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Saturn Critter Trap Feedback


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I've got some feedback about the critter trap. I got one to about the 70% growth rate marker before I got bored of watching it grow and worrying about a horrifyingly hot salt water geyser, now I've been pondering on how to make the critter trap less tedious.

 

First of all, reduce the growing time. It's 30 cycles for around 12000 calories, and a lot of hydrogen along with that. I kinda don't need the hydrogen, it's the radioactive ocean that's still kind of in temp art, and if there's anything I don't need it's hydrogen. I don't care how it's rebalanced, just drop its growing time to something like 20 cycles.

Secondly, add recipes that involve the plant's meat. It's just sad to eat poor food that took 30 cycles to grow and ate a leftover hatch; it should at least rival the power of bbq. I just hope it gets proper food items by the time the dlc properly launches.

Finally, there needs to be some update to the plant's graphics. It just doesn't give information on its growth and neither does the shriveled sprite. Either a full overhaul in order to make it a plant that grows then eats, where you harvest back to a state when it can eat once more, or just give it a better animation for digestion that changes the more it grows. While the growth onto full trap would be interesting and gives more feedback to its consumption, that's just a nitpick.

Overall, the saturn critter trap just has to be rebalanced and adjusted, while a proper overhaul might not be needed outside of the plant just being broken. 

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13 hours ago, Xenologist said:

I've got some feedback about the critter trap. I got one to about the 70% growth rate marker before I got bored of watching it grow and worrying about a horrifyingly hot salt water geyser, now I've been pondering on how to make the critter trap less tedious.

 

First of all, reduce the growing time. It's 30 cycles for around 12000 calories, and a lot of hydrogen along with that. I kinda don't need the hydrogen, it's the radioactive ocean that's still kind of in temp art, and if there's anything I don't need it's hydrogen. I don't care how it's rebalanced, just drop its growing time to something like 20 cycles.

Secondly, add recipes that involve the plant's meat. It's just sad to eat poor food that took 30 cycles to grow and ate a leftover hatch; it should at least rival the power of bbq. I just hope it gets proper food items by the time the dlc properly launches.

Finally, there needs to be some update to the plant's graphics. It just doesn't give information on its growth and neither does the shriveled sprite. Either a full overhaul in order to make it a plant that grows then eats, where you harvest back to a state when it can eat once more, or just give it a better animation for digestion that changes the more it grows. While the growth onto full trap would be interesting and gives more feedback to its consumption, that's just a nitpick.

Overall, the saturn critter trap just has to be rebalanced and adjusted, while a proper overhaul might not be needed outside of the plant just being broken. 

I agree that the plant needs to be reworked, but not for the same reasons.

It is bugged right now and does not detect critters already standing on top of it after it's been harvested, which makes automating feeding them pretty much useless because save/reload is necessary for the plant to eat. Anything that requires save/load to work is not viable, I'm not going to keep an eye on my plants so I can reload the game every other cycle, that takes forever, causes memory issues, eventually a game restart is needed and I need to wait for Steam to sync the game files with the cloud. This is only made worst by plants not all being in sync, so not eating at the same time.

IMO, the hydrogen IS the main reason to use saturn critter traps. I couldn't find a lot of info on how they work, so I played around with them and made a small scale hydrogen power plant in my current game. Basically, feeding a saturn critter trap 1 hatch (3600kcal worth of meat, 4000kcal if barbecue) results in the plant digesting the critter over 30 cycles releasing puffs of hydrogen every 1,33cycles (approx) for an average around 40g/s (approx). It seems like 3 plants are enough to fully power a hydrogen generator at 100% uptime. I have only tested with hatches, I don't know if the amount of hydrogen produced scales up with how much kcal of food you feed the plant - could be worth looking into in the future (shove voles? dreckos/pips - those two can literally be ranched for "free"?)

