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Topic: Production sites ware storage

kaputtnik
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Joined: 2013-02-18, 20:48
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Posted at: 2022-11-06, 12:14

A Production site has ware storage and a specific consumption of basic materials to produce a ware. E.g. an empire sawmill has ware storage of 8 logs and produces one plank out of two logs. At the same time the production of a plank needs ~36 sec (16s sleeptime + ~20s production time if i count correctly). If the amount of input wares (logs) is set to three this will happen, assuming a good log supply is given:

  1. produce planks out of two logs, one log remains at the sawmills ware storage, the sawmill will sleep for 16s
  2. because two logs are missing now the sawmill requests logs from a warehouse or woodcutter
  3. the logs are on the way and at least one log arrives at the sawmill, so two logs for making planks are available and the third log is on the way
  4. after sleeping start at 1. again

In the end the sawmill will run at 100% with reduced amount of input storage, and the saved logs (those which are not stored at the sawmill) can be used for other things.

Now my question is why has a sawmill a default ware storage of 8 logs, although much less amount will allow to produce at 100%? The other way around: A sawmill will never need 8 logs ware storage because it produces planks within 36s (with good log supply). O.k. the example with reducing to three logs depends on the time new logs will arrive at the sawmill. If the requested logs need more time (greater sleeptime of 16s) to arrive at the sawmill, the amount of input wares has to be increased to have always enough logs to produce planks at 100%, but with my current experience i can say reducing to store three logs is enough. If reducing to three doesn't fulfill plank requests it's time to build another sawmill to produce more planks, of course also with reduced amount of input wares.

This applies to all production sites and also to training sites: It is always needed to reduce the amount of input wares and workers, so why do we have such a huge amount of input wares storage in production sites and a huge amount of input worker storage for training sites? For new players i think this is irritating, because it makes them believe the production sites ware storage has to be full to let the sawmill run at 100%.

I think it should be considered to reduce the default storage of input wares to a more meaningful value. For production sites a rule of thumb can be, imho: Consumed wares x 2 (e.g. empire sawmill consumes two logs for planks: 2logs x 2 = input ware storage 4logs) Other examples:

  • Toolsmithy: 1planks x 2 = ware storage 2 planks, and 1iron x 2 = ware storage 2 iron
  • Training site: 1soldier x 2 = worker storage 2 soldiers

Don't know a meaningful rule of thumb for production sites consuming different items, e.g. for a weapon smithy. Usually i set the input storage for all input wares to a value of two or three for them. And here again: If this doesn't fulfill the requests for the produced wares it's time to built an additional weapon smithy.


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Seefahrer
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Joined: 2022-04-29, 18:24
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Posted at: 2022-11-07, 06:50

kaputtnik wrote:

...assuming a good log supply is given... O.k. the example with reducing to three logs depends on the time new logs will arrive at the sawmill. If the requested logs need more time (greater sleeptime of 16s) to arrive at the sawmill, the amount of input wares has to be increased to have always enough logs to produce planks at 100%, but with my current experience i can say reducing to store three logs is enough. If reducing to three doesn't fulfill plank requests it's time to build another sawmill to produce more planks, of course also with reduced amount of input wares.

Well, although I also believe that, in relation to the amount of consumed waren per production cycle, the production sites' amount of ware storage is not always taking this into account the same way (e.g. I believe sawmill and charcoal burner can both store 8 logs, but the sawmill needs a lower amount of logs to produce one plank than the charcoal burner to produce one coal, I believe). So I'm with you, that that point could be questioned, why the storage amount is not always the same multiplication factor of the amount of wares consumed per one production cycle there.

However, generally I'm fine as it is, and I personally would find a forced general reduction - thus to be limited to a storage of e.g. only 2x times or 3x times the production cycle amount - not good and I would not be for it, for the following reasons:

  1. If a player wants to reduce the amount of storage of a production site, then he can reduce it manually (and even in detail, e.g. different amount of different wares if the production site consumes more than one type of ware).

  2. You have outlined that reducing the storage amount would be no problem if there always is a good, continuing, floating chain of supply (just-in-time-production). Well, but, in turn, if this is not the case, this creates a big problem. This can happen in various ways, depending on availability of wares, map size, map type (few building spaces, islands maps, distance between e.g. mineral sites, etc.). And the more different types of wares (from different production sites) a building consumes, the bigger would be the problem.

