Fixing Techtonica: Balancing Issues and Solutions
Techtonica is a first-person factory automation game set beneath the surface of an alien planet. Work alone or in co-op to build factories, gather resources, research new technologies, mold the destructible terrain, establish a base of operations, and uncover long-forgotten secrets.
While Techtonica is still in its early access stage, it is important to address the balance issues that players are encountering. This article aims to provide an analysis of the game’s current balancing problems and suggest potential solutions for future updates.
Balancing Machine Inputs and Outputs
One major issue players have noticed is the lack of balance between machine inputs, outputs, and the speed of conveyors and inserters. Currently, it requires an excessive number of inserters to fully saturate a belt. For example, to fully saturate a tier 1 belt, it takes 8 standard inserters. This imbalance restricts the potential efficiency and progression within the game.
To address this, the number of inserters needed to saturate a belt should be reduced by doubling the input and output capacity of machines. This change would allow for a more streamlined production process and enable players to achieve a fully saturated belt with a chest buffer. Additionally, it would prevent the need for complex splitting and merging of belts to maintain a steady flow of resources.
An inconsistent behavior of inserters was also observed, where they are unable to scoot items around the belt. As a result, if the gap between items is too small, the belt cannot be saturated at all. To resolve this issue, the inserters should be programmed to delay putting items on the belt in sequential order, ensuring proper spacing and maintaining optimal throughput.
An example of this issue can be seen in this screenshot.
Mismatch between Machine Production and Belt Speed
Another significant concern relates to the lack of symbiosis between machine production, belt speed, and inserter capabilities. Some machines produce items at an excessive rate, creating an imbalance in the factory’s production flow. This imbalance is particularly noticeable when considering core boosters, which disrupt the concept of a balanced factory.
In factory building games, achieving a balanced production system is often a key objective. However, in Techtonica, it becomes challenging due to the mismatch between machine production and belt capacities. To address this, a more refined balancing system should be implemented to ensure all produced resources are efficiently used without any downtime or excess backup.
Players would benefit from having the option to prioritize balance over speed upgrades. The ability to have 20 machines running perfectly balanced is preferable to having a few machines in overdrive. Additionally, the potential to adjust the speed of all components, such as inserters, belts, drills, smelters, planters, and threshers, would allow for unlimited customization while maintaining balance.
It would be valuable to gather opinions from other Techtonica players regarding these balancing concerns. Understanding the perspectives and experiences of the community can help developers make informed decisions on future balancing updates. Sharing ideas and discussing strategies may lead to innovative solutions.
It is worth noting that similar balancing issues exist in other factory building games such as Satisfactory, where many players do not prioritize balanced setups. However, for players who enjoy the challenge of achieving perfect balance, it would greatly enhance their experience if Techtonica offered a more robust balancing system.
In conclusion, Techtonica’s early access stage presents a valuable opportunity to address the existing balancing issues. By doubling the input and output capacity of machines, allowing for adjustable inserter behavior, and refining the interaction between machine production and belt speed, the game can offer a more enjoyable and satisfying factory building experience. Gathering feedback from the community will be crucial in implementing effective balancing solutions. As Techtonica progresses, it is hoped that players will be able to create beautifully balanced factories without resource wastage or excessive production backups.