Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Regular reports on Factorio development.
Illiander42
Inserter
Inserter
Posts: 42
Joined: Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:01 am
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by Illiander42 » Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:52 pm

dzaima wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:44 pm
Adamo wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 8:51 pm
dzaima wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 7:32 pm
Ok, new players might find a use for it, but hoping people make something potentially useless & easily dismissable just because they're forced to spend a resource isn't good game design. I usually have enough coal to last me until I get solars & electric furnaces (& nuclear fuel for trains further on) for me to not need to bother, and many might feel the same, forgetting the recipe even exists. And replacing coal usage with solid fuel (without breaking things that need just coal) is another bump in the oil setup process that one would need to do before being able to actually get anything out of it.
Solid fuel is very useful. Coal should be saved for products you need later, like plastic and explosives. Notice solid fuel has, what, about 4 times as much energy as coal does, right? Whereas you need the coal to make bulk products. So I'll tell you what I tell any of the new players on my network: you're being a bit silly if you're still burning that coal for power. :)
My point was that the time from making solid fuel to not needing burnable fuel at all is too small to benefit from setting it up (in factorio's scales; at least for me, setting up a new coal patch later is simpler than extending oil & its processing sooner), and, as it stands, in the tech tree it looks like a byproduct or something optional rather than being the solution to light & heavy oil (in my experience). If it were more emphasized somehow (honestly, before this FFF I hadn't actually considered making solid fuel early, only having built it when my coal started running out, but then again, setting that up would be another wall in getting oil working as if there weren't enough) maybe it'd be more of a solution.
Also, burnable fuel backs up very quickly if there isn't a lot using it, making some scales of oil production still back up (haven't tested what those are however).
How fast do you go from the end of green science to electric smelters and nuclear/solar power?

Because I am nowhere near fast enough to not use solid fuel on my "burnables" belt.

Serenity
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 581
Joined: Fri Apr 15, 2016 6:16 am
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by Serenity » Tue Jul 23, 2019 10:10 pm

I'm by no means a fast player. But I was always fine with doing maybe 80-160 steam engines running on coal. That's 72-144MW. And then putting done some solar. I keep using steel furnaces for a long time. So I don't have excessive power needs from electric smelters.

Maybe it's still residual PTSD from my first game where using solid fuel sucked down all my oil. But that was before the oil rebalance. Now it's a lot more plentiful.
Maybe not having much coal would be different, but I don't play with super low resources. I rather have substantial patches far apart

dzaima
Burner Inserter
Burner Inserter
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2014 8:14 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by dzaima » Tue Jul 23, 2019 10:22 pm

Adamo wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:47 pm
dzaima wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:44 pm
My point was that the time from making solid fuel to not needing burnable fuel at all is too small to benefit from setting it up (in factorio's scales; at least for me, setting up a new coal patch later is simpler than extending oil & its processing sooner), and, as it stands, in the tech tree it looks like a byproduct or something optional rather than being the solution to light & heavy oil (in my experience). If it were more emphasized somehow (honestly, before this FFF I hadn't actually considered making solid fuel early, only having built it when my coal started running out, but then again, setting that up would be another wall in getting oil working as if there weren't enough) maybe it'd be more of a solution.
Also, burnable fuel backs up very quickly if there isn't a lot using it, making some scales of oil production still back up.
I get your point, but I think you're ignoring that it is much more efficient to burn solid fuel instead of coal for power. Plus the fact that solid fuel is technically infinite, since oil is infinite. That is supposed to be a big hint, and maybe you're demonstrating for us that some players don't really make that connection, which is an important point. I am suggesting to you now to rethink this! Use the solid fuel. And perhaps part of the solution to this needs to be to help players come to this conclusion.
Yeah, I realized the power of solid fuel in that post, it'll probably somewhat become a part of my early-game playing, and, indeed, with the old recipe, it'd be nice to get told that solid fuel is more than a replacement for coal, if/when that's needed.
Now that I think of it, I don't think the game mentions anywhere that crude oil is infinite though? I wouldn't be surprised if many assumed oil might deplete faster than ores, whereas it's quite the opposite. Lots of communication issues around oil (ha ha ha..)

