If you want combat to be more engaging then biters should be given a new set of incisors, perhaps even new forms of biters (ones which could slow the player down, launch huge acid bombs from nearby biter bases, burrowing biters that would try and surround you, just more variety than the current 'I'm gonna suicide run' or 'I'll stand here and spit poison').
But it has to been mentioned that some people may not find it appealing to have more combat in Factorio, a point raised already in this thread. And I have to point out that the beauty of Factorio isn't in combat but in the automation aspect of the game. This is what pulled me in (and I bet you too!).
A hands off RTS system is something I could see working (or at least seems to fit better within the Factorio ethos of automation) However.
This type of idea I find most appealing, and could tie in well with other topics being proposed for development.Kokelvogel wrote:Personally, I would love to get an automated system for fighting (on top of the existing system).
This can be seen as a logical consequence of not doing things manually.
Let us have machines we can send out, e.g. by specifying the area of attack on the main map, and do our dirty work for us. If we send too few, they get killed and our base gets massively attacked by incensed aliens.
My reasoning behind this is that apart from having to cut down trees, having to go out and get alien science is - to me - a boring chore. I am not advocating the abolishment of hands on combat as I see that many seem to like it ... I'd just like to have an alternative.
- New tier of heavy inserters, conveyor belts. Specifically for heavy construction.
- New Item - Containers, which have to be filled with 1 type of resource (iron or copper plate, batteries etc)
- Containers could then be moved around on the upgraded belts (containers are too big to be moved by logistic bots or the player)
- New item - robot assembly - Big factory building that produces various robots (could you design the robots? swap out modules so you could upgrade a shield array, or to give more firepower or speed, +1 shield module or +1 damage, not room for both)
- Robot assembly uses the containers to build robots (war tanks, I guess) Different types of robot need different base resource requirements.
I could see the above playing out as some sort of war of attrition, the robot factory makes robots and the biters swarm, and they grind on one another until either the factory is destroyed or your robots succeed in killing the biter base. Perhaps you could even have pre made big biter bases that can only be tickled by the players weapons, yet over a little time robots could assault it, and grab a super alien artifact, a one per base item that could be used to boost research or unlock specific items (you want your new upgraded armor suit - but you need a single super alien artifact to make it.. and the only way to get one is to take down a big big biter base with robots). You could even introduce robots by starting out by making small fast moving robots which would look for these semi-rare big bases, and then evolve the concept to include assault robots.
This sort of automated RTS I feel could fit in well with Factorio. It's adds more layers of tech to research and something to do in the end game other than just build bigger. It's also gives a reason to use conveyor belts in the end game, which is mostly negated by the use of logistic robots. You also have an additional supply chain to worry about, either feeding the robot factory goodies locally, or ensuring the factory is well supplied if away from your main base - if the factory stops producing robots it'll get over run. You could tier the robots too, additional research could improve their speed or hit points, any modifier you wish. +1 damage, +1 speed, +1 shield and so on.