Better new game setup

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Kayser
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Better new game setup

Post by Kayser » Fri Sep 25, 2015 1:44 pm

The current way to set up a new game is through the 'map generator' screen. This allows a lot of control, but it has some problems for the 'early majority' of players that we are now reaching out to when we go to Steam and on towards version 1.0.

1. There are too many possible combinations
2. Some extreme combinations are virtually unplayable
3. There is very little contextual help (for a newer player)
4. There is no transparency in what the levels mean (for experienced players)

These can of course be discussed, but on to my suggestion...

Suggestion:

The current map generator screen is renamed 'advanced game setup' and hid behind a much simpler screen called 'Game setup'. In Game setup the options are simpler and fewer:
1. General difficulty: "Very easy", "Easy", "Normal", "Hard", "Very hard", "Impossible" (affects starting area, enemy base frequency, size, richness as well as aggression, and alien progression)
2. Planet type: "Default", "Waterworld", "Arid", "Swamp", "Desert", "Forest", "Rocky" (affects terrain type frequency, segmentation and water size)
3. Resources "Very poor", "Poor", "Normal", "Rich", "Very rich" (affects frequency, richness, and size for all resources)
4. Game speed "Marathon", "Epic", "Normal", "Quick" (affects general crafting speed and recepies resource cost)

The number of levels and their names can of course be discussed.

Of course it's possible via mods to insert menu options and connect them to specific map and resource generator algorithms.

(If I were an artist and had time, I would have included a picture of the screen... maybe later...)

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Re: Better new game setup

Post by TuckJohn » Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:49 pm

I dont think that this is necessary. Other suggestions have brought up the point that the current terrain generation have no way to control the starting biome. Also, There is no need to change the crafting speed, as it is currently balanced well(ish. see my thread on crafting speed research).
On the other hand, I do think that when making a new world, there is a simple drop-down at the top of the creation screen to select easy, Normal, hard, custom. When you select a difficulty if acts like a pre-set and set all of options, but if you change one it will switch to "custom". For example, you want a hard game, so you select "medium"(and it pre-sets all of the values to normal/medium), but want more oil, so change the oil richness to high.

For a working example, look at Kerbal Space Program's career creation screen.
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Re: Better new game setup

Post by ssilk » Fri Sep 25, 2015 9:18 pm

I added this here https://forums.factorio.com/forum/vie ... 80&t=16592
because I think this hits very exactly the basic essence of what the Factorio world could be configured.
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Re: Better new game setup

Post by Kayser » Sat Sep 26, 2015 3:13 pm

Here is a quick mockup:

Image

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Re: Better new game setup

Post by Klonan » Sat Sep 26, 2015 3:21 pm

I like the idea of a global research cost/speed modifier :D

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Re: Better new game setup

Post by ssilk » Sat Sep 26, 2015 7:51 pm

That are such ideas, that can come only from new players: They don't have the background and see the things more clearly.
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Re: Better new game setup

Post by bobucles » Sat Sep 26, 2015 8:07 pm

Don't be hating on the new player now. Someone who has never played the game before is going to want clear, obvious game settings that best reflect their desires. Dozens of advanced nit picking dials is nothing more than useless baggage for a first timer. Those settings are for game testers, whos job is to try out various game settings and present the best recipes to the layman.

The simple fact is that some combinations of game settings are horrifically UNPLAYABLE. Why would you let a new player have access to unplayable settings?

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Re: Better new game setup

Post by ssilk » Sat Sep 26, 2015 9:16 pm

bobucles wrote:Don't be hating on the new player now.
Uhm? Hm.
My comment was a compliment!
Maybe I should have made it more clear... :)

But who knows me cannot misunderstood it. For me such suggestions makes me feel quite happy.
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Re: Better new game setup

Post by TuckJohn » Mon Sep 28, 2015 1:00 pm

bobucles wrote:Don't be hating on the new player now. Someone who has never played the game before is going to want clear, obvious game settings that best reflect their desires. Dozens of advanced nit picking dials is nothing more than useless baggage for a first timer. Those settings are for game testers, whos job is to try out various game settings and present the best recipes to the layman.

The simple fact is that some combinations of game settings are horrifically UNPLAYABLE. Why would you let a new player have access to unplayable settings?
I agree. See my above post (#2)
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Re: Better new game setup

Post by bobingabout » Tue Sep 29, 2015 8:32 am

If that concept screenshot were the only options presented to the player... I would scream very loudly to get it changed.

A simplified version with preset settings isn't a bad thing, but would be aimed at newbie players... or perhaps if achievements were implemented, it could be a requirement that you play in epic mode to be able to unlock certain ones.

