Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

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kbk
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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by kbk »

vampiricdust wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 5:58 am
The problem is that you only need as much lube as you need belts or bots. You don't need light oil to make solid fuel. Perhaps it would be better to have PG make plastics, light oil make sulfur, and heavy oil makes solid fuel in the most efficient ratios, but all 3 products can be made from all 3 oils. This lets players consume every oil regardless, but if the figure out the best use cases, then they get more out of each product. Then you only need to balance out the ratio of PG to LO needed to make Processing Units in a stable manner.
I came to believe that devs are essentially into not just having a further use for every Crude oil subproduct but into also having alternatives for such use on the entire playthrough from introduction of oils within BOP tech till the rocket gets launched so that player makes more weighted factory design decisions during the playthrough. At the same time they don't really want to overpack the game with entirely new recipes. The main goal of this is to help players achieve the game progress with a variety of 'right' ways to play and not just with a 'this goes to that, dixi' every playthrough. And eventually they want to come up with a proposition where a necessary minimum of new recipes is introduced and a necessary minimum of other things get balanced to achieve a minimal alternative throughout the gameplay (and to inflict as less damage as possible to modding community by the way).

To illustrate this approach one can imagine how the initial proposition was made. The fact that you'd only get a reliable sink to dispose of Light and Heavy oil in AOP era has initially raised questions whether they should really be a product at the refineries of BOP era, which in turn gave birth to the proposition to screw Light and Heavy oil completely so that it managed to maintain some alternative usability to PG before AOP. Namely both Plastic and Solid fuel and, to some extent, Sulfur β€” all qualify for a somewhat reliable resource sinks. To address the dropping of inputs for less reliable sinks Lubricant is then shifted after AOP & Flametrower ammo is switched to PG. All of this looks awesomely consistent at first sight and feels like somewhat fixing just everything (yet we all know how well has this proposition been received)

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Antaios »

Adamo wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 11:19 pm
DanGio wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 11:11 pm
Aivech wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 10:40 pm
Antaios wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 12:33 pm
(well-thought-out post that makes several new points)
How come none of the developers have responded to this post? I think it brings up a ton of good points that haven't really been made yet.
We can't expect devs to answer every post in such a long thread on a sunday. Also, as enjoyable to read it may be, this post focus on pointing one gameplay weakness - oil isn't rewarding soon enough - without proposing any solution to it.

From a dev perspective, I think this post is very hard to respond to.
To be fair, that post proposed that leaving oil as it is is the appropriate thing to do. Because it's best to leave it in the fray with all the other things players are learning during the green plateau.
Indeed. There isn't actually any issue with oil, it's a puzzle to solve, to be sure more difficult for some than others. But the indications as to what's going on are there, and should hopefully get better and easier to see in time.

Trying to 'fix' oil would be like trying to 'fix' smelting. setting up tons of smelters isn't particularly engaging, but it's something you have to do to get your production going. At least oil's puzzle is more engaging than smelting's, currently, as it presents interesting balances of production.

But, I feel V atleast has somewhat responded in their non-response, in that they are continuing along their route of experimenting with balance changes, which would lean towards not agreeing with my points.
Ultimately we'll see come the culmination of all of this, I wouldn't really expect a response.
Last edited by Antaios on Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Therax »

V453000 wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 2:57 pm
PG + Light means the only reason you need AOP is Lubricant - that's a really weak non-high-tech motivator.
...
Light only again makes AOP mandatory only because of seemingly low-tech lubricant, and require single-step cracking at the start.
I’d like to point out that there’s nothing in game that suggests that Factorio’s lubricant is low-tech: its two applications are a) electric engines, which you rightly observe are used in only very high tech end products (bots, exoskeletons), and b) the highest speed belts in the game.

