A new update is now available for Robbit (version 27.0.0-DEV6, revision 4655). Patch notes for this version follow.
Robbit "Fondant Fancy" Patch 27, Development Preview 6 (9 September 2018)
These patch notes are going to be in more of a prose format, and less of a list of changes, because I wanted to provide you with the background behind the alterations.
I know at this point that hardly anyone cares about Robbit, but I really do love this mod pack - it's probably my favourite project ever Every now and then I get a huge wave of nostalgia and come back to work on it some more - and every time I do, I say to myself I'm only going to make small changes, but it never turns out that way! I always feel like Robbit has so much potential and the creative juices always flow really strongly and easily whenever I'm working on it again. We also had a lot of long-term plans for this pack which never went anywhere due to Asterion's closedown But Minecraft is one of my favourite games, and I always feel like it's one of those titles which you can just put down for months or years, and then pick back up again later at any time. (I go through phases of loving this game and then being bored of it!)
Anyways, one of my biggest pet peeves with Robbit is that the server closed while the pack still had a number of enormously glaring bugs, many of which were introduced with the launch of Exciting Eclair. In particular, the build of IC2 we are using is just some random dev build from the middle of their 1.7 branch which has a bunch of half-broken stuff in. I really don't want to update IC2 much further, because I don't like the direction it went in, so we're left with all these random problems with the random IC2 snapshot that we ended up being permanently stuck on.
Obviously, this is not ideal. So my long term objective is to work on fixing all of these problems so that IC2 is left in a decent state when development of the pack eventually comes to a permanent close. I'm also looking to backport good stuff from later IC2 builds that seems useful (e.g. the new Robbit Machines Table Saw in DEV4.3, which essentially mirrors the functionality of both Thermal Expansion Sawmill and the Block Cutting Machine found in later IC2 builds). Fixing the energy net problems is a huge challenge which is best left to another time (I've probably gotta put a week or two aside for this) but smaller fixes and additions are easier to work on and I think add huge playability and QOL improvements to the pack.
My focus for this patch has largely been on the jetpack - a step in the right direction when it comes to fixing major IC2 issues. At the time of Robbit's last IC2 update the devs were in the middle of a fuel rework which sought to change the jetpack to being powered by fluids, but this work was never completed in the IC2 snapshot we're stuck on, which left the fuel-powered jetpack completely non-functional. Looking at the latest IC2 it seems that the final iteration of the rework has jetpacks being powered by biogas (made in a fermenter) and this is the only fuel that is supported - so after all the waiting, the final implementation honestly turned out to be rather crappy anyway. We can do better.
Previous builds of Robbit included Creosote (a really shitty low-end byproduct made in a Coke Oven), Oil (found naturally in the world) and a yellow liquid made by refining Oil in a refinery that was rather ambiguously named "Fuel". Some machines also allowed Lava to be used as a fuel, although this was not universal.
This new update adds two new liquid fuels: Biomass (green) and Ethanol (orange). Biomass is made by enriching water with compressed plant balls using the Canning Machine (in the same way that Construction Foam is made by enriching water with CF powder) with each bucket of Biomass requiring 32 compressed plant balls to make. Ethanol is made by refining Biomass in a refinery. Some inspiration here was taken from other mods, but I've put my own spin on it as usual
I've also taken the liberty of solving the rather ambiguous name of "Fuel" - it is now called Diesel. Calling it Fuel seems really stupid, especially when there are now 5 different liquids that can be used as fuel (or 6 if you count Lava).
Here you can see the five primary fuels ordered from worst to best:
From a balancing perspective, here's the breakdown of the EU power of each fuel when burned in a Combustion Generator. The values of the old fuels haven't changed, but I listed them here anyway for comparison:
- Creosote produces 5,000 EU per bucket (equivalent to 1.25 coal)
- Biomass produces 75,000 EU per bucket (equivalent to 18.75 coal)
- Ethanol produces 140,000 EU per bucket (equivalent to 35 coal)
- Oil produces 150,000 EU per bucket (equivalent to 37.5 coal)
- Diesel produces 240,000 EU per bucket (equivalent to 60 coal)
The effective value of Biomass can be compared with sugar cane (something you can turn into Biomass) via the following method:
- Each sugar cane can be burnt in a generator for 120 EU.
