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Speedbonus speeds are no good pre-1900 (with patch)

Started by neroden, June 17, 2012, 02:59:06 PM

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The speedbonuses prior to 1900 make pretty much everything inferior to roads for a very long time.

10 mph lorries appear in 1530 (the stage wagons), the 15 mph mail coach appears in 1784,  and the 15 mph omnibus shows up in 1828, but the 'default' road speed is 5 in 1830 and 10 in 1900.

By contrast, the 'default' train speed is usually near the speed of the fastest available freight wagon.  This means that for anything time-sensitive, it is much more profitable to send it by 15 mph bus than by the fastest available train.

Also, the 'default' water speed is at the speed of the very fastest passenger boats -- which means that ships are rarely a viable alternative either.

The speedbonuses need to be changed, at least for the roads.  I'm not quite sure what to set them at.


OK, here's a proposed patch.  This also eliminates the "trams make infinite money" issue, while still making them highly profitable.
This is not extremely well tested, but it should make the standard game playable in the 19th century, anyway.  I also added speeds for narrowgauge and maglev just so they *have* speeds (I have no idea how the defaults are computed, but they seem undesirable).

OK to commit?

The Hood

Thanks for the feedback. There are a number of other balancing issues here, not least rebalancing due to the new calculation for speedbonuses. I'm tempted to leave it as is for now and then fix everything in a big hit. Ideally that would come after adding more boats, planes and narrow gauge vehicles, but that might not be for a long while yet. Either way I'm making notes on what is well balanced and what isn't during a game I'm playing at the minute - the first I've ever played with pak128.Britain (!). I'm up to 1892 so far and trains are very profitable (with some locomotives being the exception).


I think revenues in general need to go up in the 19th century. 

The main problem I found is that the current situation *massively* preferences stagecoach travel for time-sensitive goods circa 1850, which is exactly the reverse of reality.  This may have to do with the speedbonus curve.  I'm not sure there's a good way to fix it.

Maybe I'll just give up on pak128.britain standard and only play experimental.

EDIT: Try running goods trains (cooled goods especially) to see what I'm talking about.  In the 1830-1860 period.

Here's a proposal.  The "default speed" in the speedbonus file should generally be set so that, at any given time, the "best" reasonable method of transportation for time-sensitive goods (not passengers or mail) exceeds that speed, but not by too much.

At the moment, this is true for trains in 1855 (when the 70 mph wagons show up) but not in 1854 (when the fastest wagons are 40 mph, but the speedbonus wants a speed of 63).  This is not true of lorries, where the 10 mph horse trailers are available early, but the speedbonus does not reach a speed of 10 until *1900*, so in the 1850s, the 6 mph horse trailers are profitable, the 10 mph horse trailers are very profitable, and fast goods can't be transported profitably by rail.  Which is all wrong.

The reason for this suggestion is that passenger, mail, and live fish revenues and costs can, to some extent, be tweaked individually.  Profitability of fast goods, on the other hand, is tangled up very deeply with the profitability of slow goods (for which speedbonus does not matter much), so the speedbonus should be designed to make price-setting for fast goods as simple as possible.

EDIT 3: Note that a side-effect of the low speeds for roads and high speeds for rail is that it is just stupid to run passenger trains in 1850.  Running omnibuses gets you 52 cents per passenger; the fastest train gets 23 cents per passenger.

I consider this pretty nearly unplayable.

The Hood

Somehow I missed this last post this time last year - but now I'm looking into balancing as a major project I'm thinking this over again. It's such a complicated task getting all of the different strands to work coherently together I'm not sure where to start, but certainly from your findings the speedbonus curves have to change. For one thing the calculation method has changed since I last did it. More testing and tweaking required!