what's your style of playing the game?

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red_belt
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what's your style of playing the game?

Post by red_belt »

hey there.

i'm really new to factorio with around 30 hours of playtime. and now i've reached a point where i want to ask you which kind of playstyle you prefer.

what i mean is this: in the beginning, i was just constructing things, so i can research stuff that allowed me to construct new things. and i just built stuff the way i thought it might work, and well, it - somehow - worked. figuring out how things work was much fun to me. but since i progressed in the game, the things i create get bigger and it takes a lot of time to construct them, so it sucks to notice that you have done something wrong and need to rebuild a lot of stuff. since i can play one hour a day at max, i need several days to reconstruct parts of my base.

so i think at some point, you can't just use the trial-and-error method anymore, because some errors have extensive consequences. what you can do is this: you need to start planning. so i started a new game in god-mode, just to figure out how much oil refineries i need to create enough sulfur to saturate a yellow belt (hint: A LOT) and how much space that would need, because i wanted to leave room to expand production of every resource at some point in the game (and also to finally figure out that strange liquid system which is kind of black magic to me).

BUT: testing and planning stuff like this also takes much time. maybe as much time as reconstruction parts of your base when you notice that you can't go on like that. so right now i'm figuring out what kind of playstyle i enjoy more, but i'd also like to know how experienced players are playing the game.

are you planning, or are you trying? how would you describe your style? share you're stories, if you like!

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by Deadlock989 »

Your experience so far sounds similar to mine. Different phases of how I played:

- Played the campaigns and mostly blundered about
- Played sandbox and created a lot of spaghetti
- Discovered buses, got to stage where starting a new game is sometimes less effort than pulling current base apart
- Really got into blueprints
- Train mania
- Excel spreadsheets that calculate ratios of machine to machine with configurable production/speed modules
- Own mods
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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by HurkWurk »

i tend to search for other peoples work when looking to design something and then modify it to suit.
for faster prototyping of a design, i usually use a sandbox world with console commands to give me everything i need to set it up as i like then make blueprints from it for use in my normal game.

as far as methods of play, im personally working on bridging the gap between an early base and creating enough supply to properly setup a mega base.

my personal future goals is to grasp the concepts of just in time supply... i have seen mega bases that used calculators to know that they always need XXX to to YYY to supply ZZZ, and i just dont get that math myself yet, so im still just over producing raw ingredients which is very wasteful for power and machines during that critical phase.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by Koub »

[Koub] Moved to General Discussion
Koub - Please consider English is not my native language.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by mrgasp »

I've grown into building a mostly complete base, before I hit space science, I start building minifactories and feeding them by train, then feeding the more complex ones from those, e.g. iron refinery > iron gears > red science, or copper + iron > green circuits > red > blue, all in separate factories so if a new one needs green circuits, it can just pull from there. makes expanding and leaving room easier, but rail logistics become more important than just moving ore around

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by JimBarracus »

I usually stick to the normal ratio of science (5 red assemblers, 6 green etc)
The factorio planner is a good tool to figure out how many assemblers for each item you need to get a balanced and saturated supply.

I think everyone started with the spaghetti mess and switched to the main bus later on.
The play style is determined by the world settings.
On a train world you almost ignore defense and put modules in everything.
In a death world defense is far more important plus you try to reduce pollution so that you can live in peace, or at least survive the night.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by Serenity »

To figure out ratios:
https://doomeer.com/factorio/
https://kirkmcdonald.github.io/calc.html (this shows what a belt can supply or what's needed to fill it

Also this:
https://dddgamer.github.io/factorio-cheat-sheet/


Let's skip the burner miner and feeding boxes per hand stage. After that I start with a single iron smelter array (48 stone furnaces) and maybe half a copper smelter. Then I build one green circuit assembly (expandable to 2 later) and a small starter science setup. Maybe 4 red and green and 8 or so labs. That's enough to get you through the basic science stuff. This can be fit into an area that will be turned into more iron smelters later on, so it's out if the way.
From there I can lay out my smelters and main bus. Then I start with my make everything factory/mall and ammo production. After that a proper science setup + military science

Then just expand from there. In time you will find designs that work and either remember them or use blueprints.The bus allows you to add stuff as needed. It's not ideal throughput wise and later one you'll want separate factories and move stuff around via trains. But it avoids a lot of the spaghetti issues you get with just building things somewhere random

You eventually get a feel for about how much space you need. But even then you will always run into issues where you need to change something and there isn't enough room :)
Last edited by Serenity on Wed Apr 11, 2018 3:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by Hannu »

Usually I build train based system. I like to have separate factories and trains between them in somewhat realistic style. My typical area is about 6 km x 6 km. I also like to use mods which makes production chains to much longer and complex. Now I play with Bob's and Pyanodon's mods, but I am just at beginning (about 12 hours, got just green science). I like to have structured concrete paved factories with nice walkways between production units (about 50 x 50 tiles). It makes expansion quite hard so I calculate numbers of assemblers with spreadsheets.

