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Little Big Workshop

Imagine a magical factory, appearing right in your living room. A carefully planned masterpiece, where diligent workers throw together anything customers want. Rubber ducks and dressers, drones and electric guitars, scooters and other wonderful goods can be created from many different materials and sold for hard cash – cash you invest right back into your factory to get more machines, more workers and grow your business. In Little Big Workshop you become a factory tycoon! You are the Big Boss and it’s time to take charge of your very own tabletop factory. Organize the factory floor, manage your workers, purchase machinery, and design efficient production lines - all within the time-limit and to your client's satisfaction! Take it easy, it’s a sandbox-experience where you think, ponder and poke at things until you get it to work the way you’d like. Supply products to clients and an ever-changing market, as you produce over 50 unique product types, built from multiple parts and pieces - all of which can be created with different materials and production methods. No two factories should ever look the same. Start out with just a small workshop and expand to a desk-filling factory. Unlock ever fancier machines, add even more production methods, and most of all, more room. Soon enough you’ll be running multiple production lines, producing hundreds of advanced products each day, and watching with joy as your cute workers do the actual work.
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Game Discussion

Review by Anonymous
Review from Steam

Little Big Workshop is a sandbox tycoon-style game where you build and manage a factory. You select products and contracts based on a randomly shifting market, make those products, and sell them off. There’s a lot to this game. Overall, it’s a good game that’s well made. I have some issues with it though. If you want, feel free to read the pros and cons that I’ve listed, though I do recommend this game if it’s your type of thing.
Pros:
1) Core Gameplay Loop - LBW has a solid core gameplay loop. You pick products to make, you make them, you sell them off. On the surface, it’s really simple, but it’s given a lot of depth through the process of making the products. There are steps products have to go through, you refine the raw materials, assemble them, and export them out. You also have a planning screen where you can plot out every step of the item’s production, from what materials to use to which processes you’ll do to arrive at the finished product. It’s simple, but with the huge variety of potential products and a constantly shifting market, it’ll keep you going for a while. There are also random in-game events, special timed client contracts, and a megacorporate dude who shifts the market around when you start to get comfortable with a specific product or two. Not only does it break up the monotony, but it forces you to adapt and diversify your factory.
2) The Power of Information - LBW has plenty of different hotkeys and lenses that you can use to get more information on your factory. For example, the obstruction lens allows you to see a sort of heat map of how easy it easy for your workers to walk around. Holding the shift key will allow you to see all of the operations that are running at workstations. The UI of LBW also has plenty of useful information as well, such as a finance screen to give you an idea of how productive you are. LBW doesn’t keep much from you, and I appreciate that.
3) The Power of Knowledge - The R&D tree in the game is pretty extensive, and there are two of them. You unlock different layers of the tree as you complete certain milestone goals, and you get points to unlock things as you level up your factory, which you do by making and selling stuff. It gives you something to work towards.
4) Performance - This game runs almost flawlessly. I’ve only seen FPS drops on higher settings when you queue a large construction project and all the builders show up, but it’s only for a second or two. I'm on a fairly low-end PC close to the spec requirements of LBW, on the highest settings and I get a consistent 60 fps, minus that one little hiccup.
5) Mostly Bug-Free - The game doesn’t have any game-breaking bugs that I’ve found. It has a few, ranging from negligible at best to really infuriating at times. For the most part though, LBW is mostly bug-free.
Cons:
1) The Nightmare that is Storage - This is by far my biggest issue with the game. Zones are where your workers store things. Materials, parts, finished products, etc. They work, and they are functional, but that functionality has a myriad of restrictions that can be really frustrating to deal with. For starters, the pathfinding of the workers is an issue I’ve had with a bunch of other similar games. Your workers will always path to the closest valid zone for the thing they’re carrying, and that is “closest” meaning proximity. Proximity pathing in a game where you build things the way you do in LBW is an efficiency nightmare. If you start a contract, a truck will come in to deliver the materials. When it arrives, a pre-determined amount of workers will run over to grab the stuff. Let’s say that you have a door right next to the loading bay, and your “main” storage zone is there, but you also have built your factory around the loading bay and have a small zone in one of your workrooms so that you workers aren’t running all the way back to your main room when they finish one thing. When your workers go to grab the stuff from the truck, they will go into your factory, right over your main storage zones, walk all the way down the hall and drop everything off in that little zone in the workroom. If someone asks, I’ll explain more in detail, but basically, workers will pick the closest zone to take stuff to, rather than taking the stuff to the zone that will take the least amount of time to path to. Before someone brings it up, no, zone priorities do not address this problem. I tried multiple times, in multiple different ways, and tried looking it up to see if I was doing something wrong. Zone priorities do not work, at all. Zones themselves are also really annoying to work with. They can only be square or rectangular. You cannot connect zones to each other. On its own, it’s only slightly annoying. When you factor shelves into the mix, it imposes some pretty stupid restrictions on how you can and cannot organize your factory. Shelves are placed in zones to store items more efficiently. A shelf has to be fully contained within a single zone. It cannot be in two different zones at the same time. Not being able to merge zones into more than four-sided shapes means that you cannot put the shelves perpendicular to each other without a gap. I tried to build a large central storage with shelves along the exterior wall, and more shelves in a T shape in the middle between the two entrances to the room. This restriction stopped me from doing that. I ended up with less storage space as a result. Filling the entire room with a single zone to make the shelves work would’ve created a lot of obstructions on the floor, and slowed my workers down. Two final things on this note that I’ll mention. Workers do not prioritize shelves for smaller items. They will, again, drop the item in the closest valid spot to their position. So if you’ve got one project for sandbox kits, and another for dining tables, your workers will fill all of the open zone space with the sandbox kits, leaving nothing for the large tables that can’t go on shelves. Finally, your workers are absolutely terrible at optimizing the usage of your storage space for this exact reason. They will leave giant gaps in the zone, and you’ll inevitably need to make more space or sell stuff off early. This is caused by the same pathfinding problem I mentioned, as well as just poor AI. In a game entirely about efficiency, this storage problem holds the game back a lot for me.
2) The Grid - When you are trying to build a room with stuff in it, you'll probably want the things in that room arranged in a certain way. The grid is supposed to help with this. But when you are planning a room, the grid is obscured under the grass outside your factory. On top of that, it's a light grey, which blends in very well with the white graph paper your factory is set on. It's really hard to see. You get accurate measurements when building walls, it's just annoying to be a little uncertain about if things will line up the way you want them to, and you end up doing a lot more double-checking than you probably should.
3) Blandness - In games where you build stuff, customization and variety are kind of a big deal in my opinion. Everything starts to look really the same after a while. There's also a pretty significant lack of decoration variety.
I have other issues, but those are the big ones I feel that everyone will run into. Overall, Little Big Workshop is a great game. There are just some problems that I think should be sorted out. I recommend this game if you can live with those issues.

