[Balance] Farming is not rewarding enough
The very long growth time (2 realtime hours?!) coupled with the very low yield (2-4 units per plot) makes it far too gimmicky and improductive to farm any crop.
Even with 20% extra growth rate + crops not withering with Fresh is Best, farming is still a huge chore and just not worth the time and resources, it's strictly better to run around the map looking for the fruits/veggies instead.
In the case of watermelons I could hardly even keep a superavit of melons (because they spoil too fast), unless I sat by the plot and collected them almost the minute they grew.
Also the whole crop plot interface could be reworked: Why does it allow me to stack multiples in the seed slot if re-planting isn't automatic? Why does it have 2 output slots if it always outputs 2-4 units?
Even perennial plants like coffee/yeast aren't very useful because of the very low yield and high requirements for production. (Growing 50 coffee would take 50 hours of play time in a single plot, that's not reasonable.)
So far farming feels more like a waste of time. I cannot use it to supply myself. Even less though in multiplayer when it is supposed to feed more than one person. Especially wheat is pointless. The few units that come out of a farm plot, versus the huge amounts you need to make flour and then the dough. The yield of the plants for sure need to be adjusted.
Also that each time you harvest you have to replant - what leaves even less of your grown products. Maybe there should be additional seeds coming out for the replanting, so you do not have to spend actual products on that.
I would agree that farming needs some overhaul. the Balance is way off. i could dedicate a character to only farming to perhaps make it more valuable, rendering that character less than useful in most other missions that are too short to produce crop based resources. Im perfectly fine creating tuned characters for specific prospects, but currently only the new Agriculture mission even hints to the farming functionality being useful, and only then because you force it. I have no issues waiting for a vegetable to be produced, but planting one carrot and waiting real life hours, then getting 2 back only to have to replant one is kinda nuts.
The planting / seed queue mechanic is broken AF, throw it away and start over.... I'm sorry, but Its garbage. I only add it here as if it actually worked well, the balance may be a little less dismal.. but it doesn't and created a lot of unnecessary work, making it even LESS balanced.
Totally agree this needs work, the effort vs reward is way off.
The size of those planters IRL you ought to be able to plant 40 carrots and get hundreds out.
I timed the IRL time to grow a melon at about 1h20 and set a stopwatch to re-visit to harvest next time so I didn't miss it, seemed pretty close. (no talents)
I would say you should be able to stack the input and that the grow time be less than the spoil time (this may mean crops spoil slower when planted). Maybe to stop abuse as a food store you can't get crops out of the queue once 'planted'. I would also have the yeld at least 2x, possibly 3x what it is naturally.
I would halve the current base growth time for crops. I would also include a 2x buff if the crop is 'under glass' so you can boost the speed with a bit of work. It could boost the yeld aswell as reducing the time. Alternatively some sort of fertiliser to give a similar boost.
*The two output slots are used when you grow berries as it produces berries and fiber
I not longer grew things for food, plots were only valuable to me as berries for bullets (grow and water berries, compost them into fertilizer, and then make gunpowder of the fertilizer; essentially one berry gave gunpowder enough for one bullet). The mechanic for harvesting, then replanting one is clunky and time wasting and the return is really only viable for a gun user.