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Potential feature discusion: economic integration

Started by jamespetts, January 03, 2016, 12:39:17 PM

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Ves

Although interesting idea, will that not conflict with the concept of different players? Although some companies own their own rolling stock, which actually often includes rail and rail vehicles, many companies don't and "who" are they hiring to transport things if not one of the players (which represent all the state and private transport companies in the entire world)?

Junna

Quote from: jamespetts on January 12, 2016, 09:25:53 AM
Junna: that is an interesting idea: something similar to private cars, but for freight? Private lorries, perhaps...?

Indeed. Private lorries and/or independent shipping via navigable canals, etc (the transport system in RT3 was oriented around water bodies as natural 'highways' in the absence of game railways, for example).

Quote from: Ves on January 12, 2016, 12:07:46 PM
Although interesting idea, will that not conflict with the concept of different players? Although some companies own their own rolling stock, which actually often includes rail and rail vehicles, many companies don't and "who" are they hiring to transport things if not one of the players (which represent all the state and private transport companies in the entire world)?

But it would be largely similar to how passengers work at the moment. More convenient connections, etc. It would also make much easier connections between players for the conveyance of goods -- as currently, this is very troublesome without very close coördination and exchange between players and intentional effort to make an interconnected network.

Naturally, there would be benefits to better connections (increased production, improved demands, etc) so it would not be entirely independent, but it would guarantee a sort of base level of economic activity even in the absence of player-operated goods activity. The amount of transport this system should be able to support should be limited (i.e., the capacity would be throttled in the absence of player input). But goods ought also be willing to travel some distance to a nearby station (i.e. coal could, if there is a road (perhaps, depending on how it would be implemented in terms of what is easiest and least cumbrous in terms of processing requirement), travel to a nearby station where goods platforms are present and take trips from there, rather than requiring a private siding. I think that it would be good to, for high-production and high-requirement industry to give some production bonus if the distance to the station is very short (and/or is a exclusive private siding for the industry), but for many small industries this is seldom very feasible without being extremely complex and prohibitively intricate. This system would for example allow the concentration of goods deliveries to cities to general merchandise stations, etc; rather than having individual stops for every industry there-- though I do think that, again, some positive results should be granted to the player when they so chose to serve (perhaps, the money paid for a partial trip would be less than, if say, the player provided lorries for the distribution within the city, i.e. the final- and initial trips when not provided by the player directly would be discounted from the revenue, as if they were handled by an independent horse carriage/road haulage/river contractor in an unspecified manner.)

jamespetts

This could get quite complicated and rather tricky (and more so than passengers with private cars). How would it be determined whether any given industry had access to private goods vehicles, their capacity, their speed and how many of them that there are? This is relatively straightforward with private cars: passengers are generated individually and are randomised as to whether they have access to private cars based on the proportion of people with access to them at that time (based, in turn, on government statistics). This would not really work in the same way for industry: one could not say that a particular industry sometimes did and sometimes did not have access to private lorries.

Further, if one were to involve waterways, that would require a whole new path finding mechanism for waterways with consequent impact upon computational load; one would then have to decide whether trips over sea would be able to be made, or whether privately owned boats (did these even exist?) would be restricted to inland waterways.

There is also the problem of why any industry with access to private lorries would ever use player transport unless there were no road connexion; the mechanism for determining which route to use is based on speed; there is no historical reason why privately owned lorries should be any slower than the player owned equivalent; given the transfer and waiting time inherent in player transport by road (the equivalent of which does not exist for passenger transport by car), the only way in which player transport would be likely to succeed is if, for example, it involved a railway journey faster than an available road route. One might then wonder why private owner lorries could not take the goods to a railway station, which would involve another level of simulation (and attendant large amount of coding work), although something like this is planned - eventually - for private cars.

