PCBS has put out a new beta ahead of the release of the name game expansion. It currently ends June 3rd, so you have time to check out the expansion for the time being. Similar to the Esports expansion, this one will have you joining the tech support echelons at a company Uncle Tim set you up with. From there, you move along through the normal diagnosing and fixing random problems. They have added a new job type, off-site, as a way to kind of differentiate this expansion from the previous content. You’ll travel to another office within the same company, Irratech, and then fix service tickets in these other locations.
This new workshop is extremely large, which becomes apparent as you progress through the introduction service tickets and fixes. The main reason, is the introduction of cosmetic rewards, or gifts, from those you help off-site. Upon completion of an off-site quest chain, you’ll receive a cosmetic gift, which can then be displayed in various places through the new customization feature. Everything from coffee bean sacks, to novelty books and even furniture can be added as customizations. This is all done through the new Dekor app, on the new tablet. More on the tablet later.
There are plenty of options here to spice up your workshop, and make it your own space. There are also plenty of spaces to place all this stuff, so go wild. While I’m not much for decorating, this is a nice touch, and one I’ve seen requested for quite a while on Reddit and the Steam community.
Back to the tablet, if you played the Esports expansion, this is just a more useful feature than the phone that was added. It can almost completely replace the PC you typically need to place orders for components, tools, and other items. All of this can now be done through the tablet interface. Why isn’t this in the base game? Honestly, the workshops are small enough and lack the Off-site jobs. The main intent was to give you a way to order parts while off-site, travel back to the office to pick them up, and then travel back. I still find myself running to the PC in the corner while in the workshop to order parts, but I’ve put several hundred hours in to the game at this point. It’ll be a tough habit to break.
As always, your good ole’ Uncle Tim takes the credit for setting up at Irratech. He also mentions a new business idea, which you can see in the picture above. You can see I bought out all of the stock, just to get an idea of what kind of parts you can expect from the bundles. The prices range from 100 to 1000 in-game cash, and the results are kind of…well, you get what you pay for. These bundles will often include broken parts, sometimes multiple. You’ll get a broad assortment of old parts, like older Nvidia graphics cards, all the way up to the newer stuff. It’s all used parts, and sometimes the package pays off. One graphics bundle had a used 3070 in it that I then put in to a partial build (more on this later) and sold for a tidy profit. It’s nice, and a great addition to making money faster. I did notice that purchasing multiple columns of bundles results in an email that says your order has been delayed because of shipping issues. Cheap Uncle Tim couldn’t send out all of my packages at once, so they were spaced out across a few days. Not a huge delay, but something worth noting if you want to start selling a ton of PCs quickly.
Rigg’s Rigs is a new feature as well, unlocked at the same time as Bargain Bundles. Basically, spare parts can be put in to pre-existing builds and sold to Rigg’s for a tidy profit. Every Thursday he comes by at night, evaluates, and makes you an offer. You can reject it, or accept it, and you’ll see a nice profit summation in your email. I made a good bit of money early on this way, and it puts two new features together nicely.
This is slightly more interactive method of working with your support requests. This doesn’t replace the email system, but kind of extends it a little more. Meant more for organizing a lot of stuff all at once, and even assigning things to your night shift counterpart. The night shift does the ticket for you, though you don’t get the money in return. I sent one easy ticket to night shift, just to see what it would do. I got a somewhat snippy email reply that she had taken care of it for me. I should just send them all, but I’ll reserve that for later. As for this TikkIT app, you can see all the same information as included in the emails, just with a different GUI attached. It’s neat, but I preferred the email system still. It doesn’t feel like clutter though, just a nice alternative if you hated the email version.
As with any printer in existence ever, this thing is terrible. One of the first interactions in the game is beating the hell out of this thing to clear up a paper jam. You can open all 4 paper trays, turn off the power, and beat the top of this thing. Sometimes it works, sometimes it requires a combination of all three options. Messing with this thing seemed to taper off after a handful of encounters, though most of the off-site offices you visit have this same asset. I’m assuming that you’ll encounter this more down the road somewhere, but if you want a real printer troubleshooting experience, this will give it to you.
I’ve played a few hours of the beta so far, and unlocked the second version of the workshop. As of writing, I still haven’t set foot in it. You get an email from the CEO that the company is expanding, and there isn’t really much mention that you have the option to upgrade your workshop. It wasn’t until about 45 minutes later when saving to quit the game that I noticed a new menu option. I’m especially interested in the executive slide though, maybe I can get that at some point…
I’ll be honest that I wasn’t expecting much difference between the first workshop and this middle tier workshop. The layout changed up a bit, and you have an even bigger space to work in. Some added glass doors, and fancier flooring and brick walls, and it even feels better here. Important note that you can always switch back to the first workshop if you don’t like this one. It doesn’t look like you are locked out of upgrading your peripherals at any point, though I haven’t tried yet. Mouse, keyboard, mousepad, and monitor are all changeable in both of these new workshops.
Overall, this new expansion looks pretty solid. I should stress that this is still currently in beta, and certainly rough around the edges. I haven’t encountered any bugs, but optimization is certainly lacking. Loading the game sometimes causes the window to freeze until it’s fully loaded. I’ll hear the music change, and it’ll be 10-20 seconds longer before the game window unfreezes and loads the workshop. This does occasionally happen in the base game for me on two separate computers, so maybe I’m doing something wrong. If I find more interesting new features, I’ll be sure to update this post, so keep an eye out here for any updates over the weekend. Overall, I have to give this expansion a solid thumbs up. I like what they’ve got going on here, and I hope they have even more to add down the road.