I think the chemical engineers in the room would also argue that modern lubricants used in high speed machinery are high tech. This isn’t just grease as a whale fat substitute.
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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Therax »

Antaios wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 12:33 pm
Most people with a problem solving mind, and a mind for how recipes works, as they should have after 10 minutes in the game, will quite easily understand that if the refinery can't push out it's light and heavy oil, it'll stop producing. This should take about 10 seconds of looking at the recipe - I don't think this is a stumbling block.
Practical experience suggests that it is, in fact. See below.
However, even if it is a stumbling block for some people, the fact is, it is one they have to stumble upon at some point, it simply is a hurdle they will have to overcome.
I would agree this is something has has to be overcome to launch a rocket. But is it necessarily something that has to be overcome at the exact same time as overcoming all the other challenges that oil processing presents?
Furthermore, anyone with a mind for debugging their factory, which a new player should be used to by this point, should be adept at looking backwards through their production lines in order to find the bottleneck, it won't be strange or odd to get to "no petroleum gas", then to investigate the refinery and notice it's stuck full of other products.
BOP is the first time where a recipe can have room for an output, have sufficient input, and still not be running. For example, here’s a post in this very thread:
IIIByoIII wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 4:29 pm
...
I agree about the learning curve and understand your point behind this changes. I was having trouble setting my oil processing up right.
...
The major issue I see is you get two more fluids to handle after you though you managed to set up a decent oil processing plant. It will mess with your design in a big way. I personally hate to tear things up completely and redesign them in a working manner when a i get something wrong, I find it rather tedious than fun.
...
The key point being that a player thinks they have oil processing correctly set up and moves on to other things, only to find later that oil processing has stopped for unknown reasons. The delay between the problem being created and the problem becoming visible is part of what makes this tricky to learn for a new player.
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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Adamo »

Antaios wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:52 am
But, I feel V atleast has somewhat responded in their non-response, in that they are continuing along their route of experimenting with balance changes, which would lean towards not agreeing with my points.
Ultimately we'll see come the culmination of all of this, I wouldn't really expect a response.
I like to think they are listening to us, not least because it's clear we've been trying to put a lot of thought into our commentary and criticism, and that no direct response is needed, but rather that they are taking this as input toward the final decision.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Micha DoH »

funky.bibimbap wrote: ↑
Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:09 pm
I take the time to reply here because I totally support the changes to oil processing (and because, as we know, people who have something to complain about are more prone to reply, so let's counter-balance that). We've all been there, facing this wall, and even though it gets less intimidating with time, it remains a daunting task, because there are so many things to setup in order to have oil processing working correctly. Now it will be indeed smoother, and I thank you about it!
Thanks to you guys I do not have to face this wall :P Keep up the good work! hehehe

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Antaios »

Therax wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:19 am
Practical experience suggests that it is, in fact. See below.

I would agree this is something has has to be overcome to launch a rocket. But is it necessarily something that has to be overcome at the exact same time as overcoming all the other challenges that oil processing presents?
Yes, because as I said in my post if it is introduced later, you now don't have all the oil products and design done ready for the time when you really need that stuff to start flowing properly.

This is why people set up smelting before requiring lots of plates. Most new players might only set up small smelting, but once they run into not having enough resources they'll realise this and ramp up smelting and mining to over-produce ready for later. If they just expanded only barely as much as they needed, smelting would be even more tedious - and as such this habit is curbed rather quickly.

Further, the other challenges at the time benefit from having some of those other oil products setup should the player explore oil products early. And to top it off, those other things are quite enjoyable and immediately rewarding, offsetting the 'only produces intermediaries' nature of oil.

Throwing this challenge in later, the main oil production, would be frustrating as it would be logistical puzzle ontop of logistical puzzle whilst the player sets up purple and yellow science. Where it is now, oil provides a different type of challenge than a significant portion of the others at the time (expansion, defence etc) whilst at the purple yellow stage you'll be setting up production on top of setting up production.
Therax wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:19 am
BOP is the first time where a recipe can have room for an output, have sufficient input, and still not be running. For example, here’s a post in this very thread:
IIIByoIII wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 4:29 pm
...
I agree about the learning curve and understand your point behind this changes. I was having trouble setting my oil processing up right.
...
The major issue I see is you get two more fluids to handle after you though you managed to set up a decent oil processing plant. It will mess with your design in a big way. I personally hate to tear things up completely and redesign them in a working manner when a i get something wrong, I find it rather tedious than fun.
...
The key point being that a player thinks they have oil processing correctly set up and moves on to other things, only to find later that oil processing has stopped for unknown reasons. The delay between the problem being created and the problem becoming visible is part of what makes this tricky to learn for a new player.
The quote you posted seems to be against the changes to oil because it means the player isn't exposed to these products early, and thus would have to redesign their factory. Other than that they mention that the first time setting up oil was a challenge, which isn't an inherently bad thing. I fail to see how this is relevant to your point.