As to delivering goods to general merchandise stations in cities, this can in principle be done already, so long as players then organise light goods vehicles to take them from there to their ultimate destinations.
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Iluvalar

It's rather quite simple in my eyes. No serious company would build such factory without verifying for a transport solution. So if they open and there is no players willing to do the transport they must have a private solution. But maybe that's just me ?

HarrierST

Quote from: Iluvalar on January 13, 2016, 10:01:23 PM
It's rather quite simple in my eyes. No serious company would build such factory without verifying for a transport solution.

I think your problem is, you can not separate reality - from game play.   ???

No matter how much a developer tries  to make it realistic - there are compromises.

Yes -  to quote you "no serious company would build such factory without verifying for a transport solution."

But this is a game - and to live with the constraints of various computers (still in use)  - concessions have to be made. So that the game can be played by all,  at all stages and  at a reasonable speed etc.

So sometimes to much realism has to take a backseat.  JMO.

Isaac Eiland-Hall

Quote from: Iluvalar on January 13, 2016, 10:01:23 PM
It's rather quite simple in my eyes. No serious company would build such factory without verifying for a transport solution. So if they open and there is no players willing to do the transport they must have a private solution. But maybe that's just me ?

To add on to HarrierST's reply: Anything that doesn't happen in Simutrans is assumed to have happened outside of the scope of the player(s) and/or public service. After all, no citizens purchase groceries. No vehicles have to stop for fuel or breakdowns. No accidents ever happen. No laws or politics.

It's a game that tries to have some sort of basis in reality, but the simple reality is that no game will ever be a true simulation, and while Simutrans strives for some realistic elements, ultimately there are some basic constraints that limit the closeness to reality (scale is one major problem: the size of buildings/vehicles vs. the 1km/tile most paks use to simulate distance for financial purposes)

Iluvalar

Quote from: Isaac.Eiland-Hall on January 14, 2016, 04:58:38 AM
To add on to HarrierST's reply: Anything that doesn't happen in Simutrans is assumed to have happened outside of the scope of the player(s) and/or public service. After all, no citizens purchase groceries. No vehicles have to stop for fuel or breakdowns. No accidents ever happen. No laws or politics.

It's a game that tries to have some sort of basis in reality, but the simple reality is that no game will ever be a true simulation, and while Simutrans strives for some realistic elements, ultimately there are some basic constraints that limit the closeness to reality (scale is one major problem: the size of buildings/vehicles vs. the 1km/tile most paks use to simulate distance for financial purposes)
This post make me smile :) . First because I suggested a way to calculate all the traffic for citizens doing their groceries in the posts you censored. Maybe it struck your imagination ? :)

And mostly, because I had that huge chat two months ago with jamespetts about how he would have to compromise between reality and gameplay at some point. I'm the one told that we can reach full realism while jamespetts is talking about using government statistics ^^.

Isaac Eiland-Hall

The moderation had nothing to do with any Simutrans topic. If you'd like to discuss in further detail, please open a topic http://forum.simutrans.com/index.php?board=88.0 or PM me and I'll gladly discuss what happened. It sounds like I didn't explain it well enough.

Ves

Another "economic" topic:
Selling the buildings.
Currently, if you have built a station or similar, only way to get rid of it is to tear it down. That means that the invested money in the building gets wasted. What if it where to be possible to sell the building instead and get some of the invested money back to your account? Alternative also "abandon" of the estate (like the mothballed way)

Thoughts on top of my head:
When insolvent, instead of using money to get rid of infrastructure, you can actually earn money from the estate sale including money from the land value.
There are many examples of real life station houses and similar that are today privately owned buildings.
When old buildings get obsolete, you can sell them instead of tearing it down.

What will the sold infrastructure become? Residence? Com? Should each sellable building have a twin citybuilding?
A decision should be made as to what can be sold like a small bus stop should not be possible, but the "staggered in" in pak Britain could be suitable. Platforms are also not suitable but the station house and possibly also some storage buildings probably are etc.
What if you want to buy it back?

