Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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Qon
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Wood used for infrastructure recipes

Post by Qon »

I'm considering making a somewhat silly but still maybe a bit interesting mod for some kind of challenge-playthrough. Though it doesn't really need to be hard, it could just be different to give some flavor. This is not really a request, more like a discussion about an idea for a mod.
The idea
is that wood, the rarest resource that requires the most work to acquire, would be necessary for all infrastructure. Not directly maybe, it's enough if other intermediate ingredients has raw wood as an ingredient somewhere in the chain.

Specifically I'm thinking of excluding adding wood to the military and science consumables since those are used so much that it would be impossible. Though if there's a recipe that gives 10 wooden sticks for 1 raw wood and 10 wooden pellets from 1 stick or something then maybe an option for hardcore enthusiast would be to add those pellets to some consumable items as well.
Gameplay
The point would be that you would have to expand out and scavenge for wood in a larger area to be able to increase the size of your factory. I guess I'm a bit inspired by Colonel Wills challenge map where they set resources to 0.1% of regular richness. That was a bit too extreme maybe for regular play but it did force some kinds of interesting tactics. If supply chain of science packs weren't affected then the change would be that you expand slower because you have less machines but you don't run out of resources for power and science and ammo so you can progress "as normal", just slower, since there's no real minimum requirement on assembly machines to clear the game.

So maybe your base is a few times smaller compared to regular playthroughs for similar tech levels if you just don't spend any time collecting wood. But then it's more like a chill game where time based evolution is the biggest threat, but pollution is a non-factor since you aren't chopping wood and since your factory is too tiny to pollute.

Or if you want to expand fast then you need to run between enemy bases and remove all the trees that prevent pollution from reaching all the far native bases and you get a bit of a challenge that way instead.

So it would be different, but not extremely painful and doesn't force any particular strategy.

Combined with a mod that regrows wood it might be pointless or maybe even more interesting, depending on how you balance it.
Implementation details
For buildings that are used in science packs etc (like inserters), the inserter recipe might be unaffected but it's not possible to place down on the surface. Instead a wooden inserter is added (with wood in recipe chain) which places down regular inserter entities on the surface when placed, and those entities give the wooden inserter item when mined. This way the mod can be added and removed to a regular playthrough without too much pain and all your placed buildings or inverntory items don't just disappear when you install or uninstall the mod. And the regular builds for science packs and some other things can look the same without adjustments.

I'm also considering if coal and stone should be replacement for iron and copper for all buildings. So you would have carbon thread coils instead of copper coils, wood planks instead of iron plates and those two make up the wooden circuit board that is used instead of electronic circuit in the wooden inserter recipe.

Most of the changes should be possible to do programmatically so while it does alter a lot of things the mod wouldn't really take too long to write, maybe? (I made Capsule Ammo mod [link in signature] so I have some idea for what it would require)

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

Post by eradicator »

So you want to make a mod that is based on a non-automatable resource, or did I misunderstand that? Sounds like a nightmare to balance. One player gets lucky huge forests, the other starts surrounded by deserts? If you do make it don't forget to add linear friction wood welding!
Qon wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 3:45 pm
the mod wouldn't really take too long to write
Famous last words :P.
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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

Post by Qon »

