Factory Automation Enhancement

    Factory Automation Enhancement 0.2.007

    Game version
    Factory Automation Enhancement is a mod to allow for the automation of factories and factory setups, and reduce the burden of micromanagement on the player, with the addition of two blocks: the Basic Factory Assistant and the Advanced Factory Assistant.

    The Basic Factory Assistant

    The Basic Factory Assistant is relatively straightforward. The Basic Assistant is slaved to a factory (the "master factory"), and then other factories are slaved to the assistant ("Slave factories"). If the master factory is trying to make a block, but fails to, because it can't find enough of some ingredient resource, the assistant will tell the slave factories to make more of that ingredient. The Basic Factory Assistant also works with shipyards. When the master shipyard tries and fails to pull one or more blocks for making a ship with, the Basic Assistant will tell the slave factories to make more of those blocks.

    Finally, nothing is stopping the player from using the Basic Factory Assistant recursively, so that the slave factories have their own Basic Assistant controlling another layer of slave factories. This way, the player can set up a fully automated manufacturing rig, producing any resource - or, if a shipyard is controlling it all from the top, manufacturing any ship - with little to no player intervention.

    The Advanced Factory Assistant

    The Advanced Factory Assistant takes automation to the next level, by being able to have two more kinds of blocks slaved to it - item storages, and display modules.

    It doesn't just control factories, it also reads the content of any connected storage. It calculates not only what resources are needed for the master factory/shipyard, it also calculates the resources needed to make the resources, and the resources to make the resources to make the resources, and so forth. If there's a resource shortage anywhere down the crafting tree, relative to how much is needed of the end product, it directly tells a slave factory to produce more of that resource, or if it's a raw material, it asks the player to to provide more of that raw material, by printing a "shopping list" of sorts to all slaved display modules.

    All this means the player does not need to build a tree of factories themselves. The Advanced Assistant figures it all out internally, then assigns the available pool of factories whatever recipes will most efficiently work towards the end production goal.

    Limitations (intentional)

    Neither kind of Assistant ever moves any items around, so the player must still set up the right item pull connections between the factories/storages/shipyards.

    Both Assistants don't interact with capsule refineries or micro assemblers. Capsule refineries should always be running at full capacity anyway, and micro assemblers can accidentally recycle a whole stock of capsules into scrap. (Unless it's filtered to only eat scrap, in which case it would also always be on.)

    Limitations (technical)

    No Assistant (of either type) should have more than one block (whether factory or shipyard) as a master, and no factory should have more than one Assistant as a master. Ideally, the mod would simply make this impossible, but current modding tools don't allow for such a rule to be added easily. There's never a point to slaving multiple Assistants (of the same type or of different types) to one factory, even though it's technically permitted.

    An Advanced Factory Assistant also should not be used together with another Assistant (of any type) as a single Advanced Assistant is already maximally automatic, and its algorithm would likely be confused by another automated controller being involved.


    A simple automated factory line using Basic Assistants (blue screens). The top standard factory will produce any kind of colored standard armor with the slave factories automatically supplying basic armor, hardener, and paint of the right type.


    An automated shipyard using the Advanced Assistant (red screen). The Advanced assistant makes sure the three factories produce whatever is needed in the correct order to make a ship from raw capsules. Currently, there is a shortage of Tekt and Metal Mesh to complete an Isanth.

    First release
    Last update
    5.00 star(s) 2 ratings

    Latest updates

    1. Provisional update

      No changes, hopefully compatible with Starmade 0.203.115.
    2. Temporary fix for SOE

      The Skies of Eden server reported issues with FAE relating to the preceding update. While the...
    3. Compatibility/versatility update

      This update removes a number of hard-coded values in favour of dynamically generated ones...

    Latest reviews

    Really looking forward to delving deeper into this mod. I have built stations in the past where there are a hundred or more factories making almost every block in the game! This seems to be the answer to my prayers. When making Advanced Hardener for example, having the factory to automatically instruct another one to make the required ingot is a godsend! Could mean that my major shipyards will only need a handful of factories instead of the wall of them I currently have. Also means that there is more power available to dock ships to the station instead of factories!
    Absolute quality of life mod. I enjoy building factory trees but at some point its too much. The advanced assistant especially for the shipyard is awesome. Shopping list is very helpful too. 7/5