But on to your point.
As I explained in my post, the main issue, if there is one, is one of information being provided to the player in an obvious fashion. The core of it though, looking at the recipe, or a refinery not working for less than a minute should provide someone insight on that there are one or two backed up outputs - it's quite logical given that all the machines operate in production cycles, if the thing is not empty, it doesn't run a production cycle, simple and easy to understand.

The so-called problem is only created when storage space runs out, this problem is not created when the refinery setup is complete - as such there is no better way to teach this than for the tanks to fill up and have a player actively debug their factory - a good teaching experience to have, and I'll say again, for someone who is new, the solution is simple, another tank. Simple, easy, far better than loading them up with cracking and balancing right now.

All of this is in the initial post I did, or at least most of it. I covered more than "oil is not fun whereas other things are when you're doing blue science".

If the player did not set up tanks in the first place, then I might assume they thought that the refinery might be capable of only producing petroleum (even though the recipe explicitly states otherwise), but that would immediately be obvious when the refinery stops running rather quickly. Any player who sets up a tank for a resource they're not intending to use has at least the idea that this output from the refinery needs to be removed, and as such the refinery stopping when the tank fills up would be an expected outcome, not a surprise. If someone does not presume they can simply hook up a pipe to the petroleum output of a refinery and ignore the other two products then they have already presumed that the refinery will not operate if you don't take out all three products.

In order to be surprised, the player needs to either assume that the refinery has infinite storage, in which case tanks would be somewhat pointless so there is logical reasoning to prevent this assumption, or they would need to assume that the refinery can void fluids, except voiding exists nowhere in the game unless a player or enemy explicitly does it so there is logical reasoning to prevent this assumption as well.
Last edited by Antaios on Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:14 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by mmmPI »

Adamo wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:23 am
Antaios wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:52 am
But, I feel V atleast has somewhat responded in their non-response, in that they are continuing along their route of experimenting with balance changes, which would lean towards not agreeing with my points.
Ultimately we'll see come the culmination of all of this, I wouldn't really expect a response.
I like to think they are listening to us, not least because it's clear we've been trying to put a lot of thought into our commentary and criticism, and that no direct response is needed, but rather that they are taking this as input toward the final decision.
I am sure they are listening/reading. Bilka said in FFF304 that only V453000 was "brave enough" to deal with the feedback, (to which he answered several times already) but that not only him was reading the thread. It is a change in which V said himself he wasn't "sold" on every aspect. So i guess there are discussion in between the devs too. It may be better to only have 1 person that handles the things rather than several different voices.

The good thing i hope that can comes from players feedback is a way to explore possibilities very fast. If any idea is proposed, and you got 10K individuals that think just 20minutes about the consequences, we are more likely to come up with a list of particular cases that are problematic with this idea + some way to work around. In order to make the game a sum of clever ideas, pleasant to use for everyone.

We can also say we like/don't like the change. But reading 5000 "i am ok with change" and 5000 "this is stupid" is pretty limited in terms of feedback regarding the final decision. ( even if you write in 10 points why you think this is good/bad. Compared to what would be the factual consequences of the change for a random player ).

We sure can also propose ideas, but it's more difficult if we don't know/understand/agree or don't make the effort to read why the change is proposed. I don't expect devs to answer to each and every single individual that express disagreement, but many of the ideas those person proposed where given an answer as to why it wasn't perfect in dev's minds.(now you can also disagree with the answer.) But hopefully the culmination of all this is well thought out, and makes the game even better ( which will be very hard).

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by jodokus31 »

Antaios wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:47 am
...
The so-called problem is only created when storage space runs out, this problem is not created when the refinery setup is complete - as such there is no better way to teach this than for the tanks to fill up and have a player actively debug their factory - a good teaching experience to have, and I'll say again, for someone who is new, the solution is simple, another tank. Simple, easy, far better than loading them up with cracking and balancing right now.
...
IMHO, they search a solution, where you don't need tanks to compensate in the first place. If all oil products could be used properly, i think the issue wouldn't be there. Sure, solid fuel can be used to compensate, but its not that obvious and blue science only uses a fraction of it.
We also can discuss, if this is an interesting behaviour and if it should stay in this exact place. I could live with it and it has some appeal.
Interesting is, that this exact "problem" disappears later, because you have the tools to avoid it, but that is the next hurdle

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Antaios »

jodokus31 wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:43 am
IMHO, they search a solution, where you don't need tanks to compensate in the first place. If all oil products could be used properly, i think the issue wouldn't be there. Sure, solid fuel can be used to compensate, but its not that obvious and blue science only uses a fraction of it.
We also can discuss, if this is an interesting behaviour and if it should stay in this exact place. I could live with it and it has some appeal.
Interesting is, that this exact "problem" disappears later, because you have the tools to avoid it, but that is the next hurdle
The requirement to balance the different oil liquids persist throughout the game, there is no way to use them properly in order to remove this factor.

