Custom depot cost

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McZapkie
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Custom depot cost

Post by McZapkie »

I'm playing with basecost newgrf which allow to custom prices, unfortunately all depots costs the same (not counting negligible costs of track).
With track types it makes some kind of unbalance, cheap but slow tracktypes, depots of like narrow gauges or light rails are as expensive as regular ones, thus there is no interest in building those as subsidiary local transport solutions.

Interestingly, one can set purchase costs and running costs of vehicles within range of particular newgrf,
but depots are defined globally. Is it possible to fix such issue?
Projects: Reproducible Map Generation patch, NewGRFs: Manpower industries, PolTrams, Polroad, 600mm narrow gauge, wired, ECS industry extension, V4 CEE train set.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by Eddi »

the short answer is "no".

and the long answer is:
why would you want that? a building is a building. it doesn't make much sense that it costs different amounts for different track types. you can easily balance the different track types by the running costs of the vehicles and other properties.
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odisseus
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by odisseus »

There are servers that allow just one depot per company. This forces players to build contiguous rail networks, but autoreplacing trains becomes a pain.

If instead the depot could be made very expensive to build, these servers would be able to implement a more flexible version of that rule.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by McZapkie »

Eddi wrote: 14 May 2021 05:31 ...
why would you want that? a building is a building. it doesn't make much sense that it costs different amounts for different track types
Depot is not just a repair workshop, it is literally the vehicle factory. So it is justified to have narrow gauge steam locomotive workshop/factory cheaper than electric locomotives, or maglev ones. Not speaking about TELE or WIRE 'vehicles'.
And I'm speaking about depot costs around 200-500k GPB (with initial loan of 5M GPB), not a vanilla ones.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by Taschi »

McZapkie wrote: 14 May 2021 11:12 Depot is not just a repair workshop, it is literally the vehicle factory.
No it isn't. Neither literally nor figuratively.
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odisseus
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by odisseus »

Depots can indeed be called "factories of vehicles", in the sense that vehicles such as trains can enter and leave the game through a depot. Presumably, the engine and cars are somehow delivered to the depot from someplace else, but these details are entirely omitted from the game.

This gives rise to cheating practices, such as selling a train immediately after it has unloaded to save time on the return trip. This trick is even more powerful with high-capacity ships, since they are slow and expensive.
Last edited by odisseus on 15 May 2021 01:14, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by McZapkie »

Taschi wrote: 14 May 2021 11:29 No it isn't. Neither literally nor figuratively.
Real depot doesn't. Openttd depot is the only place where you can create engine.
So it is engine factory, literally.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by Taschi »

McZapkie wrote: 14 May 2021 17:06 Real depot doesn't. Openttd depot is the only place where you can create engine.
So it is engine factory, literally.
You do not "create engine" in the depot. You buy them.

Which implies that they come from somewhere else.

The keyword here is "abstraction". OpenTTD is not a precise simulation of the real world. If you do not see something on the map, that does not mean it does not exist. This applies to cars, power lines, signal boxes, and, well, to locomotive factories.
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odisseus
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by odisseus »

Yes, but in this case the abstraction can be abused. Some people already have recognised this as a problem, though the majority clearly doesn't care.

On an unrelated note, it totally does make sense to scale the cost of building a depot along with track laying costs. Cheaper tracks usually permit only smaller and lighter vehicles, and these in turn permit smaller cranes, turntables, inspection pits etc.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by Taschi »

odisseus wrote: 14 May 2021 20:14 Yes, but in this case the abstraction can be abused.
Most game mechanics can be abused. That doesn't mean the game would be better without those mechanics.
On an unrelated note, it totally does make sense to scale the cost of building a depot along with track laying costs. Cheaper tracks usually permit only smaller and lighter vehicles, and these in turn permit smaller cranes, turntables, inspection pits etc.
Yes, that does make sense but also, given how cheap depots are, who cares? If narrow gauge isn't already advantageous through cheaper vehicles and cheaper tracks, I'm not going to go for it just because the depots are cheaper. And if it *is* advantageous through cheaper vehicles and cheaper tracks, I'm not going to care about depots because they are negigibly cheap even on the starting loan (when, to be brutally honest, you need exactly one of them), and their cost only becomes less relevant later in the game.

Making the depot costs relative to the track type costs wouldn't even be noticeable to most players, and even for those players who do have in-depth knowledge of how they are priced, I doubt they'd change their playing style by one iota if depot costs were customizable through NewGRFs.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by McZapkie »

Taschi wrote: 14 May 2021 17:34 You do not "create engine" in the depot. You buy them.
Well, lets agree that player pay for creation of engine. Since there is no factories given explicite, depot is also a factory itself, withing given level of abstaction.

And if you ask who cares about depot prices: most players on my server ask about it.
Regardless of how cheap vehicles are, if interest rate for local line depot are higher than these vehicles income, you would not make local line at all.
Projects: Reproducible Map Generation patch, NewGRFs: Manpower industries, PolTrams, Polroad, 600mm narrow gauge, wired, ECS industry extension, V4 CEE train set.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by Taschi »

McZapkie wrote: 15 May 2021 16:51 Well, lets agree that player pay for creation of engine. Since there is no factories given explicite, depot is also a factory itself, withing given level of abstaction.
No - I do not agree with that at all.
Regardless of how cheap vehicles are, if interest rate for local line depot are higher than these vehicles income, you would not make local line at all.
If the price of depots is that relevant to you (and I have never experienced a scenario where it is), maybe don't give one to every line and rather have them at intersections where multiple lines can share them.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by McZapkie »

