If you choo-choo-choose the experimental branch
As factory-building sim Satisfactory continues to assemble itself through early access, the next major update runs a real risk of becoming a train wreck. Now in public testing, Update 5 introduces new features to manage train timetables and routes, and you’ll want to pay attention to those because trains can now crash.
For budding Fat Controllers, the trains shuttling your materials around are now a wee empire to manage. Trains can now collide with each other, see, so you’ll need to manage them if you don’t want to be forever running around mashing E to right derailed carriages. The new signalling system runs on two train signals, Block Signals and Path Signals, to let you route choo-choos without kersploding.
You can create train timetables with a bit of logic too, controlling what the train will do at the station. The patch notes say, “so you might have a Train only stop for a limited time or wait until it’s fully loaded, and you can also control what resources it should load or unload.” Handy!
Other automated vehicles are improved too, able to follow waypoints and now with basic obstacle-avoidance so they will try not to get stuck.
New options are in to pretty up your industrial nightmare too. New cosmetic buildables are in, including new windows, tilted walls, beams, frame types, and pillars. And the new Customizer item supplants the Colour Gun with features including changing materials, painting more quickly, and painting patterns onto Foundation blocks, which seems helpful for planning.
Other newness includes dedicated servers, new rules for building clearing, and ah go read the patch notes for everything. Update 5 is available now by opting into the experimental branch, then will roll out to all players once it’s tested and polished.
The game is basically just 3D Factorio, but it’s already in a good state. Even when it first launched last year, Brendy’s Satisfactory early access review said, “when you see those huge assembly lines, encircling mountaintops like a giant sushi conveyor belt, you’ll know they’re your crowning achievement. The game’s coffee-sipping mascot and punning moniker refers with confidence to these brief moments of pleasure you’ll feel when you finish a tumbling mess of machinery and stand atop a tower, nodding with self-approval at the blight you’ve made on the landscape. I am become factory, the destroyer of worlds.”