eradicator wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 5:01 pm
So you want to make a mod that is based on a non-automatable resource, or did I misunderstand that?
Yes. That is the point.
Or you can automate it with recursive blueprints, that would be even cooler. But if you don't automate it then that is fine too.
I don't expect people to add it to their standard set of mods or be an inspiration for the expansion pack.
It's more like the mod that adds trees on every single tile on nauvis, you play it for a specific purpose to get something unique from it.
eradicator wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 5:01 pm
Sounds like a nightmare to balance. One player gets lucky huge forests, the other starts surrounded by deserts?
Well you can decide yourself if you want to set the tree settings high or low and if you want to peek at the map before you play or not.
I want it to be balanced, and that might be tricky. But at the beginning you need wood for electric poles, and that's not really a big issue. Depending on balance it could just be like there's a little bit of wood needed for everything else you build but it doesn't really force you to play a completely different game at the beginning. And in the end you clear a lot of area anyways for your base so you get a lot of wood. So if the wood required forced you to clear like double the space instead of 8 times the space for wood and sometimes you ran out of wood and had to run out and chop some more then that would be different but not excessive. And you can tune it to your liking by playing in something more like a desert if that's the kind of pain you enjoy. As long as it's playable and a just a little bit more challenge in a normal forest map then there's a decent default that people can work with?
eradicator wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 5:01 pm
If you do make it don't forget to add linear friction wood welding!
It would be cool if buildings burned like forests :D
I think all buildings should have a fuel value if they are made out of wood...
eradicator wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 5:01 pm
Qon wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 3:45 pm
the mod wouldn't really take too long to write
Famous last words :P.
;)

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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Qon wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:21 pm
eradicator wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 5:01 pm
If you do make it don't forget to add linear friction wood welding!
It would be cool if buildings burned like forests :D
Wood welding is a real thing and has nothnig to do with burning forests ;).
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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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eradicator wrote: ↑
Wed Jun 09, 2021 11:59 pm
Wood welding is a real thing and has nothnig to do with burning forests ;).
Looked it up now, wow didn't know that was possible. :o

I still think infrastructure should burn like forests if they catch fire though :D even if they don't start burning from welding.

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

Post by GrumpyJoe »

Use wooden sticks for a foundation thingie that every building/machine needs to be assembled. Could run through prototypes that are placeable and add it to every such recipe, to include mods as well?
Could be replaced by concrete for AM mk3 or something.

Wood/bricks/concrete for belt foundations?

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

Post by Qon »

Yeah something like that. But preferable more nuanced. Would be nice to have the recipes be about as simple and use the same amount of ingredient counts as vanilla so it isn't a mod that makes everything more complicated to craft. Adding wooden sticks everywhere makes it just annoying to craft. Would be nice if intermediates were replaced with wooden (+ maybe some stone and coal) ingredients in a way that makes sense and makes the recipes as similar in structure to vanilla as possible while having other raw resources used. Wood gears and wood sticks are crafted from wooden planks and replaces iron gears and iron sticks and iron plates. Carbon coils replaces copper coils. And then you can make something that is exactly like vanilla recipes but everything is made out of different ingredients and with same amount of resources needed.

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

Post by eradicator »

Just a thought: If the goal is to limit factory growth by total wood harvested, then it might also be feasible to do it "Platform" mod style -> only allow placing machines on "wooden floor" tiles. Ofc that's a radically different approach and might be difficult to not run into willing-suspension-of-disbelief problems.
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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

Post by Qon »

Pretty good idea!
Though I prefer mine maybe since I like the fact that the resource chain includes wood. The idea of everything being made out of wood like some kind of weird alternate world where the technology progressed differently and skipped the steel stage and went straight from low tech wood to high tech wood. What originally inspired the mod was also in part the fact that we now have the technology to build high multi-story buildings and skyscrapers with wood.

Wood is exceptionally strong compared to its weight and is actually better than our super materials steel and concrete for some applications. Steel has high tensile strength per volume but is very dense and concrete has high compression strength and is also very dense. This limits building height since the using heavy materials means the lowest floors gets crushed by a tall and heavy building. Wind turbines are now also starting to be made into wooden structures.

Wood is even advantageous compared to steel for buildings in case of fire since massive wood conducts heat very poorly and takes a very predictable time to burn down (the surface burns, and poorly, and the inner core is unaffected) while steel conducts heat and can suddenly collapse when it's weakened throughout by heat.

Also carbon negative. Well IRL, in Factorio trees don't grow out of pollution clouds.