Taschi wrote: 15 May 2021 18:21 If the price of depots is that relevant to you (and I have never experienced a scenario where it is), maybe don't give one to every line and rather have them at intersections where multiple lines can share them.
Oh thank you for such brilliant idea! Optimal placement of expensive depots and continuous network instead of placing separate lines where and there?
Guess why I invented idea with expensive depots? And why I opted for patch allowing debt not limited to 500kGPB, which is already implemented?
Even if you didn't experienced such game style before, it is not a valid reason to negate it firmly.
Projects: Reproducible Map Generation patch, NewGRFs: Manpower industries, PolTrams, Polroad, 600mm narrow gauge, wired, ECS industry extension, V4 CEE train set.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by Eddi »

i still don't understand the logic behind this. even if you think that there should be a representation of a vehicle factory on the map. why does that mean that EVERY depot should be a vehicle factory?

that makes no sense to me. there's hundreds of tram networks in the world, each one has at least one depot. but the number of tram factories in the world you can count on one hand.

also, lots of countries have train networks without any train factory, the trains being shipped from overseas.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by jfs »

The "vehicle factory" thing is just a possible explanation, I don't think there's any point in getting hung on up that word.

I can see there might be some interesting gameplay challenge in having a system where building depots is heavily restricted, for whatever reason you can come up with, or just no reason at all.
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odisseus
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by odisseus »

Eddi wrote: 17 May 2021 08:06 i still don't understand the logic behind this. even if you think that there should be a representation of a vehicle factory on the map. why does that mean that EVERY depot should be a vehicle factory?
Perhaps it shouldn't, but this is the way depots work in OpenTTD.

In real life, if you order a tram or train from overseas, you must arrange for its delivery to the point where you need it. In OpenTTD, you can erect a train shed in the middle of nowhere, and materialize any number of trains out of thin air.

Maybe the game should have two different types of structure: maintenance depot that is cheap and can be built anywhere, and vehicle delivery point that should be expensive and perhaps should be built only near the map edge.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by LaChupacabra »

What depots are may depend on the scenario and game settings, and of course the imagination of the author and the players. ;)

I think a differentiation in construction costs will be very necessary if the big depot feature are added. Then the lack of differences in costs will be much more noticeable.
Eddi wrote: 14 May 2021 05:31 why would you want that?
Different track construction and maintenance costs is not the same as different depot costs. Pay attention to reality. Have you seen that there are several workshops at each train station? Sometimes this style of construction is required by the game and a lot of train traffic, but that's not natural. By increasing the costs of construction and maintenance (currently they are always almost zero), you can limit this style of building, making the gameplay closer to reality. The problem is that nowadays, increasing the cost of building the depots of each type of track will cost practically the same, regardless of the construction period and performance of the available trains. It is known that trains in the 19th century earn much less than today's more capacious and faster trains. The differences in the generated profits are very large and therefore the differences in the costs of building depots should also be more noticeable.

Meanwhile, even the planned depot from the Useless Track set, where you won't buy any vehicles, costs the same as the one from the maglev.
Depot cost.png
Depot cost.png (24.32 KiB) Viewed 322 times
I think it would be good to add the possibility of specifying the construction costs for each type of track separately.
Or maybe they should just cost a multiple of the cost of building a track (e.g. x20) instead of £450 + the cost of 1 track?

A separate, but also related issue is the cost of maintaining depots...
[+] Spoiler
Depot maintain cost.png
Depot maintain cost.png (36.3 KiB) Viewed 322 times
They look very underestimated, because they cost the same as maintaining a single section of the track, which means they practically cost nothing. Meanwhile, even a regular intersection counts as 4 sections. Complete intersection as 36 parts of tracks! Considering the importance and function of depots, I believe that their maintenance should be more adequate in any case. It would be good if such a change was included in the game's base and also applied to the game without add-ons. This would require adding the appropriate setting... Perhaps when adding large workshops it would be worth considering this option?
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by McZapkie »

Eddi wrote: 17 May 2021 08:06 i still don't understand the logic behind this. even if you think that there should be a representation of a vehicle factory on the map. why does that mean that EVERY depot should be a vehicle factory?
that makes no sense to me. there's hundreds of tram networks in the world, each one has at least one depot. but the number of tram factories in the world you can count on one hand.
also, lots of countries have train networks without any train factory, the trains being shipped from overseas.
You are talking about real world, where vehicles are shipped from factory to depot (well, sometimes they may be also reconstructed in workshop).
I'm talking about openttd realm, where any depot can create vehicle 'from the thin air', so it is factory itself while there is no real vehicle factories.

Beside this, as was also mentioned here, depots are overpowered strucutures: small single tile capable to store unlimited number of vehicles with maxial possible length.
It is another argument, why cost of narrow gauge depot, light rail depot, WIRE or TELE depot should be different than regular depot for lot of long trains.

Maybe some patch for multitile depots (with limitation of track number and track length for single tile piece) may solve such discrepancy, but currently, allowing to custom depot price would be easier task?
Projects: Reproducible Map Generation patch, NewGRFs: Manpower industries, PolTrams, Polroad, 600mm narrow gauge, wired, ECS industry extension, V4 CEE train set.
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Re: Custom depot cost

Post by odisseus »

Yes, any patch that introduces multi-tile depots should also address this issue.

However, I think that the cost of depots (both construction and maintenance) should be increased in the base game as well. It should be defined by the cost of the corresponding track and some multiplier (for example, 10x). This multiplier may be common for all track types, and the NewGRF interface should allow changing it.
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