Factorio is not a game.

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ske
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Factorio is not a game.

Post by ske »

What is limited in factorio?

Land? All terrain is the same. Except for water... until you fill it. All terrain is the same.

Resources? If you are on an island you have to manage your resources and there are usually two outcomes: Not enough and Plenty. There are no islands in factorio after you landfill the water. Outside there are always more resources to get. Resources are not limited. They only cost time. All of them. Ores are all the same, found in random places. Uranium needs some fluid to mine (which is nice) and oil uses pumps and pipes (which is also nice). You can use trains or just long lines of belts (which aren't really that much worse than using trains).

Map size? The map size is virtually unlimited by design.

Factory size? The factory size depends on how fast your CPU runs. It is kind of a limit. Not by design though and not a hard one as you can still run a factory at 5 UPS or even lower.

Power? You can always build more generators or solar panels or batteries until your CPU starts to burn. For practical purposes there is barely any difference between coal, nuclear and solar+battery. It only takes some time to setup and then you're fine with any of them.

Time? There is no timer ticking (unless you're doing speedruns). Your free time might be limited but you could always quit your day job.

Creative force and clicks? Once you have those flying construction robots you can copy&paste the rest of your factory from some strings you've found online. No need to fiddle around with ratios. Somebody did that for you. Better than you could.

Enemies? After you researched enough military and are able to kill big worms all nests are roughly the same.

What is the difference between an efficient setup and an inefficient setup? None, I would say. It doesn't really matter. You'll get there anyways.

Is factorio really a game then?

Depending on the definition of games you might argue that yes, it is a game. It is advertised as game. It looks like a game in the beginning. But contrary to other games it lacks the limitations and goals such as managing resources in a scenario or managing time and efficiency when playing vs. opponents. (The so-called "goal" is to launch the rocket. Yea, right.) I would argue that factorio in its current state is a teaching software (how to program and automate) but not a game. It is also a game engine with which somebody could use to make games. You can also use it to make art in the form of a beautiful factory. People get confused thinking that factorio is a game until they played it through a few times to realize that something is not quite right. The way they use it, it is not a game.

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by posila »

ske wrote:Is factorio really a game then?
It is hard to tell, because you haven't said what is your definition of a game.

Factorio has some set of rules that force you to build a factory in certain way (for example you can't make logistic robots put items directly into machines or take items from belts) to reach explicit goal of launching a rocket, with lot of implicit goals (automate red/green/blue/black/... science, ...). Essentially you are solving a puzzle of getting an item from point A to point B using very limited set of objects that can help you to do it.

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by withers »

I agree with the OP. Factorio is not a game. It’s a factory sandbox. :geek:

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by terror_gnom »

Its not a game, ITS LIFE!

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by ske »

posila wrote:
ske wrote:Is factorio really a game then?
It is hard to tell, because you haven't said what is your definition of a game.
I'm not quite sure. There is no agreed-upon definition.

One aspect that I'm going for here is that a game is about managing resources. In factorio there are different ways to achieve the same goal using different amounts of resources. For example yellow vs red vs blue belts. I'd imagine that we have to mix them in order to achieve a good result. In reality, however, I'll use only blue belts because resources are so cheap that it's just easier and it doesn't matter how much resources you use. Why do we have red and yellow belts at all after we researched blue belts?

Another aspect is goals and competition. When playing against another player, suddenly efficiency matters. Both try to use the best strategy to reach the same goal. Something similar can be achieved in trade simulations where you have to build the cheapest and most efficient factory in order to get the highest return.

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Jap2.0 »

ske wrote:
posila wrote:
ske wrote:Is factorio really a game then?
It is hard to tell, because you haven't said what is your definition of a game.
I'm not quite sure. There is no agreed-upon definition.

One aspect that I'm going for here is that a game is about managing resources. In factorio there are different ways to achieve the same goal using different amounts of resources. For example yellow vs red vs blue belts. I'd imagine that we have to mix them in order to achieve a good result. In reality, however, I'll use only blue belts because resources are so cheap that it's just easier and it doesn't matter how much resources you use. Why do we have red and yellow belts at all after we researched blue belts?