  3. If a player is running short of logs, he can at the sawmill reduce the amount of ware storage or stop the building or both (until there is a better log supply). In the second case, this enables the player, to reactivate the building after a pause with full storage amount, so that it can just produce a number of logs, until the only by now requested new ones arrive (maybe from a distant place).

  4. You are also outlining that, if a production site with a reduced storage amount as suggested by you, would not be enough, that then it is time to build another building of that type. Well, the problem is that sometimes a player doesn't have the wares to build as many buildings as he wants and/or has not enough building spaces (as it also is sometimes in campaign scenarios).

This applies to all production sites and also to training sites: It is always needed to reduce the amount of input wares and workers, so why do we have such a huge amount of input wares storage in production sites and a huge amount of input worker storage for training sites? For new players i think this is irritating, because it makes them believe the production sites ware storage has to be full to let the sawmill run at 100%.

Well, although I think that a player can happen to see either by just watching e.g. that a sawmill produces not only planks when its storage amount is full but before, or by taking a look into the encyclopdia entry of the concerning buildings/wares, you could be right, that the meaning of the storage amount display maybe could be explained to new players more. Maybe in the help menu or I do not remember whether it is explained in one of the tutorials, or maybe there is another additional possibility?


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tothxa
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Posted at: 2022-11-08, 02:12

I also think that input queues are too big for most buildings. Forgetting to decrease it for the sawmill can significantly slow down the early game when there are only a few wodcutters/lumberjacks.

But sometimes you can't avoid long supply routes (I most often run into this with food for mines), in which case it's useful to have slightly more local storage. But even then I seldom set it to the max.

The toolsmith however is a special case: it has many possible outputs but low demand for them, somewhat precious input (iron) which is normally directed to military production, and it is often crucial for resolving shortages. So I like to set it to 4 iron and 4 wood, usually even with increased priority.


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hessenfarmer
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Joined: 2014-12-11, 23:16
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Posted at: 2022-11-08, 09:39

Well, from a pure game mechanics point of view I see kaputtniks point.
Although I think having a second opportunity to cope for long time ware travel by creating early requests is an option I would not like to miss. (think of ship transportation for example).
Reduce the queue for good supplied sites and keeping it at max could be seen as some challenge to master the game by optimizing the economy.

However there is another point which I always tried to consider which is the size of a building. I would find it irritating if a small building could store more then a medium building which would be the result for the frisian aqua farm if your rule of thumb would be applied consistently.
I thought there was an issue requesting to manage all buildings of a type simultaneously so this might, but I can't find it so this might relax the situation as you could se it as a change of default values.


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kaputtnik
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Posted at: 2022-11-10, 18:12

Seefahrer wrote:

However, generally I'm fine as it is, and I personally would find a forced general reduction - thus to be limited to a storage of e.g. only 2x times or 3x times the production cycle amount - not good and I would not be for it, for the following reasons:

  1. If a player wants to reduce the amount of storage of a production site, then he can reduce it manually …

Of course a player can reduce it, also if the amount is set to 4 (which is already two logs more than needed for production)

  1. You have outlined that reducing the storage amount would be no problem if there always is a good, continuing, floating chain of supply (just-in-time-production). Well, but, in turn, if this is not the case, this creates a big problem. This can happen in various ways, depending on availability of wares, map size, map type (few building spaces, islands maps, distance between e.g. mineral sites, etc.). And the more different types of wares (from different production sites) a building consumes, the bigger would be the problem.

If there isn't a continuing ware delivery, you have a problem at all i think. No logs, no planks. This is the case for all production sites.

  1. If a player is running short of logs, he can at the sawmill reduce the amount of ware storage or stop the building or both (until there is a better log supply). In the second case, this enables the player, to reactivate the building after a pause with full storage amount, so that it can just produce a number of logs, until the only by now requested new ones arrive (maybe from a distant place).

Yes, i think this was the initial idea of production site wares storage. But this is not an argument against my proposal. If the production ware storage has 8 or 4 slots for logs you can reduce the amount also.

  1. You are also outlining that, if a production site with a reduced storage amount as suggested by you, would not be enough, that then it is time to build another building of that type. Well, the problem is that sometimes a player doesn't have the wares to build as many buildings as he wants and/or has not enough building spaces (as it also is sometimes in campaign scenarios).

