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Factory Town update for 24 April 2021

Town Centers & Town Specialties, plus Campaign Map #7!

Share · View all patches · Build 6595102 · Last edited 24 June 2023 – 16:41:41 UTC by Wendy

Patchnotes via Steam Community

This update introduces a big new feature that should dramatically improve gameplay: players can now create multiple Town Centers (a collection of Houses and production buildings) and give each one a unique specialty, which encourages trade & transport around the map. It's a big step closer to how I've always wanted the game to play, and a lot of past development has been leading towards this.

Campaign 7 has also been finished (only 1 left to go!) and it makes full use of this new Town Center concept.

That's the short description of the update but a lot has changed, read below for more details on all the new features!

Multiple Town Centers

The game now supports the ability to build multiple Town Centers (the building previously known as the 'Base'). By performing Civics research, the player increases the maximum number that they can build. It starts at a maximum of just 1, but reaching Town Center levels 4, 6, 8, and 10 each unlocks a new level of Civics research that increases this maximum to 2, 3, 4, and 5 buildings.

Town Borders

Historically the Town Center (Base) was a glorified storage building that didn't interact with the rest of the buildings much. The previous update improved this slightly by allowing Markets to join together via a central Town Center. But now, the Town Center is a critical building because it has its own area-of-effect that combines nearby buildings into a single "Town" unit.

In the screenshot above you can see the highlighted tiles represent the 'town borders'. It's an area that extends from the Town Center along roads (or foot paths), out to a certain radius. Any House that is connected to this road network will also extend the town borders around it. Markets connected to this road network can deliver to any Houses in the town. And, any production building anywhere in these borders (no road connection necessary) will also be considered part of the town.

The range of the Town Center will extend as it is upgraded. And Town Centers have a label property, so you can give your towns their own name!

This leads us to one major balance change: The Happiness bonus is now specific to a particular town. It's no longer a global value. Happiness is calculated per-town based on the houses within it, and only production buildings within the town get that bonus. Players are still free to place buildings wherever they want, but will need to try and extend their town borders and consider placement more carefully in order to optimize production. While this may seem like a big nerf, many other balance changes were made to boost production in other ways...

Town Specialties

Each Town can be assigned one Town Specialty, like Farming, Mining, or Magic. In most cases, the result will be that certain recipes matching this specialty will double their output (without requiring more ingredients). Other specialties like Commerce will double the speed that Houses in that town consume items, allowing you to sell goods much faster and earn more coins.

Town specialties have requirements that must be met in order to be available - like having a certain number of houses or specific production buildings within the town's borders.

In the example above, Wood Wheel and Cloth are part of a town that has a specialty of 'Production' so their output is doubled. The pickaxe, however, is a recipe that requires a specialty of Mining or Industry, so it is produced at the normal amount.

Again, this Town Specialty attribute is assigned at the Town Center and only buildings linked to that Town will receive this very large bonus!

In summary, the combination of these elements should mean that players have a strong reason to spread their towns out across the world and transport goods between them. It should make things much more interesting!

Campaign Map 7

Finally, Campaign Map #7 is out! I try to make each Campaign map feel unique, and I wanted this one to require the player to send goods across multiple production center islands. The player actually starts with 3 towns spread across the map - one specializing in Farming, another in Mining, another in Forestry. Resources are pretty concentrated on these islands as well - so the player will need to solve problems like delivering Planks to the mining island.

The goal of this map is to activate an abandoned Mana Reactor high on a mountaintop, and use it to produce powerful Omnistones for the first time in the campaign, study them, and build their own Reactor.

Work Units display

The game has had multiple bonuses available to speed up production, but it's never really displayed this information very well. Now, this information is conveniently displayed if you hover over the Work Units icon on a selected building. All the various active & inactive bonuses are shown in this list, so you can see exactly what is contributing to production speed.

Then, instead of the misleading 'production time' value on each recipe, it just shows how many Work Units are required to produce it. For example, a recipe requiring 3 Work Units in a building producing 1 Work Units per Second will be completed in 3 seconds.

A few changes have been made to standardize the production bonuses. For instance, The Happiness and Global Production Speed bonuses are no longer multiplicative on top of all other bonuses. Instead it is multiplied by the number of workers in a building, and then added to the rest of the bonuses.

