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Author Topic: Power for trains, water for cities  (Read 4244 times)

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Offline Emil Sawicki

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Power for trains, water for cities
« on: February 25, 2012, 05:08:27 PM »
I think it would be more realistic, if tram/trolleybus/railroad overhead were powered with transformer stations. One transformer per x tiles of overhead may be required. Player builds new overhead by connecting it with transformer or existing network, only, if less than x tiles were connected yet. If limit is exceeded, player has to create new transformer. Player can't build overhead without connection to supplied network.
X should be at least 30, at most 50.

City growth shouldn't be possible without water and electricity. Player have to lay water pipes under streets and connect network with water stations. Electricity should be provided via underground cable or hanged on poles. Lines under- and overground can be connected, so player can choose, where to build network. These cables must be connected to high voltage line through transformer.

In real world rail stations are connected with telephone network. Old rail networks used telegraph. If station isn't connected with other, train can't leave it.

Are my ideas possible to code? I would like to discuss about it.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2012, 07:23:07 PM by IgorEliezer »

Offline kierongreen

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2012, 07:02:42 PM »
Almost anything is possible to code, however the ideas you talk about have have been suggested before. They gave been rejected as it was thought they would make the game too complicated and take away from the fun of playing.

Offline VS

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2012, 07:11:31 PM »
The previous discussions can be summed up easily:
  • Simutrans ≠ Simcity
  • Supplying X to allow vehicles to move = transport X to allow transport = catch 22.

Offline Fabio

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2012, 09:46:14 PM »
Against catch 22 I would say; if you don't provide "your" power to trains you buy it on the market i.e. you pay an additional fee, if you deliver power, the fee is spared.

Offline Ters

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2012, 08:41:06 AM »
Power for your own vehicles is one thing. Supplying cities with water and power, not to mention all other kinds of public services, is beyond the scope of the game. I feel that supplying industries with power is beyond the transport aspect already. Personally, I let the public player handle that.

Having a city build it's own public services could add some new challenges to the game. Some are already implemented as attractions, but if a city built underground cables and pipes, that would create obstacles for players to deal with underground too. Whether that is positive or negative depends on each players own opinions.

Offline Emil Sawicki

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2012, 09:27:35 AM »
Supplying X to allow vehicles to move = transport X to allow transport = catch 22.
No, because you can use steam loco to transport coal to power station. Then you can easily build overhead.
if a city built underground cables and pipes, that would create obstacles for players to deal with underground
I think undergroung wouldn't have to be rebuild. Maybe player could build pipes and cables in tunnels along existing railroad? And vice versa - tunnels will not collide with power network.

Offline isidoro

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2012, 10:07:02 AM »
Simutrans is meant to be a transport simulator.  The problem is to set where is the frontier/limit.

Personally, I think that pipes to feed individual houses, etc. is too much.  But maybe pipes as another type of transportation: for gas, water, etc. to industries, could be fine.  In that case, they have to disturb, to be noticed, i.e. occupy space (one tile).

But I would like something else to make the game more complete, but maybe in a configurable, high difficult level of the game:
  • Industries should have people there to produce anything.  If not, 0.  Transported people should stay some time and leave (transported or on foot).  The number of people inside a factory should be accounted for.
  • Storage capacities should be strictly respected.  No more 1200756 passengers/tons of goods waiting in an station
  • Cities should be fed and given water by end industries located there.  A city will not grow, or even will shrink if not enough meat, vegetables, etc. are provided to its butcher's, groceries, etc.  Other transport simulators implement this behavior (for instance, Transport Giant).
That way, you would build a map from the scratch.



Offline Emil Sawicki

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2012, 10:28:20 AM »
maybe pipes as another type of transportation: for gas, water, etc. to industries, could be fine
I think it's good compromise between my propistion and problems indicated by kierongreen.

Mostly I agree with isidoro's idea.