This also not a valid argument against my proposal. If there is no space for an additional building one has to cope with that situation. A sawmill needs 36s to produce planks, regardless if the ware storage is full or contains only 2 or 4 logs.

This applies to all production sites and also to training sites: It is always needed to reduce the amount of input wares and workers, so why do we have such a huge amount of input wares storage in production sites and a huge amount of input worker storage for training sites? For new players i think this is irritating, because it makes them believe the production sites ware storage has to be full to let the sawmill run at 100%.

Well, although I think that a player can happen to see either by just watching e.g. that a sawmill produces not only planks when its storage amount is full but before, or by taking a look into the encyclopdia entry of the concerning buildings/wares, you could be right, that the meaning of the storage amount display maybe could be explained to new players more. Maybe in the help menu or I do not remember whether it is explained in one of the tutorials, or maybe there is another additional possibility?

Of course this can be explained somewhere. Something like: "Each production site has his own ware storage system which can be adjusted. Usually you don't want to have a full ware storage in production sites, because not all wares in this storage are needed to produce a ware. So you can reduce the wares here to an appropriate amount". face-grin.png

hessenfarmer wrote:

Well, from a pure game mechanics point of view I see kaputtniks point.
Although I think having a second opportunity to cope for long time ware travel by creating early requests is an option I would not like to miss. (think of ship transportation for example).

Probably it's better to have a sawmill near woodcutters? E.g. i usually dismantle a stonemasons house if resources get low at this spot and build another one near a better spot.

Reduce the queue for good supplied sites and keeping it at max could be seen as some challenge to master the game by optimizing the economy.

My main point was that new players get wrong assumptions because the amount of ware storage in production sites. Once a player has learned that reducing the amount will be a benefit, he likely just does that in each new game immediately. I think this not a challenge. It will become just tedious to do this again and again.

I thought there was an issue requesting to manage all buildings of a type simultaneously so this might, but I can't find it so this might relax the situation as you could se it as a change of default values.

I think you are referring to Stop all production sites of specific type?


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hessenfarmer
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Posted at: 2022-11-10, 22:03

Well reducing the inputqueues generally would make the game harder to play., which might irritate people as well.

Not knowing about the reduction benefit and keeping all inputqueues at current max would generate some unused wares in the economy which does not really matter if you have a good supply, cause in this case the building would just use the last 3 wares. But it would generate some margin to cope with not so ideal supply, where the building still could run at 100% even if the economy is not that well managed.
Generating real good supply for each building in the economy is really a hard task imho and could be frustrating if you are forced to do this.
So I really think keeping the margin and the possibilty for very good players to optimize and not to park any wares is a good compromise and therefore I am not in favour of reducing the input queues.

To have the possibiltiy to set the value for all buildings of a type togehther would be a useful feature imho and should provide a solution for the situation kaputtnik described as well.


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tothxa
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Posted at: 2022-11-11, 00:49

hessenfarmer wrote:

Not knowing about the reduction benefit and keeping all inputqueues at current max would generate some unused wares in the economy which does not really matter if you have a good supply,

In my experience, the trouble is not unused wares, but that filling up long input queues creates a shortage in an economy that could otherwise run smoothly with reduced input queues.

Also, with not so good supply, only the consumers closest to the producers run at high productivity with long input queues, while with reduced input queues, you can get reasonable productivity from all consumers with the same supply. I've found that input queue size is more effective in this regard than ware priority.

But it would generate some margin to cope with not so ideal supply, where the building still could run at 100% even if the economy is not that well managed.

I guess this is a matter of personal style and preferences, but I actually don't like this behaviour. I like to see as soon as possible if there is a problem with my economy.

Generating real good supply for each building in the economy is really a hard task imho and could be frustrating if you are forced to do this.

Actually my way of creating good supply is exactly that I reduce input queues. face-smile.png (see above) To me, what's frustrating is that I have to do it manually for all new buildings. face-smile.png

To have the possibiltiy to set the value for all buildings of a type togehther would be a useful feature imho and should provide a solution for the situation kaputtnik described as well.

Well, yes and no. I'd still have to set it every time when I build a new building, or if it the global setting is tracked, then it would not be possible to adjust for supply lines with different length.

OTOH it would be nice if it was also possible to set your own preferred default for new buildings of each type. But users should be able to store those settings similar to economy profiles to make them really useful. But that would probably need a quite complicated GUI…


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