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MiaMia

Clay in dry areas

8 posts in this topic

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So, I've found myself yet again on a very nice, practically perfect map, with one caveat - it was dry. Dry grass everywhere, huge continent with everything: two types of rock with most needed ores, animals, food, varied trees. Everything. 

 

And no clay.

 

Clay is crucial to any progress, no clay means no storage and no going out of stone age. Ever. I feel such basic resource should not be unavailable for thousands of blocks.

 

My proposition:

 

Generate very small amounts of clay in dry areas, only next to water. To generate as clay, a dirt block must be touching sweet water source on the side. Probability should be quite low. So around a small lake one finds 0-1 clay blocks, around a huge one 4-6 blocks.

 

Still will feel completely different from when you live in non-dry area and have abundance of clay, but will allow you to make that one jug and one vessel and your first saw, which in turn will allow you your first barrel to carry more stuff and your first less-than-completely-temporary settlement. And for larger amounts of clay you can go and search in non-dry areas, but at least the dry areas will stop being completely unattractive and bane of starting players.

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I think this is a good idea.  But 0-1 is trivial, since a block of clay mostly yields 1-2 pieces and you need 5 to make anything.   I think maybe if clay nodes spawned as normal in dry areas, but only actually placed a clay block if adjacent to a water block, that would provide a bare amount of clay, yet still keep the environs unattractive for permanent settlement. 

 

Of course, that's TFC1 thinking, and I sort of doubt even a seemingly minor thing like this will make it into TFC1 anymore.  TFC2, may have an entirely different generation method.  But in general I think it's a good idea to provide some minimal clay in dry areas.

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TFC2 is still a long way from finished. Maybe we can convince Kitty to mess with TFC1 a bit more ;)

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Not sure if this would really be a good idea. For one side it makes possible settlements in dry places, but how believable would that be?

There is a reason throughout history human populations grow close to large bodies of water in fertile places.

If a place does not even have clay it can't be that great. Why try to settle there?

When I start a new map the first thing I look for is clay, do not care much about anything else. Clay means temporary shelter under it, easy to close with any block. If it was so common as to have it everywhere there would be no challenge.  

I really love the trill of starting a new map and desperately having to find clay before nightfall.

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Not sure if this would really be a good idea. For one side it makes possible settlements in dry places, but how believable would that be?

There is a reason throughout history human populations grow close to large bodies of water in fertile places.

If a place does not even have clay it can't be that great. Why try to settle there?

When I start a new map the first thing I look for is clay, do not care much about anything else. Clay means temporary shelter under it, easy to close with any block. If it was so common as to have it everywhere there would be no challenge.  

I really love the trill of starting a new map and desperately having to find clay before nightfall.

 

Read the proposition carefully. The amount of clay in dry areas would be minimal, certainly not allowing to dig a shelter underneath.

 

It would be only in blocks touching water, for both believability and gameplay balancing reasons.

 

The dry regions would still be less attractive to settle in, because there would not be enough clay to make a reasonable number of vessels and molds. You would either have to go and haul clay from non-dry areas far from you (which, honestly, you can do now) or simply settle somewhere else.

 

What it would do: it would make it so when you generate a new map, you don't automatically discard ones that start on dry ground (which is almost half of the time). I'll repeat: no clay means no storage at all. So you can neither carry more stuff nor stash it somewhere to retrieve later. If you start on a continent that is big and completely dry, you scream in sheer frustration when your backpack is full of ore nuggets, seeds and food and you cannot pick that berry bush, because the last potentially available slot is holding your only tool - your knife and it's your last defence against decay and zombies.

 

Compared to that, starting on non-dry land is laughably easy - you just find some trees and clay deposit, fire up one big and umpteenth small clay vessels, plus a couple of jugs and you can travel almost indefinitely. I just feel that the imbalance between those two starting points/conditions is too big.

Edited by MiaMia
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I understand the situation as a question of inventory management. Also the water issue, is not like I do not see your point, is just that more elegant solutions could be found.

In the case of inventory we could introduce the straw basket, part of so many suggestions around the forum. Even if we limited the use for just food, seeds and saplings, it would still free up inventory. As for water I think is an initial challenge and it should not change. You can be without water for at least 2 days upon initial spawning. Just walk in a straight line and hope to find water and clay.

So you spawn in a desert, 2 options, discard the map or try to bit it.

It always take me some time to choose a new seed. I do believe we could have more control when generating a new map, like choosing for the map to have more land mass, or more ocean, the initial spawn could also be pre-determined around a certain Latitude and even specific biome. This way a player could just choose those settings before generating the map.

So you like the tropics? Every map will be there. The same for people that prefer the tundra. It would for sure to have the random option, for those of us that want the surprise. Not a coder, but I imagine that this would not be easy to code.

I am not dismissing your idea, I just do not agree with it. I think that find that initial clay deposit is part of what makes a new map exciting, and if it was more common it would rob me of the initial challenge of starting a new world.

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If I can paraphrase a sentiment from the Factorio forums: "Roll a new world."  Not every world will be ideal or have everything you need close by, and some places will be downright uninhabitable, which is how it should be.  Either travel far to find what you need or suffer your fate.

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TFC2 is still a long way from finished. Maybe we can convince Kitty to mess with TFC1 a bit more ;)

 

TFC1 is in maintenance mode. I'm only doing bug fixes and very minor changes. Adding a brand new feature to world generation is hardly minor.

 

Also, I know of players that explicitly look for worlds that spawn them in dry grass areas specifically because they want that challenge of not having any clay nearby.

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