As a side effect, it also converts 3600kcal of meat (or 4000kcal of barbecue) into 12000kcal of plant meat. The meal quality is "poor" (the equivalent of gristle berries, swampy delights, roast grubfruit nuts, etc.) which isn't amazing, but you essentially have a 3x kcal conversion multiplier that produces a lot of power at the cost of polluted water. If you don't want to feed it to your duplicants because you need more morale, you always have the option to ship it over to the tree for some resin, which would give you more bangs for your bucks because of how it acts as a kcal multiplier. I don't think it should rival with barbecue in terms of quality, it would be way too good otherwise. It could be nice to have a recipe that uses it, hopefully not just "grilled plant meat", that would be a bit boring, but I wouldn't be offended if it stayed like this because of how the plant also allows power production.

I personally think their mechanic is really nice and different from other things we have. We are not missing sources of food in the game, there are plenty already. If you need morale from food, Id say make barbecue from your hatches. I am personally happy I can throw in a few hatches every 30 cycles to make power instead. It's basically biological power. Lowering the digestion time would result in a less cost efficient way to produce power, as you would need to feed it more often and for what, more food or poor quality? I would prefer if the digestion time stayed at 30 cycles, that's the whole gimmick of the plant IMO. 

By the way, the plant doesn't seem to produce seeds on harvest, I don't know if this is a bug or a feature or if I have just been extremely unlucky with my 25+ agriculture farmers, but if it is a feature, then it means you are essentially limited in how many you can farm and how much power you can produce by how many seeds spawn on your map.

Having an animation change could be nice visually, but I don't know if it's necessary or if it even makes sense. The plant is already mature, it only traps a critter and converts it to plant meat. Carnivore plants don't visually get bigger as they digest their food. Anyway, I'm sure Klei could figure something out that sells the idea of the digestion progress, like the plant looks "full" and is a bit bigger at the beginning, and gets smaller as time goes on and the critter gets converted in smaller volume of plant meat? It would indeed be useful not having to mouse over the plant or use the plant overlay every time to check on digestion time.

None of that matters though unless they are fixed and work properly without having to reload the game to get them to eat every single time.

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Since Saturns grow in the biome related to most dangerous, high-tech part of the game I would expect it do do something more.

Why would you need 3 hydrogen generators if you are about to make research reactor with 10 steam turbines and probably you have solar panels on every asteroid you colonised?

Why would you need poor quality food when at this point of the game your food problems are solved with much better quality of food?

I really like the concept of carnivore plant, man, thats so cool! But it should be either moved to Swamp biome or have better application for the end-game, because thats when you discover them. I believe that dropping seeds and having recipe that uses grilled plant meat for something with higher quality (maybe around frost burgers) would be enough.

Another loose idea - maybe it could try to devour duplicants? Those ofc could be able to break out of the plant's tendrils, but with health reduced. Just to make things more spicey (ofc assuming Saturns are left in the uranium biome, that would be terrible idea for Swamp biome)

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1 hour ago, pether said:

Since Saturns grow in the biome related to most dangerous, high-tech part of the game I would expect it do do something more.

Why would you need 3 hydrogen generators if you are about to make research reactor with 10 steam turbines and probably you have solar panels on every asteroid you colonised?

Not really, and that will become less the case with the new update and new type of cluster. For example, on one of the start (the radioactive ocean), you can very early access the radioactive biome, perhaps the Saturn critter traps will offer alternative ways of producing food and power on that map. On classic starts, there are radioactive biomes everywhere, a lot of them have no bees, you don't need any kind of protection to get in there. I don't know what "end game tech and danger" you refer to in the radioactive biome. Duplicants exhale CO2 and that alone puts bees to sleep. CO2 in general is easy to get and it will not instantly liquefy (even if the radioactive biome is very cold) before it has the chance to spread out and put the bees to sleep.

I hope they somehow fix the bees behavior, to be honest. Right now, most of the times my dupes go in there, the bees completely ignore them even if there is no CO2 to put them to sleep.

