Tutorial:Quick start guide/zh
Your power setup can look however you want it to look. A great method is to have a line of boilers that supply a certain amount of turbines with hot water, and then you can use transport belts to bring coal to them for inserters to place inside them so that your electricity is always running.
The most often used setup is 1 offshore pump, 14 boilers and 10 steam engines. This is due to this being the best ratio between the 3 of them. 1 pump produces enough water for 10 engine, and the 14 boilers is sufficient to heat the water for that many. The example above is easily expanded into this efficient design. But hey, this game is all about experimentation and for you to be able to find ways to do your own things! So get to it, and show off your own unique designs!
Using this power is as simple as creating a machine that runs on electricity and placing a power pole close enough to it that the blue square touches the machine, just like you have to do at the power plant with the engines. Make sure that there is a line of power poles that actually connect to your power plant.
Now that power is explained, we need to increase our resource production.
However, if you want detailed info on your power production/consumption, you can check the Detailed Electric Network Info, opened by clicking on any powerpole.
Re-thinking our resources and research
Next we really want to get onto automation of items, not just the smelting of ores.
Before we can get to that though, we're going to have increase our production of ores. This is where things start becoming a little tricky and there are few things you want to do at once. We really want to be able to set the factory to make things and let it go. But for that we need some extra utilities which we don't have and need to get through research.
We haven't even touched on that yet! lets start by ramping up our resource production. Now that we have electricity, we can use Electric Mining Drills. These are much better than those scummy Burner ones. They work exactly the same except they are twice as fast and they don't rely on fuel, as you could guess by the names. You can have them to output your raw resources onto belts and get them to a place where you can mass process the ores into plates. Here is a small example of what you could do, but let your imagination and your calculating logic figure out other, maybe even better ways of doing it! You want ore to be split more or less evenly on each side of the belts. This helps with the amount of resources that can be carried to your base of operations on a single belt.
This is once again easily expandable all over an iron deposit. This conveyor belt can then take all of the ore to some sort of processing area. The processing area needs some machines that we currently don't have due to limitations in our research.
Most importantly, we want the long handed inserter. This inserter is able to reach twice as far as a normal inserter! It is very useful for bringing or placing items to or from conveyor belts that are one extra tile away. So what we need to do is to make some science labs. They don't cost too many resources, but take a little while to make. Craft one or two of them and connect them to power. When you first place one, you are going to get a popup asking you want you want to research. We really want automation right now. This gives us our inserters and the Assembling machine 1, which is going to be very useful in the near future.
You'll notice that the cost for this is 10 Science Pack 1's, or "red potions" or "flasks" as some people like to call them. These are simply another crafted item, which you should craft 10 of now and place them in your labs to begin researching. While you are waiting for your flasks to craft or your research to complete, lets continue building an ore processing center. We want a line of copper, iron and coal to be available for this area. Despite being in the electric era, our furnaces still need coal until a little further down the line.
Below is another sample of how you could set up your area. There are efficient ways of making them that you might see on the forum, but if you want to learn about what they are and how they work, you can either experiment yourself or search the wiki/forum for some better designs.
As per usual, I leave this area with plenty of room to expand later on when demands become higher. The important parts about this is that you need the red, long handed inserters to be able to reach the coal in the middle to fuel your furnaces. You need seperate belts for your incoming raw materials to be able to be processed, and then another belt outside of them to handle the output after they have been smelted. These materials can then go straight into your base to be made into a myriad of other things. Finally, we have a steady and upgradeable supply of copper and iron plates, and we can get into further automation with the assembling machines so we can automate creation of things like Science Packs, Ammunition and every other item that the player themselves can craft, but without you involved at all!
Automating that research
Ok, so a fair amount has happened. Now, to be able to progress into later parts of the game with better research we are going to want automate the process of making science packs and putting them into the labs. This way we won't have to worry about research any longer.
There are many designs that you can find on the forums, but I'll show you something simple, letting you find what works for you. I would highly recommend that you research Logistics as your next research, and in fact manually craft the science required for this. The logistic research gives you some important things: the splitter, the underground belt and the fast inserter. The splitter and underground belts are some of the most important items you'll get at this stage. They do pretty much what their names imply.
So what do science packs require? We need copper plates and iron gears. So far we have only dealt with raw resources, how do we make craftable things? The Assembler answers your prayers! If you place an assembler down and open its interface, it asks you what you would like it to craft. Once you select one, if you put the ingredients in that it requires it will craft the item and you can pull out the finished product. In the case of red science packs, we will need an assembler making iron gears, and an assembler making the actual packs. A nice way of doing this is to have a conveyor belt with 1 side containing the copper plates and the other side taking the gears from another assembler like below.
Now this picture uses a few neat little tricks that I will explain in detail. If you have your plate belts seperate, and you want them running side by side there can be issues with trying to grab one or the other resources from the far belt. Yes, you could use a long inserter, but in some cases you don't want this (e.g. you need a fast inserter to get resources quickly into your assemblers).
The area in red is a good way to get around this. By having a splitter, you can move the far belt from your production in close while also allowing it to continue down the line for later use. For the copper, we use an underground belt to go underneath the area that is now taken by the far line which also allows the copper to continue on. Once again, this is only one possible method of doing things and you are in no way obligated to follow it.
The area in blue is a quick way to allow copper to continue down the main line, while also splitting some off for our red science assemblers. Notice how when it joins the line that the gears are on, they only join the bottom side of the belt. The little extra belt that I added to the left stops the belt from becoming a turn, and therefore makes the items only join the side I want them to. The rest is simple: the gears and copper get pulled into the assemblers, they make the science and then it gets pulled out again on the other side. These flasks can then be transported to some labs to automatically do your research for you, for example like this: