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Strange Ways of Electrical Grid

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I don't generally like exploits and try not to use them to much.

The only dodgy thing I am using in current experiment (first real playthrough) are:

- triple airlock doors - gas deletion (for insulation purposes) - there is only one possible way around it - double visco-gel lock with vacuum in-between.

- debris being pushed out from mesh tiles to nearest cell - I have found a way of not using it at all.

I placed this here as the  mechanic in question is the same in the base game and in the DLC (please feel free to correct me if I am wrong).

What I'm describing here may be well known, however a quick search did not yield any relevant results and I am not reading forums or web content on a daily basis.

I was surprised to find that you can actually build a whole electrical grid without heavy watt wires at all thus negating all the decor penalties.

The issue comes with how batteries and wires are implemented:

- Batteries seem to charge with extra energy available - this is ok.

- Wire can handle 1kW or 2kW load - mostly ok, however implementation leads to problems.

It turns out that wires get overload damage only from electrical equipment consuming energy. You can actually connect 100kW power plant to a single 2kW conductive wires and use batteries with some very simple automation to branch out and separate segments. Batteries when charging use whole connected power with complete disregard to wire's declared carrying capacity.

Found this accidentally while building underwater outpost on water asteroid. Initially I used almost all my resources to build a shaft and a ceiling - finally found use for bunker tiles. What little I had left I used to connect solar panels at the top, via the shaft with the bottom part using a single conductive wire.

I wanted to avoid potential pressure damage to the HW joint plate (and thus potential flooding), initially didn't have the resources to build HW wire or transformers and wanted to avoid decor penalties during initial outpost construction (if I decided to lay the wiring in the shaft).

Now 5 solar panels, hydrogen generator and a steam turbine support over 6kW potential load on a single wire (though divided into several sections).

All of this would be fine if you could not draw more than 2000 J/s  via a 2 kW wire using a battery without overloading the conductive wire (1000 J/s for normal wire).

It is much easier to negate negative decor in a few spots you place batteries and automation at than do the same with HW (HWC) wire.

3 batteries plus associated automation takes slightly more space than a large power transformer (and a bit more resources), however in my case this approach would be beneficial in some places. I am still not going to use this on a large scale. You can actually reduce the number to 2 batteries and it also should work fine.

In other words it seems that currently any wire can provide infinite amount of energy. Game engine only checks how much is consumed by various devices connected and on that basis applies overload damage. And well - Batteries bend the space time continuum and defy ONI physics.

I am an older user (not a grandpa, but not a kid anymore). What I like about Oxygen Not Included and some other titles (i.e. Factorio) is it's educational value especially for younger audience. However there are certain small things that may teach you the wrong way of thinking - actually batteries here are one of those "things".

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Wait till you discover the infinite gas/liquid storage exploits. Or how water in a tank can be disinfected by chlorine around it.

Some of those things are coded weirdly but require game knowledge and some creativity to pull off. I think that`s fair to keep some of those quirks for people to exploit even if they aren`t physically accurate.

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On 9/30/2022 at 3:34 PM, Sasza22 said:

Wait till you discover the infinite gas/liquid storage exploits. Or how water in a tank can be disinfected by chlorine around it.

Some of those things are coded weirdly but require game knowledge and some creativity to pull off. I think that`s fair to keep some of those quirks for people to exploit even if they aren`t physically accurate.

it's the tiny things like this I hope they would address in a new version of the game. I love ONI, but the way they want you to play it is such a turn-off too me.

They purposefully narrow options so you must play in this sliver of possibilities to get some enjoyment and satisfaction from.

Add to it the inherent quirkiness of implementation, and meandering premises. As I remember it started as a one-off, someones first attempt at a game, with no real story developed etc. All of that was filled in in later iterations. It wasn't a coherent whole at first, like Raft or others, The Long Dark. They evolved into what they are today. Whereas a ONI #2 could be actually based in real science real numbers, real situations(virtually). Using established maths for true functions in-game. That would be a worthy endeavor, for not only would it be entertaining it would be educational. And not some fanciful cartoon.I hope that Klei itself will mature and evolve in understanding to consider things similarly with merit. It saddens me to the lost potential, when all they offer is pajama cubby and spice grinders, and watercoolers, and Jambots, and surfboards. But not a half-sized pump, not a different battery type, not a new method of refinement. But toys, that's job#1. For me, it makes the game juvenile.

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This, in code, is because, unlike in reality, batteries are not a "load" when charging.

You can charge them with the smallest wire and "switch banks", for draining, with heavy wire. (A simple flip-flop logic, with an added AND gate on the opposing NOT circuit, to compensate for the "instant switching" that happens if you don't put some kind of automation on the second switch.)

I just posted about the horrible power programming.

Honestly, we should be able to branch 2x 1000w wires off a 2000w wire, going to two individual 1000w loads, and NOT overload the 1000w or 2000w wires. But, they are incorrectly using "watts" for "amps", and have made-up all sorts of odd rules for power that we have had to figure-out. (Making us a bit dumb to reality in the process.)

Basically, you can use 1000w wire for almost everything, if you want to build the matching automation for it. There is a video showing how one guy powers over 500,000watts of devices, with 1000w wires delivering all the power from two banks of batteries.

I have a similar trick here... in the attached picture. I have a steam generator charging a battery which is connected to a single 1000w transformer, with 2000w wires. The output is switched, so it charges a lower battery, nearly instantly, as long as the 1200w aquatuner is not ON. (The not gate off the aquatuner) That turns a switch on, if it is not running, and fills the second battery. If, for some reason, the second battery is out of power, it will tap into my live power to fill the lower battery. However, the whole setup, including the 120w auto-sweeper, is virtually running off that single 1000w transformer setup.

P.S. You can also put two 1000w transformers paired together, to connect as 2000w. Though you can't use 2x 1000w wires to deliver 2000w of power. {ROLLS EYES} (Both inputs attached to high power wire and both outputs connected to a 2000w wire. Though it is cheaper to use the 4K transformer, which is just dumb, because there is no way to deliver 4K power to anything unless you use HW-Wire that handles 20Kw. Guess they want us to use 5x of the 4K transformers to drop down the larger wire to HW-Wire levels. {ROLLS EYES})


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This is a video game and not a very realistic one.  Even children realize this fact.

If this game is an educational tool it is about problem solving and creative solutions and not being an accurate model.

I recently came up with:


and I don't consider it an exploit, just a creative solution.  Doing this doesn't even occur to most players anyway.

I like having a third option aside from heavy wat wires or split grids.

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