Another aspect is goals and competition. When playing against another player, suddenly efficiency matters. Both try to use the best strategy to reach the same goal. Something similar can be achieved in trade simulations where you have to build the cheapest and most efficient factory in order to get the highest return.
Do you enjoy it? I do. That doesn't mean it's a game, but considering it's fun, on a computer, costs money, and is called a game I'd say it fits the criteria pretty well.
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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Greybeard_LXI »

from: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/game
Definition of game
1 a (1) :activity engaged in for diversion or amusement :play
(2) :the equipment for a game

3 a (1) :a physical or mental competition conducted according to rules with the participants in direct opposition to each other
(2) :a division of a larger contest
(3) :the number of points necessary to win
(4) :points scored in certain card games (as in all fours) by a player whose cards count up the highest
(5) :the manner of playing in a contest
(6) :the set of rules governing a game
(7) :a particular aspect or phase of play in a game or sport
By the first definition, yes Factorio is a game.

It looks like the OP is merging some of the items from the third definition into the discussion.

I am not sure how solitaire fits with :
goals such as managing resources in a scenario or managing time and efficiency
What resource does solitaire have?

On the subject of goals and competition: You set the goal you want for this game. Often so many rockets per hour (science per minute). Some other goals I have set include using trains or nuclear. You also compete against yourself for "can I do this better than last time?"

Then again, by the first definition, reading this forum is a game. Which by extension means reading science fiction, fantasy or mysteries is a game.

Have I just cut my argument's feet out from under it?

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by ske »

Greybeard_LXI wrote: What resource does solitaire have?
Solitaire is strong in the puzzle-solving aspect.

Factorio is also very strong in that aspect if you have difficult terrain or you are designing/building yourself. It is weak in this aspect if you copy-paste some string with large parts of a factory.
Greybeard_LXI wrote: On the subject of goals and competition: You set the goal you want for this game. Often so many rockets per hour (science per minute). Some other goals I have set include using trains or nuclear. You also compete against yourself for "can I do this better than last time?"
You can gameify your whole life this way. Self-motivation-techniques build on this. It's just not very fun for most people to set arbitrary goals without a bigger framework.
Greybeard_LXI wrote: Have I just cut my argument's feet out from under it?
I think it's just not very clear cut and it depends on how you approach it. To me it's less of a game and more a simulator.

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Escadin »

What an odd question to ask. Sandbox games are still games. :roll:

I'll give you that, sandboxgames which don't involve any noteworthy progression and offer only a bare playground for your own imagination (like Banished for example) I have seen discussed to be closer to a virtual toy (like Lego) than an interactive video game.
However, this is not the case with Factorio. It offers dozens of hours worth of progression, locked behind a puzzle solving routine with some combat at it's side to make a well rounded game loop.

Factorio has defeat and victory conditions, a gameplay loop which continuously challenges the player to act and think, clear defined progression towards goals and even a campaign/story mode.
What more do you need to call something a game? What else would it be?
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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Oktokolo »

No, vanilla Factorio is definitely not a game. But if you add Bob's and Angels', it is!

No, seriously: There is a genre called sandbox games. They evolved from a very basic game - called sandbox. Its origins are in the analog era, a time before electronics or even computers had been invented. You literally had a big box full of sand and could sculpt that sand or place things on or under it. The UI was almost as intuitive as Factorio's and it had a surprisingly fine granulated voxel engine with extensive physics support...
Using the sand box was called playing at that time and therefore i guess, they would have called the sand box a game. Factorio for me looks like a (highly modified) derivative of the sand box concept. I do not know how long the OP already played Factorio. But if you play the campaign for the first time, you should instantly see, that Factorio is indeed a game. You really can't miss it. If you only start a new game on a random map and decide to not advance in the tech tree - it certainly keeps being a game... but maybe a pretty boring one.