Being limited by the rare wood resource is also part it, so I combined the two into one thing. But maybe the wood platform thing is even quicker to make and can be used to test that aspect specifically first. Higher tier buildings would require the same amount of wood as lower tier buildings though. And it kind of makes it a bit more annoying to actually build the factory. Belts and some things should probably be buildable anywhere or all wood goes to belts. So maybe I should try that first?

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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Qon wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 6:36 pm
Wind turbines are now also starting to be made into wooden structures.
Interesting! I'm tempted to say that's not "starting" but "returning" :D
Qon wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 6:36 pm
weird alternate world where the technology progressed differently and skipped the steel stage and went straight from low tech wood to high tech wood.
Sounds like almost every high-elf fantasy race. Remember "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." ;)
Qon wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 6:36 pm
Being limited by the rare wood resource is also part it, so I combined the two into one thing. But maybe the wood platform thing is even quicker to make and can be used to test that aspect specifically first. Higher tier buildings would require the same amount of wood as lower tier buildings though. And it kind of makes it a bit more annoying to actually build the factory. Belts and some things should probably be buildable anywhere or all wood goes to belts. So maybe I should try that first?
If you want it to be a fun mod it would probably be best to use a bit of everything. Variation is good. I can even imagine what a "wooden belt" would look like - lots of small round poles rotating.

Hm...also the mod should probably have different "tiers" of wood. Another game had like "wood", "fine wood" and some sort of stronger wood or something? The idea being that you can't harvest high-tier wood before you progress far enough into the tech tree (given factorio bot behavior this would mean bots have to be after the highest wood tier). Normal wood is then like a cheap t1 material, fine wood I think was used for things where the wood needs to be bent (springs, barrels), and the strong wood maybe for gears? Also maybe resin/sap/latex harvesting that only works near *healthy* trees. So you'd have to decide which forests to keep alive and not kill with pollution. And the player would be forced to use mid-/-long range transport to keep the resin harvesters from the pollution-producing resin processing facilities.

Wood certainly is a nice theme when you think about it. Though without woody graphics it might not feel that special?
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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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eradicator wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 8:56 pm
Qon wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 6:36 pm
Wind turbines are now also starting to be made into wooden structures.
Interesting! I'm tempted to say that's not "starting" but "returning" :D
The wooden big wind turbines by Modvion
Yeah you are right. Windmills were made out of wood. But they weren't electricity generating turbines. Maybe there were some small wooden ones for electricity as well in the past before the huge ones made out of of steel and glassfiber?
eradicator wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 8:56 pm
Qon wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 6:36 pm
weird alternate world where the technology progressed differently and skipped the steel stage and went straight from low tech wood to high tech wood.
Sounds like almost every high-elf fantasy race. Remember "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." ;)
Maybe? I'm thinking more like high tech wood structures that are appearing now and replacing steel and concrete to some extent. So not fantasy elves, modern real life tech. But instead of primitive wood -> concrete & steel -> modern high tech wood and alternate history where we go from primitive wood -> high tech wood and mostly skip the concrete and steel.

Even planes used to be made out of wood and fabric, right? So I wonder if there will be big planes, commercial airlines taking hundreds of people, with wooden planes. Wood is strong and light, both are highly valued for aircraft.
eradicator wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 8:56 pm
If you want it to be a fun mod it would probably be best to use a bit of everything. Variation is good. I can even imagine what a "wooden belt" would look like - lots of small round poles rotating.
There was a mod that added wooden floor tiles before I think. And some that added wooden fences. Maybe just add dependency on those and add some code that only allows some buildings to be placed on the wooden tiles. But I can't make any graphics except by code. So I can tint the regular stuff. And if we had proper blend modes I could add some wooden texture to existing items...
eradicator wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 8:56 pm
Hm...also the mod should probably have different "tiers" of wood. Another game had like "wood", "fine wood" and some sort of stronger wood or something? The idea being that you can't harvest high-tier wood before you progress far enough into the tech tree (given factorio bot behavior this would mean bots have to be after the highest wood tier). Normal wood is then like a cheap t1 material, fine wood I think was used for things where the wood needs to be bent (springs, barrels), and the strong wood maybe for gears? Also maybe resin/sap/latex harvesting that only works near *healthy* trees. So you'd have to decide which forests to keep alive and not kill with pollution. And the player would be forced to use mid-/-long range transport to keep the resin harvesters from the pollution-producing resin processing facilities.
For this I'm mainly interested in making it somewhat close to vanilla but with an alternate resource chain. I'm not really into the bobangelpyanodon-packs. Maybe some of that can be integrated without making everything super complicated? And for all the low tier stuff it really should be easily craftable, as simple as vanilla.