Providing the liquids later, at the same time as cracking, exposes the setup of tanks filling up with unused stuff later on or possibly even not at all, as a new player might just mindlessly place chemical plants cracking heavy and light oil simply because it is there, without understanding why. Then when things back up, the entire setup is more complicated and involves ratios of cracking plants, the tank solution isn't the one we'd be pushing at this point since cracking is available. In this case, there is no simple system to acclimate them first in order to be ready for the full cracking system, it's a jump immediately to the complex solution, right when most of what they're already setting up is other, similarly, new production chains and when they're supposed to be ramping up the oil products not just getting them running in the first place.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by mmmPI »

Antaios wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:56 am
jodokus31 wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:43 am
IMHO, they search a solution, where you don't need tanks to compensate in the first place. If all oil products could be used properly, i think the issue wouldn't be there. Sure, solid fuel can be used to compensate, but its not that obvious and blue science only uses a fraction of it.
We also can discuss, if this is an interesting behaviour and if it should stay in this exact place. I could live with it and it has some appeal.
Interesting is, that this exact "problem" disappears later, because you have the tools to avoid it, but that is the next hurdle
The requirement to balance the different oil liquids persist throughout the game, there is no way to use them properly in order to remove this factor.

Providing the liquids later, at the same time as cracking, exposes the setup of tanks filling up with unused stuff later on or possibly even not at all, as a new player might just mindlessly place chemical plants cracking heavy and light oil simply because it is there, without understanding why. Then when things back up, the entire setup is more complicated and involves ratios of cracking plants, the tank solution isn't the one we'd be pushing at this point since cracking is available. In this case, there is no simple system to acclimate them first in order to be ready for the full cracking system, it's a jump immediately to the complex solution, right when most of what they're already setting up is other, similarly, new production chains and when they're supposed to be ramping up the oil products not just getting them running in the first place.
The "solutions" that would involve either 1) getting the actual cracking receipe earlier or 2) adding some simpler receipe for early cracking, have been dismissed, for other reasons than the one that is pointed here, but it is also a valid point.

Providing a way to understand why later you will need/appreciate cracking, is an effect of having the player understanding why the ref output blocks. The early multiple-output receipe has been reconsidered between fff304 and 305, where in the latest , one option no longer involve a single input/single output refinery. So as to explore the possibilities of not delaying the "lesson" and acclimate players to a simpler version of the problem before the 2input 3 output.

Tank solution is possible, but feels like a cheese, I understand that some feedback about oil was not 100% fine before the change was proposed. The later i think is what initiated the change, but if the solution can be elegant and also in the meantime fix that cheese about adding removing tank. That's better.

What i think is attempted with science ratios, is to give the player some numbers that will confirm how to use oil in a way, each of output must be dealt with, so far that's easy you magically consume what you produce. But try to build other thing than science, and you'll end up with too many of some fluid. (This means you won't have an ever increasing need of adding/removing tank when you do science. Just when (a new player) manage to use oil for other things than science).

This as a lighter way/ less constraining way, of learning/teaching the same thing: why you need to do different later, with cracking, and stuff. In this case the rebuilding of a setup is motivating.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Engimage »