When I get everything work I often double or triple throughput but I do not like unrealistic beacons, too easy bots (except malls), and copying huge arrays of similar assembler lines. So my bases are not real megabases in throughput sense. My last playthrough with 0.15 produced continuously 2 all sciences per second. I like to continue playing hundreds of hours and just travel around my base and make small and often aesthetic improvements. It is nice to just watch complex system works and materials flow from unit to another and get refined.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by Bauer »

I screwed my first game up somewhere mid oil refining.It was such a mess that I had to restart.
In my second game I fired up a rocket after 34 hrs. *yipee*
Then I restarted to build really big -- at least what I thought would be really big.
With the goal to produce 4 full blue belts of each science without bots I ran into a massiv UPS problem.

So I started to try some speed runs. That was very helpful because we also started to do pvp.

With the performance improvements of 0.16 I dared to go big again. Here I can nicely use my speed run experiences to rush to all science in order to unlock the tech tree. I need no bus because I know in advance how much I need for everything, e.g., I start with a mini shop based upon 24 stone furnace for Fe and 12 for Cu. For science the calculation base is basically the time left in which I want to unlock the tech tree (e.g. 8 hrs, which is resonalbly fast -- this doesn't need to be stress, we aren't planning a speedrun, right?) and the number of flasks I need of that specific type. I go for a very big red ciruit production because my mall crunshes red chips like my kids eat Nutella. Also steel and blue chips should be much larger compared to what you need for science. Excel and/or a pocket calculator are your best friends.

However, whatever you do in this phase, it won't be sufficient to build all the building you need for a mega base. Hence, I build a second base with the purpose to build the stuff I need for my mega base. In order to get the dimensions right, you want to consider that you will need 50-100k tier 3 modules, 1M bots + corresponding number of bays, solar for 10 TW, etc. Divide this by 20-30 hrs of playing time you get an idea how big you need to go. By the time, the resources of the first base are running low or are depleted. So I use my bots to tear down the first base. The research tree is complete anyway and I don't need infinit research right now.

Now it's time to add a few mods. Power and Armor makes your life much easier and helps a lot walk long distances in the base. Same with teleportation. All your choice. I also use Recursive blueprint to autoexpand my solar field. You also need to put some brain in train logistics because belts and bot do not have the right capacity. Also the distances to the mineral deposits become larger and larger.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by Kryptos »

I started off with spaghetti.

Then I did even more spaghetti.

Then I tried a main bus. Not enough resources. Then I tried a main bus with 4 belts of every resource. Too many belts, too lazy to run across them.

Then I tried trains. This was fun.

Then, I abandoned buses completely, and tried Train-ghetti, which is little bits of spaghetti connected with much bigger train spaghetti EVERYWHERE. Then, I realized that my main train line/intersection of three rails both ways was the limiting factor in my production.

Now I do spaghetti with Bob's and Angel's.

Anyway, my playstyle at about 30 hours in, I had quit my first base and had built a big, walled off area to build in for my second base. I launched a rocket there, and then tried to build out. Crazy loops of spaghetti going everywhere (I had not looked at anything about Factorio on the internet at this point yet, I wanted to learn myself until about 200 hours in) until I realized that the very core of my base was too packed and I just couldn't fit anything more in. As a result, I've got a system going where my early game is spaghetti wherever, just enough to get green and red science. I rush robots. During this time, I go on a giant land grab and build walls at the eventual limits of my starting base, usually 4-6 chunks. I put turrets on the walls. As soon as I get roboports, I build 3-4 roboports and about 20-50 robots, then I tear down everything. This gives me the materials to build a basic factory, a defended area to build in, and robots to do it quickly and keep the walls up. I usually build a basic bus at this point, 2 belts of iron, 2 copper, and 2 for green chips along one side. Then I build onto it. Eventually, I build trains out to ore patches, and start mining them up. Once they are empty, I replace the miners with production factories, and the mining trains become resource trains. Basically, a towns map.

I also usually play with max biter settings, and "low" resource settings because "very low" can screw you on oil in the starting area.

