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Redesigning batteries, recharging

Discussion in 'Suggestions and Feedback' started by Grit Breather, Jan 18, 2016.

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This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.
  1. DivineWrath Junior Engineer

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    531
    In regards to the arguments that you shouldn't have "battery bottles" because players will never use them. That is an argument of what you think will happen and what you value. It can be refuted by players who have legitimate uses for them and do value them. It can be refuted by how frequently other players might actually use them, how much they would like to have the option to use them even if rarely, and how badly they think they might (or will) some day need one.

    How about we stop talking about the battery bottles? Give them their own thread (or use an existing one) so we can use this thread to focus on ship batteries. Call them personal battery packs or something to distinguish them from the battery packs that will be needed for ships, or ship battery packs. This thread is getting derailed.

    Overall, this thread is trying to address a few significant problems: recharging new batteries, recharging depleted batteries, the ease of recharging in general, and the ability to recycle battery blocks. Overall, these battery casings and ship battery packs are likely to fix 3 of those problems. Recharging new batteries can be fix because you could put in ship battery packs. Recharged depleted batteries can fixed in the same way. And it could fix the recycle battery blocks problem because you no longer need a drawback to balance giving ships an initial charge.

    If conveyor capabilities are added to these battery casings, or we got power cables to hook our ships together, then ease of recharging would go up.
     
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  2. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    Yes, of course inventory.

    As for conveyors, it's also covered in my OP. I'm starting to think you didn't actually read the idea. You just saw "battery changes" and started ranting.
     
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  3. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    @Harrekin, how could you even disagree with the above? I was answering your question. There is nothing you could either agree or disagree on in that post!

    As for conveyors, are you also advocating that reactors should lose their conveyor support then?
     
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  4. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    Ok, I'll test another theory about @Harrekin just disagreeing to anything I say.
    Cats have fur. Dogs have teeth.
     
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  5. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    1) You asked for my opinion since I made a disagree and you never replied to that response.
    2) Maybe he doesn't want batteries to become a chargeable reactor? (I for one don't)

    I do like the idea of batteries having to be filled with battery packs meaning you can have small ships without connectors to charge them BUT! I disagree with conveyors, different battery packs and tiers. Conveyors because again it means smart people would have any the amount of batteries needed to power their ship and use pre-charged battery packs cycling in and out constantly and automatically. If it was manually loaded in I would be fine with it since it would require manual labor but everything should not be automated.
     
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  6. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    I believe I replied to it together with a few other posts but just didn't specifically tag you.

    The conveyor part had me conflicted when I originally wrote it. I personally do believe as you do that it should be manual.
    But we both know that "add conveyors!!!!11!!11!oneone" will be the immediate next community request after this so I decided to save time and introduce it as an option. As stated in the OP, I think small grid batteries should be conveyor-less but big grid ones will likely have them.
    As for people having automated systems that cycle batteries in and out. How is this actually a problem? It's not like anything in this idea creates magic "power from nothing". They have to charge those batteries somewhere.
    As we're also talking about pretty big components that will likely take up 150-200L of space, there won't really be much advantage in stockpiling them just for the sake of more power. They would severely detract from your ability to carry cargo.
     
  7. VanGoghComplex Apprentice Engineer

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    I don't think either should have conveyors, personally. Modders will quickly fulfill that request for people.
     
  8. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    I'm not sure they technically can.
    As I'm not a modder myself, I can't speak to the validity of this claim but I picked up the notion that if a base block doesn't have at least one conveyor port, they can't be modded in either.

    As for not having them at all, I'm fine with that. As stated, I wasn't a fan of that option anyway and only added it because it would be the obvious next outcry.
     
  9. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    Anything with an inventory can have a conveyor currently. And yes cycling batteries in and out would become a problem since cargo containers would have much more storage per block than a battery (unless you seriously inflate numbers) meaning you only need the minimum amount of battery blocks and have a billion power packs basically making power packs into "uranium" instead. Batteries should have the disadvantage that they have powerloss, are block to power inefficient and obviously that they have limited capacity. Doing it manually sure it wont be that big of a problem since manual labor is a good balancing factor for people cycling in and out packs. Battery packs at 200L would not actually impact storage capacity a lot on large ships considering that the carry capacity of even small inventories are massive in comparison.
     
  10. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    I would say Battery "bottles" should be added in as a moddable option but not in the base game.
     
  11. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    As I said, I'm fine either way. My personal preference is to not have conveyor ports but as I don't work for Keen, it's not my call.
    I still don't see how having a million batteries being cycled in and out is a problem because they would still need to be charged somewhere. It's not like their charge is magical, you need to create the power to put into them.
     
  12. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    I disagree with that but I guess we play differently. I do think SE has room for long ship-less missions that may require additional power.
     
