Consuming Power

Omicron

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I've recently started up a new Minecraft server for friends and me after a half-year hiatus. It's still 1.6.x for now (because not all mods that we wanted have ported yet), but even with that, there's quite a few things and even a number of mods that I've never tried before.

Thing is, between my friends and myself, our plans for "new things to try out" can all be summed up as such: generate large amounts of power in new and interesting ways. Except none of us really has a use for all that power.

So I thought I'd ask for a bit of inspiration. What do you people generally need large amounts of power for? I do know a couple machines that are pretty hungry, but I'm intentionally not mentioning anything specific here. I'm not looking for a list of machines with high power draw; instead, I'm looking for specific reasons to use power.

Do you have any tales of how you built something that sucked your base dry in ways you didn't expect? Are there some baselines you target in each of your worlds, or challenges you dread because you're always struggling to power them? Perhaps you made something needlessly expensive and wasteful that's just too cool to optimize? Tell me about them! :)

(We're playing Techworld 2, by the way. Not the recommended build, but the most upto date one. 1.1.7?)
 

Golrith

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Going OT, but your post highlights a issue I mentioned recently. We can generate all this power, but there's next to nothing that needs all that power constantly.
Personally I feel all power generators need their generation rates reduced to match the actual usage levels. I remember once running my whole starter base off 4 peat fired engines and that gave me ore processing and various bits and pieces.
 

Nanolathe

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Unless you've gone into the configs and increased power-usage of some item/block or another... nope; nothing springs to mind.
I agree with @Golrith, there's next to nothing that demands power on a level that even comes close to what you can produce, which is a shame.

I wish more mods had configs that allowed you to set power-usage numbers or at least a blanket multiplier. Makes making cohesive packs rather frustrating for me, and those mods that don't let me set such numbers are relegated to "early-game only" and have a lot of their late-game features completely stripped.

Messing with recipes only goes so far; Sometimes what I want the player to have isn't resources... but Infrastructure
 

PierceSG

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There are no specific reasons for need of power really barring a few specific mods.
MFR have the laser drill.
BuildCraft has the laser assembly table. More laser and more power will reduce the time needed per item crafted.
MFFS force field requires a huge constant supply of power to keep it running 24/7 if I'm not mistaken.
RotaryCraft's Extractor (runs on shaft power but iirc you can use rf to run magnetostatic engines that provides shaft power) would need a lot of power to be able to run all stages together at fast speed too.
 

Omicron

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Going OT, but your post highlights a issue I mentioned recently. We can generate all this power, but there's next to nothing that needs all that power constantly.
Personally I feel all power generators need their generation rates reduced to match the actual usage levels. I remember once running my whole starter base off 4 peat fired engines and that gave me ore processing and various bits and pieces.
One mod which I think has its power creation and consumption pretty much down pat is IC2, actually. You start out really low with the basic machines, but the more advanced ones (and especially the thermal centrifuge) get really hungry. And then you can overclock. And if you still have something left, there's the mass fab. It's very well tuned, self-contained system, and while you can still go crazy with power generation, that usually involves running a very large amount of generators in parallel. And honestly, you can do that in any mod since all resources are practically infinite in Minecraft.

Other mods exist more as an enabler for third parties. Thermal Expansion, for instance, is considered essential in many builds involving power generation. But as a mod by itself, it actually has very little power requirements. One magmatic dynamo and a decent energy cell for buffer was enough for my entire TE setup in my last world. I built more dynamos than that, of course, but they were to power stuff from other mods. And I don't think that's entirely unintended either. TE started as a Buildcraft addon, and I think it's always seen itself in this supportive role, offering things that everyone needs all the time.

On the other end you have Buildcraft itself, and that shouldn't come as a surprise when you keep in mind the previous paragraph. Buildcraft has its own power generation options, but in practical gameplay few people use them. Buildcraft machines, particularly the quarry, the filler and the refinery, are typically consumers that get fed power that other mods produce.

A problem arises when we have a ton of enabler/supportive mods, and not so many consumers or self-contained systems.

RotaryCraft's Extractor (runs on shaft power but iirc you can use rf to run magnetostatic engines that provides shaft power) would need a lot of power to be able to run all stages together at fast speed too.
With Rotarycraft I am unfortunately having way more fun building an elaborate three-speed transmission for the extractor rather than throwing pure megawatts at it. :p
 
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Golrith

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Yep. If you go down to basics, BC has 1, 2 and 4 MJ production options. First version of TE dynamo's produced 4MJ, then were later buffed to 8MJ, which is equal to top tier Railcraft engine. No wonder a single dynamo can power so much and overshadows everything else. (My one dislike with TE, although in latest version gen rates are now configurable. In my personal pack I have them all at 40RF/t, but I may change that to variable amounts dependent on dynamo).

I've seen that power requirement with IC2 from watching DW20. Seems fairly well balanced, with expanding power systems at a rate that matches your machine growth.
 

Omicron

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Yep. If you go down to basics, BC has 1, 2 and 4 MJ production options.
0.05, 1 and 6, actually. ;) Unless that just changed in 1.7.x.


What about Applied Energistics, by the way? That's a pure consumer mod. How much power do you guys usually pour into it?
 

Nanolathe

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AE is relatively light on power usage... unless you tweak the configs of course.
Not sure about AE2 though.
 
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Golrith

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0.05, 1 and 6, actually. ;) Unless that just changed in 1.7.x.


What about Applied Energistics, by the way? That's a pure consumer mod. How much power do you guys usually pour into it?
Was it? I might be thinking of the engines I used to use (might be forestry/railcraft) - just shows how long I haven't used BC/MJ engines :p. Well, regardless, same situation applies. One mod makes another mod totally obsolete for power gen purely by out producing the top tier options as the basic power producer.