Otherwise, I play no biters and just go crazy. Those are my "creative mode" maps, because I think actual creative mode is too cheaty. I just don't have to worry about defenses, which becomes a big part of my normal games.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by gsezz »

I began with the campaign as a tutorial, played it until it felt too restrictive, and startet a real map.
I spaghettied a bit, but my first bus evolved on its own, before I even learned it's called a bus.
It took me 4 or 5 games to finally send a rocket to space, because at some point it seamed easier to start from scratch than to fix the mess. :D
My first rocket also was the only rocket I ever send to space, until we got space science. It felt like the end of the game, and I didn't want to come to an end, so I never researched it again. :D

Nowadays rarely play into late game.
- build a temporary base, get one machine of red and green going
- lay out the future base, build smelting and produce first products needed for construction, set up the usual 5 red 6 green.
- expand the base, build military science.
- clear biters in a very big area all around the base and future outposts.
- set up blue and production science
- focus on robots
- build perimeter defense and outposts.
since I'm playing very slow, at this point usually 40-50h into the map, biter evolution and expansion begins to kick my ass.
- focus on suite
- set up high tech science.
- build destroyers.
- clear all biters near the polluted area
- play around with nuclear, begin to set up maintenance trains and so on
- game gets boring, since biters aren't a challenge anymore. The rest of the game would be just repeating what I did in earlier games.
- start a new map, increase difficulty. Since I hate to build hundreds of smelters without bots in the early game, I often take a break at this point and play some KSP or Oxygen not included for a few weeks.
I manage to spend 100h on a map without even getting to space science. I'm a bit OCD in factorio. If something is not symmetrical or doesn't look good, i tear it down and redo it.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by MeduSalem »

Always saying "I will do that better in the next map"... but then continue to play the same map for another 100 hours because I can't be arsed to start over anymore.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by zOldBulldog »

I enjoy figuring things out and coming up with a better mousetrap. So I am always planning and preparing stuff for "my next run through".

I've done so much tinkering and improving of my first map that 200 hours into my my first game I've researched all the techs and done and redone stuff a number of times. But... I have not yet finished: (1) Upgrading all my smelter stacks to electric (I need more power for that), (2) I am not yet satisfied with my overall layout (but I think I am close... even if not fully going to do it in this game), (3) I feel that I need to do major changes to my rail network, logistic coverage approach and radar coverage approach, (4) I have not yet started on Nuclear... which I need to power the electric smelters! (5) I have not even bothered to go down the path of creating a rocket launch facility.

By the time I launch my first rocket, play my second game to test the plans and blueprints I made, and finally feel ready to start "playing for real"... I might hit 400 or 500 hours.

And yet... the whole process of getting there is so much fun. And that won't be the end of it... that's when the various run-throughs to do all the missed achievements will start. A year or two of fun maybe?

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by featherwinglove »

Koub wrote:[Koub] Moved to General Discussion
Where was it before?

I like to make life hard, so I modded the
ease
out of it. My current pack has Bob's (not Angel's 'cus that makes life easier), Hard Crafting, SJT Dirty Ores, Mountains, Versepelle's Hard Storage, Science Cost Tweaker, my own Pollution Damage, and a few others all at once. Hard Crafting and Hard Storage simultaneously is super hard. I also like to play without natural water, but rather than mod it out, I'm currently ignoring it. This means KS Power and Aquifer Drill. But since I can get water from dirt, I can skip to the binbinhfr water pump (this is a barrier because Bob's Electronics need water.) So not everything makes the game harder, but most of it does. Considering the game's inherent complexity, I got bored of vanilla remarkably fast. That might have more to do with mods being so interesting and vanilla being so unrealistic (e.g. electronics don't use crazy piles of iron irl. Granted, Bob's has a few pet peeves, like silver-zinc batteries being more advanced than lithium-ion, also zinc needs massive crazy piles of sulfur to mine, but sphalerite, its most common ore irl is zinc frickin' sulfide.) It doesn't need to be realistic but don't over-stork it. (Let's see if I can turn that into a meme: When explaining where babies come from to little children, there are two approaches: the tummy approach, which is an oversimplification, and the stork approach, which is a fairy tale. Into Space and Into Space 2 are browser games that kinda over-stork the Kerbal Space Program idea, but Into Space 3 introduced Santa Clause: it launched so far over that line I can barely see it, but I'm still trying to get away from the stench.) One of the things that I've done is take a map that I've finished (or played along enough that I've had enough of it) and then start it over with the coal and oil removed (mods let me survive, esp. KS Power, Bob's Power, Bergius Process, Charcoal, and Wood Gas. Bob's has greenhouses because there are so many things in it that need wood - they're a bit finnicky and random, thus becoming the only thing that I've blueprinted and one of only two things that use circuit networks.)

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by Smarty »

featherwinglove wrote:
Koub wrote:[Koub] Moved to General Discussion
Where was it before?
gameplay help

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by featherwinglove »

...wut?

