As of writing, I have currently 45.5 hours of play time on the game Factorio, now usually with indie games, I have a burnout rate, and that hovers around 30 hours. At this point I usually make a deal with myself saying, hey I only paid 20 bucks for this game, I’ve gotten enough enjoyment out of it and stop playing it. But with this game, I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface with its potential.
Let’s start with some basics, The best way I can describe this game is as a Red Alert or RTS resource manager. Now that may seem a bit too pithy, but that’s just the bones of the game, the frame if you will. There is a single player campaign but one I didn’t touch other than to get the basics of the game. Where this game truly shines is the multiplayer servers. You and 500 of your closest friends can get together and figure out a way to turn iron ore, coal, and copper wire into electronic circuits.
Now I never played in a game that large, I just played with my one friend, and we managed to bumble our way through, all the way to launching a rocket into space and nuking the local aggressive insectoid population. The beauty of this game is the small things. An overused word in our group call was efficiency. I would be running over the transport belts we had laid just hours before and said, “this isn’t efficient” and proceed to change something to make the whole system run just that much smoother or mess up something my partner had set up deliberately to serve some function.
This game is a brilliant example of an experience that makes you want to go back and use the things you learned to make it better each time you play. For example, How do I get this component to the other side of the track so I can feed one line into the assembling machines? And once you figure it out, you want to go back and change all the work you have done. Now, this example is an easy problem, and one that you solve very quickly, but there are tons of these realizations that you come across that change the way you will play the game next time. Not to mention this game has a great Wiki with tons of information, guides, and tutorials to help you out if you are stuck.
In short, it’s a great game; it’s affectionately known as crackorio. So play it and get lost in the fact that you can never make enough iron plates.