V453000 wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 6:00 pm
So, I tried implementing the Heavy + Petroleum gas BOP.
...
Option 2: Sulfur in Chemical science pack, Sulfur made from Heavy
- AOP still mandatory for rocket fuel
- Solid fuel only used by itself when the player would want to burn it or to boost vehicle speed
- the amount of obtainable sulfur would be limited by amount of consumed PG, which would be mainly for plastic. From quickly browsing through a few saves from different stages of the game I'm reading between 1,5x up to the theoretical 8,5x (science production only) more Petroleum gas being used by plastic than sulfur, which is a big range but having BOP make 1:1 heavy and gas would probably be a safe option, as the 8,5x would just use more cracking, likely AOP. Coal liquefaction is always there to increase the heavy:gas ratio.
With AOP and Coal liquefaction the amount of obtainable sulfur would also be limited by the amount of Light oil consumed, but that could be translated into Petroleum Gas.
Still, needing more Heavy for Sulfur than Gas for Plastic would probably be a very rare case to occur, and the player has the chance to adjust the ratio further by switching solid fuel production from gas on, in case PG backs up.
Chemical science pack alone would need 4 times more gas for plastic than heavy for sulfur (if the science pack needed 1 sulfur), unless the science pack 4x Sulfur which I would not have a problem with. If the player produced only up to Chemical science, BOP with a ratio of 1:1 would work forever. If the player needs lubricant/batteries, or more plastic for building purposes (robots, modular armor, modules, ...), they would need to somehow handle the excess on one side or the other.
I didn't do enough math yet on how much/ratio should AOP do. Coal liquefaction should definitely make a lot of heavy oil, same or similar as it does now.
You can consider adding extra recipe for Sulfur made from PG to AOP. This will kinda revert the complexity of balancing to existing levels, but only with AOP researched. You can make this recipe much less effective compared to HO variant to promote effective solutions but this will remove a possible deadlock for people that prefer it.

Light Oil fits the idea of being more advanced tech and provide high end fuel. As I mentioned rocket fuel should not require solid fuel at all and this would make much more sense. However dealing with PG in this case is still something to be solved. Maybe add a gas liquification recipe to convert PG to Light Oil somehow. As an option you can add Sulfur made of Light Oil instead of PG alongside with gas liquification. This will clearly state that plastic is made from gas, and sulfur is extracted from liquids, which makes a lot of sense from RL perspective, and solve all deadlocks in game.

Making HO:PG same as blue science requirement IMO is the best solution:
  • Both outputs are greatly visualized as it is a straight conversion to belted items, and you can clearly see the issue of imbalance on belts.
  • There will be no deadlock on the initial setup before the player actually uses excess amounts of red chips/lube for something.
As for blue science pack I would still consider replacing red chips with plastic to reduce material cost for the pack. I have stated this before - the total complexity jump does include both oil problems and the requirement to dramatically expand production, both at the same time.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by mmmPI »

PacifyerGrey wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:32 am
You can consider adding extra recipe for Sulfur made from PG to AOP. This will kinda revert the complexity of balancing to existing levels, but only with AOP researched. You can make this recipe much less effective compared to HO variant to promote effective solutions but this will remove a possible deadlock for people that prefer it.
mmmPI wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 10:28 am
the ability to transform 100% of BOP in sulfur is nice, so maybe petroleum gas could be use to make sulfur, but at a terrible ratio, just as an almost flare stack.
This or the ability to add Coal+PG=>LO or HO if you can transform HO or LO into sulfur.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Engimage »

mmmPI wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:44 am
PacifyerGrey wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:32 am
You can consider adding extra recipe for Sulfur made from PG to AOP. This will kinda revert the complexity of balancing to existing levels, but only with AOP researched. You can make this recipe much less effective compared to HO variant to promote effective solutions but this will remove a possible deadlock for people that prefer it.
mmmPI wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 10:28 am
the ability to transform 100% of BOP in sulfur is nice, so maybe petroleum gas could be use to make sulfur, but at a terrible ratio, just as an almost flare stack.
This or the ability to add Coal+PG=>LO or HO if you can transform HO or LO into sulfur.
PacifyerGrey wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:32 am
Maybe add a gas liquification recipe to convert PG to Light Oil somehow. As an option you can add Sulfur made of Light Oil instead of PG alongside with gas liquification. This will clearly state that plastic is made from gas, and sulfur is extracted from liquids, which makes a lot of sense from RL perspective, and solve all deadlocks in game.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Antaios »

mmmPI wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:26 am
Providing a way to understand why later you will need/appreciate cracking, is an effect of having the player understanding why the ref output blocks. The early multiple-output receipe has been reconsidered between fff304 and 305, where in the latest , one option no longer involve a single input/single output refinery. So as to explore the possibilities of not delaying the "lesson" and acclimate players to a simpler version of the problem before the 2input 3 output.