Offline Fabio

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #8 on: February 26, 2012, 10:59:16 AM »
Cities could all have water, power and gas consumers. Delivering those utilities would unlock higher level buildings. those consumers would be built as the city grows and the player can supply them for profit and for boosting growth.
E.g.
1000 pop
   - builds power consumer
   - builds 1 small market
   - unlocks buildings level 15-30
5000 pop
   - builds water consumer
   - builds big market
   - unlocks buildings level 31-45
10000 pop
   - builds gas consumer
   - builds supermarket
   - unlocks buildings level 46+

City consumers would work as normal industries. Supplying them boosts growth, but it's not mandatory.



Pipes: they would be very useful anyway, for fluids (oil, gas, water) or even for pax (escalators to move pax between 2 stations)
The catch would be to make them expensive enough to build and maintain so that (except water) you don't really want to use them for distances greater than 4-8 tiles.
Typical use of oil pipelines would be a refinery or oil power station 4-8 tiles inland. Hauling oil from a rig currently asks for:
- canals (ugly for supertankers) or heavy terraforming for ships to reach the industry
- ships to the shore, than trucks or trains, an overkill for such a short distance.
Here pipelines from shore to the industry would just be perfect.

Alternatively, the choice for the player would be between
- high fixed costs and no running cost (pipelines); and
- lower fixed costs but higher running costs (roads or trains)

Offline Emil Sawicki

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2012, 11:12:45 AM »
New idea: garbage trucks can collect garbage from bus stops.

Offline IgorEliezer br

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2012, 07:17:11 PM »
Simutrans is meant to be a transport simulator.  The problem is to set where is the frontier/limit.
As for goods: the goal is to transport goods from the first factory of industry chain to the end-consumer factory.

Power for your own vehicles is one thing. Supplying cities with water and power, not to mention all other kinds of public services, is beyond the scope of the game.
I completely agree.

I feel that supplying industries with power is beyond the transport aspect already. Personally, I let the public player handle that.
As fas as I know, coal industry chain is the one only that doesn't end in a city. All the other chains have at least a market or a shop in the city to sell the end-consumer products. I see the electricity as a consequence or product of coal, and the powerlines are there to complete the gap between the last factory and the end-consumer (since all other industry chains deliver the final product to the end-consumer).

Considering this aspect, I think it's still fair to have an electrical substation in the city as final "factory" of coal industry chain, like a gas station or a car shop. Or, we could give the electricity produced by power plants a better end-destination, we could power the the vehicles that require electricity. This is a visible gap in the game that needs to be fulfilled. Every time I power my electrical trains by building overhead lines on the track, I ask myself "where this electricity comes from?", I could answer "from power plants of course". Then I'd consider that delivering electricity in the city would be a bit pointless.

Offline Zeno

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #11 on: February 26, 2012, 09:54:52 PM »
Just a personal opinion, but I think this is about transporting goods to one or more consumers. If it was my choice, I'd even remove current electricity stuff. Electricity can't be transported by trains or trucks, so I think it's ok as an "extra" for the game (production bonus, blah blah...), but that's all; it's removable, and the game would keep working fine.

There's yet another reason for me, electricity *is* everywhere (and is not produced nor controlled by transport companies), and a simutrans map only generates few electricity industries here and there, which requires placing wires all around the map. That becomes absolutely nonsense for me; I like spending my time placing tracks instead ;)

Offline kierongreen

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #12 on: February 26, 2012, 11:04:02 PM »
Quote
If it was my choice, I'd even remove current electricity stuff. Electricity can't be transported by trains or trucks, so I think it's ok as an "extra" for the game (production bonus, blah blah...), but that's all; it's removable, and the game would keep working fine.
I can see your point, and yes, most gameplay would remain unchanged, however electricity generation does mean that:
Power plants have some purpose - without generation coal and oil power stations would just use goods giving a very simple industry chain.
For people preferring transporting mainly goods power allows some degree of flexibility - you can increase the output of certain industries at the expense of organising the delivery of fuel to power stations.and the transmission of power.