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by bman212121 »

I can't say as I've ever made spaghetti in any map I've done. There are some loose ends here and there, but for the most part everything is setup with purpose. From the very beginning it was quite obviously that Factorio is like programming 101. You start at the top of an input chain, you take the input and run it through a function, return that function back to the main code and use that to branch into the next function. In Factorio terms that simply means mine ore, run that through furnace "loop" to get plates. Then take those plates and use the input to a factory "loop" that makes gears, and return those back to the main line. Keep doing this for each step as each function or loop becomes more complex requiring more input (variables in coding) then still only ever returning one entity.

To do that I've always stuck with a North / South, and East / West design. If the main part of the base will flow North / South, then the input / output of the factory loops would be run East / West. If the main flow was East / West then run the factory flows North / South. Basically the "main bus" concept that most people talk about. It doesn't always have to be belts, you could incorporate a type of main bus using trains, but just make sure that if you decide that the feeding / return area is going one way, you leave a small gap between that, then put factories that start from the center outward. Any time you need to expand you can just expand the size of the factory layouts as I leave a ton of room on the end of a factory row for additional items to be placed. This does draw the size of the base out a lot more than cramming everything into a small area, but the trade off for me is highly worth it as everything stays organized.

I'm not necessarily a programmer, but the concept of having functions that perform a task is one that anyone who has done a bit of coding would relate to. In Factorio you will hit the same performance limitations you would hit with single threaded code, so in order to scale out you just blueprint that function and duplicate it, so it can be run in parallel. Very often if I need more output of something I can just blueprint it wholesale and 2x, 3x, or 4x that configuration on the map. You can do the same with with every process you have available, and then you just need to beef up your interconnects (Belts, trains, bots) to meet the demands. I don't think I could function well in a base that is just haphazardly placed with as soon as you wanted an item you just threw some stuff on the ground to make it work. I do get a game plan of where I want to start laying everything down, how wide it needs to be, and will take and put down ghost blueprints of factory rows so everything is spaced out nicely. Then later on if I do need to cross something, there is always room between things to run a belt, pipe, or whatever to hook things up.

I actually wonder what it's like now for a new player with .16. I know someone who's just going down that road, so it will be interesting to hear how they fair. I started in .12 and back then you could beat the game in 30 hours and only needed a single yellow belt of each item type to get it done. That's definitely not the case anymore. It was much easier to just throw stuff down on the map and not worry about how badly it will scale. I still prefer to just toss down items and fix the scaling issues later, because for me that's more fun that copying someones highly optimized layouts that work perfectly. I never keep blueprints and always rebuild every aspect of the map by hand each time, so I can kind of play around with new ideas and see how they work out.

I will say though that we tend to build small scale versions of things in the very beginning of a map just to get the processes started, and rather than ripping those out a lot of times I'll just leave it while I build the full scale production elsewhere. Case in point is a lab or two to get research going. I have a specific pattern for full scale lab research, but in the very beginning, you can just combine a few things via chests and inserters to get things rolling. From the very beginning other things like Steam power will be designed in a way that I can get my starting 2 or 4 engines going, but can quickly scale it out to like 20 or more. After you've played the game several times you kind of have an idea how big you want to go, so rather than just building small setups in the beginning and making bigger ones later, you just start huge and worry about feeding it later. I'll setup a small row of burner miners that feed ore directly into a stone furnace, and then we'll just those to make the items so I can create a 20 stone furnace layout that has room to blueprint that 2 or 3 more times. It's already spaced so we can rip out the stone furnaces and put in electric ones later, you just need to add a helper belt in front of your inserters.

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by featherwinglove »

bman212121 wrote:I can't say as I've ever made spaghetti in any map I've done.
Since we all know that's impossible, I can tell you're lying :mrgreen:

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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by ChoMar »

Im currently trying to develop a working PvP-Style.
That really ups everything, since Time suddenly becomes a very important Factor. You need to be FASTER than your opponent but still build JUST GOOD ENOUGH to be able to expand up to the point where you can kill your opponent.
Its pretty much the minimum principle without a given target.
I havent really gotten the Hang of it yet, because unless, say, SC2 your Ressource Management is way more complex, Scouting is only worth the Time if you play in a large team and have someone in your team that is too incompetent to copy a basic build or set up a smelting area on his own (if you have someone in your Team and its a SMALL TEAM, dont start) and combat tends to be over quick.
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Re: what's your style of playing the game?

Post by SirLANsalot »

I go for Rail-world when I can. I love trains.

Research and Power are the only things that still survive in the starting area, everything else gets split out into their own "towns/bases".

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