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[Feature request] Revised vehicle overcrowding mechanics

Started by passengerpigeon, September 04, 2019, 07:05:27 PM

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Dear jamespetts and other developers,
I recently had a thought about a potential way to make the mechanism of standing passengers in overcrowded vehicles more realistic - please correct me if I am getting any current game mechanics wrong. Currently, I believe that there isn't enough incentive for transport companies to provide adequate seating on long journeys, because standing passengers still pay a reduced rate, and the presence of a large number of standees doesn't make the journey any worse for the seated passengers. In real life, however, the seated passengers in an overcrowded vehicle may well have their personal space intruded upon and find it difficult to move around amongst all of the standing passengers, making the journey less pleasant. I therefore propose the following two changes:
•The base comfort level of an overcrowded carriage should be reduced based on a formula that takes into account the percentage of standing spaces filled (number of standing passengers / (overcrowded capacity - seating capacity)) as well as the length of the journey the convoy is making. Although passengers won't always travel the full length of a journey, this shouldn't be a problem as somebody wanting to get on an overcrowded train making a three-hour journey wouldn't mind the lack of comfort if they were only going to the next stop 10 minutes away, due to the scaling of comfort threshholds based on journey time.
•In order to prevent this, players should be given the option to disable standing passengers, simulating the concept of reservation-only journeys. This would ideally be done at the individual vehicle level with an option to reconfigure all vehicles on a line, similar to how passenger classes are done, allowing people to have trains with both reservation-only and walk-up carriages. Of course, pakset makers could just design vehicles without any overcrowded capacity, but there are many real-life examples of the same vehicles being used for both reservation-only and reservation-not-required duties at different times.
Please feel free to evaluate the plausibility of what I have just suggested.
Thank you,


Yeah switching the overcrowded capacity on/off would add to reality.
Also increasing the loading time for overcrowded vehicles might be a good incentive for players to provide enough capacity.
More complicated way would be if overcrowding would affect routing, i.e. - hey that company's trains are always overcrowded, let's try some other company/route.


Well, your post made me think about "what happens when a train gets (over) crowded".

First of all, I don't think we should even try to simmulate load dependend comfort and pricing, as realistic as possible, the current solution is fine imho.

As always, I don't know specifically about England and in this case I don't even know how it was handled in the past.

About comfort, for sure, the fewer people are in a train, the more comfort you will get up to ~50% load. Even if everyone gets a seat, it's still more comfortable when you have enough space for your luggage and there is nobody sitting next to you.

However, currently in Germany there is a so called "Flexpreis Ticket" whose price is always the same for the same route (it's always much too expensive compared to any other transportation), wich allows to use any train on a given route at a given day. Also, there is the "Sparpreis Ticket", which allows you to use exactly the trains listed on your ticket. That one is much cheaper but the price highly depends on how crowded trains on that roue are expected to be, how many tickets were already sold for that exact route and how much ime remains to the departure. This is to try some kind of load balancing.

When you want to take a highly crowded train, you will have to pay much more than for a low loaded train. For sure, people using such an overcrowded train won't be happy about it, so it's bad publicity. Additionally, in the real world not that many people would be willing to pay that much for a ticket.

For ingame balance, expensive tickets at highly crowded trains is absolutely counter productive (and counter intuitive).
Simmulating this in a realistic way would require some publicity system, so the worse the publicity of a company or a line is, the more will simutransians look for alternatives such as other lines of you or another company or even driving by car or walking.

Again, I don't think we should implement this, it is just my thought about this and I think decreasing the overall comfort level when a train gets overcrowded is absolutely logical and realistic from just the comfort vviewpoint, but is counter realistic in its effect on pricing.

Edit: increasing overcrowded loading time is a good idea to increase realism and give more incentive to prevent overcrowded cars.


Being able to switch off passengers overcrowding trains/vehicles would certainly be a nice feature, mainly because there are cases where the player cannot avoid overcrowding. Always happens when the transport mode is changed to one with lower convoy capacity. Example: ferry arrives at port with 1000 passengers, passengers board waiting trains. No matter how many trains are waiting, the first ones will be overcrowded to max. capacity. No way around that I believe.


The long term aim is to have partial comfort based routing, which would eliminate the price/fare impact of overcrowding.

The ability to disable overcrowding is possible and would not be too large a job (albeit it may still take a very long time indeed before I have time to prioritise such a feature; but others may well wish to work on this), but careful thought would need to be given to how this would be communicated to the player. Probably the best mechanism would be for allowing/disallowing overcrowding to be a per schedule option. This could then simply be checked before any attempt is made to load the vehicle past is non-overcrowded capacity.

As to the actual comfort rating, the way in which it actually works is very similar to what has been suggested: the overall comfort of the convoy is reduced based on an averaging of non-overcrowded and overcrowded passenger comfort, where overcrowded passengers are deemed to have a comfort level of 10. So, for example, if there are 100 people in a vehicle, 90 of whom are the non-overcrowded capacity and 10 are overcrowded, and if the vehicle's base comfort level is 10, then the adjusted comfort level would be (90 * 100) + (10 * 10) / 100 = 91.
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