Illiander42 wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:52 pm
dzaima wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:44 pm
...
How fast do you go from the end of green science to electric smelters and nuclear/solar power?

Because I am nowhere near fast enough to not use solid fuel on my "burnables" belt.
There's a reason I said "in factorio's scales" - anywhere between 1 and 100 hours works (not to say I'm near either of those) if there are enough coal patches near the starting area, and once coal starts running low, it might be hard to remember that more coal mining isn't the only fix, let alone think of using light/heavy oil to make solid fuel while coal is working just fine (which I hopefully now will remember).

kbk
Inserter
Inserter
Posts: 47
Joined: Sun Jun 30, 2019 2:21 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by kbk » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:01 pm

Dropping in to insert my 0,05P on the upcoming Basic oil processing recipe change (which I happen to find imprecise and overdone although I'm generally in favor of the direction).

A 500+ish hours ~2 year factorian myself, I spent a day googling and self-educating on the topic and reading this thread. I came up with the following proposals:
  • Heavy oil as a product of Basic oil processing must be retained (because what happens at the refinery at this stage is separation and the refinery is indeed useless when oil processing becomes so basic that there is no separation at all)
  • A 'Flare stack' mode of operation could indeed be added to the Oil refinery at Basic processing. There can be two uses for this: first recipe just to burn out the excess fossils relatively fast (and a lot of pollution), second recipe to burn them to make steam for power (more efficently than at Burners, much less so than at Heat exchanger). This definitely should communicate the refinery "production halts when output clogs" thing very clear in early midgame. Produced Steam might also become used in Coal liquefaction later on
  • All the Light oil recipes should be moved to Advanced oil processing (as it is with cracking)
  • There might be some 'backwards cracking' recipes later on for Plants or Refineries similar to IRL process called alkylation at or after the Advanced oil processing tech. E.g. PG + Sulfuric acid —> Less PG + some Light oil + a bit Sulfur (or a bit Sulfuric acid). These could allow for more precise control over oil products later on, like rather simplistic circuit balancing for your oil rigs or creation of separate lines for Rocket fuel elsewhere on the base
  • Solid fuel should remain as the Blue science component, but Solid fuel yield ratios should be tweaked so that heavier oil yields most Solid fuel (more like IRL). This is to encourage use of Heavy oil through Solid fuel smelting and power generation in the early midgame
  • Rocket fuel should be made almost entirely of Light oil (also more like IRL). This is to provide the much needed incentive to use the light oil at all
  • Flametrower tech might be rebalanced to make damage pattern depend on fuel type — rather than damage itself (i.e. lighter oil fraction use as a fuel in turret leads to more on-impact damage and less AoE and DoT yield and vice versa). As part of this, two recipes for handheld FT ammo: FFF proposed — for more xenocide, current (renamed to "Napalm") — for more bushburning, crowd control and damage on structures. All this is also to spur the player just a bit into use of Light (and Heavy) oil
  • Refined concrete might be crafted with the use of Lubricant and might be used in Silo/Reactor construction. This is to provide additional stimuli to use Heavy oil and to prolong the Steam/Solar power supply era a tiny bit


IMO all of these would ease the usage of oil tech while providing more oil spending flexibility and balance at the same time on the whole span of midgame situations. Here every oil fraction is used mostly for each own set of relevant subproducts and at the same time is fully spendable right from the start and fully interchangeable through cracking/alkylation later on. Any kind of overproduction is thus solvable from the very start of the oil tech and up to the game end with somewhat gradually increasing efficiency and complexity. Which is better. Or so I think :lol:

Thanks for reading.

Cumva
Manual Inserter
Manual Inserter
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:13 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by Cumva » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:21 pm

I don't like the oil change.
As previously said, this solution is much much better: makes everything simpler (not too much), while pushes you (one oil at a time!) towards understanding of oils role and usage.
Zaflis wrote:
Fri Jul 19, 2019 5:25 pm
I would be ok with the oil change. There's also one compromise i could think of that Basic Oil Processing would output light oil as well as petroleum. It would better prepare for the transition to advanced oil and let you use the right oil for solid fuel.

