It's like GTA crossed with Magic the gathering and a little MS Encarta and other inaccurate descriptions

Was playing this interesting pre pre pre alpha game off of called Autonauts.

It was described as Factorio meets Minecraft. Two games I really enjoy but the description was misleading. It could be better described as Factorio with vaguely 3d graphics and a pseudo voxel/minecraft art style.

Factorio is all 2d and sprite graphics the game play in all in the 2d plane. Autonauts has 3d graphics but the gameplay is still just 2d.

Factorio is all about production chains that get ever more elaborate and sophisticated as you go up the tech tree.

So you start as a just a person mining collect resources manually. Then you build a few mining machines and a few furnaces the materials are collected automatically but you still need to make the refined parts from them. Then you get factories an conveyor belts and inserters. You can then chain up production mining resources shifting them on conveyors to furnaces to refine the materials then to factories to refine them a step further and so on and so on. Eventually you get to the point where you are making things in multiple chains and ending up with remote mining sites that ship their ores to you factory via automated train lines. Then the step beyond that you get logistics networks with robots that shift around resources and others that automate construction of new factories.

Autonauts is in a similar vein but uses a different mechanic. Little robots you can train to do tasks. So it starts the same sort of way you have to make stuff by hand then eventually you can make a worker factory. These little workers have the option to be trained in that you can select one put him in training mode and then execute a task and it will then copy you and repeat that task forever. So you give it an axe and then you train it to go and chop down a tree set it to repeat forever it will then chop down any tree in sight until it runs out of trees breaks its axe or runs out of power. You can then add more robots to collect the wood to dig holes to plant more trees and so on.

The robots can only do fairly simple tasks and their is a lack of any conditionals to allow for more complex behaviours but they do have some simple repeat functions like pick this thing up repeat till you hands are full go here put it in the box repeat till hands are empty. With some creative arrangement you can get the robots that use tools to automatically get a new one when it breaks by setting the cut down trees functions to repeat until hands are empty (a tool takes a hand slot) then have them get another tool from a store somewhere.

You can chain up robots make them produce more and more things even have them automatically make more robots or have them recharge other robots that get wound down.

Being an early alpha there are some issues the command system is limited more complex behaviours can be difficult and also as you get more and more robots finding which ones are set with which commands can be difficult and things like limits or quotas are not possible so if you want them to produce spares of something like axes for wood cutting they will just keep making them till they exhaust all the materials where as making 10 and then waiting till they were used up would be more useful. There's also not really a goal as such there is a thing with these people that you find where you can make them happy by giving them houses and porridge but it's not really a clear goal. Things like minecraft and factorio go the survival as a goal route (I supposed minecraft has a goal with the ender dragon and in factorio the goal is to escape back to orbit) this doesn't really have that. Also the tech tree here is maybe three levels at the moment crude stuff you make by hand, wooden versions of that, then metal versions. It's an early version so it has a way to go.

I'd still like to see a game that was what was promised a factory game that has the same open 3d minecraft type environment. I've seen some attempts but nothing that reached the same sort of level of polish and function that factorio has.

Still Autonauts is an interesting game you can try out for free on here it's a bit like sous vide cooking a roast but where that roast is actually a swimming pool.


OH CRAP! I just lost 3 hours! :D

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