Friday Facts #410 - Rocket turret & Target priorities

Posted by Klonan on 2024-05-10

We know you love to blow things up, and the Space Age expansion will be bringing ever more advanced and powerful ways of bearing arms against your enemies.

Rocket turret

The rocket turret does what it says, it shoots rockets:

  • 3x3 powerful long-range turret.
  • Unlocked on one of the three initial planets.
  • Minimum range of 15, and a max range of 36 (improved +10% for each quality level).
  • Shoots any type of rocket (including atomic bomb).

Graphics by Jarosław; Sound effects by Ian

It is very useful as an upgrade for Space Platforms, as laser and gun turrets alone start to struggle on larger asteroids. Each size of asteroid has resistances to different types of damage, but more on that another week.

To make rocket turrets work nicely on space platforms we needed to tweak the rocket ammo recipe a bit, by removing the electronic circuits from the recipe. This makes it much easier to set up rocket production on the platform where copper is quite scarce.

Turret target priorities/filtering

With more powerful turrets which use precious ammunition, it leads to another problem: We don't really want to expend expensive rockets on small little asteroids that the gun or laser turrets can easily take care of.

So we added the feature of turret target priorities, with an additional option to ignore things not in the list (which effectively makes it a whitelist filter). We can use this to focus fire on the larger asteroids, or even set our rocket turrets ignore the small ones completely.

This feature is not exclusive to the rocket turret, so there are some nice optimizations we can apply in other contexts. For instance we found that setting laser turrets to prioritize spitters helped to reduce the amount of damage our defenses would take in large biter attacks. We can also optimize ammo usage at walls by setting the rocket turrets to only shoot behemoth biters and spitters, as the rest are easily handled by the laser turrets.

The artillery turret does not support the priorities/filters, due to the way the optimized artillery shooting logic works. This probably isn't a big problem because we should just kill everything anyway.

There is another part of the Space Age expansion where target filtering will play a crucial role, but that is for another week...

Turret circuit connection

For 2.0 we have added the ability to connect turrets to the circuit network:

  • Enable/Disable
  • Set target priorities
  • Set if unlisted targets are ignored
  • Read ammunition

This opens up a few nice opportunities, one useful thing is reading the turret contents to enable and disable a train stop bringing ammo.

The artillery turret also has a circuit connection, but it only has the enable/disable and ammo read.


Researching the Rocket turret is a big milestone in the Space Age journey. It unlocks more options for platform and factory survival, and gives you new logistic dilemmas to solve.

While the Rocket turret is exclusive to Space Age, the target priorities and circuit connection will be available for all to enjoy with the 2.0 update.

It is also not a coincidence that the turret has similarities with the head of a Spidertron. You could almost expect the Space Age recipe of Spidertrons to be a rocket turret + four exoskeletons...

As always, fire a salvo of your thoughts to the usual places.