So some general improvements to PI, Id like to remove a few redundant tasks, by switching facilities from Pins, (like individual factories) to nodes (like on extractors).
- Factories use nodes similar to an extractor to increase production capacity
- Warehouse/launch pads use nodes to increase storage
- Swap the function of nodes/area on extractors, so nodes increase duration, slider increases total output with extra fittings cost
So instead of having to set up 7 basic factories with the same schematic, input, and output routes, instead create 1 factory, add 7 nodes (which would each have the same fitting requirements as an individual factory), and then only requiring 1 set of input/output routes (although like the current system multiple routes with different quantities are still possible)
Similarly adding nodes to warehouses and launchpads to increase storage is an easy time saver as well
For excavators it’s a bit more complicated. I think the area slider giving time granularity down to 15 minute intervals is a bit silly, where as having the option of 1-10 nodes for fitting/output requirements isn’t granular enough, so why not swap them?
Each node would give you an extra set amount of time, say for example 1 node 12 hours, 2/24, 3/36,4/48,
5/96(4d), 6/120(5d), 7/144(6d), 8/168(7d),9/188(12d),10/336(14d)
Where as increasing the slider would increase the node output while also increasing the fitting requirement up to 100% of your command centers. This has two benefits, one it lets you fully max out your command center fitting, and two, shorter cycles will now not have as much nodes to readjust (longer cycles will have more nodes to adjust but you have to adjust them less frequently, so it still balances out).
Next I think we should change how launch pads work. Command centers should function identically to launch pads, same storage and new added storage from pins. However I think for each level of command center you should get 1 additional launchpad to use (so including the command center itself 6 launch pads). The fitting should be similar to the existing exctractors, with each additional storage node making up the bulk of the cost. Warehouses would still remain unlimited in qty, but also have similar fitting requirements on additional storage nodes.
Finally a little more radical idea I had not related to the other suggestions. How about removing cycle duration from excavators entirely. Instead just increase the rate a particular area gets depleted and then once an extractor node’s covered area is fully depleted the extractor shuts off, and the planet starts to regenerate. That way you could still get the same yield out of less material dense planets, it would just require more frequent node shuffling by the user. Conversely a more abundant planet would require less maintenance, the trade off being you’d probably have to travel farther away from populated areas to find them.
Anyways regardless of what happens, theres alot of repetitiveness in PI that could be removed for the benefit of everyone who does it, this is just one possible solution that uses existing pi structure mechanics on more structures to do so.