By Marcus Estrada
[dropcap]F[/dropcap]actorio… Somehow, I had never heard of the game before. It saw crowdfunding success via Indiegogo in March 2013 and has since been accruing a devoted fan base. Perhaps the better way to describe it is indoctrinating new, innocent gamers. Before Factorio, I thought my life was in order. After engaging with the series of tutorials included in the demo, it became impossible to tear myself away. What follows is an impromptu journal chronicling the highs and lows of my inaugural experience.
Day 1 :
I’m a man – or am I a woman? In either case, my character was decked out in a blue spacesuit and standing rather sadly near their wrecked spaceship. There was a vast amount of emptiness on display, minus a few patches of trees and oddly colored rocks. The landscape seemed completely desolate. Being suddenly plunged into the alien landscape put me on heightened alert, if just a little bit.
The game quickly began to usher tutorial tips across the screen. Everything seemed pretty standard: Scavenge the ship for parts, build tools, and harvest the surrounding natural resources. The second my pickaxe began mining stones my memories of Minecraft, Terraria, and countless others started to seep through. However, that feeling was relatively short lived even though I didn’t recognize it yet.
Day 2 :
Oh, god! I’ve discovered that machines can be built to assist in gathering resources. Factorio’s main selling point is this fact, after all. Again, the game kindly dips you into these topics. First there’s just a few tools devised to allow for automatic mining and collection. Even at that point, I found myself continuously running back and forth to raid the collection boxes for their goods.
Starting to recognize the potential of the experience, I plowed further through more tutorials. Oh, and there are enemies too. This wasteland is far from empty. At the start, I panicked as strange dog-like monstrosities ran down into my burgeoning factory to eat me alive. My unfamiliarity with the controls gave them precious time to take chunks out of my character although luckily I never died. Gotta love regenerating health!
Day 3 :
Although the demo exists as only a tutorial, it eventually gave me enough room to start experimenting with more complex factories. With newfound access to electricity generated by a flowing stream, I unleashed my poorly-designed factory on the world. My excitement over lessened dependence of coal as a power source drove me to expand.
With my power poles in haphazard directions and machine gun sentries positioned everywhere to keep me safe from the creepy dogs, I felt (temporarily) like a king. Of course, upon reflection I realized any hardened Factorio players would probably laugh my measly, inefficient factory off the planet. Still, it felt good to see the workings of a semi-automatic factory begin sliding into place.
The demo tantalized me, leaving a tremendous need to be satiated once it was over. Factorio seems like the kind of game for people who enjoy order and automation. My goofy factory made me proud but with more time, skill, and planning, I know it would lead to even greater excitement. Is Factorio for you? Try out the demo yourself and see if it lures you in!
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[author image=”http://cliqist.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/marcus.jpg” ] Marcus is a fellow with a love for video games, horror, and Japanese food. When he’s not writing about games for a multitude of sites, he’s usually still playing one. One day when he became fed up with the way sites would ignore niche titles he decided to start his own site by the name of Pixel Pacas. Writing about video games is something he hopes to continue doing for many years to come. Some of Marcus’s favorite games include Silent Hill 2, Killer7, and The Sims.[/author]