It also seems like the devs are intending Uranium ore to become accessible and useful earlier with earlier techs (radlamp are researched with fridges, manual radbolt generator, etc.).

To be honest, I don't really get the logic behind what you said up there. Each hydrogen generator is 800W and the only thing you need is sub-0degC environment and polluted water. Cool slush geysers are pretty easy to find nowadays. This is much more accessible and more easily renewable than setting up a research reactor and sending rockets to mine space POIs to get renewable ore. Granted, there's ore on the map to last several thousand cycles if you refine it with the bees. If you really don't like hydrogen generators, feel free to liquefy it late game, it should come out below 0degC instead of the classic 500 degC from hydrogen vents or 70+ degC from electrolyzers.

I don't really understand that "myth" that the radioactive biome is end game, it's literally at the bottom of the -closest- asteroid in the cluster (spaced out), on all classic starts (?) and also on one of the close asteroids in the new incoming cluster type. Dupes don't even need atmosuits to stay alive in there. They can use masks (and exhale CO2 in the process), grab a few seeds and get out, plant and get hydrogen, that can be done relatively early, with a low tech level.

I think it's mostly an unknow resource and people are mostly ignoring it until they are perfectly settled and their colony is already sustainable. Old habits die hard.

1 hour ago, pether said:

Why would you need poor quality food when at this point of the game your food problems are solved with much better quality of food?

Let me ask you the same question, why would you need better quality food from that one specific and unique plant you may end up farming only a limited number of anyway since they currently do not produce seeds if, at that point of the game, your food problems are solved with already good quality of food? Right now, I see an opportunity to throw that food to the tree since it acts as a kcal multiplier or provide okay quality of food if you farm them earlier in game. I don't think that plant is meant to be farmed for food only, but it would be interesting if they came up with some recipe anyway.   

1 hour ago, pether said:

I really like the concept of carnivore plant, man, thats so cool! But it should be either moved to Swamp biome or have better application for the end-game, because thats when you discover them. I believe that dropping seeds and having recipe that uses grilled plant meat for something with higher quality (maybe around frost burgers) would be enough.

Another loose idea - maybe it could try to devour duplicants? Those ofc could be able to break out of the plant's tendrils, but with health reduced. Just to make things more spicey (ofc assuming Saturns are left in the uranium biome, that would be terrible idea for Swamp biome)

I like it a lot too, and I think the saturn critter trap is very interesting already - if it could just work properly. For the reason mentioned above, I don't see it as an "end game" plant, it's just victim of being unknown and underexploited by the community. I think it is very good right now for what it does and what it costs to farm. Did you give it a try at stages earlier than end game when your colony wasn't already fully sustainable and all your problems weren't already solved? Cause at that end game stage, nothing is really "good" (all your problems have already been solved).

I do like the idea of them trapping duplicants :-) I sincerely hope that becomes a thing, perhaps the radioactive biome would be a bit more dangerous than it is now.

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48 minutes ago, NeoDeusMachina said:

I don't know what "end game tech and danger" you refer to in the radioactive biome.

I mean that this biome is related and designed for radiation part of the game. Uranium produces energy faster and better than any other energy source and radiation sickness is currently the only one that can kill infected duplicant. I like that high risk - high reward theme of radiation and I feel that Saturn Traps should align more to that as well.

48 minutes ago, NeoDeusMachina said:

Let me ask you the same question, why would you need better quality food from that one specific and unique plant you may end up farming only a limited number of anyway since they currently do not produce seeds if, at that point of the game, your food problems are solved with already good quality of food?

I'd love to have exciting alternative for frost burgers. Poor quality meal is not one. Also, I suggested they could drop seeds.

48 minutes ago, NeoDeusMachina said:

For the reason mentioned above, I don't see it as an "end game" plant, it's just victim of being unknown and underexploited by the community. I think it is very good right now for what it does and what it costs to farm.