Adamo
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 434
Joined: Sat May 24, 2014 7:00 am
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by Adamo » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:24 pm

kbk wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:01 pm
A 500+ish hours ~2 year factorian myself, I spent a day googling and self-educating on the topic and reading this thread. I came up with the following proposals:
I think you have well-thought-out ideas here. I came to add my thoughts about something else, but I wanted to say that. Maybe the best proposal on here, although, I think the idea in its totality may require more additional content than is on the table at the moment.

I know I've talked a lot, because I feel very strongly about this, but I have made a strong effort to only add new information when I post. I've just now (over the past few weeks) run a new map up through basic oil and to blue flasks for science. Plus, over the past few weeks I've been helping a friend learn factorio, and he likes it, but he's struggled with these issues, so I think there are some relevant lessons to share.

No advanced refining, yet, on this new map. I've been playing the game forever, so I didn't even think twice about how to setup my early refineries. I just did this, and I thought about it, and realized I always just do this, until I have beacons:
fuel.png
fuel.png (921.12 KiB) Viewed 1271 times
refinery.png
refinery.png (863.99 KiB) Viewed 1271 times
If every new player was able to do that, half the problem would be solved, because I think the pipe routing issue muddies up figuring out what's happening with the multiple products, but you can't really separate these lessons.

"Hello, new player. Welcome to fluid in factorio. Fluid is funny because there's a lot of it and it gets split up in different ways and any branch of the fluid being backed up will cause the entire system to back up."

This is what I had to tell my friend for him to start to "get it" when it comes to having multiple fluid products. Now he thinks it's cool. There's nothing wrong with having three products. We want that because it's interesting. Now he just needs help with learning to pipe. Knowing how to effectively distribute them out of the holes of the refinery in a way that always works is not so clear, but in the end only really suggests one or perhaps a small handful of possible solutions. So why are we making players discover that solution every time they start the game?

We could append my first quote with, "here are some examples of working pipes."

My friend has been "stuck" and has asked for me to help him get past certain stages. So, I'm trying to quantify: what is he really getting stuck on? One of the first places he got stuck was just learning how to properly use all the logistics stuff: underground belts, etc. We were playing multiplayer, and he had to step away, and while he did, I left a bunch of examples of how to use belts in different ways near his player. When he got back, I didn't have to explain anything to him: he was like "oooh, now I get it". Once he knew how to use the belts, the rest of the game fell into line: he naturally figured out how to USE the items once he got them somewhere with the belts. He needed to see examples of how to move things around.

I'm confident a similar thing with pipes will work (he asked me for more help today, so we'll see where he's stuck -- maybe on trying to make blue flasks for science, maybe on piping). As experienced players, we've learned all of these effective ways of moving things around, and filed them away in our brains, and that's what really enables us to "think big" and figure things out. We can read the board, see what's moving and where, and know what's going on from that. This is what we need to help players learn to do, and I strongly feel, as someone who has taught factorio players and as someone who has a strong background in education, that the way to do this is through visual example of working flows, probably both examples of simple flows and efficient flows, depending on the level of the player.

I haven't looked into if tutorials can be modded. I know scenarios can be modded in terms of control scripts, but not sure how that's related. Anyone know about that?

n8crafter
Manual Inserter
Manual Inserter
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 21, 2019 11:35 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by n8crafter » Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:31 am

meganothing wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:01 pm

I stand corrected. Yes, lots of games do this. In a small way "service games" already. But the important thing I wanted to point out: Those released games surely do not break backwards compatibility if it isn't absolutely unavoidable. A released game should have higher standards after all.
minecraft has broken backwards compatibility with every other update they release, dude...

IronCartographer
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 341
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2016 2:07 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by IronCartographer » Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:57 am

This mod represents the collective discussion and input of many people. It makes surprisingly few direct changes, considering its effects on the learning process through obtaining oil and chemical science in this manner.

