More findable mid-tier constructions / home base possibilities

I find myself getting a little tired of Cata’s current mid-game. For reference, I’m referring to the period after you get done scavenging for scraps, have trained up some kind of offensive capability, and are now building up supplies and capabilities and begin roaming for better loot. This period currently revolves, nearly entirely, around finding or building vehicular rigs to get free power for almost all of your tools and excellent food storage, generally as part of a mobile death fortress (I call mine, a modified RV, the Wreckreational Vehicle). You don’t HAVE to make one, of course, but any alternatives to superrigging are frankly a waste of time, and often require such high skills that there’s really no reason not to find or build the rigs apart from the challenge of having your time wasted.

For example, consider the rechargeable battery mod. It’s easy enough to build just from What’s a Transistor?, and one can imagine making a bunch and slapping them on your welder, flashlights, hotplate, etc. You may not get to use a tool forever like you would a rig, but you could get by. Except that while recharging mods are easy to produce, recharging stations are hard, requiring Elec 8 and one of the advanced books, and who knows how much Mech to install. So, by the time you can actually build and install a recharging station for your non-rig plan, do you know what you’re already very capable of using? Rigs.

Or consider the charcoal tools chain. On paper, it seems pretty useful: charcoal kilns to make charcoal for preserving food via charcoal smokers, forging metal items in a charcoal forge, purifying water with charcoal purifiers, and eventually ammo. The only thing you’d need batteries for is your welder. Except that, to build all of the above, you’ll need so many batteries. Hey, you know what would help a whole lot with building all of those things? A vehicle welding rig. And since you have that, you know what would make the whole charcoal thing completely redundant, and you probably already have the skills for? Electric forge rig and RV kitchen unit.

Now, I’m not saying that the above should be easier to build. One of the things I like about Cata is its adherence to realism, when possible. A complicated electronic whatsit should need good skills to slap together from scratch, and a ton of heavy and bulky constructions lying around everywhere should be a pain to construct.

I’m saying we should simply find them, in the form of ready-to-use constructions which are juuust convenient enough for a player to consider making them their home base.

For instance, how about a solar home? Like a regular house, but part of one room has been knocked away to fit a “vehicle” consisting of a few solar panels, a storage battery and a recharging station. Toss in some rechargeable battery mods lying around, and any early-game player stumbling across it would find moving in quite a tempting proposition.

Same idea as above but make it a gas-powered generator (engine + alternator) instead, for a smoother transition to mobile living without requiring high Mech: just add wheels and controls.

Or how about a redneck trailer, off by itself in the woods? A busted-up RV, just trunks and beds and trash inside, a couple of charcoal kilns already filled for their charcoal smoker, a fermentation vat and standing keg or two sitting around nearby. Maybe a wrecked car in the yard, for flavor and steel. Not ideal for every player, but if you’re the woodsy type, it would provide a considerable leg up for establishing a permanent base of operations.

tl;dr - for gameplay reasons let’s have more convenient paths to make use of the tools which, for realism, are inconvenient to build from scratch.

I like the way you’re thinking.


I don’t think we should just give stuff away to the players, especially when it’s not logical to find them in abundance. ( The game already does this a bit much IMO ) I do however think some things are just so inconvenient as to not be worth the effort of using at the moment.

The examples you give for instance all seem really logical and I’d support all of them.

Charcoal has another primary use.

You need it to make primers for reloading your ammo.

You do reload you ammo right? That’s a more late game use. So the charcoal kiln and other things have usages beyond what you state.

Also it’s the primary way someone who does a more wilderness survival makes use the ones you say are ‘skipped’.

Just because you go into the city all of the time doesn’t mean every player does. It adds variety.

There needs to be ‘gaps’ and harder to get things. You cannot have a simple smooth auto way to get from point a to z.

I’m also not following your logic of “rigs” solve all problems. The recharging station is too high.
A welding rig cannot recharge my 4 UPS’s. For tools, sure. But that is a 1 sided look.

Recharging stations are pretty powerful. They are in a good spot. I have Light amps/wearable flashlights/gunsmithing tools, I keep in there, UPS’s, I rotate though, because Power armor needs power. All of these work well into the later game also. You don’t want some things being too trival.

The thing that is almost too easy is the fact that solar power is still too powerful, but the game has near infinite resources. So at some point it’s a matter of time. If you make them take longer, people will just build a bigger rig to get more.

Yeah, the recharging station is really overpriced.

I usually manage to get UPS bionic running before I get the means to get a recharging station.

I guess it’s because of the description that makes it a semi-sci-fi high tech stuff instead of just being a battery recharger that keeps a proper voltage and amperage.