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Hellatze »

They needto create fearure that consider this thing. A game.

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Nasabot »

Sandboxes are heavily overrated. I prefer games.

Not that I dislike factorio, I just dont like the way so many games go with ARBITRARINESS (which often gets confused with "freedom of choice")

Imo sandboxes are the greatest banes of game design, because a sandbox actually does not require game design.

A common sandbox is like dragging somebody to the open sea and push him into the water and say: "Swim, you are free now"

A good sandbox is like dragging somebody to the sea, give him a boat, a compass, a map and scuba gear and tell him: "Go, explore the ocean! Watch your oxygen while diving"


The biggest problems I see in factorio is that it does not have replayability and that you cant lose.
Ok, the problem of missing replayability can be bandaidfixed by installing and trying out imbalanced and broken mods...

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Greybeard_LXI »

ske wrote: Solitaire is strong in the puzzle-solving aspect.

Factorio is also very strong in that aspect if you have difficult terrain or you are designing/building yourself. It is weak in this aspect if you copy-paste some string with large parts of a factory.
I forgot to mention that using blueprints from the web is cheating yourself of lots of the fun. Others may disagree, and getting ideas from the web is much better than beating your head against the wall.

I think we're on the same side of this argument.

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by ske »

Greybeard_LXI wrote: I forgot to mention that using blueprints from the web is cheating yourself of lots of the fun. Others may disagree, and getting ideas from the web is much better than beating your head against the wall.
Using "cheating" to solve a problem is how you do it efficiently most of the time. If your task is to solve a problem you google it and copy a solution. Done.

It gets more interesting if there is no solution. There, the "fun" really begins. You are doing something that probably noone did before.

One way to create such "interesting" problems is to add constraints to something like diverse terrain. You see this a lot with buildings that are custom-designed to fit the terrain.
Greybeard_LXI wrote: I think we're on the same side of this argument.
I think so, too :)

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by ske »

Oktokolo wrote:No, vanilla Factorio is definitely not a game. But if you add Bob's and Angels', it is!
Probably I have to try these 8-)
Oktokolo wrote: No, seriously: There is a genre called sandbox games. They evolved from a very basic game - called sandbox. Its origins are in the analog era, a time before electronics or even computers had been invented. You literally had a big box full of sand and could sculpt that sand or place things on or under it. The UI was almost as intuitive as Factorio's and it had a surprisingly fine granulated voxel engine with extensive physics support...
Using the sand box was called playing at that time and therefore i guess, they would have called the sand box a game. Factorio for me looks like a (highly modified) derivative of the sand box concept. I do not know how long the OP already played Factorio. But if you play the campaign for the first time, you should instantly see, that Factorio is indeed a game. You really can't miss it. If you only start a new game on a random map and decide to not advance in the tech tree - it certainly keeps being a game... but maybe a pretty boring one.
There are other sandboxes called "virtual machines".

You can play the Gnu-Compiler-Collection game in them. It sounds simple. You write text files and start the game. If you win, you get other files out. You can make your files bigger and bigger and get bigger and bigger files out. You can even make another compiler-game with them. The possibilities are endless!

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Escadin »

There is an awesome first person shooter called Join the Army in RL. The tutorial is rough and long but in the end you get to shoot bad guys, rank up your career and if you stick with your team you may actually win a war. You can use the money you make while playing for the inbuilt feature "player housing" which offers lots and lots of options.

Are we done exaggerating now? ;)
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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by aober93 »

Nice a discussion for retards. Heeeelp its not a game what must i do!?

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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by 5thHorseman »

I'm going to ask the begged-for question.

Does it matter if Factorio is a game or not?
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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Jap2.0 »

5thHorseman wrote:I'm going to ask the begged-for question.

Does it matter if Factorio is a game or not?
Not at all :). It's Factorio, and that's enough.
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Re: Factorio is not a game.

Post by Cribbit »

something something eye of the beholder something something

You get the idea

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