- 8 sugar cane (worth 960 EU) compresses into 1 compressed plant ball. The use of the compressor costs 1200 EU.
- The total equivalent EU spent to make each compressed plant ball is therefore 960+1200 = 2160 EU.
- The total equivalent EU spent to make 32 compressed plant balls is therefore 69120 EU
- The cost of using the canning machine to enrich water with the plant balls is another 1200 EU
- Total EU cost of resources spent to make 1 bucket of biomass == 70320 EU.
After going through the process of making the biomass (which requires a reasonable amount of crafting and then several machine processing steps) the net EU gain is only 4680 EU (worth 1.4625 coal).
You can hopefully see that creating Biomass by itself isn't all that beneficial (you effectively spend 70320 EU to get 75000 EU out, which is not a huge gain). The real gain comes from the refining process. The cost of using the Refinery to refine 1 bucket of Biomass into Ethanol (or 1 bucket of Oil into Diesel) is 120000 RF (equivalent to 30000 EU) - and this process pretty much doubles the burning power of your Biomass.
All in all, the total effective EU spend required to make 1 bucket of Ethanol is 100320 EU, but the total power generated by that resulting Ethanol when burnt is a whopping 140000 EU, which is a gain of almost 40,000 EU per bucket!
It sounds like a lot of manual labour to make by hand - and you might be right - but there are great opportunities for the budding factory builder to automate the manufacturing of Ethanol, because it can be made entirely out of renewable resources like cactus and sugar cane. In fact, the entire process from start to finish (turning cane to ethanol) can be completely automated.
For those who like Railcraft steam boilers (although I'm not sure that's anybody, but oh well) the new fuels can be burnt for heat in the Liquid Fueled Firebox as well
You might be wondering why the hell you would bother to make Ethanol or other liquid fuels when you can just use solar panels. This is where the fixes to the Jetpack come in to play.
Those of you who have a lot of Robbit play time (or play time on IC2 in general) will be familiar with the Electric Jetpack. This is a jetpack you can recharge in an MFS or by standing on a Charge Pad, and it offers approximately 3 minutes worth of continuous flight time, with an EU cost of about 10,000 EU per minute.
You will also be painfully aware at how frequently you have to refill the damn thing, because 3 minutes of flight time sucks ass.
The newly fixed Jetpack (i.e. non-electric jetpack) introduced in this patch offers an alternative to the Electric Jetpack which is powered by liquid fuels. You can power it by any of the main 5 liquid fuels displayed above, with a total fuel storage of 4 buckets worth (although you can't use multiple liquid types at once). When compared to the electric jetpack, the fuel efficiency is only around 25% (so if you want to maximize your fuel efficiency, the electric jetpack is still the way to go) but where the fuel jetpack really shines is in flight time.
Here you can see how much continuous flight time you can expect from 4 buckets worth of fuel:
- Creosote: 31 seconds
- Biomass: 7 minutes 48 seconds
- Ethanol: 14 minutes 35 seconds
- Oil: 15 minutes 37 seconds
- Diesel: 25 minutes
So for every fuel except Creosote, you gain a HELL of a lot of flight time. This goes up to a whopping 25 minutes when using Diesel!
Now you can see where the fuel-powered jetpack really shines. If you want to do some huge rebuilding projects and constantly refilling your jetpack is a huge hassle, it really pays to use the fuel-powered jetpack instead of the electric one. It also gives you a reason to actually make Diesel
Other Bug Fixes and General Changes
As with any Robbit patch, there are some other little small changes:
- Added wooden pressure plate variants. Recipes have been adjusted appropriately.
- The old style bio-cells from IC2 have been removed.
- Creosote cell now stacks to 64 like other cells rather than stacking to 16.
- Fixed conversion ratio of RF-to-EU, which was accidentally set to the wrong value when updating to Buildcraft 7.
- Fixed tooltip of CF sprayer to display localized fluid names instead of internal ones.
- Fixed BiblioCraft registering its recipes in the wrong pass.
This patch makes a small dent in fixing all of the IC2 issues in Robbit. I hope you find the new changes a substantial improvement to the balance of fuels and jetpacks. Please let me know your thoughts on the new balancing!
If you find any bugs, please report them on the Robbit issue tracker. This will help us to weed out and fix bugs faster and more efficiently. Thank you.