Please take a look at how the in-game tech tree is affected, and what a new player would experience while going through it. There are techs unlocked post-blue with only red+green science costs that need to be rebalanced, but otherwise it should be fairly comprehensive.This is now an optional behavior from a mod setting for reasons explained in the detailed description. Very few techs are changed by default.

https://mods.factorio.com/mod/Heavy_Oil ... al_Science
Image
Last edited by IronCartographer on Thu Jul 25, 2019 3:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

FuryoftheStars
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 389
Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2017 2:01 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by FuryoftheStars » Wed Jul 24, 2019 2:46 am

Adamo wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:32 pm
FuryoftheStars wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:10 pm
My thoughts on if the sulfur process was moved from PG to the oils, then it should probably use both of the oils, but then I think we'd still want water input, too (? At least in the hydrodesulfurization process, Hydrogen is needed, which we could theoretically get from water), but I don't think we have anything that takes 3 liquid inputs.

So the other option I see offhand is have two different sulfur processes, one HO/water and one LO/water (this way the player can choose which one to draw down on).

You're more knowledgeable than me on this subject... do you have any input?
My first advice is to not try to over-complicate the final product, of course. You are definitely on the right track. In real life, sulfur is mostly obtained by extracting it in the form of hydrogen sulfide from "sour" natural gas, and also from refined petroleum (but not typically from petroleum gas), but there it's mostly just a waste product that needs to be removed and hopefully the refinery can make a little cash on it. This is done by hydrodesulfurization, and so I agree this is the process to model in the game: this is the process of removing hydrogen sulfide from the petroleum (or natural gas or whatever). In the real world, there is then another process (called the Claus Process) to turn the hydrogen sulfide into elemental sulfur, and I think that's the part we should ignore in the game. So, to me, we're on the same path, here. For hydrodesulfurization, the heavier oils should be more "fertile", if you take my meaning, and it sounds like we think the same, there, too. We don't actually need *water* for hydrodesulfurization, though: what we need is hydrogen gas and heat. However, for simplification, in all of the chemical reactions I've added to the game in my chemistry mod that call for either hydrogen gas or oxygen gas, I just use water or steam and imagine the chemical plant is capable of producing the hydrogen/oxygen gasses from the water.

This is a long-winded way of saying that I agree with you, yes.
Yeah, sorry, I usually try starting from the realistic end and work my way down until it fits. :)

That said: https://mods.factorio.com/mod/SulfurFromOils (I wish I had a more conducive environment for making mods... I could've had this done hours ago.)

kbk wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:01 pm
Dropping in to insert my 0,05P on the upcoming Basic oil processing recipe change (which I happen to find imprecise and overdone although I'm generally in favor of the direction).

A 500+ish hours ~2 year factorian myself, I spent a day googling and self-educating on the topic and reading this thread. I came up with the following proposals:
  • Heavy oil as a product of Basic oil processing must be retained (because what happens at the refinery at this stage is separation and the refinery is indeed useless when oil processing becomes so basic that there is no separation at all)
  • A 'Flare stack' mode of operation could indeed be added to the Oil refinery at Basic processing. There can be two uses for this: first recipe just to burn out the excess fossils relatively fast (and a lot of pollution), second recipe to burn them to make steam for power (more efficently than at Burners, much less so than at Heat exchanger). This definitely should communicate the refinery "production halts when output clogs" thing very clear in early midgame. Produced Steam might also become used in Coal liquefaction later on
  • All the Light oil recipes should be moved to Advanced oil processing (as it is with cracking)
  • There might be some 'backwards cracking' recipes later on for Plants or Refineries similar to IRL process called alkylation at or after the Advanced oil processing tech. E.g. PG + Sulfuric acid —> Less PG + some Light oil + a bit Sulfur (or a bit Sulfuric acid). These could allow for more precise control over oil products later on, like rather simplistic circuit balancing for your oil rigs or creation of separate lines for Rocket fuel elsewhere on the base
  • Solid fuel should remain as the Blue science component, but Solid fuel yield ratios should be tweaked so that heavier oil yields most Solid fuel (more like IRL). This is to encourage use of Heavy oil through Solid fuel smelting and power generation in the early midgame
  • Rocket fuel should be made almost entirely of Light oil (also more like IRL). This is to provide the much needed incentive to use the light oil at all
  • Flametrower tech might be rebalanced to make damage pattern depend on fuel type — rather than damage itself (i.e. lighter oil fraction use as a fuel in turret leads to more on-impact damage and less AoE and DoT yield and vice versa). As part of this, two recipes for handheld FT ammo: FFF proposed — for more xenocide, current (renamed to "Napalm") — for more bushburning, crowd control and damage on structures. All this is also to spur the player just a bit into use of Light (and Heavy) oil
  • Refined concrete might be crafted with the use of Lubricant and might be used in Silo/Reactor construction. This is to provide additional stimuli to use Heavy oil and to prolong the Steam/Solar power supply era a tiny bit