Tank solution is possible, but feels like a cheese, I understand that some feedback about oil was not 100% fine before the change was proposed. The later i think is what initiated the change, but if the solution can be elegant and also in the meantime fix that cheese about adding removing tank. That's better.
My point is that you already appreciate cracking when you get it, precisely because by that point you understand how the refinery and your setup is working. You 'get' that this is a balancing act of products.

As has been pointed out by some other people aswell, outputting two products versus 3 is hardly a difference, and you'd be better off continuing to output all three, leaving options and products available.

As I pointed out, there are a myriad of reasons why understanding that the refinery output blocks is not a large issue, and is obvious and evident in the games design, logically following from everything else. The only change I advocate is more ui/gui information to make this even more evident, But I believe the devs are working on this, at least in part. This extra information would make any balance changes one might do in order to achieve the same effect redundant.

The tank solution at that point in the game isn't cheesy, unless you want to delete the tanks, in which case if dumping the fluids feels cheesy to you it is entirely a cheese of your own making. Piping and storing the fluid in extra tanks is entirely valid, and a simple quick low-tech low-effort low-complexity solution that illustrates and foreshadows processing for later, and also helps you understand just what you are making too much or too little of.

Science could be re-balanced to try to consume more even amounts of oil, but ultimately that's a fool's errand I think, as the player can consume any amount of any of the three oils depending on what they decide to do. It's not exposing the player to the three oil fluids early and letting them setup the full fledged refinery minus only cracking during this time that I think would hurt the game pacing.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by gGeorg »

Antaios wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:56 am
jodokus31 wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:43 am
IMHO, they search a solution, where you don't need tanks to compensate in the first place. If all oil products could be used properly, i think the issue wouldn't be there. Sure, solid fuel can be used to compensate, but its not that obvious and blue science only uses a fraction of it.
We also can discuss, if this is an interesting behaviour and if it should stay in this exact place. I could live with it and it has some appeal.
Interesting is, that this exact "problem" disappears later, because you have the tools to avoid it, but that is the next hurdle
The requirement to balance the different oil liquids persist throughout the game, there is no way to use them properly in order to remove this factor.
Scream simple senteces is a method. However id doesnt mean the statements are correct.
Balance of liquids can be achieved by few pumps and wires. If you cant solve it, it doesnt mean others cant either.

Perhaps make it other way around, make wires available sooner so player can play with it. This way you get smooth difficulty stepping. Make it clear, simple wiring is part of the game. Combinators are optional. for example, Make it so, the research of logistic science pack gives effect of green and red wires available.

Many people call for flare stack, but solid fuels is the flare stack. Its already there! Learn how to use splitter for priority input. Make sure your boilers consume only solid fuel. Problem solved?
If you over produce flare stack fuel, then use a chest. Learn how to Build yourself a simple automated buffer. Again, simple wirirng. Yo get stored energy as a bonus. Problem solved?
Great, Your start coal patch will last longer, rejoice.

Rather than gut out game, make an tutorial or find another way how push player to properly use current game mechanics.
Or call it "The best practice processes."

Do not fix what is not broken. Do not try remove puzzles. Introduce them !
If a player gets introduced to current game mechanic, then there is no spoon. spike.
Last edited by gGeorg on Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:48 am, edited 12 times in total.

mmmPI
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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by mmmPI »

Antaios wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:50 am
The tank solution at that point in the game isn't cheesy, unless you want to delete the tanks, in which case if dumping the fluids feels cheesy to you it is entirely a cheese of your own making. Piping and storing the fluid in extra tanks is entirely valid, and a simple quick low-tech low-effort low-complexity solution that illustrates and foreshadows processing for later, and also helps you understand just what you are making too much or too little of.
I do understand your others points, this one i'm a bit torn, like yeah adding tanks is the legit way to do, this is not a cheese and basically is integral part of why there is a problem in the first place, how many tanks will be needed ??? o damn i need to fix that thing i can't continue adding more.