Auto-Upgrading Houses

Having to click 'Upgrade' on all your houses multiple times was kind of a rote, tedious process. I want to move more towards a model where several town & production buildings upgrade more organically through use and/or through supplying goods, and the player doesn't need to spend as much time stockpiling specific goods in barns.

So now, manual upgrading of Houses has been removed and instead they upgrade once they have consumed enough goods of a specific type. The amount & type of goods they require for each level is roughly the same as what they used to for manual upgrades. Plus, the goods are no longer subtracted from the player's inventory. Houses that require a specific good for an upgrade will take the highest delivery precedence over other houses.

Balance Changes

  • The first worker in a building produces 100% of baseline worker units. Workers 2 through 5 each produce 50% of baseline worker value. Additional workers after 5 produce 40% baseline worker value. Previously additional workers only added a flat rate of 25% for all buildings, except for natural resource production buildings where additional workers provided 100 for each worker. UPDATE: In version .189, the worker production value was reverted to 100% for all natural resource production buildings (Farm, Forester, Fishery, and Mine) because they are harder to connect to the Town due to their placement restrictions, and are already limited by resource yield.
  • Steam Boost will provide 1 additional work unit per second (additively), instead of 50% (multiplicatively)
  • Elemental Boost will provide 2 additional work unit per second (additively), instead of 100% (multiplicatively)
  • Omnistone Boost will provide .5 additional work unit per upgrade per second (additively), instead of 100% per upgrade (multiplicatively). Infinite research of Omnistone Boosts increases this amount by .1 per upgrade, for each level of research completed
  • Supply Water, Supply Fertilizer, and Supply Pickaxe recipes only require 1 work unit instead of 2
  • Happiness and Global Production Modifiers are now applied per worker, instead of multiplying against the baseline worker output (which changes calculations slightly because not all workers apply the same baseline value, e.g. the first worker is 1 work unit / sec and each additional worker is .5 work units / sec, but each would receive a .2 work unit / sec bonus from happiness)
  • Campaign Map 4 starts with a working locomotive setup
  • Omnitemple research requires base level 10
  • Temple research no longer requires Mana Reactor, just Base Level 9 and the related elemental Purification technology
  • Removed Omnistone ingredient from temple research
  • Elemental purification and Elemental Temple recipes no longer require purified Crystals, just elemental ethers
  • Houses no longer have resource cost (they are still limited in number though)
  • Default Grain Yield increased from 5 to 10. Grain Affinity multiplier reduced from 4 to 2. This means grain is easier to grow in arbitrary locations, production is not as strongly linked to affinity.
  • Cotton, Berries, Herb, Tomato, and Cactus Fruit automatically being re-growing when harvested instead of disappearing
  • Removed Happiness victory condition from Campaign 2

Misc Changes & Improvements

  • No longer shows infinite research Stars on the top-left status panel, as it is needed to display base count instead.
  • Item production details are now shown on tooltips for Research recipe outputs
  • Attribute selection panel (Math Function, Access Type, etc) is now a repositionable window
  • Happiness and Consumption duration are shown on tooltips for sellable items
  • Instead of a single base level requirement, can now have victory conditions specifying which town specialty is required for that base level.
  • Temple building research is no longer hidden when is in a locked state
  • Worker Bonus editable rule on buildings has been deprecated, as it is now a global setting
  • Clicking on a Train Station’s inventory slot will open up details for the full list of inventory slots, not just the one that was clicked on, to make batch editing easier
  • Improved performance when drawing many highlight tiles on the ground
  • Boat pathfinding has longer range and is more optimized
  • Removed Juices / Jams / Dragon Punch from Campaign Map 1 as they weren’t possible to produce with available buildings

Bug Fixes

  • Agent Triggers were not showing all selected worker filters, just the first one
  • Was showing erroneous tooltip when hovering over a blank inventory slot
  • Unexpected behavior when worker unit holding an item was issued a dropoff command to a chute or belt
  • Was unable to build extension to Omnipipe from a location that had an item in it, had been giving an 'occupied' error message
  • Fixed 'base capacity increased' appearing repeatedly (hotfix .188k)

That's all for now, thanks as always for playing!

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