Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Regular reports on Factorio development.
conn11
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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by conn11 »

Antaios wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 3:09 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 2:18 pm
I didn’t get the impression (modifying blue science) from your post, the question was more of a rhetorical nature.
This is more of something I posted later, and is moreseo a response dev posts on singular specific things they wished to address.
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 2:18 pm
I personally would have preferred some early cracking too, but then again to really create a sufficient oil set up for all products requires the cucuit network, probably the most complex aspect of the game (although fluid balancing doesn’t really require any too elaborate networks). I think we could agree, that this is overwhelming for new players. So while definitely not outbursting in joy over new BOP I can understand why the devs ultimately did implement it and will probably stick with it.
This is absolutely untrue, and is the point of my large post, especially the first half. I even went back and added a couple paragraphs I posted later to it which extended this point.
Any idea that oil requires circuitry to be working sufficiently is a case of an experienced player wanting ratios to be the best and wastage/downtime to be minimal, it's perfectionism. It is absolutely possible to run a more than sufficient oil industry without circuitry whatsoever. And as I stated in my first post, the specific claims about what is difficult to understand about oil don't have a particularly solid foundation as they are easily fallible. So I do not agree.
By axiomaticly assuming a new player can easily grasp it. Secondly proposing a no circuit-oil setup firstly with BOP only and no cracking (and even like you've suggested with early cracking) is likely to require high maintenance, especially if the new player has to solve it for the first time. Adding to that ist the complexitcy spike of blue science and the gain of oil intermediates, with uses not quite clear from the beginning, as you have pointed out quite good in your post.

However in the end it's irrelevant how we (personally) are assesing the circumstance.
The devs heard many good arguments (your exellent post included) and it can be safe to assume they tested many variation of BOP and found the now .17.60 BOP to be best suited for the "general playerbase". Is there any chance that this could be the wrong direction? Yeah, sure. But on the other hand it may be not, therfore I mainly advocate to look for possibilities how we, the community (of mainly experienced players) can make suggestuions to ad some of the lost complexity back in be it in oil related products or AOP or more OP solutions, to ultimately achieve a superior system.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Antaios »

conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 3:55 pm
By axiomaticly assuming a new player can easily grasp it. Secondly proposing a no circuit-oil setup firstly with BOP only and no cracking (and even like you've suggested with early cracking) is likely to require high maintenance, especially if the new player has to solve it for the first time. Adding to that ist the complexitcy spike of blue science and the gain of oil intermediates, with uses not quite clear from the beginning, as you have pointed out quite good in your post.
Assuming what? that the player can understand a recipe in the game? The reasoning follows on from that.

How long has it been since you had a no-circuit oil setup without cracking? (circuits are pointless without cracking anyway)
over 1000 items, over 1000 blue science, or 1500 advanced circuits, or 1000 batteries (that's over 20,000 sulphuric acid), before a tank fills up, without using any heavy or light oil.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by nafira »

I think it could be good to have a little pool like:

First question : Are you good with Basic Oil tech changes ? (only Basic oil recipe)
* Yes
* No, but I have propositions
* No
* I don't know, let's see what happens

Second question : Are you good with recipe changes ? (except Basic Oil, considering you are using Advanced Oil Production everywhere)
* Yes
* No, but I have propositions
* No
* I don't know, let's see what happens

@Koub : is it possible to have that kind of pool instead of posting in an everlasting thread. It has deviated too much already and it's beginning to be pointless.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Yandersen »

TurboJetXII wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 3:45 pm
I think it's great how the developers listen to the community
Hm, I am note sure I understand this particular one. Can you please explain what exactly do you mean?
Image

conn11
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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by conn11 »

Antaios wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 4:45 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 3:55 pm
By axiomaticly assuming a new player can easily grasp it. Secondly proposing a no circuit-oil setup firstly with BOP only and no cracking (and even like you've suggested with early cracking) is likely to require high maintenance, especially if the new player has to solve it for the first time. Adding to that ist the complexitcy spike of blue science and the gain of oil intermediates, with uses not quite clear from the beginning, as you have pointed out quite good in your post.
Assuming what? that the player can understand a recipe in the game? The reasoning follows on from that.

