Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

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Should belts use energy (also Offshore Pumps, etc...)

Yes, to increase immersion.
26
11%
Yes, cause it increases game-play.
35
15%
No, cause game-play is more important than immersion.
65
29%
No, to avoid breaking the game.
30
13%
I don't know or don't have an opinion.
3
1%
Yes, if it is optional/can be turned on/off.
68
30%
 
Total votes: 227

Koub
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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by Koub » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:18 am

What future content or content enhancement are you willing to trade for this feature to show up ? the devs have limited time to add content and debug. So you'll have to sacrifice some anticipated feature to get this one instead.
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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by Neotix » Fri Mar 25, 2016 7:31 am

Offshore Pumps could use fuel and it wouldn't be game breaking change.
Splitter could require power to work with native speed (and show low energy icon if no powered).
About belts I'm not so sure. From one point of view, it could work like with splitter (require power for native speed) but from another point it add another level of micromanagement. It will be hard to see if some pieces don't have power, localize problem with speed etc.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by indjev99 » Sat Mar 26, 2016 2:03 pm

MeduSalem wrote:I think there should be something like an "Expert Mode"

"Regular Mode" or "Beginners Mode" would be like Factorio is currently. With all the "space magic" going on, like belts moving on their own and offshore pumps not requiring some kind of fuel, etc..

"Expert Mode" could be selected during the game start as a difficulty preset where everything has upkeep that currently doesn't have any upkeep. It basically is optionally and for people who know the game pretty well to deal with the addititional difficulty, for people who want to punish themselves even further.


Therefore I vote for "yes, if it is in an expert mode"... because I don't know if all the new players would like it if everything gets 2 times as hard. I mean, yeah I would like it that way but that's also because I already know the game. xD
After having read all the posts here, I think that this is the most reasonable solution.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by Grey » Sun Mar 27, 2016 4:53 pm

Right now i would also go with that hardcore mode. Not sure if it would be easy to make an "Hardcore" mod actually.

My idea regarding the belts: What about an "belt overclocker". A Building which would Speed up the belts. The amount of power consumed rises with the amounts of belts. So no area covered, global effect.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by DrEthan » Wed Apr 06, 2016 6:26 pm

Koub wrote:What future content or content enhancement are you willing to trade for this feature to show up ? the devs have limited time to add content and debug. So you'll have to sacrifice some anticipated feature to get this one instead.
why would they have limited time? unless they are planning to not develop anymore after a certain date they could keep adding content for quite a long time

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by Koub » Wed Apr 06, 2016 8:20 pm

At one moment, when sales won't be able to get enough income for the devs to be paid (because there won't be people willing to buy Factorio forever), the time will prove to be limited. Time is always limited in some manner. And as I don't know when that time will come, or the time at which the devs will decide to stop working on Factorio, I prefer the dev time spend on features I find more important to the game.
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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by zytukin » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:59 am

I like the idea, but one question comes to mind.

If belts needed power, how would a factory run before electricity was developed?
It might hurt the early game for new players if they had to transport everything by hand before making power.


And, the current Off Shore pump can't use power as there would be no way to power them to supply water to the first steam engine you build.
A possible solution to this would be make the current pump use power and add a 2nd slower pump that doesn't need power.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by zytukin » Thu Apr 07, 2016 11:36 am

Hexicube wrote:
DrEthan wrote:- Should a belt continue moving after a power cut, since it has inertia (which causes a metric ton of calculations since items add to inertia)?

The last one in particular is the issue, because if belts require power I'd wonder why they immediately stop when they lose power. If the expectation for realism is set that high, I'd be less immersed than I am currently if that expectation is not always met, which would be the case with belts instantly stopping. This also only accounts for belts, there's several other issues with realism that would break me out of it should such a change come into play, all because of a set expectation.
Having worked in shipping warehouses most of the past 15 years, I can honestly say that the conveyors in the game are already *far* from realistic.
They simply would not work the slightest bit in a real world environment.
In a real world application, the min two of the games conveyors came together would be a huge disaster as the items collided and pushed each other off the sides of the conveyor. Even if it had walls on the sides. The first two items would collide and block the path, then the long line of stuff behind would push against it and once force exceeded gravity stuff would lift, pile, and fall over the sides off the conveyor. This could *also* happen if stuff backed up on a single conveyor if it kept running when items weren't moving like it does in the game.

