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Offline Foxglove

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Trams
« on: October 20, 2012, 07:02:57 PM »
 Good evening. I've got to write some words about what I would like to fix with trams.
Currently, I barely use trams ingame. Most tram routes are supposed to be "A factory - streets of the town - some railroad station". But there goes a big negative side of trams in town: the one way tram track takes a whole street, meanwhile buses/trolleybuses can go in two ways by the same street. So it makes trams sort of hard to be used in towns.
I believe it is not how it supposed to be. So what about making such a system: the game takes tram track not as railroad but as two ways road forbidden for cars (not forbidden if the track is in town by the street, sure), so it allows to put rails by two sides of street. Trams are mainly having two sided tracks in my country, in Germany too, as far as I know, so it would not be a big problem for players to take tram as "developed bus", not as "problematic train" as they probably take it now.
There are many good sides in making tram going by two sides of street and I dont really see negative sides, except that you would need to code it, hehe. Would like to hear words of coders, if the idea is possible or not, tho I think it worths a try, to make trams more serious transport than they are now.

Offline prissi

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Re: Trams
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2012, 08:07:54 PM »
This was requested several times already. Trams on both sides of the road would be just trolleybuses. In many places trams are single way too, especially on smaller roads and in downtown between narrow buildings.

Tram were though as a different mode of transport from buses. With the two-ways trams, those would eb just like buses.

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #2 on: October 20, 2012, 08:37:37 PM »
Well, not really. Buses are able to drive by a road only, trams can go offroad. After all, trams have a special charm, not like buses. There is almost no use for trams in their current state, making trams using two ways track would force players to build tramroutes in almost every town they could build trolleybus + railroad. Please, reconsider that, it would be a big push forward.

Offline Fabio

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Re: Trams
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2012, 09:04:56 PM »
Trams can have much higher capacity, and up to 24 cars in game. They are more like a light rail system. I usually put them in 2 parallel roads. Having another bus-like transport would just be repetitive. Use buses for small traffic routes. If it's not enough update to trolleys. If still not enough, try the hassle of building an efficient tram route. I don't see the need of 2-ways trams until we won't have 2-ways train tracks as well (quite unlikely, unfortunately). At that point, trams will follow.

Offline Ters

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Re: Trams
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2012, 09:08:55 PM »
I find the current trams very useful, in part because they have higher capacity than buses and in part because they unrealistically don't interact with road traffic. They can also interconnect with the railroad network, which makes it possible to reassign trams between cities, though that is a rare and eccentric thing for me to do. A road like waytype in Simutrans would not be able to interconnect with a railroad like waytype unless a central part of Simutrans is rewritten.

Almost all my bus lines are circular and don't travel back down the same road either.

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #5 on: October 20, 2012, 09:16:08 PM »
Well, trams do not require a whole road for one way track mainly, even if they interconnect with railroad. The fact that most countries have two ways track only proves it.
No doubts that trams are useful for their capacity. But they could be useful for their being easy-to-build-in-town. I understand that it requires to rewrite a lot of code, but there would be some temporarial solution, like making a "streetcar" rails for trams, which would be two sided.
Also its not very easy to build passing tracks in a big town...

Offline Vladki cz

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Re: Trams
« Reply #6 on: October 20, 2012, 09:26:47 PM »
I think that there will be use even for more bidirectional ways - not only trams, but also a funicular. Currently both can be "faked" as sort of trolleybuses, but it would be nice to have them as a separate mode of transport.

Old (one-way) tram, could be still used as a sort of suburban light rail system, with cheaper but slower tracks (and in experimental only for lighter trains) that can go sometimes in the middle of the road without getting stuck by cars. And with the possibility to connect to regular rail system. New (two way) tram would be possible to build on top of road, and trams will get stuck by cars, but its track could be built also on empty tiles, just as train tracks, and there the trams will be free of congestion. In my city, trams share the road with cars, and if it is narrow, the have to queue with them. Only on places where the road is wide enough, trams have their own lane and can overtake cars, but they almost always go in both directions over the same street. So this would give the player a choice - either trams stuck in city traffic, or bulldozing double-wide boulevards (either for two one-way tram tracks, or one road and one double tram track.), or using one-way trams which go one street up and other street down.

Funicular could be other interesting bidirectional type of way, with some similarities to power-lines or elevated schwebebahn - they cold cross other ways without blocking the traffic on them. And maybe with some extra specialities. We have quite a lot one-way types of transport - train, tram, narrowgauge, maglev, monorail (schwebebahn) but only one two-way transport - roads.

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2012, 09:29:01 PM »
Well, thats what I wanted to say but couldnt really put into words because of my lack of english knowledge. We have no choice between buses and trolleybuses mainly, we should improve this side of gameplay more.