How long has it been since you had a no-circuit oil setup without cracking? (circuits are pointless without cracking anyway)
over 1000 items, over 1000 blue science, or 1500 advanced circuits, or 1000 batteries (that's over 20,000 sulphuric acid), before a tank fills up, without using any heavy or light oil.
Actually quite recently. For my .17 playthrough I've first set up an BOP Setup accumulating as much SF and lubricant as possible fore later usage. Then rushed to AOP and cracking and fine tuned it.
However the question is not if a new player can or can not do it, obviously all who are contributing to the disscussion did. (I doub't by using circuits on their first run) But that a relevant amount of new players are quitting in early to middle game transition. Presuming not all of them are "unfit" to play factorio, what is the best solution to smooth the spike. As you and most users agreed before, not by simplifying blue science. So oil is the best next candidate to go. It is doubtful a more complex solution (early cracking) or just a UI change is to redeem the situation sufficiently. I do basically agree with you that oldBOP was learnable, but apparently not this easy in combination with blue science. So newBOP might actually be the way to go and is the feature the devs are seeing to be currently best suited. Of course not without creating problems on its own. To circumvent those there are options like stated before either to have oldBOP shortly after newBOP available or have more needs for HO and LO in AOP. But of course interpretations might vary.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by FuryoftheStars »

conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
But that a relevant amount of new players are quitting in early to middle game transition. Presuming not all of them are "unfit" to play factorio, what is the best solution to smooth the spike. As you and most users agreed before, not by simplifying blue science. So oil is the best next candidate to go.
Well, I think part of the issue and disagreement stems around was oil the actual problem why they were quitting? Sure, we've seen complaints of people posting why isn't my oil working (which a UI fix can definitely solve), but for all of the ones not posting, is this the issue? Or does it just drag a bit much for them at this point? Maybe it's once they realize they need to establish an outpost for oil that the quit. As someone else was pointing out (I can't even keep the threads straight now :lol: ), could it be trains that are actually tripping them up? We often see posts in here on that, too.... Or maybe they're being overrun by the biters.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by conn11 »

FuryoftheStars wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:50 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
But that a relevant amount of new players are quitting in early to middle game transition. Presuming not all of them are "unfit" to play factorio, what is the best solution to smooth the spike. As you and most users agreed before, not by simplifying blue science. So oil is the best next candidate to go.
Well, I think part of the issue and disagreement stems around was oil the actual problem why they were quitting? Sure, we've seen complaints of people posting why isn't my oil working (which a UI fix can definitely solve), but for all of the ones not posting, is this the issue? Or does it just drag a bit much for them at this point? Maybe it's once they realize they need to establish an outpost for oil that the quit. As someone else was pointing out (I can't even keep the threads straight now :lol: ), could it be trains that are actually tripping them up? We often see posts in here on that, too.... Or maybe they're being overrun by the biters.
Hard to say in the end. But should we no at least give newBOP a fair chance? Maybe it isn't that abhorrent like suspected by so many (me initially included). With .17 stable not far away, a new influx of players will create necessary longterm data. It's EA fore a reason. Afterall I've the greatest trust that the devs will propably make changes if necessary and even revert new oil should it somewho turn out too game changing. ;)

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by nafira »

Trains are by far more complicated to setup in a normal to a big factory. You need to learn chained signal, deadlocks, etc.

If you want to rebuild you train track it will take a lot more than place your tanks elsewhere. Your just need a pump for that...
And no in-game tutorials whatsoever can help you in real map situation.

