Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

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rain9441
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Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by rain9441 »

This is a simple suggestion that I would like to propose, but am unsure about. On one hand, I am sometimes annoyed when I am dragging power poles and they are placed over a ghost in the blueprint, destroying it. On the other hand, I'm unsure how this behavior would feel if it were changed.

My proposal is to treat ghosted entities as real entities when dragging power poles.

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by thuejk »

This seems like an obviously good idea to me. I have never ever wanted dragged power poles to destroy ghosts.

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by 5thHorseman »

I'd make your suggestion more generic (and useful) : When placing any buildable thing, ghosts should be treated like buildings on the ground.

i.e., you can't place an assembler over a ghost of an inserter, and you can't place a n->s inserter over a ghost of a s->n inserter. But you can place a fast inserter of the ghost of a regular inserter.
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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by Koub »

5thHorseman wrote:
Mon Jan 11, 2021 11:53 pm
I'd make your suggestion more generic (and useful) : When placing any buildable thing, ghosts should be treated like buildings on the ground.

i.e., you can't place an assembler over a ghost of an inserter, and you can't place a n->s inserter over a ghost of a s->n inserter. But you can place a fast inserter of the ghost of a regular inserter.
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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by jodokus31 »

+1
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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by Kyralessa »

The thing about not replacing a ghost power pole with a real one sounds reasonable (though I'm not fond of the idea).

The one about making ghosts as solid as buildings, so that ghosts can't be replaced unless they're removed first, sounds quite intrusive.

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by blazespinnaker »

Yeah, this is consistent. BPs should be about exact replacement or sketchy outline. Trying to do both just makes the UX confusing. The new power pole changes are a good example of how this gets confusing due to inconsistency.

I actually regularly clobber ghosts, but I feel that is an edge case and not how BPs are meant to be used. kovarex refuted this clobbering use case, which is readily agreed, but I think it's time to go all the way: ghostplacer mod should be in vanilla. Maybe an early tech you can research, perhaps a single use equipment grid with some kind of rate limit or reach limit. shiny UX flare (a robotic arm?) would be attractive.

Critically, it makes BPs usage more compelling for preplanning your base and the UI less tedious to use. It especially makes power poles less tedious ( recent changes practically require exact pole placement with ghosts) and trying to generally distinguish between ghosts and non ghosts becomes less annoying. it's not always obvious. like belt dragging, it is a pleasant UX experience.

there is zero risk this will make bots obsolete, especially if rate limited. a later and more expensive tech can have a less rate limited version.

it will also open speedrunning to a much less niche crowd, and make it less dexterity based and more creative / problem solving. though if you make it an expensive early tech, it becomes an interesting question.
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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by Sad_Brother »

5thHorseman wrote:
Mon Jan 11, 2021 11:53 pm
you can't place a n->s inserter over a ghost of a s->n inserter.
I prefer to place s->n inserter in this case. I.e. use ghost's orientation.

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by boskid »

That would be one step closer to the "blueprint spraying" and so it is not going to happen. Blueprints are primarily for bots to construct. Player is always able to build over ghosts, even if they are invisble (belong to other force).

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by blazespinnaker »

Yeah, I get that. It's a real issue for sure. It'd a risky change, I guess. Could change the game dramatically.

A real shame, though, as there is a very nice pre-planning use case I think new players never discover because BPs make little sense prebots. A lot of frustrating and tedious spaghetti messes are created by a lack of least a little bit of preplanning.

Honestly speaking, have you looked at the statistics on how many people drop the game before ever reaching bots? Something to think about there.

Vast amounts of gameplay never even attempted, not even a gentle segue into blueprints. Just a hard tech, construction bots reached, 50% of the game features turned on. Rocket Rush helps, but without context, it's just an invite to copying blueprint from blueprint libraries.

And there are ways to gamify BPs, pre bots, that would change "blueprint spraying" into real and intriguing game play. A teaser of what's to come if you are patient, stick to it, and tech up to bots.

TBH, I am not sure spraying is a good word or a great way to look at it, especially as that spraying is a lot of what is done, post bots. The term denigrates probably 75% factorio game play. Even on elegant, symmetrical, compact designs, you see a lot of repetition (necessary for high production), and thus - spraying.

Factorio, because it doesn't have an encapsulation concept, really relies on spraying.

I'd recommend thinking more in terms of discouraging blueprint plagiarism, which is something you want to avoid in newer players, as it spoils a great deal of fun.
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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by jodokus31 »

boskid wrote:
Tue Jan 12, 2021 11:06 am
That would be one step closer to the "blueprint spraying" and so it is not going to happen. Blueprints are primarily for bots to construct. Player is always able to build over ghosts, even if they are invisble (belong to other force).
What about the original suggestion? Only for power poles, because they have this autoplace drag logic. (and not for invisible ghosts, if it can be distinguished easily)
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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by Koub »

boskid wrote:
Tue Jan 12, 2021 11:06 am
That would be one step closer to the "blueprint spraying" and so it is not going to happen. Blueprints are primarily for bots to construct.
That's sad, because blueprinting before bots is often a frustrating experience. How many times I have laid a blueprint, and misclicked (plonked an inserter upside down, or forgot a power pole, or accidentally plonked something with one tile offset, removing 3 ghosts, ...), especially during dawn, dusk, or night time, where visiblity is lower.
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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by rain9441 »

"That would be one step closer to the "blueprint spraying" and so it is not going to happen"

IRT just the poles or the follow up recommendation of treating all buildings as "built" for the sake of placement of anything?

I am thinking the dragging of poles is a different case. It already takes into account blueprints because it ensures that unpowered ghosts will be powered after dragging the pole across. You are interacting with the ghosts in this process.

I don't think I'd want to make it so that you cannot build over ghosts at all, as I think we do that far more than we realize (Think about when a user would connect the inputs to the blueprint).

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by coppercoil »

boskid wrote:
Tue Jan 12, 2021 11:06 am
That would be one step closer to the "blueprint spraying" and so it is not going to happen. Blueprints are primarily for bots to construct. Player is always able to build over ghosts, even if they are invisble (belong to other force).
I think this enhancement would not stop BP spraying. It will protect what I have just sprayed :). BPs are just made to be sprayed, that's called "build automation". That's good, this is why I like Factorio.

But BPs also need to be connected to infrastructure; players connect them manually, players place entities manually for faster building, and players do mistakes from time to time. Fixing silly mistakes is very common in Factorio, but if you are spraying building large base, that likely means you pursue more challenging goals than fixing wrong entities.

Other forces IMHO have their own care regarding their BP building issues.

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by Kyralessa »

Koub wrote:
Tue Jan 12, 2021 2:11 pm
That's sad, because blueprinting before bots is often a frustrating experience. How many times I have laid a blueprint, and misclicked (plonked an inserter upside down, or forgot a power pole, or accidentally plonked something with one tile offset, removing 3 ghosts, ...), especially during dawn, dusk, or night time, where visiblity is lower.
Don't you use Control-Z in these cases?

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Re: Disallow power poles to be automatically placed over ghosts

Post by Koub »

Kyralessa wrote:
Tue Jan 12, 2021 3:12 pm
Don't you use Control-Z in these cases?
Now that I've tried, I'm surprised to see it works quite well. I admit I have never got used to rely on using "undo" because when it was implemented, when I tried to use it, I often got results I didn't expect. Next time I'll find myself some time to play Factorio, I'll give it a try. It should ease the "I see my mistake as soon as I make it" use case.

I'm still convinced the feature I described would make the game experience smoother and more enjoyable.
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