But then you can remove them at no cost ( which would be a torture for newplayers if you can't EDIT: well just shoot them is enough i guess). so ehm not fully satisfied.
PacifyerGrey wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:47 am
mmmPI wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:44 am
PacifyerGrey wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:32 am
You can consider adding extra recipe for Sulfur made from PG to AOP. This will kinda revert the complexity of balancing to existing levels, but only with AOP researched. You can make this recipe much less effective compared to HO variant to promote effective solutions but this will remove a possible deadlock for people that prefer it.
mmmPI wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 10:28 am
the ability to transform 100% of BOP in sulfur is nice, so maybe petroleum gas could be use to make sulfur, but at a terrible ratio, just as an almost flare stack.
This or the ability to add Coal+PG=>LO or HO if you can transform HO or LO into sulfur.
PacifyerGrey wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:32 am
Maybe add a gas liquification recipe to convert PG to Light Oil somehow. As an option you can add Sulfur made of Light Oil instead of PG alongside with gas liquification. This will clearly state that plastic is made from gas, and sulfur is extracted from liquids, which makes a lot of sense from RL perspective, and solve all deadlocks in game.
well yeah that's pretty much the same idea that i also explained in the previous post on sunday, glad to see you share/ came up with the same.

I also during the thread pointed out that you could also remove PG from coal liquefaction to achieve a similar control for late game. In case it was lost in the 20 pages.

Antaios
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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Antaios »

mmmPI wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:57 am
I do understand your others points, this one i'm a bit torn, like yeah adding tanks is the legit way to do, this is not a cheese and basically is integral part of why there is a problem in the first place, how many tanks will be needed ??? o damn i need to fix that thing i can't continue adding more.

But then you can remove them at no cost ( which would be a torture for newplayers if you can't EDIT: well just shoot them is enough i guess). so ehm not fully satisfied.
The thing is, I see no reason why someone who is running out of space for tanks (surely you can fit a pipe to a tank somewhere else, if you're desperate), or doesn't want to continue making them, wouldn't look through the tech tree and see advanced oil processing, right there. This information is all available to the player, the information they need to focus whatever goal they want, if the player is truly feeling like it is a problem.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Adamo »

Who was it that originally suggested we have a natural gas alternative to crude oil for getting at the basics? I decided to build out a mod of that, and thought I would send it your way.

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Re: Friday Facts #305 - The Oil Changes

Post by Theikkru »

vampiricdust wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 5:58 am
I notice you do realize that the issue with oil is resource sinks. However, I think you're over estimating the ability of solid fuel to be a sink. Until you get to end game, even science packs are not a sufficient resource sink to make it a tool for balancing consumption.

The balance of oil is entirely driven by the player's factory build, their priorities, and rate of progression.
jodokus31 wrote: ↑
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:43 am
Sure, solid fuel can be used to compensate, but its not that obvious and blue science only uses a fraction of it.
See:
V453000 wrote: ↑
Sun Jul 28, 2019 6:00 pm
Option 1: Solid fuel in Chemical science pack, Sulfur made from PG
- "don't make me produce SF inefficiently" people will hate. I don't find it to be a huge deal though, and it would be completely clear that AOP unlocks more efficient Solid Fuel - it could even be written in the technology description.
- AOP still mandatory for rocket fuel
- the idea of increasing the amount of solid fuel for the science pack is not stupid at all, the player could put all Heavy into SF if they do not use Lubricant, or add from PG if they are, or if they want to burn some
- easy change, no need for math as petroleum gas has a sink pretty much always (sulfur and/or plastic)
Solid fuel can and will constitute a sufficient resource sink if tuned correctly on the chemical science pack. First off, remember that this balance by solid fuel is only necessary until advanced processing is researched, because cracking will take over at that point. Therefore, only a rather narrow band of the tech tree needs to be considered: that between basic oil and advanced oil. Within this band, there aren't actually that many persistent sinks for plastic or sulfur products that do not involve chemical science (primarily level 1 modules and cliff explosives). Additionally, chemical science does not have to consume some arbitrarily large amount of solid fuel to act as a balancing factor, just more than it consumes in petroleum gas products (advanced circuits). If a player is experiencing an excess of an oil product, then chemical science will present itself as a natural sink for solid fuel that is produced with that excess, encouraging the player to produce more of it in order to relieve the backup. The more chemical science is produced, the more chemical science technologies the player will research to use it, until they inevitably click on advanced oil processing. The point here is not to remove the pressure of oil imbalances entirely, but to configure it in such a way that it naturally guides players to its solution, (cracking,) as opposed to locking up the factory with no obvious way out. Balancing the chemical pack to consume more solid fuel is definitely capable of that.

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