IMO all of these would ease the usage of oil tech while providing more oil spending flexibility and balance at the same time on the whole span of midgame situations. Here every oil fraction is used mostly for each own set of relevant subproducts and at the same time is fully spendable right from the start and fully interchangeable through cracking/alkylation later on. Any kind of overproduction is thus solvable from the very start of the oil tech and up to the game end with somewhat gradually increasing efficiency and complexity. Which is better. Or so I think :lol:

Thanks for reading.
I think most of this could be modded in to test with....

IronCartographer wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:57 am
This mod represents the collective discussion and input of many people. It makes surprisingly few direct changes, considering its effects on the learning process through obtaining oil and chemical science in this manner.

Please take a look at how the in-game tech tree is affected, and what a new player would experience while going through it. There are techs unlocked post-blue with only red+green science costs that need to be rebalanced, but otherwise it should be fairly comprehensive.

https://mods.factorio.com/mod/Heavy_Oil ... al_Science
Image
Wouldn't this delay sulfur processing and, by extension, batteries (accumulators, bots) and explosives?

IronCartographer
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 341
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2016 2:07 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by IronCartographer » Wed Jul 24, 2019 3:26 am

FuryoftheStars wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 2:46 am
Wouldn't this delay sulfur processing and, by extension, batteries (accumulators, bots) and explosives?
It spreads out the oil learning and building process, yes. While it does reduce choice (enhancing focus on the fundamentals of basic fluid handling) at first, unlocking blue science happens quickly and advanced oil is displayed prominently.

Countless new players have rushed to exciting new technologies while disregarding advanced oil processing until it's too late. These changes push back the complications just long enough so that when they hit the full complexity increase of oil they will still be unlocking new things--driving production and scaling of their oil industry in order to try out the new toys.

It's an inversion of the philosophy of forcing advanced circuits through science directly, but one that just might work as there are so many other reasons to want them in abundance.

User avatar
MrGrim
Fast Inserter
Fast Inserter
Posts: 210
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2016 7:58 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by MrGrim » Wed Jul 24, 2019 3:30 am

IronCartographer wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:57 am
This mod represents the collective discussion and input of many people. It makes surprisingly few direct changes, considering its effects on the learning process through obtaining oil and chemical science in this manner.

Please take a look at how the in-game tech tree is affected, and what a new player would experience while going through it. There are techs unlocked post-blue with only red+green science costs that need to be rebalanced, but otherwise it should be fairly comprehensive.

https://mods.factorio.com/mod/Heavy_Oil ... al_Science
Image
This is really freaking great! It expands on Hexicube's original proposal addressing what few dev concerns we've heard. A heavy oil centric blue science is a really great idea. I analyzed this from an expensive mode perspective, and the total raw resource cost of science is barely changed. Also, the recipe itself is very interesting.

I made this build in my test world. I modified a spaghettified 6 science "block" from the original recipe to the one IronCartographer proposed, and it was quite some fun getting it in there!

Image

So you don't require cracking to get blue science, but to utilize a lot of the technologies in blue science you'll be highly encouraged to learn it for red circuits, and you don't need to deal with multiple output recipes until you are ready to.

This is fantastic work and a great example of what the community can come up with when people collaborate. I just hopes it's not too late! Please give this a good hard look, devs!

Roxor128
Fast Inserter
Fast Inserter
Posts: 142
Joined: Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:48 am
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by Roxor128 » Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:35 am

I don't think the changes to Basic Oil Processing are the way to go. I think it's attacking the problem of the Oil Spike from the wrong angle.

