After I read this forum (Better then Hackers (Nevermind, just improved electricity)) I have my own suggestion in my mind, but I feared that the reply will be too long, so I created the thread instead. Anyway, thank you White_okay (https://forum.smartlydressedgames.com/u/White_okay) for your ideas!
For the electricity usage, the Joules system Nelson mentioned is still good, but I’ll try to expand his ideas a bit further:
Generators create certain Joules of electricity that can be used by electrical equipments or stored in batteries, and all electrical equipment have different Joules consumption per time unit.
Batteries has its own Joules caps, and whether they can recharge or not. Rechargable batteries will have condition percentage that will go down while charging, and will affect its own Joules cap when it’s below 50%. (This is optional though, as using batteries like “another magazine for flashlights” will cause players headache for sure.)
Excess Joules are discarded immediately without any consequences. This is not realistic, but Joules overloading will cause a lot of headaches to anyone relying on bases.
If the Joules are not enough for all equipments in the circuit, none of them will function at all, forcing you to remove some of them to “make room” for another, or simply build more (or better) generators.
Every electrical equipment, including generators, will have different “wiring range” which shows you its radius when they’re in your hands. As long as the wiring radius of generators and powered equipments are overlapped, you can place it and power it. You can also craft a makeshift outlet (which we shouldn’t do IRL) or switches to extend their wiring range, and control them as well.
For simple automation scripting, I’d like to use different kind of switches: toggle switches, hold switches, conditional switches (with 6 conditions that can be used together with and/or statement: lights, Joules, actual time, time delay, proximity to certain players and items, and signals from other switches and terminals) and Loop switches (for both for and while loop). They can be used to manipulate equipments, or to send signals to another switches to do another job like an instruction.
For advanced automation, I’d like to use terminals. They consume Joules, unlike switches, but they can process and execute many complex commands to switches and equipments, such as calculations, logics, Joules channeling, non-binary conditioning (imagine “switch and case” in programming languages), text and data storage, and automation data visualization, via visual programming. This will reduce the moving parts greatly while still retaining opportunity to invent more complex things.
- Electrical equipments that I think they should be included in the game are:
– Fridges, if Nelson wanted to include spoilage into the game
– Neon lights and Colored neon lights for light sources and displays
– Electric stoves for the equivalent of campfires
– Boomboxes for music making, voice message record and playback, and luring zombies
– Electric fence, or Electric fence kit for base defence.
– Portable electric sockets for extending wiring range (as I mentioned earlier), and add an overloading point for intruders.
– Overloaders for temporary disabling the generator in the circuit it’s connected to.