Qilili wrote: ↑
Sun Mar 19, 2023 1:42 pm
Sorry for mass-quoting, just want to make clear where I am coming from
no problem it makes it easier to adress each point
Handcrafting is slow
No, handcrafting is not slow, it is very fast.
Well this is subjective, it is fast enough that the game is not punishing you too hard if you don't automate, it is still possible to win the game and handcraft many things and sometimes it is even necessary, i've read that for deathworld, to avoid the pollution from machines in the very early game.
I just find it slow. And often time i go for an intermediate solution when i play ,where i use temporary assembly or also temporary furnaces for steel. It would be machines not connected to belt, but only hand-fed directly or using a manually refilled buffer chest. This in my mind to multiply my crafting speed before things are properly automated.
Even in late game, i can do that with assembly lvl 3 and speed modules,placed down a temporary one, hand fed, for things like the silo or nuclear reactors or the armor, things you would rarely automate if not just for the sake of automating everything
you can forgot something
You handcraft when you forgot something.
If you run out of mats, which happens, you just go to pick them up, you can have several places, cause they are used everywhere. It is arguable faster then go to the mall.
I have never had any problem with power poles and inserters. Something I run out of mats, it is no different than runing of them and go to the mall. When I don't have inserters: open crafting screen, right click several time, done.
It is possible to argue i agree
i think your screenshot illustrate one aspect of the mall, which is not only the place where "everything is crafted" but also the place where "everything is gathered". My personnal experience is that picking up materials from everywhere is not as fast as having some known places with chest filling up of materials. I took the example of the stack inserters but the fast splitters is also a good candidate for the annoying thing that need 40 gears or 15 green circuit, meaning that if you wish to build 50 of them, the amount of materials required is large enough for one player to be forced to pick up one , then the other, then again the first material, then the other and emptying belt is ok for 10 to 200 thing, but when you need 1000 or more of those material, it gets annoying imo.
Having 1 place ( or a few if your base is gigantic) to look for is simpler i feel, be it a "mall" or a "material reserve".
You CAN forgot to take things from the mall that's true, and then be forced to go back, even with a mall i would handcraft things that i forgot, unless it is the 150(+) mines that i forgot, or if i forgot 100 power poles, i would go and pick those up to the mall rather than handcraft usually because i would lack the materials for the mines or i wouldn't have the patience to wait for the power poles to be done. Having a mall changes mindset to "i will pick things up and place them on my next trip here". It frees the mind from the task of maintaining a crafting queue for those things you forgot.
This is not really "early" mall, but i think the "early" mall act the same way, once i have automated belt, i only handcraft a few of them when i am short of a few during building, then i can automate underground belt or splitter and inserters, and so on, reducing the things that i potentially handcraft as i unlock technologies.
Solar panels is a production thing, you need small factory for them if you are going solar. But yes, they are very slow to handcraft. Even then though I handcraft 10-50 of them in the very start when I have nothing better to do and want to bootstrap my solar energy.
It is very endgame thing when you /suddenly/ need 150 mining drills. But even then I will still most likely either handcraft them (5 minutes? Ok, just make sure I have everything, go take mats, shift+click) or put 3 temp assemblers, set them up, ctrl+click in each, wait 2 minutes, then delete these assemblers.
When you need 150 mining drills not once but often, only then is a time to automate it.
Well it depend on how long is the game, maybe 10 hours maybe 100 hours, maybe 1000 hours
150 mines could be 1 outpost connected with trains, because it's not worth the hassle to connect smaller outpost if your trains are long, this would be "mid-game" for me , maybe because i play for a long time and i'm used to building at larger scale than when i started. I wouldn't automate rails but not mining drill for example, i would do both at the same time as in game i would use both at the same time, and when doing so if i have the tech for signals i would also quickly add a machine to automate them.
If i unlock the tech later, i would try to automate signals near rails, so i could easily pick up both at the same time since they are used together. And doing so i would create somewhat of a mall, because there would be an area with all the material coming from belts for this purpose already so i may as well use it to automate something unrelated that uses the same materials and/or belt the new material when they become available, like red circuits. It can quickly get messy and as such leaving room for "a mall" can be a help for organization. Especially if you re-use the same mall on blueprint.
It would be different for solar pannel if you plan to use them heavily, as you said a dedicated small factory for them could be more suited. There is no strict definition for "mall" in factorio it's just a name people gives to different things, what if you have 8 assembly making solar pannel at the end of the mall if there are material left to use ?
I'm not saying you should change what you do based on my preference it would make no sense, the long ramble is only to explain (my) love for early mall based on (my) personnal opinion/habits
Speedrunners have games WAY shorter than mine, and uses handcrafting much more, same with players that deal with heavy biters agression as in deathworld. There are many playstyle, me it's often time very long game ( 200 hours+ ) where i have friends that come say hello and
distract me some days and it helps when i have a mall pinpoint on the map so they can equip and join me fast.
The reverse situation of me joining another player's factory and not needing to find all the different good places to pick up material to help lead me to much appreciation of the concept of "mall" even though always re-using the same mall without improvement or adaptation can become boring i find it interesting to see different mall and how different players tackled the same problem. I think it's fun building the mall x) It can take me hours of time i enjoy, plus later i can use the mall !
When compared to a late-game mall, where everything is done using robots, i find the early mall more interesting, the benefits comes earlier, and the puzzle is funnier
Again i am aware other people do different things, or do not see things the same way, this is just my personnal opinion, i try to explain my love for early malls with rationnal argument, but maybe it has nothing to do with reasonning and it's just a dopamine/reward shot that triggers my brain to make me feel happy when i see a chest full of things that i can pick up with only 1 click that comes with a funny sound. It is difficult to "understand love" you ask a difficult question.