Factorio

Good
  • Great replay value through the core mode, scenarios and mod enhancements
  • Unique automation based strategy that has a steady evolution of mechanics for players to conquer
Bad
  • Learning curve will likely put some players off
  • Dated graphically that serves as a barrier to entry as it often obscures information for learning players
9

Design the perfect production automations in Factorio where players turn the 2D alien game world into their own efficient resource machine. Originally released in 2014 through the Steam Early Access Program the game has continued to evolve by introducing new challenges and options for players to master over potentially hundreds of gameplay hours. With a simple core that steadily introduces new mechanics to consider Factorio’s steady progression is equally filled with discovery and reward.

factorio-gameplay-automation

The underlying story concept of Factorio is based around a crash landed man on a far off alien planet who must rely on the resources contained on the planet to build a rocket in order to escape. The game design promotes open ended gameplay with players able to achieve this goal (or even ignore it) however they wish in single player and multiplayer co-operative game modes. Alternatively a range of set scenarios provide shorter focused objectives for players and also serve as a great learning tool to master individual game elements before you try combine them all for the ultimate planet escape. From crafting to power production, research, transport, circuits, fluids and pollution every game element starts basic before building to expert level optimisation options.

Constructing a rocket from the raw resources of the planet is of course no easy task although players are given all the tools necessary to achieve this goal provided they can master the core gameplay loop of Factorio. Of course this rocket also requires a significant amount of resources to complete and can only be achieved with efficient factory design to acquire and produce said resources. Given this objective Factorio is at its core a resource management and acquisition game with randomisation and alien attacks to give the player extra added depth to overcome.

factorio-gameplay-alien-attack

With aliens sharing the same planet time is of the essence as you try to not only acquire the resources but also survive attacks that become increasingly aggressive as players pollute their home planet. As is traditional for strategy management titles players start with the basics, slowly building up resources that can in turn create tools and machines to produce advanced technologies to assist you harvest resources even more efficiently. In Factorio this is taken one step further with players designing their settlement for automatic assembly lines to drive production, mining, transport and the final assembly of products you need such as oil, drones and equipment.

This equipment can be particularly important as players must defend themselves and their factory from the diverse aliens that are attracted to the sources of pollution and evolve as does your own factory. With different enemy types to counter and their own bases for players to challenge you’ll use a blend of your own character and automated defence systems to survive.

factorio-gameplay-map

Beyond the base game Factorio also actively encourages modding that allows fans in the community to tweak the game and visuals to their tastes while providing a near endless content suite for advanced players to alter their experience.

Summary:

  • Blend of strategy and automation as players accumulated the resources necessary to escape the planet surface.
  • Based on an alien planet complete with increasingly deadly aliens as you pollute the planet for resources.
  • Single player core with co-operative multiplayer modes and countless mods for additional content.
  • Simple core mechanics that build on each other to provide both a sense of progression and steady learning curve.
  • Originally developed for Windows, Mac and Linux with a subsequent Nintendo Switch release.

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Review Platform: PC

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Written by
Samuel Franklin
Samuel Franklin is the founder and lead editor of the Games Finder team and enjoys video games across all genres and platforms. He has worked in the gaming industry since 2008 amassing over 3 million views on YouTube and 10 million article views on HubPages.

Games Finder is a Steam Curator and featured in the aggregate review scores data of MobyGames and Neoseeker.
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