Author Topic: Creating or destroying cities and jobs  (Read 441 times)

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Offline MirceaKitsune

Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« on: September 24, 2017, 04:21:04 PM »
One of the things that's not made very obvious is how much control the player has over cities and jobs. Cities and workplaces are procedurally generated when the world starts, and they look pretty nice no doubt. However are they set in stone, or does the player ultimately have control over what takes place with them?

What happens if the player wants to create a new city, or completely erase an existing city from existence? Can you pick a location in the middle of nowhere and start your own city from scratch there... or contrarily wipe out cities from existence if you no longer want them? What are the dynamics of city growth / shrinking in general, how can you make cities become smaller or larger if you so please?

Same goes for jobs: In many cases I've found that the world doesn't generate jobs which certain other jobs are demanding, however I don't seem to have an option to spawn such buildings either (malls, oil rigs, etc). Likewise, can useless jobs be removed from the world if you don't want them taking up space unnecessarily? It would be interesting if this was ecosystem based, so jobs appear or disappear over time based on how much demand there is.

Online Leartin

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Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2017, 04:49:10 PM »
You are a transportation company, not the government or some kind of god. You don't really need to concern yourself with those things, as all you need to do is transport stuff from A to B.

That being said, of course the player has a lot of control over the simulation. When you interact with a city, either with mail and pax directly or with it's factories, you raise the rate of unemployment and homeless. The city will counteract by building or upgrading city buildings. So just by regularly playing the game, without paying much attention to it, cities will grow and expand over time.

Even as a player, you should be able to demolish most buildings if you want to shrink a city down. If you switch to the public hand, you can also demolish monuments, factories, curiosities and townhalls, the latter eradicates all city buildings of that city. You also have access to the map editor, which allows you to found new cities, increase or decrease the inhabitants of a city, build and connect factories etc. - Public Hand is basically a cheat menu, but since it's a sandbox game mostly used in singleplayer, just go for it.

I'm not sure what you mean be "generating jobs". Unemployment rates only affect citybuilding spawning - high unemployment causes more industrial citybuildings to spawn, while homeless people require residential buildings. This happens on it's own. The "number of worker" from different towns in factories are unrelated and shows you where you can expect pax movement. More factories will spawn eventually, this is tied to the number of residents in the cities.

So in general: If you build connections and transport goods and people, your map will fill with more goods and people to transport, and you are never done until every tile of the map is covered ;)

Offline MirceaKitsune

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2017, 07:29:02 PM »
Thank you, that is very helpful! I didn't find the "public hand" mode in the menus, sounds like I should look at it.

Yeah I'm aware this is more like Tycoon rather than Simcity, the player isn't supposed to be a president or god. Still that can be fun when you want to have full control over the world and change things easily.

By create jobs I meant being able to place buildings like oil rigs, car dealerships, tree plantations, and so on into the map. Those buildings are only generated at world spawn time, and they don't really seem to change.

Offline Vladki

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2017, 07:55:11 PM »
Look for a tool to switch players (or just press P), you can create new cities and factories as public player.

Offline MirceaKitsune

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2017, 08:08:28 PM »
Look for a tool to switch players (or just press P), you can create new cities and factories as public player.

Found it, it's right in the players menu! Just what I was looking for, it totally answers my question :D Thanks! I might not normally use it since it looks like a cheat, just when I make a world I'm looking to mess around with.

As far as city growth goes, I was thinking if adding more roads (as player) will also cause houses to appear there automatically, so that you can expand cities without having to use this trick. I assume they'd need a special marking though, similar to the Simcity "public / industrial / residential area" markings. Cities automatically shrinking and growing (in physical size) based on the wealth you bring them could also be a nice feature for someday.

Offline Vladki

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2017, 08:14:13 PM »
I use the cheapest roads to pre-plan the city layout as normal player. City will then take them over when houses are built next to the already existing roads.

Offline MirceaKitsune

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2017, 09:46:57 PM »
I use the cheapest roads to pre-plan the city layout as normal player. City will then take them over when houses are built next to the already existing roads.

Aha... so simply building city roads will do, the city expands on its own from there. Thank you!

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Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2017, 03:54:37 AM »
Aha... so simply building city roads will do, the city expands on its own from there. Thank you!

The city expands even without roads, as it can build it's own roads. Building a road network beforehand is a trick to get a road system more fit for public transport, often in a grid.

Offline IgorEliezer

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Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #8 on: September 25, 2017, 04:20:01 AM »
Kind of tangent:

Correct me if I'm wrong, factories get a  "production boost" with workers from the cities (and energy from powerlines), don't they?

It is not like destroying city buildings will make the factories stop for lack of workforce (I read somewhere the factories were designed as if they had workers of their own living there inside -- oh that's dark) but that would affect them to a limited degree as a loss of productive potential.

Offline MirceaKitsune

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #9 on: September 25, 2017, 10:03:02 AM »
Kind of tangent:

Correct me if I'm wrong, factories get a  "production boost" with workers from the cities (and energy from powerlines), don't they?