Offline kierongreen

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Re: Trams
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2012, 09:31:23 PM »
The current 1 lane tram simulates a high end tram/light rail system. You can imagine that road vehicles do not delay trams because of prioritised traffic lights and right of way. It also simulates the occasions in real life when heavy rail ran along city streets (which used to be more common than it is now).

A two lane tram track would simulate a low end tram system - one with little off road running. As has been said, this would differ little from trolleybuses (and infact there are addons you can get which make trolleybuses look like trams, complete with rails).

In real life, having two tram tracks running for any distance along a two lane road severely limits capacity for both the tram system and road users. At least in Britain, when most cities had a tram network it generally ran along 4 lane roads, so I find it realistic that in Simutrans you need a 2 tile wide formation for double track trams.

Offline Ters

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Re: Trams
« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2012, 09:37:40 PM »
I understand that it requires to rewrite a lot of code, but there would be some temporarial solution, like making a "streetcar" rails for trams, which would be two sided.

A different type of tram is what I suggested. The catch, and it's not trivial, is that there will now be two types of trams: the current railroad-like, and the new road-like. And these will be completely distinct, both when it comes to vehicles and most infrastructure. Removing the old will ruin games that use it, but having them both will confuse new players.

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2012, 09:43:13 PM »
In real life there are many routes having such situations like here http://transphoto.ru/photo/397812/ or here http://transphoto.ru/photo/347146/ and nobody makes them having one way track on so narrow streets. Theres no denying trams are supposed to be fast LRT which should bring people from the town to their destination, but there are many streetcar-trams which I am talking about, and Simutrans doesnt really have them, offering to replace them on trolleybus like it has been done in USSR in 1960s: they simply removed tracks from big streets, moved them on little ones, so possible LRT became a streetcar like from these photos above, and big streets got trolleybus having problems with traffic jam now. There is no reason to keep trolleybus as main transport in a town just because "trams are supposed to be LRT"; trams are also working awesome as public transport in the old center of town, and as I said, we dont have a chance to reproduce it in game.

I can agree with last message of Ters about adding a "streetcar" and renaming "Tram" in "LRT".


Offline Vladki cz

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Re: Trams
« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2012, 10:34:59 PM »
Well the picture from prague is quite a bad example. That place is quite a rare example. It is a short section which is used in both directions. If you look carefully you will see that there a two rails next to each other, so there are no switches just two overlapping tracks.

Offline prissi

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Re: Trams
« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2012, 10:40:19 PM »
In Vienna there are many places. Also on wide roads these trams go on either side. That can be done by simutrans too.

Also Berlin has few places were single track trams exit(ed). Nowadays most tramsways are built on separate tracks in the middle of two lane roads. Again equivalent to simutrans trams. Street running taking the whole street has become very rare, as the trams are stuck with the other traffic.

Offline Sarlock

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Re: Trams
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2012, 10:50:38 PM »
I think the bottom line is that there is no provision in the game for double track and I doubt there ever will be.  It's a huge overhaul of the system to be able to do double tracking and it really doesn't have a huge payoff in terms of gameplay.  It might be a bit of eye candy but doesn't change the way the game can be played.  A single tram line down a road is sufficient if you make the line loop around and form a circle, square or other pattern and have your trams run in a single direction.  If you want to do a two-way tram line, you can run them down avenues:



Trams are intended to be a higher volume transit option above busses.  Basically an urban passenger train or surface subway system.

Offline ӔO

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Re: Trams
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2012, 11:18:15 PM »
I think an ideal solution would be to have smaller tiles, so that each piece of way type represents one lane.
However, that requires a significant rewrite to the code.

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2012, 11:23:37 PM »
Yes Prissi we have the same place here http://transphoto.ru/photo/384423/ and http://transphoto.ru/photo/351600/ which actually only proves that such places are mainly exclusions. The country has ~70 tram towns and only 5-6 of them have some one-way track parts which are not really long. I dont know about german and czech tram systems much, but I would say that having only one-way track is pretty outdated and makes tram having much smaller capacity that even streetcar has (thanks to passing tracks and waiting time on them). Again, I dont deny nowadays most tracks are built separately, but we are reproducing already existing towns, with existing infrastructure, and we are used to streetcar, having 45 routes here and only few of them are sort of separated. So I still insist that streetcar idea needs to be reconsidered.

@Sarlock, thats how I have to do it, but its not very possible in most of old towns. So, as the result, proper two ways tram track starts only between center and new neighborhoods, and center has one sided directions.

@Aeo, would be easier to make trams working as trolleybuses and to keep LRT as different kind of vehicle.