This also could lead to the question of selling infrastructure to other players but I don't remember if this had been discussed?

Junna

well, buying and selling of company assets was on the list as I remember (including taking over companies and merging them should players wish), but this seems to have been given an unwarranted low priority.

Ves

Oh, you are right, I forgot that! However the possibility to sell buildings to private (ie becoming city buildings) was my initial thought which I don't remember was part of that plan.

jamespetts

Thank you for all your feedback. There are a number of separate ideas here, which I will address in turn. Many of these issues are more complex than they appear at first.

Quote from: IluvalarIt's rather quite simple in my eyes. No serious company would build such factory without verifying for a transport solution. So if they open and there is no players willing to do the transport they must have a private solution. But maybe that's just me?

Having every industry have access to private lorries would certainly make one step of the process easier, but it produces its own problems. Firstly, the rationale of the original suggestion is not fulfilled if the industry in question does not in fact have road (or, if applicable, depending on the implementation, water) access to its destination industries. There has been some suggestion of a mechanism to ensure that all out of town industries be built along roads, but this would probably take a considerable amount of time and effort to implement (and therefore not be able to be done for a very long time, as in probably quite a number of years), and in any event, this would not ensure that the road, river or canal network in question would in fact be connected to the destination. Secondly, on the realistic assumption that industries that have access to road transport have access to the same vehicles as players, there would be no way in which industries would ever choose player road transport above their own. This is realistic for industries that do in fact have their own fleet of road vehicles, but would render redundant road goods transport in the game except as a single leg of a multi-leg journey (e.g. to a dock or railway station), and would eliminate even this if a mechanism were introduced to allow partial journeys by private road goods transport as is already planned in connexion with the prospective car park feature for private road passenger transport. Because private road goods transport independent from industries (e.g. Eddie Stobart) does exist in reality and is significant, this would thus not be a realistic solution.

The idea that every industry should ensure that it has a means to transport its goods (and receive its raw materials) before being built is realistic enough, but extraordinarily difficult to implement in practice, as there is no way for the game to be able to negotiate with a player, or infer a player's future intent, at least without mechanisms that are way beyond the scope of what can be done given current coding resources (i.e. me on my own with sporadic assistance from others occasionally). The next best solution is for industries to exist but be effectively dormant unless and until they are connected by some sort of transport to their end-point, as more or less happens now and as will be even more so apropos passenger transport if and when the features discussed in the opening post are implemented. This is economically more or less equivalent to industries not existing without first knowing that they can be connected to other industries in the chain.

Quote from: VesAnother "economic" topic:
Selling the buildings.
Currently, if you have built a station or similar, only way to get rid of it is to tear it down. That means that the invested money in the building gets wasted. What if it where to be possible to sell the building instead and get some of the invested money back to your account? Alternative also "abandon" of the estate (like the mothballed way)

Thoughts on top of my head:
When insolvent, instead of using money to get rid of infrastructure, you can actually earn money from the estate sale including money from the land value.
There are many examples of real life station houses and similar that are today privately owned buildings.
When old buildings get obsolete, you can sell them instead of tearing it down.

What will the sold infrastructure become? Residence? Com? Should each sellable building have a twin citybuilding?
A decision should be made as to what can be sold like a small bus stop should not be possible, but the "staggered in" in pak Britain could be suitable. Platforms are also not suitable but the station house and possibly also some storage buildings probably are etc.
What if you want to buy it back?

This also could lead to the question of selling infrastructure to other players but I don't remember if this had been discussed?

I am planning on simulating land value as part of the town growth feature, as this will be important. It will be very difficult to code for allowing station buildings etc. to change use rather than be demolished and have the land re-used, but what would work quite well (and already does work, in fact, but with only an extremely crude way of determining the land value, which I hope to change) is allowing players to demolish their station buildings and realise the value of the underlying land. With a sophisticated mechanism for determining land value, this should allow players to invest in land.

