Cars and electric power

This thread was kind of inspired by the thread about drills/jackhammers mounted on cars, but it’s not really about that.

The car thing is going to get out of hand. I mean, cars can run headlights, which means they have an alternator. They’re not using batteries, I don’t think? I mean, it’s not like they run out. Has to be running off the alternator (which is to be expected).

So wait, if I have an alternator, why can’t I run my MP3 player off of it? Why can’t I run a hotplate off of it? (I actually expected RV Kitchen Unit to be an infinite charge hotplate that ran off my engine.) Why can’t I hook up the NX-17 Charge Rifle to it? etc. As long as you have gasoline and a modern car engine, you should have electric power.

The problem here is that it’s just way too easy to get a working car, and there’s way too much fuel in the game. Towns are mostly intact and seem to have plenty of gasoline left in the gas stations - wouldn’t there be shortages when people panicked and tried to leave, for example.

Gasoline should be incredibly rare, as cars are already incredibly powerful and are only going to get better as logical and consistent extensions are made to their capabilities.

Powerful, yeah, but since they can’t really move without gasoline, they’ll be practically useless without a reliable supply of it. What’s the point of making a deathmobile if you’ll have to scrape & scrounge to barely fill one gas tank, and it dies empty halfway to the next town?

I don’t know, I’ve barely used one gas station in one town and I have entire trunks full of jerry cans full of gas. There’s like 3-4 gas stations I haven’t even touched yet, and I’m making trips all around these towns and labs, for days at a time.

In short, as it is now gasoline might as well be free once you get a car. I drive my own modest deathmachine around all day and I have enough gas to last me a lifetime.

OK, that’s the problem: you’re speaking from a position of feeling too much gas in your area. Unless they fixed the mapgen, though, gas stations don’t spawn between towns: so you’d have to stockpile in town. Not everyone gets that many stations in the local mapgen.

It’d help if you define “incredibly rare”, too. I see that and think something on the order of not being able to fill a Flamethrower (1600 units; a vehicle tank holds 3000 IIRC) or somesuch. Enough Cool Stuff runs on gas that limiting gas risks making the stuff Too Awesome To Use, IMO.

it’s the tank capacity and the fuel consumption that are broken, 3000 units are less than 4 liters, and the engine consumption is abysmally low. Make fuel tanks hold 40-50 liters and an appropriate mileage, still depending on speed, together with fixing the pumps glitch and everything should be fine. One full tank should be enough to drive around one day, not 2 seasons. This would also make electric engines more desirable.

From what I’ve been told/read gasoline shouldn’t be viable after a number of years.
This site talks about it:
But from what I’ve read five year old gas may work, but it just is going to give you crappy mileage and have the possibility of screwing up your car (due to sludge forming). Personally I think eventually we should be moving to alternative fuels. Alcohol is the easiest to move to. It doesn’t give as good a return as gasoline but it does work and isn’t very hard to make. A still is relatively easy to improvise.
Alcohol Fuel:
Survivalists Ethanol Distilling Blog:
Once you get into higher tech you can start looking at making hydrogen. I’ve mentioned this before and won’t go into it. Hydrogen can be made by shunting a current through water. Obviously this means you need a source of water and electricity.

Add into that the fact that if you play with dynamic spawning there are only two ways to safely get gas, either:
1)Kill all of the zombies incredibly quickly and then get your gas before the next wave
2)Sneak in under cover of darkness and hope you don’t run face-first into a brute

The gas balance for filling up containers does seem to be just a little bit too easy though, right now I’m testing a small rebalance for the chances of a gasoline pump going empty when you fill something up from it, and if everything seems right that should be submitted to be merged into the dev version sometime soon.

I think basing it on having a chance when filling up a container is kinda broken. I just go for the biggest container there is and I’m fine. You need a random amount in the pump, yes I know, more stuff for the map to remember… But otherwise it’s not that hard to bend the system to your favor. Current one is VERY easy to do so.