Offline isidoro

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Re: Trams
« Reply #17 on: October 21, 2012, 12:53:32 AM »
If we don't pay attention to real life, ST trams occupy a nice niche in the game.  They can connect to rail, they can go on road without being stopped by cars, but they can't go both ways on a tile at the same time.  If we have Super Trams capable of everything, they would be too powerful, imho.

In the last game I played, I used two-way trams in one tile roads.  How?  Simple.  Most of the line is one track.  From place to place, I used a building surrounded by streets and some signals to make the trams wait for their bidirectional track to be free...

Offline benjad

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Re: Trams
« Reply #18 on: October 21, 2012, 02:00:12 AM »
I am thinking about an easier solution... let me know if this works.

Since 'trolleybusses' require electrification, change the street electrification back image to lay a double track implant in the road.  The, make all the 'electrified busses' look like the trolley.  They would still be road vehicles, and still interact as such.

Can be done in an existing pakset, right?  The only issue is then you would not be able have an 'electrified bus' route.

Offline ӔO

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Re: Trams
« Reply #19 on: October 21, 2012, 02:04:33 AM »

Offline Sarlock

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Re: Trams
« Reply #20 on: October 21, 2012, 02:48:56 AM »
Funny, I was just logging in to discuss that possibility... convert road electrification to include a tram line on each side of the road and presto... you have your trolley busses.  It's a pakset component, not a programming one.  It appears that the Japanese ones have a front/back image issue... maybe it's impossible to resolve when mixing power/tram lines on one tile.  Either way, it's entirely do-able with existing programming.

Which pakset are you using, Foxglove?

[Edit] I tested those tram-in-road designs and it is using an elevated roadway system to make it work.  It works but they are tricky to figure out... you have to get your road vehicle up on the second level for it to line up properly with the roadway below.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 04:32:57 AM by Sarlock »

Offline Sarlock

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Re: Trams
« Reply #21 on: October 21, 2012, 06:21:20 AM »
If you're using a 128 pixel pak, I created this tonight... I used the Japanese site's tram track graphics and set them as actual tram tracks.  You lay them down like regular tram tracks except that they are double tracks instead of single.  Note that you can run a regular tram down this track and it will work fine but it will look funny because the tram will be running down the middle of the road.

Next, you put up road electrification.  Not the tram kind but the road kind for trolley busses.  NOTE this step, it's important.  Don't use tram electrification, it won't work.  (You can add it to the line as well but it won't make our trolley work)

Now you will notice that I've made an extra electric road vehicle.  I used the T-113 tram and converted it into a road vehicle (I had to change the alignment so that it lined up properly with the tram tracks).  This is a "regular" road vehicle so it will go on any electrified road, whether the tram tracks are there or not.

Put them together and voila, you have yourself a two track trolley/tram system that looks just like the real thing even though we've made it work through a couple of tricks in the game (running on a roadway even though it looks like it's running on the tram tracks).



Here is the .pak for this addon:

http://www.elvenorder.com/sar/images/simutrans/addons/images/road_tram_pak.pak

Just put it in to the appropriate pak128. folder and it should work fine.  I set the date for 1880 onward.

It looks cool enough that I might just put it in to some of my games.

Making a two car variant probably wouldn't be too hard, just a bit of work to get the alignment proper.

Since these are road vehicles, they will hold up road traffic as they stop at the stations.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2012, 06:38:01 AM by Sarlock »

Offline sdog

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Re: Trams
« Reply #22 on: October 21, 2012, 08:42:56 AM »
There was a suggestion a year or two ago, to modify city creation, to build an double tile road through the centres. It would make building of tram lines quite a bit easier and less costly early in the game.

Offline IgorEliezer br

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Re: Trams
« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2012, 09:05:01 AM »
There was a suggestion a year or two ago, to modify city creation, to build an double tile road through the centres.
It would be nice. Building a double-road is a thing I use to do a lot when I notice the town is growing in its earlier days.

Offline Vladki cz

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Re: Trams
« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2012, 09:39:36 AM »
Double tram track already exists, as a "trolleybus addon" in czech section:  http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?topic=8596.0
Just ignore the text and search for .pak files, there are several downloads with electrification (including the track) and a few vehicles. However they behave completely as trolleybuses, they can "escape" to roads with trolleybus electrifiacion (without track) and vice versa, trolleybuses can use this tram tracks.

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2012, 01:51:17 PM »
Sarlock, thats awesome! Could you please publish dat and png files of T-113 you modified? I want to see how does dat file look in case of such vehicle. Also what alignment do you recommend to use for new streetcar vehicles?
Vladki, do I have to put those tracks one by one, or they are able to be put in same style as usual tram rails?