I am also considering a feature allowing players to build commercial and residential buildings in towns and to earn a market rent from commercial and residential buildings that are owned (buying town buildings is possible already, even in Standard), which will fluctuate with their level of occupation (which I am also planning to simulate in the town growth feature), and incur maintenance charges so that there might be a loss made on such buildings if they are unoccupied or under-occupied. This would allow for the simulation of the practices of, e.g., the Metropolitan Railway, which built railway lines to empty spaces near London and built houses near their own stations, selling them for a profit in view of the increased value of the land that their own railway line had generated, and generating themselves a source of traffic by doing so at the same time.

Quote from: Junnawell, buying and selling of company assets was on the list as I remember (including taking over companies and merging them should players wish), but this seems to have been given an unwarranted low priority.

Buying and selling individual company assets is likely to be difficult to implement for things like ways and stops. I do plan to add the buying and selling of secondhand vehicles as part of the next major release, however.

Merging of companies has not been given a low priority, as such: it is a potentially important feature. However, there are even higher priority things that are essential to basic balance in a way that this is not, such as the proper treatment of vehicles and convoys (including simulating wear, maintenance, overhauls, the secondhand market in vehicles, automatic convoy recombination in operation and related matters) which will be the next major feature after signalling to be worked on. This is likely to be a very major set of features indeed, and require a very large amount of intensive work, but, for reasons discussed at length elsewhere, it is essential for balance.
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Ves

QuoteI am planning on simulating land value as part of the town growth feature, as this will be important. It will be very difficult to code for allowing station buildings etc. to change use rather than be demolished and have the land re-used, but what would work quite well (and already does work, in fact, but with only an extremely crude way of determining the land value, which I hope to change) is allowing players to demolish their station buildings and realise the value of the underlying land. With a sophisticated mechanism for determining land value, this should allow players to invest in land.
Ok but will there be any possibility to cash back some of the investment you made in the building itself, not just the land value as I can read from your text? Would it not be possible to have a tool that demolites the building and in the same turn build its "twin"?

QuoteI am also considering a feature allowing players to build commercial and residential buildings in towns and to earn a market rent from commercial and residential buildings that are owned (buying town buildings is possible already, even in Standard), which will fluctuate with their level of occupation (which I am also planning to simulate in the town growth feature), and incur maintenance charges so that there might be a loss made on such buildings if they are unoccupied or under-occupied. This would allow for the simulation of the practices of, e.g., the Metropolitan Railway, which built railway lines to empty spaces near London and built houses near their own stations, selling them for a profit in view of the increased value of the land that their own railway line had generated, and generating themselves a source of traffic by doing so at the same time.
Wow this is very interresting! I was always imagine how cool it could be to just build a station on the country and suddenly a town pops up! What you are saying is that I can build a station and some of those houses, and then it will grow by it self (if "fed" properly by services)? Would this not partially solve the problem rized in this thread where someone only wanted to transport good and not passengers? If I want a coalmine somewhere far away to work, I just build a bunch of those houses and the mine will work!

jamespetts

Quote from: Ves on January 17, 2016, 12:22:08 AM
Ok but will there be any possibility to cash back some of the investment you made in the building itself, not just the land value as I can read from your text? Would it not be possible to have a tool that demolites the building and in the same turn build its "twin"?

I am not quite sure how this would work or what it would simulate. Can you elaborate?

Quote
Wow this is very interresting! I was always imagine how cool it could be to just build a station on the country and suddenly a town pops up! What you are saying is that I can build a station and some of those houses, and then it will grow by it self (if "fed" properly by services)? Would this not partially solve the problem rized in this thread where someone only wanted to transport good and not passengers? If I want a coalmine somewhere far away to work, I just build a bunch of those houses and the mine will work!

