After you get to a certain point all is good; you've got fat stacks of power, huge turrets and everything is awesome; your first interstellar fighter is taking shape... then you turn on your four constructors all at once and your base goes dark and your food goes bad and the aliens kill you...and you die.
So! Let's talk about energy efficiency. There are no infinite sources in Empyrion other than the trusty survival constructor and water, so not dying and spending most of your time not just mining, is pretty much about using energy efficiently.
If you read nothing else: Generally, love thy survival constructor. This is a survival game, speed costs and kills, and it's efficient. Converting Promethium to large tanks in Advanced Constructors is almost as good. Use H2O2 for fuel for your base (build enough fuel tanks to deal with it)
An average base seems to take me about 100 kW at steady state (I like light) and about 700 kW at 'making something now'. That's a lot of juice. It sucks two promethium packs dry in 'no time at all'.
Let's look at being a little more efficient.
A 100 kW base takes 100 fuel an hour to operate. A 700 kW base takes 700 fuel an hour to operate. Your survival constructor can keep up: It can crank 27000 fuel units an hour (if you don't use it for anything else). But can your promethium reserve?
Your best Promethium direct to fuel ratio is also from your SC: 1:6. So you're looking at 116 promethium an hour to keep that base running flat-out.
At that rate, you'll mine all the time, and maybe even mine out the world.
But! If you up-convert Promethium to Promethium Fuel Cells and then to Hydrogen Fuel Cells, you can roughly multiply your fuel by 12 (so a measly 10-12 promethium an hour to keep the lights on in our heavy case).
Can the H2O2 gen keep up? We know the factory is plenty fast. (A single H202 generator only produces (at perfect efficiency) 854 fuel an hour, so our 700 kW base is getting close when running flat out, and the H2 generator is by far the slowest link in our fuel pipe. Building beyond a 700kW steady state base is rather hard.
- Work lights are great - they run forever with no energy in!
- Turn your stuff off if you're not using it, and don't load constructors before you need them (pre-work is wasteful, unless you know you'll need it).
- War is hell - don't go to war unless you're flush or a pauper, because the resource destruction (energy and consumables) is staggering when your favourite (foo)V gets blown up with full tanks.
- Naked death is cheap, unless you're carrying something you like. It's a fast way to teleport home and driving is either slow or uses fuel.
- Constructors in parallel run at the same rate as they do in serial, you're just paying the overhead of a couple lights (or half a turret) for idling it. Can't hurt to disable your constructors if you're not using them.
- Bigger is better - bigger packs are more efficient, and bigger generators are more efficient at making them.
- Counter-intuitive: Make small packs with the survival constructor all the time - it's the most efficient machine at converting Promethium to fuel in the game, if also the slowest. It takes very little game time to queue it up with 'all the promethium' and run it.
- It's actually the right choice to up-convert fuel Promethium to H2O2 - it's slow, but damn, does it make you more efficient. A 10-pellet starter of promethium makes either 60 fuel directly or ~700 fuel via hydrogen. So you can fuel a 700 kWh habit pretty well on a 10 Prom/hour intak.
- See table below for data.
- If you could put H cells in the H2O2 machine, you could get perpetual free energy..
- Always make the biggest fuel packs available in the generator you're using - they're strictly better (lower cost to produce same energy from same promethium).
- Always fuel things with the biggest packs.
- Generally, you need as many H2O2 Generators as you can stand running to.
- I'm not sure if it's cheaper (in time) to fetch iron and fuel and make plates or to salvage alien bases. It's certainly the easiest way to get to hardened steel.
- There's probably a play here with a pantsload of survival constructors to convert promethium to fuel 'free', by respawning to Akua a billion times and having a buddy in an HV collect your dropped survival constructors, then using them and a fleet of H2/O2 converters to get to the cheapest possible energy. But that would take a lot of time.
Note that the math and predictions go bad if anything down here changes:
- 1 Light = 1 kW
- 1 Adv constructor unloaded: ~ 3kW
- 1 Adv constructor loaded: 300 kW
- 1 Large constructor unloaded: ~2kW
- 1 Large constructor loaded: 250 kW
- Load type doesn't seem to matter for constructors (same power consumption under load, production type-ndependent)
- 1 Fuel = 1kWh = 6 pellets (from survival constructor)
- All turrets = 5 kW
- H2/02 Gen: 12 H for 30 F in 25 m (this is important)
- Gross fuel is fuel out minus fuel consumed in the making (energy = fuel * time, accounting for the conversion of fuel to kW/h and the time it takes to make a pack)
Constructor Promethium products:
|Constructor||Pellets In||Product||Sec||Fuel Out||F Used||Gross Out per 10 Prom in||kWh/Sec Produced|
Constructor Hydrogen Products:
|Constructor||H In||Product||Sec||Fuel Out||Energy Used||Gross Fuel Out||Gross Fuel/Time|
Hydrogen production via large constructor:
|Device||In Fuel||In Promethium Pellets||Out Bottles||Out Effective Fuel||Ratio In/Out|
|Worst||Best||Bottleneck, best rate.|
|Fuel via Prom direct||5.96||6||Survival Constructor, and up to about a 27000 kW base|
|Hydrogen via Prom||2.38||2.4||Only one H2 gen, so varies by prom -> fuel tank, see above|
|Fuel Via H+Prom||70.75||71.3||Survival constructor and then H2 gen. Bottlenecks at ~800 kw base at the fastest one H2 gen can output, but becomes an endless run before that.|
Note that the bottleneck is mining rate, until you shift to H2, and then it's conversion speed (for a long time).
Rough scratch spreadsheet: