SUGGESTION: For Automation: Settable Arm Parameters.


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This idea is for the automation system.

The first is Settable Arm Angles: This would allow the player to decide where an arm will pick up and drop off by allowing them to adjust the angle, rather than being stuck with only the 180 degree angle we currently have. The player could alter the angle to whatever they wished, as long as the pickup and drop off circles didn't intersect for the same arm.

The second concept is Adjustable Pickup/Dropoff circles. Much like how the player can adjust the diameter of the land deformation tool in Creative, this would allow a player to adjust the size of the green and blue circles on an Auto Arm. This would allow a player to specify more exactly where they wanted the arm to grab things from and place them to.

The third idea is a bit of an alternate to the second: Assignable Locations for picking up and dropping off. This would allow the player to point the arm at a particular storage or canister for picking up and dropping off resources, as long as that storage was within the arms reach. This would help prevent accidental pickups of unwanted resources, which often stops a production line from functioning as intended.

A fourth idea would be Arm to Arm conveyance. This would allow one Auto Arm to grab a resource being held by another Auto Arm, removing the need for a storage platform or canister. I think this could be done by giving the 'grabber' part of the arm the same classification as a storage slot (though I don't know if that's something that can be done). This would allow for much more compact automation builds, and more complex ones as well.

A fifth idea would be processing speed upgrades. When trying to make production lines, I've always had a problem with smelting or the chem station or atmo condenser slowing down production considerably, often causing a massive backlog in the line, or causing errors in the pickup of the auto arms. Being able to invest in accelerators (Or medium, then high grade smelters, chem stations, canisters, arms and so forth) would improve things a lot.

My final idea is the concept of a dual auto arm, or one that can lift more than one resource at a time (with multiple slots for holding resources).

The friend that I play with has been getting me into automation, experimenting with building various setups to take a resource from raw to upper end refinement. I've been having a lot of fun with it, and would love to see it developed more to allow for more complex inventions. We wanted to make a sort of 'Master Sorter' system, but as things are, it's not really possible without flattening half the planet. ^^; So making some additions that allow for more dense, complex automation would be ideal.

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Just to add to this suggestion as an maybe a modification to the double sourcing issue with things like the chemistry labs.

Given i'm playing with Gargoyle, a thought is to have a means to either have 2 single arms on the long armed bases rather just one,  so it's easier to setup duel sourcing lines for the chemistry labs.

Another idea to add a unit like the repeater that can be added and linked to specific containers, by doing so, the arm is then set to only pick from those 2 canisters and alternate between the 2 for example. This could be expanded to up to 3 canisters given the mechanics, allowing for 2 materials and a gas to be transfered to each chem lab, providing the canisters have enough materials.

A thought for the gases, would be to have a gas distribution system. This would be achived by having a specialized base unit in 2 sizes, one for the medium canisters and one larger for an atmospheric processor.

Both units have have a raised pipe coming off of it, which a pipe with the same mechanics as the power cable can be run from the base to a chem lab, though you can run multiple nodes like with the repeater units. The idea is that you can daisy chain the 'gas line' from one chem to the next, and with a switch on the specallized base unit, you can turn the gas off and on as required. or it's automatically on demand from each chem lab.

in the case of the medium canisters, you could have a means to link multiple tanks into the gas lines and it allows each gas to be tapped off as needed, until the tank is empty at which point it disconnects the line. 

 

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Unfortunately the current auto-arm is rough and rudimentary. The updates you have proposed, it would be a very welcome update for automation lovers!

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