You need to learn by experience and/or with tutorials.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by FuryoftheStars »

conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:06 pm
It's EA fore a reason.
While I get this, I'm also still a bit conflicted. I paid into EA to support this game because I liked what I saw and the direction it was going at that time. In 0.17, there have been shifts away from that. If it shifts far enough away, can I withdraw my support?

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by conn11 »

FuryoftheStars wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:16 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:06 pm
It's EA fore a reason.
While I get this, I'm also still a bit conflicted. I paid into EA to support this game because I liked what I saw and the direction it was going at that time. In 0.17, there have been shifts away from that. If it shifts far enough away, can I withdraw my support?
and with your initial support you've got how many good hours, days, weeks of gameplay? After all .16 is absolutly playable and will likely be for sometime, if this is more your cup of tea. (Not to mention mods) In my certainly biased personal opinion, I don't see any significant "dumbing down" of the whole game (CL is effectifly made more relevant with the .17.60 BOP), but this is just my take on it. One point I think was communicated quite loadly is a certain resistance from a huge amount of the playerbase against oversimplifications. And it's quite obvious that we aren't filling the spam folder at Wube. This forum is red and discussed upone by the devs. (Of course with no guarantee that this or this favorite solution is picked)

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by meganothing »

FuryoftheStars wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:16 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:06 pm
It's EA fore a reason.
While I get this, I'm also still a bit conflicted. I paid into EA to support this game because I liked what I saw and the direction it was going at that time. In 0.17, there have been shifts away from that. If it shifts far enough away, can I withdraw my support?
Buy only released games or not at all and you never have to ask that question. In the case of Factorio being so bad now that you can't stand it, it would mean you wouldn't have bought it at all. Does that sound like a better world to you?

EA steam rules even advise you to only buy an EA game if you are satisfied with the game as it is at that time. Because it is entirely possible that no further version ever gets released. Did you get Factorio with 0.16? Just pretend the game never got another version released and you got the baseline that steam promised you.

Are you saying you didn't have enough fun with 0.16 for the 25 $/Euro you payed or you would prefer you never had played Factorio at all because you didn't like a later version? Surely not.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by FuryoftheStars »

conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:26 pm
and with your initial support you've got how many good hours, days, weeks of gameplay? After all .16 is absolutly playable and will likely be for sometime, if this is more your cup of tea. (Not to mention mods)
My support was of the development process to release, not for a set amount of time or a set beta version.

I'm the type of person that will go back and reinstall & play old games and have even paid for newer versions that were simply updated to run on newer OS's. I was even considering on paying for a few extra copies to further support and distribute to a few friends, but I'm holding off on that now. A change like this is detrimental to my enjoyment of what I thought I was supporting.

And I realize I'm not the only one supporting it. But I feel like the game was going one way when I bought in, and now it's potentially changing. That hurts a little.
meganothing wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:37 pm
Buy only released games or not at all and you never have to ask that question. In the case of Factorio being so bad now that you can't stand it, it would mean you wouldn't have bought it at all. Does that sound like a better world to you?

EA steam rules even advise you to only buy an EA game if you are satisfied with the game as it is at that time. Because it is entirely possible that no further version ever gets released. Did you get Factorio with 0.16? Just pretend the game never got another version released and you got the baseline that steam promised you.

Are you saying you didn't have enough fun with 0.16 for the 25 $/Euro you payed or you would prefer you never had played Factorio at all because you didn't like a later version? Surely not.
See above. And yes, if it strays too far off the path, I would consider it a waste of my money and wished I had not bought in.

