Move Modular Armor item grid to the Character

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voddan
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Move Modular Armor item grid to the Character

Post by voddan »

Modular armor is used in Factorio to add "pockets" to the character for carry-on items such as goggles or exoskeletons.
Major Problems of Modular Armor:
1. In order to use night-vision goggles (which are cheap), I *have to* have modular armor with batteries (which require chemical production).
IMO this is unbalanced: ability to see at night shouldn't be bundled with advanced protection or advanced energy management.
Similar thing happens with exoskeletons - I know of no reason why an increase in walking speed should be coupled with an increase in armor protection.

2. The User Interface for managing carry-on items is very cumbersome. De facto, it is an interface of an item (modular armor), not a stand-alone interface of the game.

3. It harms New Player Experience.
When I started Factorio, I created night-vision goggles early-on, but I couldn't figure out where to put them to make them work.
Nothing in the game explained that I needed another item (modular armor) to use those goggles.
How Factorio could fix it:
I propose that instead of modular armor a player is given a number of slots for carry-on items.
UI may be similar to player's inventory, possibly located on the next tab to it.
Modular armor and upgrades can increase the number of slots later in the game.

It provides several advantages:

1. You can use any carry-on item right away. No need to wait for upgraded armor.

2. The interface reminds of personal inventory and thus is familiar.

3. While night-vision goggles would still require placing them in a certain spot to work, it is one step simpler now because this spot is *not* inside another item.

4. Armor upgrades can be simplified now. Instead of making a better armor and throwing the old one away, Factorio could provide "armor plates" that would be added in the same pockets as carry-on items, thus making the player balance armor protection and exoskeletons / personal laser defenses.
Last edited by voddan on Wed Nov 14, 2018 7:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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dog80
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by dog80 »

modular armor (which is expensive)
wut?

voddan
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by voddan »

dog80 wrote: ↑
Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:45 pm
modular armor (which is expensive)
wut?
Corrected. In the current research tree the armor is not much more difficult to get then the goggles - both need red circuits. The bigger problem is batteries since they require chemical production, delaying then night-vision goggles.

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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by bobucles »

I have a problem with NV goggles
Therefore remove the entire armor system
Uh. You can fix NV goggles by simply giving them enough internal battery to survive the night. All they need is 120 seconds worth of storage which is still less than a modular shield's internal battery.

I'd rather NV doesn't exist at all. It'd be better to have a lantern with 120 seconds of energy storage. That's more than enough because you only need 1 modular armor, one portable solar, and the lantern to make it work.

Darinth
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by Darinth »

I kind of like the idea of moving nightvision further down the tech tree and adding a lantern with an internal battery... I otherwise really like modular armor and think it's a fun mechanic. Also, adding an internal battery to the nightvision goggles is probably not unreasonable as well.

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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by Hannu »

If you do not like something just do not make and use it. Problem solved.

I wondered some times ago the purpose of modular armor and portable solar cells which can not supply even one exoskeleton or personal roboport and seemed therefore completely useless for me. I was told that they are intended to handle night vision and a shield or two. In other words to give boost to player's combat abilities at early midgame and not affect to building capabilities as I wanted. Sounds reasonable. I just play with another style and try to avoid straight fights with handheld weapons at that phase and have never tried to use modular armor to give me more durability. It is not the best idea to demand removing of some element from the game if I do not need, like or understand it. Possibility to play with many significantly different strategies is one of things which make Factorio so great.

voddan
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by voddan »

Hannu wrote: ↑
Wed Nov 14, 2018 9:15 am
If you do not like something just do not make and use it. Problem solved.
You do realize that I have not come here for life advice, right?

When I write a post about some aspect of the game that is hard to grasp or inconvenient to use, I relay MY EXPERIENCE only. I do it because chances are that there are other people who don't read this forum but still have similar issue, and I want to see the game improved. I volunteer my free time.

You don't have that issue - good for you. You have objections or improvements to the proposed suggestions - great, let's discuss them here and find the best design that satisfies everybody. You used to have a similar issue but have found a workaround - awesome, please share your story. You did that, thank you.

At no point I enjoy a how-to-play advice based on a distorted understanding of the first half of my post.

Darinth
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by Darinth »

Hannu wrote: ↑
Wed Nov 14, 2018 9:15 am
If you do not like something just do not make and use it. Problem solved.