AE1 by default is not power hungry. It only get's hungry if you configure the system wrongly with constant item movement. Like, putting cobble into AE, then dumping it into a trash can. That's a big waste of power.
Perhaps change the config to increase it's power requirements? Pushes it back a bit, and gives you something for your big power gen systems.
 

Drawde

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The author of TE stated that that's why the dynamos produce such low amounts of power and the conduits as well. Nothing within the mod itself, including multiple machines running at once, would require anywhere near the maximum amount the highest conduits can pull at once.

Also note that the MFR Lasers are like the IC2 Recyclers in that they work with any amount of power up to their maximum. They just run slower. I doubt that it was intended for people to reach the maximum amount of four Lasers powering a Drill to be reached when they first came out. They would just take any excess power you had to make some extra resources for you.
 

GreenZombie

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Going OT, but your post highlights a issue I mentioned recently. We can generate all this power, but there's next to nothing that needs all that power constantly.
Personally I feel all power generators need their generation rates reduced to match the actual usage levels. I remember once running my whole starter base off 4 peat fired engines and that gave me ore processing and various bits and pieces.
What *should* the minecraft endgame be? that we strive to reach?
Amassing resources for their own sake seems to be a very HQM style task.

Killing the "end bosses" is, for a lot of stuff, a midgame task required to proceed to the higher tier stuff.

So, if HQM doesnt seem enough of an excuse, if there are only so many ways to overkill the Wither.

Then the Minecraft end game has to be about building:

We would need / want mods that add things such as quarries to increase their power requirements by orders of magnitute, and introduce a set of tiers of lesser mining devices. Advancing through the tiers would require exponentially more energy and resources as the previous tier.

The final tier would terminate in devices that make wide area changes to the world: Basically RF powered McEdit: devices that will take templates and build structures, clone chunks from one place to another, basically cut, copy and paste operations that can space fill, perhaps up to 1kx1k areas - all with resources gathered by the player. Things like AE spatial storage are a step in this direction, but even there its setup costs seem rather high.

I can't see any other defensible use for lots of power in MC that isn't entirely self serving: At the moment the big reactor powers a MFR laser. and the MFR laser digs up yellorium to run the Big Reactor. Rather pointless without each other.
 
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mcalpha

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I guess the ideal setup is a collaboration between people who love to build and people who love to engineer. That way the engineer can provide the power systems and processing to provide the builder with enough expensive materials and building helpers to realize the most absurd dreamworlds.

In view of that, more endgame-y builder tools would indeed be appreciated. The BC builder/filler are one step, MFFS/frame machines to build repeated structures are another. A supercharged builder's wand could be another example.
 

Omicron

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I think what Golrith wanted to address isn't so much about endgame; rather, it's about mods releasing powerful power generation options but no consumers that need that amount of power.

People often say that with Minecraft, the journey is the reward, not the destination. In other words, it's not really about whether there's much of a purpose or sense in engineering elaborate power and processing setups, but about whether or not you have fun engineering them. And that's okay. But in some cases, it's hard to have that fun because you're lacking the components. No machines to feed the power to. A square peg but no square holes. No road to have a rewarding journey on, to return to that metaphor.

And this thread sure got off topic fast and furiously. o_O Can we try to return to the initial question - what do you guys actually use your power for when you play?
 
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mcalpha

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I think what Golrith wanted to address isn't so much about endgame; rather, it's about mods releasing powerful power generation options but no consumers that need that amount of power.
I agree, but this problem usually comes up near the "endgame", since you do pretty much all the midgame things in order to get these powerful generators.

People often say that with Minecraft, the journey is the reward, not the destination. In other words, it's not really about whether there's much of a purpose or sense in engineering elaborate power and processing setups, but about whether or not you have fun engineering them. And that's okay. But in some cases, it's hard to have that fun because you're lacking the components. No machines to feed the power to. A square peg but no square holes. No road to have a rewarding journey on, to return to that metaphor.
I agree, that's what I've been feeling off and on too. But more often than not, the direwolf-style "this isn't automated yet" kicks in and 8-10 hours are gone.

And this thread sure got off topic fast and furiously. o_O Can we try to return to the initial question - what do you guys actually use your power for when you play?
Currently I power a super-fast Mek ore 4-ling system and insanely overclocked IC2 machines. Need a stack of glass freshly made from cobble? No problem, just wait 3 seconds.

Also, AE2 alone consumes around 500 RF/t in my base.
 
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Golrith

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I think what Golrith wanted to address isn't so much about endgame; rather, it's about mods releasing powerful power generation options but no consumers that need that amount of power.

People often say that with Minecraft, the journey is the reward, not the destination. In other words, it's not really about whether there's much of a purpose or sense in engineering elaborate power and processing setups, but about whether or not you have fun engineering them. And that's okay. But in some cases, it's hard to have that fun because you're lacking the components. No machines to feed the power to. A square peg but no square holes. No road to have a rewarding journey on, to return to that metaphor.

And this thread sure got off topic fast and furiously. o_O Can we try to return to the initial question - what do you guys actually use your power for when you play?
FTB forums. Goes OT quick :p

But OT, TBH, apart from ore processing, farms, and mining, I use nothing else that needs power. Sure I could maybe play with forcefields or digitize chunks but I have no need to do that. So for myself, power usage is shallow, so I reduce power gen rates and/or increase power usage rates. This expands on what I need to build + gather.
 

Wagon153

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I myself have been known to use enormous amounts of power. By time I get done with a world, my AE system alone uses 2-4k RF/t. Not to mention Gendustry, MFR laser drills(I've had up to 6 running at a time), giant autocrafting setups for everything in the game, giant mining rigs(world eaters anybody?), Extra Bees, overclocked IC2(and Gregtech) machines, and Rotary Craft.
 
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