In real life, conveyors work like signaled rail tracks in the game with trains representing the items carried. Splits and intersections are also treated the same way as signaled rail tracks in the game.
- Real world conveyors have electronic sensors and are divided into sections the same way the game's rail tracks are divided into blocks. A section will stop running if the items can't enter the next section.
- Places where conveyors come together have the conveyors taking turns putting items on the destination conveyor and neither would run if the destination was full.
- Places where conveyors split wont have the splitter run if one of the destinations is full and the conveyor feeding the splitter will also stop (yes, there are real life 'smart splitters' that sort items by final destination off a single conveyor)
- To facilitate all the above and make it all work properly, conveyors also have automatic brakes to prevent movement when power is cut to the electric engine, otherwise inertia would result in items moving when they need to stop, like in an intersection where two belts come together, or where an inclined conveyor stops because the destination is full.
- In real life, if a conveyor continued to run when the items weren't moving and the pile up and falling off the conveyor didn't happen, then there would be resistance between the stopped items and the moving surface of the conveyor resulting in excessive strain on the motor and other driveline components resulting in faster wearing and breaking of the engine, gearing, or belts powering the conveyor. This resistance and strain would increase with conveyor length and easily prove fatal to a driveline component.

-In real life, even when the automatic brake fails, the inertia can be measured in feet which wouldn't be too much an issue if not programmed into the game (it would be what, one tile?). They really don't have much inertia when power is cut to them, even when carrying over a thousand pounds. And the tiny amount of inertia that exists generally gets smaller with length.

All the rollers offer resistance, turns offer resistance, the items suffer from air resistance.
If the belt surface is rubber, the rubber flexing offers resistance and being a supple material offers resistance against the rollers.
It's obvious that the in-game belts aren't rubber, they appear to be made of individual pieces that overlap and interlock, there would be resistance between all these pieces as well.

So, in the end, would it really be so bad if the game didn't offer this 1or 2 tile slowdown of items?

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by bobucles » Thu Apr 07, 2016 12:51 pm

The first two items would collide and block the path, then the long line of stuff behind would push against it and once force exceeded gravity stuff would lift, pile, and fall over the sides off the conveyor.
Wheeled belts have less traction, but they don't have this problem. Once items hit something solid they simply roll on the belt.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by zytukin » Thu Apr 07, 2016 1:26 pm

bobucles wrote:
The first two items would collide and block the path, then the long line of stuff behind would push against it and once force exceeded gravity stuff would lift, pile, and fall over the sides off the conveyor.
Wheeled belts have less traction, but they don't have this problem. Once items hit something solid they simply roll on the belt.
You mean conveyors like these?
Image


I have seen it happen on both rubber surface conveyors AND conveyors simply made of metal rollers like in the picture.
Several factors at play:
Speed of items when impact occurs - faster moving items will be more likely to knock other items off
Weight of the items - a heavier item will more likely knock off a light item, a heavier item will have more friction against the rollers then a light item
Size and Shape of items - ie, square vs round. Two square items could catch each other and jam easier then 2 round items.
It also depends on the items themselves, the levels of friction aren't exactly the same between metal and all other objects.


A fast heavy item will more easily knock off a light item then a light slow item will a heavy item.
There is friction between metal rollers and items, get enough items backed up and enough rollers trying to push, and it can happen (hence why I said "once force exceeds gravity"). Both item weight and belt length come into play. Doesn't matter if all the items are the same or different.

besides, the game doesn't have conveyors made of separate rollers.

Items maintaining their side of the belt is a whole different issue as well. lol. Unless they were *perfectly* lined up, they wouldn't stay in a straight line upon a forward impact and backing up. Even if we assume they are in a perfect line due to inserters and splitters, belts can turn so items wont stay in a perfect line around a bend if a backup occures. A lateral impact would easily shift an item to the opposite side of the belt that the impact occurred on.


BTW, in that picture, those black things along the side of the conveyor are electric eyes to detect where items are. Each eye controls whether the set of rollers before it is running, similar to signals in the games rail lines. It isn't a perfect system though, while it does help prevent jams, when it comes time for the computer controller to say 'empty this belt' instead of 'pause the flow and let items build up', the belt will try to empty and if the items can't go anywhere you could have 50 yards of rollers all pushing against the jam. Assuming that each roller is 2" in diameter and spaced 1" apart, that is 600 rollers trying to move items.

If we assume that the game tiles are 1 meter, a 50 yard conveyor would only be 45.7 tiles long.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by DrEthan » Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:40 pm

Koub wrote: I prefer the dev time spend on features I find more important to the game.
so just because you dont find this an important feature for yourself you are willing to make other people suffer because of your selfish desires?

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by mooklepticon » Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:12 pm

zytukin wrote:I like the idea, but one question comes to mind.

If belts needed power, how would a factory run before electricity was developed?
It might hurt the early game for new players if they had to transport everything by hand before making power.
Create another power generator. Stirling Generatorsare efficient, but expensive, heavy, huge and low-power. They can't compete with internal combustion for mobile stuff and can't compete with with steam for power throughput. (Of course, the factorio solution is just build more!)

Technically, the car, tank and train have Stirling engines. They can consume any combustible material.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by zytukin » Thu Apr 07, 2016 5:06 pm

mooklepticon wrote:
zytukin wrote:I like the idea, but one question comes to mind.

If belts needed power, how would a factory run before electricity was developed?
It might hurt the early game for new players if they had to transport everything by hand before making power.
Create another power generator. Stirling Generatorsare efficient, but expensive, heavy, huge and low-power. They can't compete with internal combustion for mobile stuff and can't compete with with steam for power throughput. (Of course, the factorio solution is just build more!)

Technically, the car, tank and train have Stirling engines. They can consume any combustible material.
It is a good idea, but players would still have to move everything around by hand to craft all the stuff needed to build the stirling generator to provide power for the first conveyors. Manually unstocking everything from buildings as they generate and manually adding everything each building needs. Would be a real pain.

Unless it could be simple enough to be made with just a few iron plates and possibly with gears.
Otherwise it's a lot of running coal and iron ore around by hand.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by mooklepticon » Fri Apr 08, 2016 2:36 pm

zytukin wrote:Unless it could be simple enough to be made with just a few iron plates and possibly with gears.
Otherwise it's a lot of running coal and iron ore around by hand.

Stirling generators are really simple, usually. The toy ones are crazy simple. You can't get a toy internal combustion or steam engine that simple. Industrial stirling generators are big. In game, I'd make them 2x2 or 3x3 and take a stone furnace or two. They wouldn't have much power output, but would burn efficiently. Steam and Solar would still produce more energy per square foot. (Solar makes 60kw in a 3x3, so perhaps stirling could make 40kw in a 3x3?) Offers a stepping stone before steam, doesn't require ponds, but can't produce near the voltage needed to run a huge base.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by Brambor » Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:43 pm

Hi I was off the internet recently and I have suggestion and reasons why and how the belt consumption could work:
‘free transport belt‘ (free/shitty/basic/you name it/(burner?))
We use our belts all the time, it’s a free energy-type entity and I think that this is wrong.
What I suggest is to make the belts consume power and to make new really shitty belt that doesn’t need any power (or maybe consumes coal) (or maybe don’t make it at all – just make the current consume energy).
Let’s cut the cake right away;
Balance:
‘shitty/burner transport belt’
  • The basic idea is to have really slow belt, so it would be able to transport only (get fully compressed by) the output of burner miner, which is twice as slow as electric mining drill
    Throughput: [TODO: FILL]
    Consumption: [TODO: FILL]
    Ability to consume fuel that it is transporting
    No splitter and underground versions
‘yellow’
  • Throughput: 40/3 (as before)
    Consumption: I was thinking something like 500W per piece, maybe it should start at 10W as non-active or non-transporting (=drain) and then increase its consumption by the number of items it’s transporting
‘red’ and ‘blue’ should be the same, maybe they should consume little bit more than twice/triple the yellow does, because inserter takes 14kW and fast takes like 40kW (I think it is good idea with inserters AND transport belts to increase consumption more than twice)
Why do I think this would improve the gameplay?
  • Making transport belts consume something makes them expensive over time which changes things like main busses (Yes, they will be nerfed a bit by that! ) and, mainly, transportation over long distances. It will be better, actually even more efficient, to build a train transporting resources from mining outpost to smelting area or from smelting to crafting area or research area because it would consume quite a bit of power via transport belts (which it is meant to be I think). That also includes that making tetrabelt for such a distance will be much more expensive than tribelt so (at least) players will try to compress to less number of belts and yellow belts to consume less power, maybe even sacrificing that ‘one extra iron’ to fully compressed belts.
    I think it doesn’t make sense to have a free energy entity (another is the offshore pump) and replacing them like this adds Factorio more realistic feeling.
    Challenge (=nerf)
Now there are two or three things to address.
One is performance; this might seem like a think but the performance should be reduced by grouping all continuous (belts + underground belts + splitters) into one group which consume energy as a whole and remembering what does it hold and inserter and player would tell them what did they took rather than checking each tick what is the content of each belt/splitter/underground belt.
The other is powering the thing, I would say that they would be in groups (as described in Performance above) and this whole group needs to be connected to power just by one of its pieces; same with ‘shitty belts’; they would be one consumer together and you would need to put coal in only one of them to make it move OR (probably not) add an entity for all burner things that would make all burner things modular and able to accept this module which gives it the ability to accept fuel and power itself by the burned energy
Changing the recipe for yellow red and blue; This is only optional since the belt is one of the key items. My suggestion is to add 1 ‘Copper wire’ to the recipe. The reason is that this would make more sense since there is a lot of power going through these belts, since they need this power to operate. The consequences are that transport belt would now require not only iron but copper as well as well as for automatization you would need three factories (one more for copper wires) and more belts (one more for copper) to make it work. I do think it is good idea to add complexity for the senior players however it might be better for the newcomers to keep this recipe simpler to make.