Review from Steam

I refund a lot of simulations because they are too shallow.
I think this one is going to be a golden one. This is the "Learn how to run a small factory in your hometown if mass production didn't exist." game.
There are some confusing elements that people think are bugs, and if you keep reading for a second I'll get you past them.
Billboards only connect to a single machine type. They are basically "split the workload across all of these".
Storage zones that you want connected to those billboarded machines instead need to be connected to the billboard. Whew, that one will confuse you forever if you aren't lucky enough to read this.
And wooden horses, bicycles, other big items, cannot fit on shelves, they need a storage zone that is just floorspace.
Boom, now go forth and sim!
(For countries lucky enough to still have shop class, this should be a "learn flow, throughput, bottlenecks, etc" learning game.)

Review from Steam

Good game!

Review from Steam

---{Graphics}---
☐ You forget what reality is
☐ Beautiful
☑ Good
☐ Decent
☐ Bad
---{Gameplay}---
☐ Very good
☑ Good
☐ It‘s just gameplay
☐ Not great
☐ Bad
---{Audio}---
☐ Eargasm
☐ Very good
☑ Good
☐ Not too bad, but not too good
☐ Bad
---{Audience}---
☐ Kids
☐ Teens
☐ Adults
☑ All
---{PC Requirements}---
☐ Potato
☑ Decent
☐ Fast
☐ Current generation hardware
---{Difficulity}---
☐ Just press 'W'
☐ Easy
☐ Requires effort
☑ Easy to learn / Hard to master
☐ Difficult
☐ Dark Souls
---{Grind}---
☐ Nothing to grind
☑ Only if you want achievements
☐ Isn't necessary to progress
☐ Average grind level
☐ Too much grind
---{Story}---
☑ No Story
☐ Some lore
☐ Average
☐ Good
☐ Lovely
---{Game Time}---
☐ Long enough for a cup of coffee
☐ Short - <10 hours
☑ Average - 10-20 hours
☑ Long - 21+
☐ Never-ending
---{Price}---
☐ It’s free
☑ Worth the price
☐ Buy on sale
☐ Not recommended
---{Bugs}---
☐ Never heard of
☑ Minor bugs
☐ Noticable bugs
☐ Game ruining bugs
Little Big Workshop is a lot of fun. I really enjoyed it. It was fustrating at first - like I couldn't get off the starting block. I kept going bankrupt and couldn't figure out why. So I just kept trying different approaches. Eventually I found one that worked well for me. The amount of freedom you have to do things how you want is awesome. It took me I think 6 tries to finally get the win condition. Nearly 60 hours. You can DEFINITELY do this game WAY faster than I did. That's why I selected both average and long. You can easily get more than 20 hours of gameplay if you WANT, but probably to just finish the win condition if you really are trying to finish fast, you could do it in 10 hours probably. There are bugs, thankfully nothing that is game breaking.

Review from Steam

Part chore/part idle clicker/A tiny bit factory builder
Not a challenger, but a diversion maybe.
If you have a cool idea for a factory it probably won't work without modding the game.

Review from Steam

Fun management game in the style of Theme Hospital. Clear UI and art style with some good character modelling that is expressive. Early to middle game is well paced and offers some challenges although the late game can be a bit grindy with a fair amount of waiting.

Review from Steam

Unlike other factory games where it essentially becomes an afk money farm game, Little Big Workshop keeps me entertained and focused constantly improving the workshop design and layout and learning the most efficient ways to have everything while walking the tight rope of the budget and making quick hard decisions of selling that big 9000 dollar tool you thought you had enough money in the budget for, but in the end the contract took longer than anticipated or the product dropped in price too quickly before you could sell all the inventory (like real world) and to keep your company just barely afloat you either cut your losses to sell the tooling or go bankrupt. Beautifully designed and well balanced game.
There is one bug that is plaguing me however, its a texture bug. Epileptic people beware. (yknow when your gpu gets too hot and stretches textures all over the place and wigs out? yea its that bug but my gpu is absolutely healthy n fine)