Offline greenling

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Re: Trams
« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2012, 02:30:13 PM »
Now have we Three People they work on those Projekt on out Japan, on out CZ and on out germany! :o

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2012, 02:38:58 PM »
Ok I found out what alignment means.

Code: [Select]
emptyimage[w]=T-3.1.0,-6,-6
emptyimage[nw]=T-3.1.1,3,3
emptyimage[n]=T-3.1.2,3,3
emptyimage[ne]=T-3.1.3,3,3
emptyimage[e]=T-3.1.4,6,6
emptyimage[se]=T-3.1.5,-3,-3
emptyimage[s]=T-3.1.6,-3,-3
emptyimage[sw]=T-3.1.7,-3,-3

This is making Tatra T3 appearing properly, on two sides of rails.

Also it should be waytype=road in dat file.
Nvm about my previous question, Sarlock, but I still ask you to post T-113 model though, I haven't got it yet.

Offline Vladki cz

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Re: Trams
« Reply #28 on: October 21, 2012, 02:58:30 PM »
Vladki, do I have to put those tracks one by one, or they are able to be put in same style as usual tram rails?

Build them in the same way as trolleybus electrification. First build a road and then electrify (put rails) on it. Just click on the beginning and end of the track and let simutrans do the magic. ;)

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #29 on: October 21, 2012, 03:04:35 PM »
Another question. A tram who has waytype=road cannot be having a second section? I mean, a train out of two Tatras T3 is not able to be made in my bus depot now.

Offline Vladki cz

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Re: Trams
« Reply #30 on: October 21, 2012, 03:08:17 PM »
I can make train of 4 Tatra-T3 trams. Did you download the modified T3 from the czech forum?

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #31 on: October 21, 2012, 03:18:31 PM »
Yea. I meant, if I use them as "streetcars" in bus depot, they didnt want to be attached to each other. But I probably fixed the problem, so nevermind again.
To dear developers, why not to make this streetcar working not just as mod, but more like as official vehicle in game.

Offline greenling

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Re: Trams
« Reply #32 on: October 21, 2012, 04:01:33 PM »
That it a hard qustion.
Edit: for those system over that be talk gives some more addons:
http://www.simutrans-forum.de/forum/thread.php?threadid=3344

Offline Ters

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Re: Trams
« Reply #33 on: October 21, 2012, 04:46:26 PM »
To dear developers, why not to make this streetcar working not just as mod, but more like as official vehicle in game.

What's an official vehicle? Simutrans itself doesn't come with any vehicles at all. You need to address the maintainer of the pak set you're using, or want to use. (But most people here seem to use add-ons like crazy.) Or are you talking about a waytype?

Offline Sarlock

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Re: Trams
« Reply #34 on: October 21, 2012, 04:49:25 PM »
Yes, it's a pakset thing... but honestly, I don't think anything that isn't entirely intuitive... these streetcar trams work but you have to assemble them in the right way or they don't behave correctly.  Probably best kept as an addon than added to the official paksets.

Here is the .dat and .png for the T-113 that I modified for road use:

http://www.elvenorder.com/sar/images/simutrans/addons/images/mhz_roadtram_1880.dat

http://www.elvenorder.com/sar/images/simutrans/addons/images/mhz_roadtram_1880.png

Note: I edited the .PNG file for alignment and not in the .DAT file.  I just set up a loop in the game with the tram going in each direction, saw how far off the tracks it was and made a quick realignment with the image in the .PNG file.

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #35 on: October 21, 2012, 07:19:33 PM »
@ Ters, pak128 vehicles + support for them in main game core, I guess
@ Sarlock, I only edited dat file coords to -6 and 6 to set alignment. Also waytype, sure. What you have done is just great, actually, I gonna flood my town with trams.

Offline Ters

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Re: Trams
« Reply #36 on: October 22, 2012, 04:36:15 AM »
Can you elaborate on what you mean by "support for them in main game core"? I got the impression that they worked?

Offline Foxglove

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Re: Trams
« Reply #37 on: October 22, 2012, 10:00:26 AM »
They work from trolleybus depot as trolleybuses, with "waytype=road". We also cant put rails of streetcar by offroad. They probably should work from trams depot, to use special rails and to be able to go by offroad?

Offline Ters

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Re: Trams
« Reply #38 on: October 22, 2012, 02:58:56 PM »
Well, they wouldn't work from a tram depot either, because it is for the single tracked tramway. You would need a whole new depot type to go along with the new waytype. It's up to each translation of each pak set what it wants to call these two waytypes, but the current one (unfortunately or not) has a good claim to the name "tram" since that is what all existing games use it for.