The way I see it, the problem with the Oil Spike is in three parts:

1. It's the first time the player needs to get serious about fluid handling.
2. It's the first time the player needs to deal with multiple outputs from a single recipe.
3. It's hard to tell which of the multiple outputs is blocked.

For solutions, I offer the following suggestions:

1a. Add or move a few recipes that need fluids to before oil refining. The obvious example would be concrete. Make refineries and chemical plants require it and force the player to build a production line that needs a fluid input. You have the fluid-accepting Assembling Machine 2 by that point, anyway.
1b. Split oil extraction and refining into two technologies. The extraction technology would enable building pumpjacks and a fluid-fuelled boiler for the power plant that can take anything the flamethrower turret can, with the associated bonuses, so as to provide an incentive to go to more sophisticated fuels once you get oil refining. Main point is to give the player practice handling fluids other than water. The rest of the basic oil stuff (refinery, chemical plants, solid fuel, basic processing) would be moved to the refining technology.
2. Add recipes to earlier parts of the game that produce multiple outputs. Let the player get their head around the concept in the familiar context of belts and inserters before trying it with fluids.
3. Put a red ring around the output icon on refineries and chemical plants in Alt-view mode if it's blocked, or include a red blockage indicator light above each output on the model (well, sprite) that turns on when that output is blocked. Inside the window for a machine's details, turn the backgrounds of blocked outputs red for all machine types.

Implement all three (well, four) of these and I think that would more-or-less solve the problem.

IronCartographer
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 341
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2016 2:07 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by IronCartographer » Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:59 am

Roxor128 wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:35 am
1a. Add or move a few recipes that need fluids to before oil refining. The obvious example would be concrete. Make refineries and chemical plants require it and force the player to build a production line that needs a fluid input. You have the fluid-accepting Assembling Machine 2 by that point, anyway.
Concrete for the refinery would be doable, now that assembler ingredient limits have been removed. While I would argue that using lubricant in an assembler (electric engines) serves the same purpose, this is a good idea for an earlier introduction and creates practice through repetition of the basics!
Roxor128 wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:35 am
1b. Split oil extraction and refining into two technologies. The extraction technology would enable building pumpjacks and a fluid-fuelled boiler for the power plant that can take anything the flamethrower turret can, with the associated bonuses, so as to provide an incentive to go to more sophisticated fuels once you get oil refining. Main point is to give the player practice handling fluids other than water. The rest of the basic oil stuff (refinery, chemical plants, solid fuel, basic processing) would be moved to the refining technology.
Generators to directly consume the unwanted fractions rather than just burning them off would be an interesting idea for diversifying power, but they are ultimately equivalent to converting to solid fuel and burning it. Good flavor and variety on the surface though.
Roxor128 wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:35 am
2. Add recipes to earlier parts of the game that produce multiple outputs. Let the player get their head around the concept in the familiar context of belts and inserters before trying it with fluids.
You could do this, and it might help to understand the problem with tangible items, making the concepts clear, but it might also create something nearly as confusing--with no candidates for an early recipe giving sensible conversion between the two products. This is essentially the Kovarex process, but pre-oil, and with no clear avenue for introducing it justifiably into the early game.
Roxor128 wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 6:35 am
3. Put a red ring around the output icon on refineries and chemical plants in Alt-view mode if it's blocked, or include a red blockage indicator light above each output on the model (well, sprite) that turns on when that output is blocked. Inside the window for a machine's details, turn the backgrounds of blocked outputs red for all machine types.
Something to help visualize the state of a fluid network from afar would be great...! Maybe an overlay that vividly shows empty vs. full pipes (like the debug view for fluid boxes, but separate from Alt mode, since it would be too flashy for a view most people have active all the time)!

DanGio
Fast Inserter
Fast Inserter
Posts: 216
Joined: Sat May 10, 2014 6:22 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by DanGio » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:00 am

I like in the Heavy Oil Chemical Science mod that you make your way from low tier products to high tier products. This feels really good. This solution also seems well balanced, as the same chemical science throughput can be achieved with the same number of assembling machines.

