4 Suggestions That Might Enhance Gameplay

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  • #20097
    PaTrond
    Participant

    Hi all!

    Some ideas have come to my mind when playing Train Fever and making content for the very title.

    1. Double passenger and goods capacity on all vehicles, while also doubling the maintenance cost and buy prices. At the same time, double the accepted travel time for passengers and cargo. Why do this? Firstly, it will give less vehicles to simulate and render. In my opinion, it will also make the cities look prettier with less vehicles, as it would look more realistic and less busy compared to an over crowded transport machinery, where trains are waiting in line to enter the station.

    2. Combined stations. This idea emerged while working on the Scandinavian DLC project on Train-Fever.net. The idea is that goods- and passenger stations are combined, as they have often been in Scandinavia, especially in Norway. Norwegian trains – even express trains – used to have end coaches with a luggage and express goods section. This was really useful for transporting goods back and forth to smaller towns, without having to send an expensive, dedicated goods train. It would also lessen the need for more space taking cargo hubs without having the need for a large cargo capacity.

    2.1 Combining passenger stations with tram and bus stations would also make public transport more effective. A problem I’ve encountered is that should be considered is also that a huge amount of traffic can clog up road intersections. This happens more often with longer vehicles, such as the Cobra. This also leads back to idea 1. Another way of solving this is having several entrances and exits from bus/ tram stations.

    3. Less cities, more towns and rural places. By this I mean that I would like a focus on the rural places, and what is a better example than Switzerland itself on this? Smaller stations meant for short trains, such as railbuses would give the player a good reason to buy railbuses. They’re fast, but as Train Fever is right now, buses and trams are much more effective. The reasons are probably that it’s hard to build effective stations for this purpose. The smallest stations are 160m long, and can only be accessed from one side, meaning that one station could quickly take as much space as there would be between two tram/ bus stops, while also taking space away from other buildings.

    3.1 Having an effective use of small passenger stations would potentially eliminate the use of a subway system, which some players request.

    3.2 Farms. How I would implement this is just as much of a visual thing as a gameplay thing: Farms grow with borders snapping to roads and railroad tracks, giving a realistic- and more organic look, as well as more to look at in the environment. It would therefore not looking like a squared, boring farm that was placed at a random location. It also helps on the appearance problem that occurs when the player destroys trees and the farmland decals: Nothing natural replaces it. In the end, the environment can look a bit naked.

    3.3 Giving rural areas farms would give the rural areas something to live on. Smaller cargo stations could transport goods to the bigger cargo stations, where the cargo is then transported from city to city. The same would happen with passenger, travelling from a small rural station to a bigger city station, from where they would then take a train to another city.

    4. Some factories plop up like regular buildings – when there’s a good access to some resource, a factory will plop up nearby, pasteurizing milk, making cheese, bread, steel rods, cars, locomotives, etc. This would be useful in rural areas, as well as allowing some cities to specialize more than others. It could possibly give the player another little puzzle on the cargo side to solve. Making cities demand several different goods would maintain the goods need in several cities, in case any of my ideas made cities flood with goods.

    Conclusion: The player needs more options on how to solve challenges. Right now, the game does it well, but it can be done better. Cities need to be more spread with smaller towns in between, where railbuses and very short trains would be more effective than regular trains, or even bus/ tram routes with very frequent departures. The player also needs mechanics that makes theses smaller places very useful. Could a system for more varied good demand be useful?

    I hope this will inspire Urban Games, give the player more options and more often have a good reason to buy what he/ she doesn’t buy that often today.

    #20106
    gcampono
    Participant

    I agree on point 2, especially the possibility to access railway stations from the two sides, integrate rail and bus station and build integrated passenger/cargo stations.

    I also agree on point 4. It would give a much more dynamic gameplay. At present once the tracks are laid out there is little to do than replace vehicles (or maybe optimize routes to better employ the added speed*)

     

    * I am not sure about this point, since I read that most destinations are set and do not dynamically change during the game (except when a location is destroyed) so that would not really alter profits (at least for passengers). Is that true ?

    #20307
    Tom
    Keymaster

    Hi PaTrond!

    Thank you for your suggestions. As always feedback is very welcome! I will take a note on everything and make sure to bring it up in the next discussion.

    Best Regards
    Tom

    #20560
    assko277
    Participant

    I strongly agree on point 4, adding more goods types for cities. Where a city would really start growing when all the goods types are being delivered. As it is now, you can just hit each city with one goods train and it is done. Having to deliver different kinds of goods for each city will challenge the player to build more complex traffic which in the end is the best fun in this game. Also could add more dynamics into the gameplay as the time moves forward, changing the demand of different kinds of goods across different eras would demand the player to change or remove existing routes and build new ones. For example increasing the demand of oil after the population starts using own cars, etc.

    Also the idea of prolonging the 20 minutes rule for cargo is very attractive as it would make more complicated cargo delivery models viable, like moving cargo from close factories together to one central hub and then delivering it with long trains across the map. It is possible now, but sometimes limited.

    #20567
    isidoro
    Participant

    In other games, small towns require basis resources to develop (water, food, etc.).  Bigger towns require more commodities in order to further develop (clothes, cars, etc.).  That makes the distribution problem interesting.

     

    #20605
    kingeek
    Participant

    I did point 1 myself, by downloading buses/trains from the mods and then editing these. I altered the capacity and made them accelerate faster, and changed the door animation speeds. On lines with a lot of stops, lowering the door opening/closing time can make quite a difference. All the costs can also be altered this way.

    #20776
    AsHalt
    Participant

    Also is it possible to have the normal carriages to have some cargo being transferred , as a commodity. as sometimes people going to the other town (B) would bring back some goods to the original town (A). 

    Maybe in terms of like maybe 1 or 2 per carriage , say a 10 people carriage.

    #21367
    SanditeChief
    Participant

    Going by your suggestions, this is almost identical to Railroad Tycoon 3. I also mentioned this in my Train Fever review on Steam.

    #21397
    electricmonk2k
    Participant

    I also think it’s a good idea for towns to accept more types of commodities than just ‘goods’. The most obvious would be to introduce an agricultural cargo-vector. Towns above the snow-line would require food to grow, whereas towns below the snowline would just accept food. Because of the way the cargo ‘walks’ if it’s close enough to it’s destination, this would work really well in Train Fever, because towns above the snow-line would be fed if they are close to a food-processing-plant which is close to a farm.

    Another good reason for making towns accept multiple types of commodities is that in the current system, it is too easy to oversaturate a town with goods, and beginner-players may be confused as to why their goods-lines are not working (because the destination town already has it’s full supply of goods).

    I also like the idea of dividing the map into rural and urban places. As it is, the map just contains ‘cities’ in a uniform distribution. As well as adding ‘towns’ and ‘villages’ to the map, it would e a good idea to make the distribution non-uniform, so for example, we could have one part of the map that resembles the German Ruhr-area, and another part that has a very rural characteristic to it.

    #21403
    HCone
    Participant

    Just have some suggestions regarding the placing of railway tracks. I would like to see the ability to cross tracks over each other in the game. E.G. a four track mainline, i think the end tracks should be able to be connected without having to create 2 or 3 cross over tracks. instead i think one cross over from one end track to the other end track across 1,2 or even 3 tracks.

    I think this ability would be very helpful for people who enjoy creating mainline railway networks and like to keep things neat.

     

     

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