Maybe it's a matter of different ideas and perspectives. Agreed, the plant might be unknown, but that's probably the effects it provide doesn't sound that exciting and at this point of the game nobody bothers with that. Maybe if new asteroids introduce this biome earlier to the game, the plant indeed may more application.

Also - don't get me wrong, I don't say the plant is utter garbage and if it stayed in it's current shape to the release that would be OK. I'd just love to be as excited about farming this plant as I love it's nature of a carnivore. Currently plant sounds cool but weak for me. Maybe it is not terrible, I just don't feel the wow effect that the plant deserves - some new recipes could help with that and probably wouldn't hurt overall game balance

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On 10/25/2021 at 9:13 AM, NeoDeusMachina said:

Basically, feeding a saturn critter trap 1 hatch (3600kcal worth of meat, 4000kcal if barbecue) results in the plant digesting the critter over 30 cycles releasing puffs of hydrogen every 1,33cycles (approx) for an average around 40g/s (approx).

'Digesting' probably should depend onto critter's mass with bigger critters taking longer to digest yet giving more plant meat.

On 10/25/2021 at 9:13 AM, NeoDeusMachina said:

It could be nice to have a recipe that uses it, hopefully not just "grilled plant meat"

Definitely needs at least some receipts.

Soy? Since it's so different, it might use some different production chain, like making soy-like fiber out of it (crusher?) and then cooking it into other products.

On 10/25/2021 at 9:13 AM, NeoDeusMachina said:

IMO, the hydrogen IS the main reason to use saturn critter traps.

 

Peronally I would have preffered it having a mutation that produces natural gas. It's likely possible to make the plant produce both gasses depending on the type of the critter, but it will be too OP this way. Default plant attracting and catching beetas and releasing nuclear fallout, with mutations producing natural gas and hydrogen sounds like fun, but sadly it's too cold for the 'nuclear fallout' gas.

I personally have no use for Hydrogen but Natgas Mutation might have justified setting up something to mutate plants.

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I think the core design of it is wrong. Obviously, it's meant to replace drowning chambers, but meat is already intended to be high-tier food item you work for, so there's no point in using a ton of effort on transmuting it into another kind of food item. It would make far more sense if it just released a ridiculous amount of hydrogen, but even that really isn't useful when it's so easy to use electrolyzers.

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3 hours ago, Nebbie said:

I think the core design of it is wrong. Obviously, it's meant to replace drowning chambers, but meat is already intended to be high-tier food item you work for, so there's no point in using a ton of effort on transmuting it into another kind of food item. It would make far more sense if it just released a ridiculous amount of hydrogen, but even that really isn't useful when it's so easy to use electrolyzers.

Have you experimented with the traps in game?

I don't believe it is "obviously" meant to replace drowning chambers. Those plants take 30 cycles (if farmed) to digest a single critter, and they do not produce seeds, which means it would be very difficult to find enough seeds to process all the extra critters you would normally drown. Of course they can process some of them (multiplying kcal in the process and providing power), but I would not rely on traps to replace a drowning chamber entirely, unless only ranching a very small number of critters. (Edit: something that would obviously be meant to replace drowning chambers would also not transform critter drops into something else entirely that you cannot use as originally intended, for example, for barbecue.)

They produce a reasonable amount of hydrogen. Three plants can sustain a single hydrogen generator at 100% uptime with some extra leftover hydrogen. This is like a single hydrogen vent but the hydrogen comes out cold and not at 500C, which makes it simpler to harvest. The only power needed is to pump the polluted water in and the gas out - both of which will run at low uptimes. You might need to cool down the farm depending on how you set it up, but cool slush geysers should work well for that providing polluted water at the correct temperature for the plants. To me, that makes it convenient compared to setting up an electrolyzer (if you're looking at power production), dealing with the heat, filtration of water, heating it up if the water is too cold, cooling down the O2, etc. If it's a SPOM, then the leftover hydrogen is generally minimal and not viable for power production on its own.

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