I'd prefer however to have 4 Image instead of 1 Image, as automating red wire production isn't crucial and can be avoided by :
- not using circuit network at all
- Ctrl-C Ctrl-V an unlimited free amount of wires when building (kind of)
But that's debatable, and quite minor.

What bothers me the most is :
  • these technologies amongt others who are now locked behind chemical science : Explosives > Rocketry, Level 1 Modules, Mining Productivity 1, Modular Armor.
  • you can't craft advanced intermediates early. In the FFF solution, it seems to me that you can somehow manage to have plenty of Image and Imagewhen bots are researched, because Plastics and Sulfur processing will be researched earlier.
So I have to admit I'm still in favor of Petroleum output only, despite it feeling wrong as it provides the high end product first.

IronCartographer
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 341
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2016 2:07 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by IronCartographer » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:29 am

DanGio wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:00 am
What bothers me the most is :
  • these technologies amongt others who are now locked behind chemical science : Explosives > Rocketry, Level 1 Modules, Mining Productivity 1, Modular Armor.
  • you can't craft advanced intermediates early. In the FFF solution, it seems to me that you can somehow manage to have plenty of Image and Imagewhen bots are researched, because Plastics and Sulfur processing will be researched earlier.
It definitely pushes a surprising number of things into blue science, from green. However, have you considered how much the green region dominates currently? It would make sense for the most self-directed learning (not simply targeting a science pack directly) to occur within blue science, after which production and utility are both valid choices.

Delaying techs into blue gives a longer tech-path and fluid-learning runway before the oil decision tree explodes. Meanwhile, the simplification of chemical science makes the actual time difference negligible.

Pre-buffering of gas-based intermediates is an interesting casualty. Speed-runners certainly feel the effects of things like that. Is there a significant sentiment of wanting to build many small spaghetti setups and early gas-buffers vs. larger builds at appropriate times?

The overall effect of the mod seems to be: Oil is a smooth climb in complexity, with advanced oil unlocking the huge branching paths (plastic, sulfur trees) when you have had time to absorb the recipes derived from heavy and light oil, along with the fundamentals of fluids. With more techs in the blue region, players will spend longer here, steadily unlocking things as they learn to produce gas-products in bulk and plan for the end-game techs that use them--rather than unlocking too many gas-hungry things while in green science and getting stuck before reaching blue. The petroleum-only solution addresses this, but does so in a way that I'm sure feels 'wrong' to so many of us, driving this massive forum response.

The biggest impact is not strictly needing to solve the 3-product multiple-output problem. However, the basic oil->heavy recipe is really quite wasteful (as is truly sticking with heavy oil rather than immediately using the benefits of early heavy->light->solid conversion). The benefits of using the actual advanced refining recipe would be quite clear and appealing for the newly gas-hungry Engineer.

Also, just in case no one has noticed: Flammables tech doesn't unlock anything at the moment in the base game. I moved solid fuel to be unlocked by flammables, and the gas->solid to join light cracking at advanced oil.
Last edited by IronCartographer on Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

Adamo
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 434
Joined: Sat May 24, 2014 7:00 am
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by Adamo » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:36 am

IronCartographer wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:29 am
DanGio wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:00 am
What bothers me the most is :
  • these technologies amongt others who are now locked behind chemical science : Explosives > Rocketry, Level 1 Modules, Mining Productivity 1, Modular Armor.
  • you can't craft advanced intermediates early. In the FFF solution, it seems to me that you can somehow manage to have plenty of Image and Imagewhen bots are researched, because Plastics and Sulfur processing will be researched earlier.
It definitely pushes a surprising number of things into blue science, from green.
I haven't heard anyone mention the fact that it pushes back laser turrets, which I typically start making well before I even worry about explosives -- doesn't everyone? They're the best weapon, by far, at this point in the game. This would also be a problem.