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Electric Belt idea

Post by zytukin » Sun Jun 04, 2017 11:11 pm

Keep the current yellow unpowered belt for starting a factory, then add a variable speed electric belt and a 1 tile electric motor.

Electric motors placed on the righthand side of the conveyor seperate it into blocks like signals do for rails and you just click on a conveyor block and set the speed. If no motor is presant on the conveyor, then it will not move. When new conveyors are being placed, the block defaults to the speed of the block it is connecting to. If no such block exists, it defaults to stopped until you either set it or you place enough to connect it to an existing running block.

The motor pieces need a power connection and use a variable power based on the total speed setting of the two blocks it seperates and the number of conveyor pieces in those two blocks. Perhaps Total Speed x # of conveyor pieces = kw used. If no power connection is made then the two blocks it seperates will not run. Like with rails, no limit to block size so you wont have to worry about power on long stretches of conveyor. No block size limit also means you would be able to power all the connected belts in your factory with just one motor. More motors are only needed if you want to make different blocks with different speeds.

Add a research for the engines to speed them up. They start out with a 1.5x yellow belt max speed and each level of research adds 0.5x yellow belt speed to the max that you can set.

Splitters do not seperate blocks, like a rail intersection doesn't seperate rail blocks. The blocks continue from engine to engine or engine to end of conveyor and are only measured in a forward/reverse direction so side loading one conveyor from another will not combine the blocks. If you connect one running block to another block running in the same direction then the new larger block defaults to an average speed of the two. Connecting a running block to a stopped block will make the new larger block go the speed of the running block. If you connect two blocks end to end, they remain seperate blocks until you chage the direction of one side so they match.

This could also be expanded to allow circuit networks to adjust the speed of conveyors and even direction.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by Koub » Mon Jun 05, 2017 4:29 am

[Koub] Merged into older topic/poll about powered belts.

Also remember that :
Rseding91 wrote:No.

It wouldn't make the game any more fun and would add a massive drain on performance.
Source : viewtopic.php?f=6&t=43221
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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by buckplug » Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:32 pm

If belts did require power, it would be good if they also conducted electricity. Otherwise it would be too tedious to be immersive.

Also, why can't all buildings be conducting?

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by sarcolopter » Fri Oct 20, 2017 7:47 pm

Option: allow belts (and ubelts and splits) to transfer power to adjacent belts, ubelts, splitters (from any tier to any tier), but not to other entities. So you'd still have to supply more and more power as your number of belts increased, but you'd only have to "hook in" at one point in any given contiguous belt network. Would also allow to treat power demand of a network as a single, flat number (belts would have constant power drain, so it would only have to update when belts are added / removed), keeping performance cost down.

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Re: Poll: Should belts use energy (and Offshore Pumps etc...)

Post by Chthon » Thu May 24, 2018 4:14 am

This is an old topic, but I would like to point out that a Twitch streamer named DarkTwinge has been playing Beltless Factorio, using inserters instead of belts. His power consumption is a little high, but not nearly as high as I've heard arguments in the past against this.

I still vote that powered belts should never be required, so players can choose, but any arguments that it makes the power game difficult aren't valid at this juncture. It simply will help discourage long belts across the landscape that some people swear by, instead replacing them with trains.

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