This is an interesting idea indeed. Certainly, what you described is one of the intended functions of the town growth system.
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Ves

#49
QuoteI am not quite sure how this would work or what it would simulate. Can you elaborate?
If I invest lots of money building a house, then when I dont need it anymore, I would try to sell it. That way, my investment in the building wont get lost as well as the building will continue to exist under another ownership. Currently in Simutrans, If I have a building I dont need, I have to tear it down, loosing all the money I invested building it. If I understand you correctly, I will in the next version only get the money back from the land it stood on which I bought, not the building it self.

edit:
With the tool I meant that the house would "upgrade" like the current upgrade function for vehicles do upgrade. Each sellable house would require a doubblet to which it can upgrade. When clicking with the tool on the house I want to sell, the tool demolishes the house, finds which house is its "upgrade" (which would require a dat-parameter in the sellable house like "sell_to=" and then the second building which is the sold house = a total of two buildings) and build the upgrade with the same rotation and location as the old. The pakset manager could then design the sold house with work slots or residences or even other graphics (eg commersials or laundry on the lawn) however its important to keep the size the same and the graphics relative similar in order to not create confusion or bad glitches.

jamespetts

Are you referring to players buying and selling city buildings, or are you referring to transport buildings such as station extension buildings, depots, signalboxes and so forth?
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Ves

Im refering to all player buildings. Like station extensions, stops, depots, signalboxes, Head quarters.
It could in principle work the other way around too: Buy a city building and you could choose it to become the Head quarter, or an old station house (which once in the past has been sold by a player) would be opened up to become a station house again.

Difficulties is however if "stops" and "depots" (which are built on ways) should be allowed to be sold. Maybe then the way underneath could also be sold to the new private owner?

jamespetts

The difficulty really is in repurposing buildings (currently, the function of a building is determined by its type, so this would involve a very major rewrite) and changing owners of buildings integrated with a way or stop. What would happen if a player sold a single station building part of a larger station? That would not make any sense.
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Iluvalar

Quote from: jamespetts
You also write about taxes on buildings and profit goals; neither of these things exist as features or are planned as part of the city growth or economic integration system. It is very unclear, therefore, how you see this relating to everything else in the game.

Quote from: jamespetts on January 16, 2016, 09:49:40 PM
I am also considering a feature allowing players to build commercial and residential buildings in towns and to earn a market rent from commercial and residential buildings that are owned (buying town buildings is possible already, even in Standard), which will fluctuate with their level of occupation (which I am also planning to simulate in the town growth feature), and incur maintenance charges so that there might be a loss made on such buildings if they are unoccupied or under-occupied. This would allow for the simulation of the practices of, e.g., the Metropolitan Railway, which built railway lines to empty spaces near London and built houses near their own stations, selling them for a profit in view of the increased value of the land that their own railway line had generated, and generating themselves a source of traffic by doing so at the same time.
allright allright... good idea boss.

Junna

Quote from: Ves on January 17, 2016, 01:28:45 AM
If I invest lots of money building a house, then when I dont need it anymore, I would try to sell it. That way, my investment in the building wont get lost as well as the building will continue to exist under another ownership. Currently in Simutrans, If I have a building I dont need, I have to tear it down, loosing all the money I invested building it. If I understand you correctly, I will in the next version only get the money back from the land it stood on which I bought, not the building it self.

edit:
With the tool I meant that the house would "upgrade" like the current upgrade function for vehicles do upgrade. Each sellable house would require a doubblet to which it can upgrade. When clicking with the tool on the house I want to sell, the tool demolishes the house, finds which house is its "upgrade" (which would require a dat-parameter in the sellable house like "sell_to=" and then the second building which is the sold house = a total of two buildings) and build the upgrade with the same rotation and location as the old. The pakset manager could then design the sold house with work slots or residences or even other graphics (eg commersials or laundry on the lawn) however its important to keep the size the same and the graphics relative similar in order to not create confusion or bad glitches.

Have you ever played A Ressha de Ikou ('A-Train') 8 or 9? It is relevant to these ideas (the game as a terribly simplistic passenger system, regrettably, on the other hand...)

Ves