  13. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    Not saying that charge is magical but it comes down to "per block" balance. Especially in multiplayer it can become a silly issue where people can build solar panels and charge up let us say 100 Battery Packs. That would be 200 000 L and it would be equivalent to quite a bit of Uranium. Now they build only 5 batteries (pulling numbers out of my ass here) and for the sake of discussion it powers the entire ship without overload. Now those 5 batteries would have power for approximately 26.25 hours at full capacity (with current battery balance) but only taking up a total of 14 blocks (a large cargo container and 5 battery blocks) and still having 221 000L of extra storage space available on realistic settings. That is 81 blocks less if you wanted to run the ship for concurrent 26.25 hours at full capacity.
     
  14. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    The reasoning behind it is if you take an oxygen tank, a hydrogen tank and a battery with you then you would not be building / drilling / grinding anything significant materials anyway and if you want to travel the current power consumption is so low that you could fly to Mars from Earthlike with like 3 hydrogen tanks and the rest of the inventory filled with oxygen tanks.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2016
  15. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    Yes...
    But let's say you have reactors and use Uranium for the same example instead of those batteries. The batteries would cost you 200kL of storage where the reactor solution would only cost you maybe 20-30L of Uranium storage. It's not like Uranium is rare in space so collecting that much would take no time.
    Don't forget that batteries are also less efficient that reactors in transporting power. What's the number people throw around for batteries? 20% power loss on output?

    Yes, if you exploit it in that way then it give off the impression of not being balanced but is that really the case? You're flying around with an immensely heavier ship (batteries aren't light) and have also sacrificed 200kL of storage just for this. This may be a small tradeoff for very big ships but so is anything else. Reactors are also stupidly cheap to build once you have enough resources.

    What if batteries required slightly more rate materials? Would that make you more comfortable?
     
  16. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    I'm proposing an option that would enhance gameplay for some of the players.
    I personally don't like using small cockpits on large ships. Doesn't mean I think they should be removed.
     
  17. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    The some player part is also the reason why I would like it as a moddable option, and the some player part is also the reason why I wouldn't like to see it as a vanilla component.
     
  18. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    I don't think Keen are able to add this as a moddable option without providing a working example in vanilla.
    If this isn't the case then I wouldn't mind that as a solution.
     
  19. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    It is actually 20% power loss on input actually. Also if you want to talk about the weight difference between running only blocks as batteries let me do a quick calculation more.

    1) If we go with current balance of batteries then a battery casing (if they use one battery pack) would be 4 645 kg and a full 4 845 kg if filled with a battery pack. (if we say the battery pack weighs as much as it fills). That would equate to a total of 200*105 kg 21 000 kg for the battery packs and 23 225 kg total for the batteries amounting to a wooping total of 44 225 kg a very insignificant amount.
    1) If we would say the you still need 60 Power Cells and that the Battery Packs weigh as much as 60 Power cells the numbers are a little different.
    The empty battery casing would then weigh 3 345 kg and the Battery packs would weigh 1 500 kg. That amounts to a 16 725 kg for the batteries and 1 57 500 kg for the battery packs (making them the most weighty component in the game by far). Now it would be kind of balanced but you also have the most weighty component in the game for no apparent reason.

    If Keen would do anything they would probably go for option 1 since it makes the most sense.

    Sorry for all the numbers but it is a significant part of a discussion of whether or not conveyors is a proper option for batteries.

    For this one they did it with Thruster Upgrades.
     
  20. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    Don't apologize, numbers are good!

    The way I envisioned this is that all the Power Cell components would be removed from the Battery Casing construction and put into the assembly of Battery components. For the same level of power you would need the same volume and weight as you already have today.
    From your two options, the second one is where I was aiming but I think you misunderstood some of my idea. The 60 cells wouldn't go into a single Battery component, they would go into 4-8 of them. You technically could only use a single Battery in your casing but that wouldn't give you its full power potential. You would need to fill it up with the equivalent of what goes in to it today.

    I purposely left the numbers out of this because I wanted to keep the post light on the technical side. Essentially, a Battery would be balanced around the ~180L mark and require a certain quantity of Power Cells that equates to that with relation to how much space/weight they take up in battery blocks today. The balance would come out of you using the same amount of materials as you do today but with the added flexibility of being able to use less (load less Batteries in a Casing) with the tradeoff of also getting less power.

    Not entirely true.
    They introduced upgrade modules as vanilla blocks, just not the thruster variant. I don't think there is anything in the game today that's possible via a modding API and doesn't already exist in vanilla in some way.
     