The key with the current gameplay is that power is entirely optional. This means that if someone wants to ignore goods entirely, focusing on passenger transport, they are free to do so. I would say that one suggestion that has been made before is that providing townhalls with power would increase city growth. If I manage to get underground transformers stable, and it is decided to include them in the trunk then this may be one possibility. Again, this is entirely optional in gameplay terms.

Making it necessary for cities to have power (and even moreso water) for any growth, as I have said,  just complicates gameplay. Simutrans should ideally be quick to learn, harder to master. Already there are a lot of concepts for first time players to learn before they can run their first line. Adding more is definitely not helpful.

Offline Ashley

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #13 on: February 26, 2012, 11:31:44 PM »
I've long wanted pipelines in the game, though not specifically for connecting to cities (more for oil pipelines). If these were implemented then supplying water to factories would be a logical extension of the concept. Giving cities a growth bonus for supplying them with water and electricity would also be a nice little extension as well.

This isn't really a technical discussion, since implementing these ideas is relatively trivial, it's more a discussion of what we want the game to be like. Given that use of pipelines and supply of electricity/fluids to cities could be entirely optional (and indeed, these mechanisms could be left out of a pakset entirely) my vote would be to build support into the game for them and let players/pakset maintainers decide whether to use them or not.

On a tangent, I do feel we should be treating Simutrans as a game engine rather than as a game. I feel we should think of the paksets as being the game(s), since they determine the gameplay and character. Thus the game engine can provide for features which aren't used by some paksets, and paksets can choose not to make use of features which don't agree with their design choices.

Offline wlindley us

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2012, 01:10:54 AM »
Simcity took the water/electricity/trash thing too far, but ...

Water to factories would also mean, water for irrigation to farms, and to water-wheel powered factories and mills in the 1800s.  In the days before the power grid, factories that used electricity accepted coal directly, and had their own power plants.  In America, factory power plants, and railroad power plants, before about 1960, often ran on Mr. Edison's 25Hz system instead of the Westinghouse 60Hz system -- ask your grandparents why the lights in their factory seemed to flicker.

Simutrans should either handle water-and-power consistently for the 1750-to-modern period, or else electricity should be kept simple and limited.

Offline ӔO

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #15 on: February 27, 2012, 01:16:24 AM »
one of the challenges with trying to build tunnels for cars and trains inside a modern city is having to navigate around all the drinking water, sewage, oil, steam and electrical pipelines running around inside the city that have existed there for over a hundred years.

such logistical difficulties may or may not be desirable for some players.

By the way, for oil pipelines, the various oils that are sent around are usually separated with radio isotope markers so that the terminal can sort the various types of oil that may be sent over the pipelines.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2012, 01:25:48 AM by ӔO »

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #16 on: February 27, 2012, 01:32:03 AM »
The key with the current gameplay is that power is entirely optional. This means that if someone wants to ignore goods entirely, focusing on passenger transport, they are free to do so. I would say that one suggestion that has been made before is that providing townhalls with power would increase city growth. If I manage to get underground transformers stable, and it is decided to include them in the trunk then this may be one possibility. Again, this is entirely optional in gameplay terms.

I should note that this - albeit without the underground substations/power lines - has been in Experimental for some time (albeit the substation can be placed anywhere in the city, not just next to a town hall).

Offline Spike

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Re: Power for trains, water for cities
« Reply #17 on: February 27, 2012, 10:47:16 AM »
The "water for the cities" idea was on my list when I still was actively developing Simutrans. That is why nowadays power sources are called "pumpe_t" internally (-> "pump") and the consumers are called "senke_t" (-> "drain"). The code was made for pipelines first, to transport fluids, and water for the cities was one of the ideas linked to that. I couldn't figuer out how to properly code fluid dynamics in pipelines (too much realism most likely) and it was easier to try with electrical power, which spreads almost instantly through a network, without need to calculate flow amounts and pressure on joing/forking pipeline parts.

Many words. I wanted to say, that even if this is not a "transport game" idea, but a "sim city" idea, it was on my list, but I failed to implement it.