I wondered some times ago the purpose of modular armor and portable solar cells which can not supply even one exoskeleton or personal roboport and seemed therefore completely useless for me. I was told that they are intended to handle night vision and a shield or two. In other words to give boost to player's combat abilities at early midgame and not affect to building capabilities as I wanted. Sounds reasonable. I just play with another style and try to avoid straight fights with handheld weapons at that phase and have never tried to use modular armor to give me more durability. It is not the best idea to demand removing of some element from the game if I do not need, like or understand it. Possibility to play with many significantly different strategies is one of things which make Factorio so great.
A little derogatory and doesn't actually resolve any issues. He obviously likes having access to the equipment modular armor provides. Telling him to simply not use the modular armor is telling him to cut off his arm because he's got some rough skin. Like you I disagree with his solution, but agreeing with one of the suggested alternatives or suggesting your own is a far more useful than an obvious non-solution.

voddan
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by voddan »

Darinth wrote: ↑
Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:07 pm
Like you I disagree with his solution, but agreeing with one of the suggested alternatives or suggesting your own is a far more useful than an obvious non-solution.
What problems do you see in the proposed move from modular armor grid to a character grid that is dependent of the equipped armor?
All the replies so far deal with NV googles while leaving out the bigger problems with usability of modular armor in general.

P.S.Thank you for supporting a constructive discussion. Really appreciated.

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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by Hannu »

Sorry about attitude but it is just annoying when people demand some things they do not like should be removed from game.

I understood that he had solved the actual problems, which was practically lack of documents and logic of unlocking researches. Devs work currently with that kind of things. After all, Factorio is in early release stage and such things are typically done at final polishing before release (i.e. now).

Solution would be to put research of night vision and all armor equipment so that researching the modular armors unlocks them. There could be tutorial screen when player unlocks the modular armor which explains how to put equipment in armor and what all pieces of equipment will do. In my opinion armor logistics works well (except item explosions) and do not need significant changes. If player have red circuits he can build batteries with 3 assemblers (sulfur, acid and batteries) from few simple ingredients and intermediates. It is very natural step in that phase of the game and not too hard requirement at all.

voddan
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by voddan »

Hannu wrote: ↑
Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:29 pm
Solution would be to put research of night vision and all armor equipment so that researching the modular armors unlocks them.
That is a nice idea and I wonder why it wasn't done like that from the beginning. It solves problems 1. and 3. for me, but what do you think about the problems with game UI for modular armor that I outlined?

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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by Darinth »

A part of me would like to see a small 3x3 equipment grid be available before unlocking modular armor, and making that interface a standard part of the inventory interface in some fashion. Would open up the ability to provide some other simple equipment early on as well.

I like the equipment grid in general and the modular armor's ability to give you progressively larger equipment grids. I wouldn't want to see those go away, but implementing equipment grids as a part of character early on would make it feel like a more integrated part of the game.

Keep in mind, 0.17 is bringing with it a massive UI revamp. So who know how all of this will change. :)
Last edited by Darinth on Wed Nov 14, 2018 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

adam_bise
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by adam_bise »

I think modular armor in general opens up cool things for equipment grid modders. I would hate to see the whole mechanic scrapped. Unless you can use equipment grid mods without the armor like you suggest.

voddan
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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by voddan »

adam_bise wrote: ↑
Wed Nov 14, 2018 4:00 pm
I think modular armor in general opens up cool things for equipment grid modders. I would hate to see the whole mechanic scrapped.
Yes, I have seen some pretty cool modes that add item grids to trains, etc. I think the capability to add grids to objects should definitely stay in the game for mods, but core game would benefit from a cleaner implementation.

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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by Hannu »

voddan wrote: ↑
Wed Nov 14, 2018 2:38 pm
That is a nice idea and I wonder why it wasn't done like that from the beginning. It solves problems 1. and 3. for me, but what do you think about the problems with game UI for modular armor that I outlined?
I have so used to current UI during years that can not feel the problems. But I agree that it would be more clear for new players if the armor grid was for example a tab in crafting menu and player could change items between it and inventory. Also armor slot could be there instead of lower right corner, where I sometimes click it unintentionally and cause item explosion (which should never happen, in my opinion). There could also be more functions on the tab, like on-off switches for nightvision, personal roboports, exoskeletons etc.

I support also the idea of small default grid, for example for nightvision or stronger headlight. It is not very realistic that night vision need special armor and massive batteries. It could be option from earlier phase of the game. At least I feel darkness more annoying and tedious than interesting and challenging element.

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Re: Abolish Modular Armor

Post by voddan »

Hannu wrote: ↑
Thu Nov 15, 2018 10:53 am
like on-off switches for nightvision, personal roboports, exoskeletons etc.
Switches would be so nice! Every game I take my roboport out of the armor when I go near an alien base, but I've never thought about having a switch. Kudos!

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