Starting off with a small disclaimer; I've searched the forums but couldn't find anything that completely resembles my idea, feel free to correct me!
I've tried the latest nightly, I've seen groups and timetable. Also gave Simutrans a shot to see some differences. What is common to both sims is that they don't allow you to handle lots of routes/groups/vehicles easily. I would suggest a whole new approach to handle traffic instead of adding features here and there to current game.
My (or someone elses if I missed it) idea will make "Routes" the primary way to handle your vehicles. There can be groups that contains several routes to make it easier to get an overview but what is important is to get rid of the micromanagement of individual vehicles.
This is the idea how the workflow should be for starting a new route (example in italic
):1. Find your desired routeA nice wood to papermill route2. Build necessary tracks, stations, depot & signalsTwo stations, one in each end, with a train depot. Double track a waypoint and some signals.3. Click on the route icon in the toolbar4. Route window opens which shows already assigned routes and group of routes5. Click "New route" and select a name for it (This can be adjusted later as well, you can just press enter if you want to)6. Assign orders to the route (instead of vehicle) as usually, the route editor will check according to the first point that this route willl only be able to use track/trainsGoto Wood (Full load)
Go non-stop via Wood DELIVERY
Goto Paper (Unload)
Service at Wood Depot7. Select home/start depot for the routeClick on the depot closest to get started collecting wood8. In the current route windows vehicle tab choose "New vehicle set"9. Construct the type of train that will use this route, there can be several different train setups in useOne good engine with 5 wood wagons10. Select number of sets of each train setupSelect 2 sets of the wood-train setup11. Click "Apply", a red window opens with the cost of the current changes, confirm or cancelEverything looks fine, money well spent. Clicking "Yes"12. Trains are bought, they start at the home depot and immediatley start carrying out the orders
Changing a route (example in italic
):1. Click on the route icon in the toolbar2. Route window opens which shows already assigned routes and group of routes3. Select the route you want to adjust and click "Edit route"4. Do necessary changesChange engine of the current train setup and add an extra wood wagon, also change to 3 sets of that train setup
Add another train setup with the old engine but only 2 wood wagons and select 1 set of it
Change the name of the route from "Route 1" to "Super WOOD route"5. Click "Apply", a red window opens with the cost of the current changes, confirm or cancelEverything looks good, the cost is what I expected, go for it...clicking yes6. Changes are carried out, new train setup starts at home depot and the others are changed when they pass the "Service" order
There should also be more fetures, for example:
Choice to spread all/each vehicle setup(s) evenly or by a minimum number of days (timetable)
Stop/start the entire route, delete the route
Group several routes together to get a better overview (For example: "Wood and Goods to City Group" containing one route for wood transport and one route for Goods transport)
Give specific priority to route
Ability to still go for a global route upgrade of specific vehicles
Choice to set individual vehicle in Auto or Manual mode to take control and solve possible problems that could be caused (don't know if this would be a necessary feature)
When clicking on a vehicle the usual "train window" opens with ability to expand the route window underneath
A big pro would be that it would be much easier to change setups and number of the trains instead of having to deal with each vehicle set. Be able to see stats for entire route, including profit and loadlevel. No more need to share orders.
Cons, can't really think of one at the moment.
Some feedback please!!