  21. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    It doesn't really matter the amounts of battery packs though or their size (except they have to be carryable). The math kind of still stands. For a massive ship that already weighs millions of kg that wants to run battery power (with conveyors) will still be much better off storing the surplus of batteries in containers instead of battery blocks skewering the block -> Power ratio of stuff. That is something I find the most important balancing aspect (above cost) in the game is Block->Power Ratio.
     
  22. VanGoghComplex Apprentice Engineer

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    I understand the exploit you're concerned that this will present, but... I also don't.

    You can only effectively use cells as fast as you can charge them or you run out. Cells shouldn't charge while in cargo; they should only charge when they're inside a battery casing set to charge them, which has power available to charge them with.

    Sure, you could have a large cargo container full of charged cells, but it's not like that would happen magically; you'd have to charge those cells with something (that being time, whether via solar or reactor). At that point, why wouldn't you just be using a reactor anyway?
     
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  23. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    Because you could cycle in and out batteries while the ship is idle (For example with solar power) increasing your Block->Power output quite a lot.
    And most people use reactors anyway. This issue is more of a problem on Multiplayer server than in singleplayer games obviously since ships have a lot of idle time.
     
  24. VanGoghComplex Apprentice Engineer

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    246
    Yeah, but... what would it buy the player to be able to do that? What advantage is there? If you're talking about a single ship, then it wouldn't make sense to move dead cells to a "charging" block and full cells back to the "discharging" block; you're not earning anything there. In fact, you're losing to the 20% efficiency loss inherent to charging batteries.

    As for packing a cargo container full of precharged cells and just swapping them out in your battery block when needed, again: what's the advantage? You're still limited output wise to your battery block, you're just using additional cargo space to extend your run time. At that point it's a far less efficient means of doing exactly the same thing with uranium and reactors.
     
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  25. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    I am not talking about moving it between them I am saying you charge while idle and you discharge while doing stuff as simple as that. The fact of the matter is that batteries have a maximum of 15 minutes of maximum output time. If you make a hydrogen ship you should be able to run even jump drives with quite few batteries. With charging one jump drive and all your utilities you are considering 4 batteries. That is 4 block spaces. To keep your ship efficient and minimize the block space used you could just as well have the rest of the in a cargo container which would have quite a bit of storage space. Now you can precharge a ton of battery packs to extend your maximum output time from 15 minutes to what ever time you want. So if you want more run time you just add more battery packs instead of actually building batteries (As long as they are conveyored).
    Batteries and solar panels are already less efficient at doing basically the same thing as uranium and reactors if you wanna go that route.

    The thing here I am saying it ruins the Block Space -> Power Output ratio which has an impact on the overall game balance so if this got implemented I would personally just build just enough batteries to make sure my ship is never overloaded and then have precharged batteries in a container. BOOM I extend the life of my batteries significantly for much less overall block space used. While the ship is idle and having a higher input than output I would put my batteries to recharge (with a script) and make it cycle in and out batteries until they are all charged. On singleplayer I said it is going to much less of an issue as it would be on Dedicated Servers as your ships are idle while you are offline.

    EDIT: Side note, would you need more output if your ship is not overloading? Not really.
     
  26. VanGoghComplex Apprentice Engineer

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    Yeah, I get all that.

    But... how does it upset game balance? You can already do all that with uranium and reactors, for far fewer components, with much greater energy yield, with much less time invested (it takes a lot less time to mine and refine U than to charge batteries from solar.) Anyone who went to the lengths you described would have an overcomplicated and underperforming system compared to reactors.

    I like that we're discussing the ramifications of conveyor ports on the battery enclosures, but to be clear, I'm with you. I don't see a need, for the reasons I stated above. To me, the appeal of battery boxes is simple: so that I can build a solar outpost that does nothing but charge batteries, and swap battery cells on my utility ships when they run low, instead of having to stop what I'm doing, dock the ship, and wait for a charge.

    I can do it in 2016 with my cordless DeWalt drill. Why can't I do it in 2077?

    (As usual, I'm aware there's a way to make a gigantic merge-block contraption to accomplish this, but ew.)
     
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  27. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    Because Batteries can do the same as a reactor with no Uranium involved.
     
  28. Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    But Uranium is still dirt cheap in space. Mine once and forget about it for weeks.
     
  29. VanGoghComplex Apprentice Engineer

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    Yeah, except not quite. You still have to spend the time (and possibly U, depending on your charging scheme) to actually charge all those battery cells in the first place.

    You're acting like this change makes energy free. All it does is make energy more portable.
     
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  30. sioxernic Senior Engineer

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    2,535
    Yes but if you are doing it the solar way you most definitely do not have the power to charge all the battery cells at the same time you had produced in the first place... And secondly the point you keep ignoring:
    BLOCK SPACE Efficiency. Block Space is the most balancing factor of blocks in this game.
     
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