IronCartographer
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 341
Joined: Tue Jun 28, 2016 2:07 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by IronCartographer » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:38 am

Adamo wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:36 am
I haven't heard anyone mention the fact that it pushes back laser turrets, which I typically start making well before I even worry about explosives -- doesn't everyone? They're the best weapon, by far, at this point in the game.
That's actually something the original FFF changes as well- https://cdn.factorio.com/assets/img/blo ... t-tech.png

Amusingly, military 3 lands in a somewhat unique position to obtain as it doesn't depend on oil products, just blue science itself.
Last edited by IronCartographer on Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
BlueTemplar
Smart Inserter
Smart Inserter
Posts: 1754
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2018 2:16 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by BlueTemplar » Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:43 am

Yandersen wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 7:18 pm
Omnifarious wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 5:56 pm
Yandersen wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 5:37 pm
"[if basic oil processing only outputs heavy oil and cracking is available early] understanding fluid backup [becomes] the key to efficiency, not the key to progression" - well put, good point. Though I see the solution differently. How about this: make all 3 outputs somewhat independent of each other: whenever at least one of the outputs reaches 0, then refinery takes another portion of inputs and processes all three products. Whichever is not taken out - get lost to void. Just like if you destroy the tank - the same thing that can be made manually. This way we eliminate fluid backup problem completely - the player is free to use a single output and nothing is broken. But, of course, this way he will loose potential product, reducing the efficiency. So the proper setup with cracking and everything else will just become an option to increase efficiency. Beginners happy, experienced players unaffected. Everyone happy. Yes?
This is a simplified version of the flare stack solution. And I think that might be OK, but I think the discarded products should cause extra pollution as well.
Of course, this mechanic is simply underdeveloped since you can destroy the tank full of oil without any side effects; or the pollution rate dependent on the type of the machine instead of the actual recipe it is working on - counter-intuitive also. But going into proposals in this field will be an off-topic. Which I find hard to avoid now. ^.^

As I see the solution for more realistic pollution handling, each item type must carry an additional property - the amount of pollution it generates if consumed/destroyed. Let's call it the item's "pollution cost", for example. So if the tank or pipe destroyed, then the pollution value released at the destroyed items' storage location will be proportional to the number of items sent to void multiplied by their respective pollution cost.
The similar is with the recipes: the amount of pollution generated by the machine at the moment the inputs got processed into the outputs, is equal to the sum of consumed items' pollution costs minus produced items' pollution costs. Very universal and elegant solution, I think...
Well, it's not as universal and elegant as when pre 0.17.12 pollution was directly tied to consumed energy (or produced energy, in the case of burners - efficiency weirdly having no direct effect).
And I'm afraid that it would make gameplay more fiddly than having pollution modifiers tied directly to recipes ? (though the game would have to display that...)
Ranger_Aurelien wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 8:23 pm
Optionally, I'm sure there's a mod for a box that takes any fluid and gives off pollution so you don't have to worry about one refinery pipe backing up and stopping the other two...
Of course there is, that flare stack proposition didn't came out of nowhere !
https://mods.factorio.com/mod/Flare%20Stack
Image
(Also, as already mentioned, one could use steam engines for that duty at some point... before 0.15.10 ?)

PacifyerGrey
Smart Inserter
Smart Inserter
Posts: 1042
Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2016 10:02 am
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by PacifyerGrey » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:15 am

I do really like the idea from IronCartographer. It really does smooth out oil learning experience. It also does give AOP nice progression purpose. It also completely solves the problem of the lack of lube in some situations.

However sadly this still does push back construction bots due to those indirectly requiring red chips. Maybe this could also be modded a bit to grant most satisfying experience.

Nevertheless the output blocking problem is still there and should still be solved by UI.

RocketManChronicles
Filter Inserter
Filter Inserter
Posts: 324
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 2:38 pm
Contact:

Re: Friday Facts #304 - Small bugs; Big changes

Post by RocketManChronicles » Wed Jul 24, 2019 11:23 am

PacifyerGrey wrote:
Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:15 am
However sadly this still does push back construction bots due to those indirectly requiring red chips. Maybe this could also be modded a bit to grant most satisfying experience.
Ahem, Construction Bots require Green Circuit Chips not Red Circuit Chips.

Post Reply

Return to “News”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: asdff45, MasterBuilder