It is not like destroying city buildings will make the factories stop for lack of workforce (I read somewhere the factories were designed as if they had workers of their own living there inside -- oh that's dark) but that would affect them to a limited degree as a loss of productive potential.

I was actually wondering how delivering workers and electricity to a factory affects it. I've seen that there are power plants throughout the world and an option to draw power lines, also that you can transport passengers to those factories to earn money... however I can't tell if and how either of those affect the performance of that factory, and would enjoy more insight on it.

So far I haven't seen cities physically growing on their own yet. This might be due to the fact that I haven't gotten too far, as my transports always turn out negative and cause the city to lose money.

Offline Ters

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Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #10 on: September 25, 2017, 03:22:27 PM »
The factory information window contains a tab that displays the potential and actual performance boosts that factory can receive from passengers and electricity. Some industries might not get boosted by some things, or even anything at all.

Offline DrSuperGood

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #11 on: September 25, 2017, 04:02:32 PM »
You might be thinking the game is more complex than it actually is. Shipping passengers to a factory will satisfy any passenger bonus, if any. Same applies to mail and power. The fraction of the bonus varies with the fraction of passengers/mail arriving and the fraction of power supplied (in case of overloaded network).

Bonuses are in percent, which is added to the base production. So a 200% passenger, 200% mail and 50% power boost will allow a factory to produce up to 550% (450% more) of its base. Factories with fields have a chance to place a new field up to a maximum field number (specified by pakset) as long "work" is done, usually meaning it is producing or consuming goods, and each field increases base production by some pakset determined amount. No other modifiers for factory production exist.

A new factory is created every time a city reaches another industry spawn milestone, which is usually at twice the population of the last industry spawn milestone. The factory that is created is determined by missing chains/factories and chance.

Simutrans has a very basic economic model. It is primarily a transport simulator although many do agree a more complex economic model would be good. Simutrans Extended is trying to do this to some extent.

Offline IgorEliezer

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Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #12 on: September 26, 2017, 10:38:36 AM »
That being said, of course the player has a lot of control over the simulation. When you interact with a city, either with mail and pax directly or with its factories, you raise the rate of unemployment and homeless.(...)
Even as a player, you should be able to demolish most buildings if you want to shrink a city down.(...)
Now this raises a question: shouldn't there be greater consequences for a player leveling a city whole?

Since the end-consumer factories (e.g. a chemist, library, car sales etc) are somewhat bond to the cities, their monthly consumption should be more affected by the city growth to a degree: if the city grows, those factories demand more products; if the city shrinks or demolished, they demand less, but never zero. This might hint the urban-design players to be more careful with playing god with the cities. :)

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Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #13 on: September 26, 2017, 04:07:15 PM »
Now this raises a question: shouldn't there be greater consequences for a player leveling a city whole?

Since the end-consumer factories (e.g. a chemist, library, car sales etc) are somewhat bond to the cities, their monthly consumption should be more affected by the city growth to a degree: if the city grows, those factories demand more products; if the city shrinks or demolished, they demand less, but never zero. This might hint the urban-design players to be more careful with playing god with the cities. :)

Sure, but it wouldn't really stop people from demolishing anything for their big projects of aligned greatness, as it would be a short-term bummer, same as losing the potential pax from destroyed buildings already is, or the money spent on the destruction crew. The mindset is simple: It will regrow, better than it was, no worry. So I doubt the suggestion would do what it is intended for.

I suggested at some other place that cities could have a variable for each player to show the "relationship level".
There are several things that could lower a relationship level - obviously deleting anything the city owns, but also overcrowded stations, or perhaps building any kind of infrastructure in the cities territories. As for raising the relationship level, having happy pax in a good network within the city might be the best indication, perhaps you could bribe the major as well. If we go further, beside general rules for how buildt infrastructure changes the relationship, perhaps the infrastructure itself could have different values - perhaps there are stations that are very cheap, but also very ugly, and therefore lower the relationship even more, while a beautiful station extension might be more expensive than others of the same level, but also raise the relationship level - but that's just advanced stuff and not required for a basic implementation.
Now, there might be some things you can only do if the relationship level is high enough. For example, you might have to raise it first to even be allowed to destroy anything. And if it get's low enough, you might not even be allowed to build stations on city roads, or even build anything within city borders, or at the worst get banned from using the cities' road network with your trucks.

Nothing you can do right now would be generally forbidden, you'd just need to fulfill requirements and/or suffer consequences. As such, urban-design players might have more fun while playing not-god, without introducing any more complex dependencies.

Offline MirceaKitsune

Re: Creating or destroying cities and jobs
« Reply #14 on: September 26, 2017, 06:42:47 PM »
Nothing you can do right now would be generally forbidden, you'd just need to fulfill requirements and/or suffer consequences. As such, urban-design players might have more fun while playing not-god, without introducing any more complex dependencies.

That's the part I'd like to see more focus on honestly; The urban design bit. I know Simutrans is officially about the transportation stuff, and the player's business is solely to build roads and connect factories... still I can't help feeling like I wish I had even more freedom, when I see such nice city designs and it feels like there's so much you could go ahead and touch.