Factorio is the most addictive experience of my life.
Factorio is an endless factory management and real-time simulator game. While that may sound boring, the possibilities are endless within this game. The play style is your choice as you can strategically crumble your alien enemies, or peacefully build your factory in the way you want to with an endless array of parts and machinery to choose from.
Factorio’s history begins with three guys in a garage, Michal Kovařík (the lead programmer), Tomáš Kozelek (secondary programmer and managing director), and Albert Bertolín Soler (the main artist and illustrator). This small team of friends’ passion project would eventually grow into a massive game spanning across multiple platforms, with the team growing into this. Factorio was initially announced via a crowdfunding campaign in 2013 and was eventually released in an early access phase in 2016. After four long years, the game was finally released in its entirety to Windows, macOS, and Linux with it being ported to the Nintendo Switch two years later.
What sets Factorio apart from its competition is its unique gameplay features and generally addictive game style. Factorio’s features include unique graphics, addictive and interesting game mechanics, and extensive part and machinery arrays with intelligent enemies which will try to stop your expansion at every corner. These aspects are what make Factorio so successful, having sold three and a half million copies as of January 1st, 2023.
In Factorio, you start with nothing and build your way up creating infrastructure and more and more complex production chains. There is also a research tree where your factory’s products can go into labs to unlock newer and better technology. There’s also a main goal of launching a rocket to escape the planet, but that only really opens up endgame research science so that you can unlock the infinite research focuses. By then you’ll be hooked enough that you learn the real goal, infinite expansion.
This game also includes an extensive modding community with multiple mods that either completely change the game, or just add some quality-of-life improvements. Here are some that I would recommend: Belt balancer, a quality-of-life mod that adds a smaller belt balancer that makes your factory more compact; Space Exploration, a complete overhaul that adds new resources and an in-depth space exploration system; and finally we have Rate Calculator, a quality-of-life mod that adds a calculator that figures out the rates for different parts of your factory, which can be extremely helpful for fixing bottlenecks and for automating new items or fluids.
At the end of the day Factorio is not for everyone, but if you like games like Satisfactory, Mindustry, or even Rimworld, then I strongly suggest you give this game a go.