Also,
Because it is entirely possible that no further version ever gets released.
That's obviously not what happened here. And, by staying on an older version, you also lose access to new/updated mods.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Antaios »

conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
Actually quite recently. For my .17 playthrough I've first set up an BOP Setup accumulating as much SF and lubricant as possible fore later usage. Then rushed to AOP and cracking and fine tuned it.
You rushed advanced oil processing and cracking, you've missed my point.
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
So oil is the best next candidate to go. It is doubtful a more complex solution (early cracking) or just a UI change is to redeem the situation sufficiently.
Early cracking is a far simpler 'solution' than the new basic oil processing and all the recipe changes that brings, if you consider not having endlessly-sustainable oil before blue science a problem. And a ui change would actually address the core of what is supposed to be the learning problem
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
I do basically agree with you that oldBOP was learnable, but apparently not this easy in combination with blue science.
I've explained why the fundamentals of the oil system are not complex. The only remaining factor is a breakdown in the effective display of information to the player. The simplest math class can still fail, if the teacher is terrible.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by conn11 »

FuryoftheStars wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:47 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:26 pm
and with your initial support you've got how many good hours, days, weeks of gameplay? After all .16 is absolutly playable and will likely be for sometime, if this is more your cup of tea. (Not to mention mods)
My support was of the development process to release, not for a set amount of time or a set beta version.

I'm the type of person that will go back and reinstall & play old games and have even paid for newer versions that were simply updated to run on newer OS's. I was even considering on paying for a few extra copies to further support and distribute to a few friends, but I'm holding off on that now. A change like this is detrimental to my enjoyment of what I thought I was supporting.

And I realize I'm not the only one supporting it. But I feel like the game was going one way when I bought in, and now it's potentially changing. That hurts a little.
Sure this is understandable, especially if someone is contributing his/hers thoughts to a topic, because feeling strongly about it. But as you said "potentially". Why not let it cool down a bit? In in a few weeks it should be determable with greater clarity if these changes are good or not, or needed just some improvements. And it also at least conceivable that the game as a whole won't go down any subjective wrong road.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by FuryoftheStars »

conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 7:01 pm
Sure this is understandable, especially if someone is contributing his/hers thoughts to a topic, because feeling strongly about it. But as you said "potentially". Why not let it cool down a bit? In in a few weeks it should be determable with greater clarity if these changes are good or not, or needed just some improvements. And it also at least conceivable that the game as a whole won't go down any subjective wrong road.
Well, even if no further changes are done, this stays in for whatever reason and nothing further is done to stray it from the path I felt it was on, it's still a change that affects the game play and will always be a sticking point (mentally).

I dunno. Anyway, at this point I just feel like I'm trying to explain where I'm coming from. *shrug*

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by conn11 »

Antaios wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:55 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
Actually quite recently. For my .17 playthrough I've first set up an BOP Setup accumulating as much SF and lubricant as possible fore later usage. Then rushed to AOP and cracking and fine tuned it.
You rushed advanced oil processing and cracking, you've missed my point.
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
So oil is the best next candidate to go. It is doubtful a more complex solution (early cracking) or just a UI change is to redeem the situation sufficiently.
Early cracking is a far simpler 'solution' than the new basic oil processing and all the recipe changes that brings, if you consider not having endlessly-sustainable oil before blue science a problem. And a ui change would actually address the core of what is supposed to be the learning problem
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm
I do basically agree with you that oldBOP was learnable, but apparently not this easy in combination with blue science.
I've explained why the fundamentals of the oil system are not complex. The only remaining factor is a breakdown in the effective display of information to the player. The simplest math class can still fail, if the teacher is terrible.
well rushed is a little bit of a relative term, but let's not drive too far off topic.
You might absolutly be right, some UI changes and early cracking can solveany hassle with first oil. It actually struck me on the above mentioned playthrough how much easier BOP with cracking would be. But then again neither of us likely qualify as novice player and presumably neither has any good empirical data on actual new player behaivior on a larger scale. Wouldn't it be quite smart from a development standpoint to try out an alternative, more simple approch like newBOP now and .17 stable and still have the chance for UI changes (and tutorials) and if needed whatever alterations in BOP later, e.g. in .18?
Last edited by conn11 on Wed Jul 31, 2019 7:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Tricorius »

conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm

Presuming not all of them are "unfit" to play factorio, what is the best solution to smooth the spike. As you and most users agreed before, not by simplifying blue science. So oil is the best next candidate to go. It is doubtful a more complex solution (early cracking) or just a UI change is to redeem the situation sufficiently. I do basically agree with you that oldBOP was learnable, but apparently not this easy in combination with blue science.
I’m in the crowd that considers blue science itself to be a large part of the barrier. I actually *do* think that blue science should be simplified.

It is currently the largest ramp up in the game (minus the prep of a rocket for space science). The difficulty is currently pretty smooth for red/green/military, a crazy step up for blue, then smooth(ish) again for yellow/purple, then pretty significant for space.

I think it should be closer to a logarithmic progression. And this means some of the complexity in blue should be pushed into yellow/purple (which should be about equal in my point of view).

Alternatively an addition science type could be introduced (since we have an odd number at the moment, I’d kinda like one more to fill out 4 mixed belts, I currently have space all by its lonesome on a half belt). (Yes I know this is more effort than they want to put in during the push to 1.0. But I honestly think an additional science pack and smoothing the progression out overall would be an ideal solution).

Regardless, the blue science recipe I’d prefer to see is plastic, engine (or furnace/smelter—my preference would be steel furnace), and either solid fuel (redundant) or sulfur (more realistic for a chemical reaction, such as waste plastic pyrolysis). This feels like a pretty good (and simplified/reduced-tech) “chemical science” pack.
Last edited by Tricorius on Wed Jul 31, 2019 7:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by BlueTemplar »

FuryoftheStars wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:50 pm
[...] or maybe they're being overrun by the biters. [the actual problem why they were quitting?]
I really hope the devs will be very careful with this :
Early massive biter attack

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by FuryoftheStars »

BlueTemplar wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 7:33 pm
FuryoftheStars wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:50 pm
[...] or maybe they're being overrun by the biters. [the actual problem why they were quitting?]
I really hope the devs will be very careful with this :
Early massive biter attack
Oh, yeah, that brings up a good point, too. Biter nests are still in/super close to your starting area. They haven't fixed that one, yet.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by conn11 »

Tricorius wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 7:28 pm
conn11 wrote:
Wed Jul 31, 2019 5:35 pm

Presuming not all of them are "unfit" to play factorio, what is the best solution to smooth the spike. As you and most users agreed before, not by simplifying blue science. So oil is the best next candidate to go. It is doubtful a more complex solution (early cracking) or just a UI change is to redeem the situation sufficiently. I do basically agree with you that oldBOP was learnable, but apparently not this easy in combination with blue science.
I’m in the crowd that considers blue science itself to be a large part of the barrier. I actually *do* think that blue science should be simplified.

It is currently the largest ramp up in the game (minus the prep of a rocket for space science). The difficulty is currently pretty smooth for red/green/military, a crazy step up for blue, then smooth(ish) again for yellow/purple, then pretty significant for space.

I think it should be closer to a logarithmic progression. And this means some of the complexity in blue should be pushed into yellow/purple (which should be about equal in my point of view).

Alternatively an addition science type could be introduced (since we have an odd number at the moment, I’d kinda like one more to fill out 4 mixed belts, I currently have space all by its lonesome on a half belt). (Yes I know this is more effort than they want to put in during the push to 1.0. But I honestly think an additional science pack and smoothing the progression out overall would be an ideal solution).

Regardless, the blue science recipe I’d prefer to see is plastic, engine (or furnace/smelter—my preference would be steel furnace), and either solid fuel (redundant) or sulfur (more realistic for a chemical reaction, such as waste plastic pyrolysis). This feels like a pretty good (and simplified/reduced-tech) “chemical science” pack.
"most" my bad.
I do find the suggestion of some additional science pack, maybe needed for some more product rich variant of BOP and/or some highly speculatic early construction drones quite intriguing. Actually it's hard to argue against this last half belt :D

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