AI management tool for feeder service

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tomtom
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AI management tool for feeder service

Post by tomtom »

Feeder service is very important when doing a passenger line between two or more big cities. This allows you to get more passengers and post, but transfer and station management might get annoying because it requires you to monitor line load and the number of passengers waiting at each station.

My idea is to make a tool that allows you to:
-Select stations (area?) you want to transfer from
-Select the station you want to transfer to
-Automatically generate most efficient routes (orders)
-Automatically assign/buy busses or other vehicles to service these routes

Going further it could also be handy to have an automatic bus station building option in a given area.
Eddi
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by Eddi »

so you want a "play this game for me" button?
You might not exactly be interested in Ferion, but if you are, have fun :)
tomtom
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by tomtom »

Eddi wrote: 22 Sep 2021 06:55 so you want a "play this game for me" button?
Yes, to some extent. That way you can focus on other things.
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odisseus
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by odisseus »

Joking aside, is there any AI capable of building feeder services or any kind of transfer routes?
Eddi
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by Eddi »

honestly, if building a feeder system is so annoying to you, you can just build a station with a giant catchment area (use ctrl+click to build a bunch of bus stops and join them to the main station). that way you get the same amount of cargo, but don't have to manage any vehicles.
You might not exactly be interested in Ferion, but if you are, have fun :)
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Taschi
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by Taschi »

Eddi wrote: 22 Sep 2021 14:04 honestly, if building a feeder system is so annoying to you, you can just build a station with a giant catchment area (use ctrl+click to build a bunch of bus stops and join them to the main station). that way you get the same amount of cargo, but don't have to manage any vehicles.
No, that doesn't have the same effect, as feeder services also help increasing the station rating, which as you know is important for passenger generation.
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Eddi
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by Eddi »

ok, correction: you possibly need one single vehicle
You might not exactly be interested in Ferion, but if you are, have fun :)
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Taschi
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by Taschi »

So, while I do think that this idea is probably very hard to implement in a way that is actually useful, I can see some merit to the idea.

Especially when playing on large maps and building complicated rail networks, feeder lines tend to become a bit of a chore. The way I play, I usually have three or four feeder bus/tram lines for every railway line. Those feeder lines are generally fairly cookie-cutter when set up but require constant maintenance when the town grows outside of its catchment area, and / or the line gets overcrowded.

There's a big difference between a game that plays itself and a game that allows the player to choose which areas they want to manage themselves while automating the rest. And the conflict of "automation vs player control" is already something where every game makes a trade-off. You could argue that OpenTTD already "plays itself" because vehicles just follow the player's orders without requiring them to manually set points and signals for them, and it doesn't even require the player to set speed limits in curves to prevent the trains from derailing because the train just magically knows it needs to slow down in curves. I don't even need to be here, I can go get myself a kebab while the game is running and it'll be fine!

This is not something where there's a correct and perfect answer exists and while I am absolutely not willing to code something this complex, I think that just assuming OP is making this proposal because they're too lazy to actually play the game is kind of disingenous.

And the catchment area cheat you propose is one of those things that just feels like, well, a cheat.
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mauried
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by mauried »

With JGRs patchpack you can sort of do this now , and while it takes a bit of time to make the original order once you have it going it works pretty well.
The basic idea is pick a number of stations in the capture area, lets call them A and B with E the big station you want to transfer the passengers too.
You then make a single order for all the vehicles which basically looks like this.

Start
If station A has passengers waiting
goto station A and full load
goto station E and transfer
goto start
if station b has passengers waiting
got station B and full load
got station E and transfer
goto start

Basically the busses then go to the first station in the list which has waiting passengers regardless of which station it is, and only one common order is needed for all the busses.
You can increase the number of stations to as many as you like.
All you then need to do is occasionally watch the ratings of the stations to make sure that your busses do make it to all of the stations, if not you just add more busses.
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odisseus
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Re: AI management tool for feeder service

Post by odisseus »

That's nice, but you still have to build those routes manually in every town, don't you? I believe that's not what the OP was asking about.
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