Author Topic: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom  (Read 1109 times)

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Offline Leartin

(Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« on: May 30, 2016, 12:05:39 PM »
The bottom of the game screen shows the players bank account. The players bank account has virtually no meaning at all, since going negative does not restrict the players action in any way, and it does not indicate how rich a player is either. If you start a game and build a typical coal line, even if it makes profit you would have to wait an endless long time until your bank account shows the amount you started with.

On the other hand, you have the company net worth. If it goes negative, the player is bankrupt and the game ends 3 month later. It does indicate how rich a player is. If you start a game and build a typical coal line, if it makes enough profit, it might just be enough to bring you back to your original net worth, at which point you feel a success.


Isn't it just for historical reasons that the bank account is shown, and wouldn't that be a rather simple change (given that you only display one variable instead of another)?

Offline Václav

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Re: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2016, 01:46:15 PM »
This sounds very good. Quesation is, where to place button to switch it.

In my opinion, it could be in (for example) Display settings.

There it could be switched between:

default (Money cash)
Monthly profit
Yearly profit

Chybami se člověk učí - ale někteří lidé jsou nepoučitelní

Offline DrSuperGood

Re: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2016, 06:16:10 PM »
Quote
If you start a game and build a typical coal line, even if it makes profit you would have to wait an endless long time until your bank account shows the amount you started with.
In pak64 you need to wait ~5 minutes as the line pays for itself in 2-3 trips. In pak128 that is true.

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the player is bankrupt and the game ends 3 month later.
Only in singleplayer. In multiplayer the company is simply liquidated.

Quote
Isn't it just for historical reasons that the bank account is shown, and wouldn't that be a rather simple change (given that you only display one variable instead of another)?
The problem is that there are many mechanics missing from the game to make the bank balance make sense. Experimental is trying its best to add such mechanics however in standard there is currently no plans in that area. Basically if you had to pay interest on the balance, on top of vehicle value deflation, then it would make a lot more sense as being in the red will cost you and potentially eat away all your profits.

Offline Leartin

Re: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2016, 06:57:12 AM »
In pak64 you need to wait ~5 minutes as the line pays for itself in 2-3 trips. In pak128 that is true.
It's an issue of balancing, but the current display of the bank account is useless either way.
* If the pakset is balanced in a way that money is growing on trees, you don't need to look at the bank account, you will always have enough money.
* If the pakset is balanced so vehicles are expensive, as stated, your bank account is irrelevant, you only care for net worth.
* If the pakset is balanced so vehicles are cheap but infrastructure is expensive so you can't make money easily, there is less difference between bank accound and net worth, and you can stay black without swimming in money. However, if you created such a pakset, you would want bankruptcy to come with negative cash, so the current situation would still be unsatisfying.

No matter how the balancing works exactly, as the player what you want to see is a value that, if it reaches zero, ends the game (liquidation is a loss, so the game still ends for the player in multiplayer) - not some value that is rather meaningless without further information.

The problem is that there are many mechanics missing from the game to make the bank balance make sense. Experimental is trying its best to add such mechanics however in standard there is currently no plans in that area. Basically if you had to pay interest on the balance, on top of vehicle value deflation, then it would make a lot more sense as being in the red will cost you and potentially eat away all your profits.
I disagree. There already is a meaningful value one can use to determine overall success and keep an eye on not to go bankrupt, the net worth. So the actual problem is that this meaningful value is not shown, but a meaningless value is. Changing which variable is displayed would already fix this.

Changing how money works in the game by adding some financial features might be nice to have, but not punishing ones. Eg. you can't just add taxes and make it so players have to give some of their income away. Instead, you reduce overall income in secret and add some aids and grants for 'poor' players, since positive features are better than negative ones and the overall impact is the same. But that's complicated and does not help making the game more accessible, so if you have concrete ideas please open an independent extension request.

Offline Ters

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Re: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2016, 07:59:29 PM »
Since Simutrans doesn't really handle debt in any way, I simply avoid negative bank balance at almost all costs (although my rather crude budgeting mean I occasionally dip below). Another reason might be traumatizing experiences with debt in SimCity 2000, and to a lesser extent in Transport Tycoon. However, money is only a concern for the first ten or so game years, since profits grows more or less exponentially, and there are no governments that want to a share of your wealth through taxes, owners demanding greater dividends, managers demanding greater bonuses or customers demanding lower prices to slow it down like in real life. Although profits in pak64, which is all I play, might grow faster, I have heard that all pak sets have this problem.

Offline prissi

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Re: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2016, 09:32:30 PM »
THe decision between net wealth and account is easy and will be in in next nightly.

Offline captain crunch

Re: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2016, 01:51:30 AM »
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THe decision between net wealth and account is easy and will be in in next nightly.

It gets only updated while the finance window is opened.

Offline prissi

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Re: (Option to) Change money displayed on game bottom
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2016, 08:44:33 PM »
Ok, check the nightly.