But it should either have a custom option which brings you to the current existing screen (perhaps with the addittion of some biome settings), or after selecting an option, it takes you to the current existing screen with certain options selected.


Anyway... some changes i would recomend. Instead of simply very rich, or very poor etc, perhaps also have a field entry that lists the actual numbers behind the scenes, and have the abillity to change that manually if you like, as an advanced setting.

On top of that, we already have Terrain segmentation as a biome size control. Other options such as starting biome, and climate. (certain climate options will favor certain biomes more than others)
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Re: Better new game setup

Post by Kayser » Sat Oct 03, 2015 9:11 am

bobingabout wrote:If that concept screenshot were the only options presented to the player... I would scream very loudly to get it changed.

A simplified version with preset settings isn't a bad thing, but would be aimed at newbie players... or perhaps if achievements were implemented, it could be a requirement that you play in epic mode to be able to unlock certain ones.

But it should either have a custom option which brings you to the current existing screen (perhaps with the addittion of some biome settings), or after selecting an option, it takes you to the current existing screen with certain options selected.


Anyway... some changes i would recomend. Instead of simply very rich, or very poor etc, perhaps also have a field entry that lists the actual numbers behind the scenes, and have the abillity to change that manually if you like, as an advanced setting.

On top of that, we already have Terrain segmentation as a biome size control. Other options such as starting biome, and climate. (certain climate options will favor certain biomes more than others)
With reference to my problem point #4, I agree that the actual numbers should be available too. However, numbers are of no value to a new or casual player, so this should be listed only in the 'Advanced Game Setup', which is available by clicking the 'Advanced Game Setup' button (which might need an icon or a new placement to be more visible).

Like TuckJohn says, the basic Game Setup and Advanced Game Setup are connected. If you select "Rich" for resources, and then switch to the advanced setup, the settings for each individual resource's size, richness, and frequency is set to whatever the "Rich" basic setting is mapped to. For iron, "Rich" might correspond to +10% for size, +20% for richness, and 0% for frequency; copper might need to be boosted more than iron, or whatever the devs find satisfies the majority players' expectations when it comes to how a game with "Rich" resources should feel like. For players who want, changing each individual setting is also possible, which leads to the basic setting for resources flipping to "Custom".

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Difficulty level

Post by dimmy » Mon Jan 18, 2016 12:04 pm

Merged with already existing topic
-- daniel34


Please! Think about difficulty level settings on the settings page!

For example:
1) easy - all in a lot
2) normal - all as now set
3) hard - less resources, etc
4) very hard - more enemies
5) ultra hard - try to alive in such world!

its easy to implement in the game.

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New Map Difficulty Settings

Post by Nubm2 » Fri Apr 01, 2016 11:59 am

Hi! o/

Im playing the game now with bobs mod and marathon, i have to say the vanilla game was an awesome experience, but somewhat too easy. The game with the mods now seems too streched out at times, especially in the first hours. However, i just had an idea, and like to ask what others might think of this.

How about a more simple start screen on new maps? (without taking away the customization options, but more about that later)
Starting a new map could offer several options:

- BEGINNER -
The vanilla game as it is now, maybe with decreased research time, costs, evolution and pollution. Resource/ore settings set to high/rich/large etc. Also a good place for additional tutorial tips.

- NORMAL -
What the game is balanced around. Including additional resources that extend recipes. All in all an advanced mode from the beginner level.

- Hard -
This is like the normal mode, but with some different settings: Resources are much more spread out and not nearly as rich. Critters are more agressive with a faster evolution. Pollution is high. Research time and costs are increased, as well as general costs for production. This mode will give some nice archievements and is hard to beat. The map has much more natural occuring obstacles that has to be removed/leveled (if terraforming, mountain and rivers etc. ever make it into the game for example).

- Custom -
Like the map creation screen the game has now, but also with some additional settings like pollution factor, evolution speed and maybe a toggle for additional resources/recipes. This is for people who wants to play the game without critters, with settings that are between difficulties or make the game much more easy/hardcore, etc.

Also i'd really like to see an 'override' toggle for mods, so maps that are marked with override (can be changed anytime in the options) do not use mods at all, even though they might be loaded at start. Or/and an exclude option to set which mods wont be active for the map. Default is 'off' so maps will include any mod that is installed.

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Re: Better new game setup

Post by Koub » Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:50 pm

Merged topics, because essentially about the same thing. : difficulty presets when creating new map.
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Re: Better new game setup

Post by ssilk » Fri Apr 01, 2016 6:39 pm

I post the links again:
viewtopic.php?f=80&t=16592 Game Setup, Game Configuration, Init Screen
viewtopic.php?f=80&t=13022 World Generation / Map Generator / Game Modes / Scenarios
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