Factorio is an intimidating title for many gamers. Despite being very easy to learn, as far as the basics go, it is also extremely deep and hard to master. This fact can dissuade many from trying the game in the first place. Despite this, it can quickly become an addicting and satisfying experience.
Factorio arrived as a full release in August 2020, after almost nine years in alpha. It’s an excellent sim concerning automation and factory building. As such, it is no surprise that the game can become complex and hard to navigate quickly. The key is to take small chunks out of this behemoth of a game, making it a great, satisfying and long-lasting time sink, like the best examples of the genre.
Learning to use the Alt key will make anyone’s Factorio experience that much better. This key enables an overlay over specific machines, telling players exactly what they are holding, producing, or building at a glance. Factorio, much like other great simulator games, provides benefits for players who take the time to carefully plan their actions.
This key will make the factory much more organized and the chains of supply much more obvious. Assemblers will show their product, furnaces will show their ingots, and gamers will easily be able to see which materials are required where. Those who stay on top of all of this will be able to keep machines running and churning out those crucial science packs.
Research Queue allows players to queue up technologies so that no time is wasted picking them. This is enabled by changing the map generation settings or by using console commands. Either way, it will make a new player’s Factorio experience that much less daunting.
This will make time go by faster, which, by extension, can perhaps make the action a little more overwhelming. At the same time, though, it more than makes up for this by lessening the chances that invaders overwhelm the quickly-growing factory. It will give players much more time to react as well, helping them to advance down the sometimes long and intimidating tech trees.
While it may be tempting to dive straight into a first game, players can increase their efficiency early on by learning a number of key ratios.
For instance, eager fans of factory simulator games should learn the amount of copper wire needed to create a batch of electronic circuits. Or, as another example, take steam. This will be the first source of consistent, reliable power. How many boilers are supported by a single pump? How many engines are supported by a single boiler? These questions may seem trivial, but they will have a huge impact on efficiency in-game.
While it is important to build up a factory, it is also crucial to keep everything already constructed functional. If gamers are enjoying multiplayer, then this can be given as a job to one of the players.
Gun turrets are the first line of defense and should be kept loaded whenever possible. Upgrading to lasers as soon as the opportunity arises gives the option to convert electricity into defensive power. Players shouldn’t be afraid to leave and fight back the Biter nests themselves, either. After all, the best defense is a good offense in this excellent simulation game.
For players that have sophisticated schematics they wish they could save, Factorio has an easy solution. Blueprints are a convenient way to store and save layouts for assemblers, furnaces, and anything else the average Factorio player needs. Priceless features like these help Factorio rise above other simulator games that often disappoint.
Once a budding factory owner researches bots, they will also make their life significantly easier by automatically building important parts of the factory (which players place using blueprints).
Construction bots are robots that will follow the player around, supplying them with resources and building blueprints they place. Using these helpful bots will net any player a huge increase in efficiency and make building the dream factory an attainable goal.
They may seem expensive, but working towards them slowly will allow many players to dramatically increase the speed of expansion, as well as cutting down trees to free up extra space. By the time the average Factorio player has access to bots, they will seem relatively cheap.
Using poison capsules is a reliable way to take out turrets (known as worms) and ensure the safety of the factory. Players can throw these capsules at worms and they will deal damage over time until the foe expires.
The most convenient aspects of poison capsules are that they are cheap and can be created quickly and easily. They are by far the most effective means of taking out hostile alien nests. However, players using them should be careful not to stand in the cloud, for obvious reasons.
Buffer chests are essentially chests that are supported by an inserter, allowing players to pick up items and use them early without taking them directly from machines. Gamers should make sure not to allow them to take a large amount, but if implemented correctly, these will make any Factorio player’s life so much easier.
It’s a similar concept to that featured in other factory management sims like Satisfactory. Players with an interest in organization should make sure not to make the buffer limit the same for every material. Iron, for example, is much more plentiful than uranium or steel.
It is always best to start building up stocks of basic items early on, lest a factory suffers the consequences of a major resource shortage. Iron, copper and coal should be the biggest priorities. Players should always make sure the furnace and mining areas are big enough; production will soon follow.
It’s also vital to remember that if one area of the factory clogs, because of a lack of a certain resource, everywhere else that requires said resource will soon follow. Rushing for the sake of progress never pays off. As in Satisfactory, it’s best to start with many basic miners. Everything else will follow from there.
The demands of a growing factory are many; they will soon outpace the average player’s ability to craft items in their inventory. As such, creating a small area off to one side will support the crafting needs of the expanding base. Supplied with bots, this place can become a hub of activity.
With an assembler and chest for every item, this area will allow players to build their factory bigger and better than ever before. New factory owners should be sure not to over-prioritize this, but built carefully, one of these hubs will make anyone’s Factorio experience much easier.