary solution
- I barely used the toolbar. Wonder if new players actually do the work to manually configure them.
- The "evacuation"... like the idea, but hardly felt like there was a threat. Better AI would be nice, maybe shoo'ing away the player.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Xuhybrid »

For someone like me who has beaten the game and played many, many hours. The biters are too hard. It's 30 biters every 5-10 seconds on both sides at the same time. That's WITH walls which i know how to build, which the game doesn't even mention. If you think a very experienced player should be failing in the tutorial campaign, you're deluded.

Moving onto the design, it's actually quite good with a few exceptions. It asks you to build a stone furnace without telling you how to mine stone. It gives you resources you won't need for 5-10 minutes. It deleted my iron mining setup to build it's own.
Last edited by Xuhybrid on Sat Mar 02, 2019 9:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Selvek »

Campaign thoughts:

1) I don't like the "gather some of your equipment and escape east". I wound up picking up my whole base at that point (I wasn't sure if I would keep my inventory or not), and I'm really glad I did... it would have been really unfortunate not to. There's probably a way to streamline this so you don't have to guess whether you get rewarded for spending the time to pick everything up.

2) I think underground belts, or at least long handed inserters, should be unlocked near the end of the campaign. Aside from the fact that it's just limiting in terms of how you can effectively lay out smelting, I wouldn't want new players to get the impression that the game will continue with just having to route more and more, long awkward belts around your base.

3) Maybe a permanent autosave when you move to the new area? After I beat the campaign, I wanted to give the survival section another go to see if I could do it better. But alas, I would have had to go back through the (boring) tutorial section, so it'll have to wait until I'm willing to play through that again.

4) Related - there is a level selection menu inside the campaign... with only one level ("arrival")... I was hoping a second level to start at the "East" area might show up there, but no such luck.

5) I'm not sure I believe you when you say "it's not so hard for new players, it's hard for veteran players..." But then, I'm a veteran, so maybe I've fallen victim to the curse. I suspect this will be hard for veterans and even harder for new players. But, we shall see.

6) I think there were a couple of useful tricks, such as picking up and dropping items on belts, that could be mentioned. Also, there's no indication that biters respond to pollution, no mention that maybe electric drills have a lower biter impact than burner ones... I don't know if you intend that idea to get across or not.

7) Very early, you can hand craft transport belts (and the gears that go in to them). Then, as soon as you automate gears, you can no longer hand craft them. There's no warning about this... you could craft transport belts, and now you cant. Which has a lot of potential to be confusing.

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Re: Friday Facts #284 - 0.17 experimental

Post by Lonami »

Xuhybrid wrote:
Sat Mar 02, 2019 7:59 am
[...] If you think a very experienced player should be failing in the tutorial campaign, you're a fuckin moron.
I think you went a bit overboard there :roll:. It's only a experimental release, prone to plenty of tweaks still. It's good to get feedback of people liking it and people that don't, but there's no need to get like that ;). I haven't played it yet but I'm pretty sure they will balance it or find another way to make the players think "oh, I need to produce more" instead of "oh, I need to play a tower defense".

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