Also I can't live without construction bots so I would never delay that for myself q:

I'm not sure about adding more raw resources either. I was thinking that wood (and stone and coal to some extent) aren't really used that much already so if more things were made out of those then why add more? They are kind of unused resources already, so by using those it already adds 3 new resources to use in larger quantities in your production lines. 5 raw resources (wood, stone, coal, iron, copper) is many times more than of vanilla already which makes everything out of iron (+ some copper for coils in circuits).

Wood could be maybe be processed into strong wood (compressed?) and bent wood (steam + wood) to not add to many types of wood. Though extra processing steps should also be avoided for low tier stuff.

I like the sap/latex harvesting idea. Could replace oil for infrastructure. And requiring healthy trees out of pollution cloud would also force the player exploring further out similar to how the need for wood chopping does.
eradicator wrote: ↑
Thu Jun 10, 2021 8:56 pm
Wood certainly is a nice theme when you think about it. Though without woody graphics it might not feel that special?
Like I said above, that's for someone else to make :)

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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Qon wrote: ↑
Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:17 am
The wooden big wind turbines by Modvion
Heh, for a moment there I thought: What if factorio had realistic forestry? Square kilometers full of planned forest that takes hours to grow :D. Interesting video though.
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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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eradicator wrote: ↑
Fri Jun 11, 2021 1:20 pm
Heh, for a moment there I thought: What if factorio had realistic forestry? Square kilometers full of planned forest that takes hours to grow :D.
I've been playing with Noxy's Trees mod which is supposed to grow new trees slowly and automatically as you play. But I have no clue which of the dense forests are not from map gen. And after 100 hours I can't tell the difference. I don't understand the mechanism in the mod which enables tree growth so I can't really evaluate it.

Like do new healthy trees pop up in areas with pollution enough to damage trees? If I saw one lonely healthy tree in the middle of some heavily pollution damaged ones then I could notice new ones that way. But I haven't seen any like that.

I think trees in very dense forests don't spawn new ones, but maybe there needs to be some trees nearby for new ones to pop up? But I haven't cleared any big areas because I'm trying to control pollution in my deathworld so I have some areas with more trees and some with less fairly naturally and that's kind of what I expect to see both from the mod and the map gen.

So maybe I need to clear some big area to test it. But how big is enough? If I see trees in the area later then I can see that the mod did something. But if I don't, maybe the mod doesn't work or it doesn't spawn any trees there because the area is too empty. And it takes time for trees to spawn, so how long do I wait? Not knowing how it works kind of makes it too hard to test if it does anything at all. So I like having it kind of, but I'm also disappointed by it because I don't see if it works. Looking at it now there are debug options and settings for it I could use in the future. But that's a bit late now.

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Re: Wood used for infrastructure recipes

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Qon wrote: ↑
Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:11 pm
I don't understand the mechanism in the mod which enables tree growth so I can't really evaluate it.
At the very least the code looks like it checks each chunk if there are any trees, and if there's at least one but not too many then it grows new ones. Didn't analyze how the rng works so I'm not sure if new trees can spawn into neighbouring chunks, probably depends on mod settings.
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