Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track building?

OpenTTD is a fully open-sourced reimplementation of TTD, written in C++, boasting improved gameplay and many new features.

Moderator: OpenTTD Developers

Post Reply
ripperdoc
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 3
Joined: 03 Dec 2011 14:11

Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track building?

Post by ripperdoc »

Hi guys,

Have played all versions of TTD since beginning of time and lurked around these forums regularly, but haven't done much posting.

Anyway, I'm in one of those phases and trying to get into the game again. I realized there are two things that have been on my wish list for years. With so much patch development going on, I'm not sure if someone has already thought about it. I searched around but it's difficult to find the right terms for what I'm looking for. So here it goes: do we have patches for the following features (and if not, would you think it's useful?)

1) Sparse / expanded towns. I have drooled over many gorgeous, sculptured screen shots on these forums, but the main enemy to building nice and realistic I believe are the towns. They grow quickly, very densely and leave very little space for you to come in a little bit later in the game. I would want cities to grow less dense - to accept a few green tiles between buildings, to spread out a bit more and then densify as they grow. This will leave some empty areas for adding stations later, for beautification (parks, etc) as well as making the towns look a bit more realistic (especially on big maps). It seems like it shouldn't be a major change to do, but has it been done?

2) Point to point track building> with this I mean that when you build tracks, you could click on the start point and the end point, and the track is built (or at least suggested) on the shortest route between those two points. It would save a lot of clicking so one can focus on the beautification. Think of it as a "track dragging that can go around corners".

If they haven't been done already, I'd be happy to try and figure out how, but would appreciate any pointers in the right direction!

Alberth
OpenTTD Developer
OpenTTD Developer
Posts: 4753
Joined: 09 Sep 2007 05:03
Location: home

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by Alberth »

Hi and welcome,

1: There are newgrfs with eye-candy that you can use. Another option is to buy tiles. I don't believe you can do this automatically by the game, as 'looking good' is very hard to capture in program code.
If you want to have a crack at it, maybe you can write an AI for this purpose? (not sure it is possible)

2: This is exactly what the AIs do; they use a path finder to compute the place where tracks should be laid. I don't consider such a feature a real improvement though. There is a large chance the path finder has another idea about a 'good' route than you. The current implementation gives you much better control over that. I would expect that to be very important for good 'realism'.

User avatar
kamnet
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 6984
Joined: 28 Sep 2009 17:15
Location: Eastern KY
Contact:

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by kamnet »

ripperdoc wrote:1) Sparse / expanded towns. I have drooled over many gorgeous, sculptured screen shots on these forums, but the main enemy to building nice and realistic I believe are the towns. They grow quickly, very densely and leave very little space for you to come in a little bit later in the game. I would want cities to grow less dense - to accept a few green tiles between buildings, to spread out a bit more and then densify as they grow. This will leave some empty areas for adding stations later, for beautification (parks, etc) as well as making the towns look a bit more realistic (especially on big maps). It seems like it shouldn't be a major change to do, but has it been done?
The user PikkaBird released the TaI UK Houses NewGRF, which includes a feature to limit populations. It is an update to the previously-released Suburban Renewal Set. The user Ammler also has also released the Early Houses NewGRF which cuts town growth down in games before 1930.

What might be a better idea, though, is to go into Advanced Settings -> Economies -> Town and change "Town Growth Speed" to "Slow" or "None", and to change "Proportion of towns that will become cities" to "1 in 4" or higher.
ripperdoc wrote:2) Point to point track building> with this I mean that when you build tracks, you could click on the start point and the end point, and the track is built (or at least suggested) on the shortest route between those two points. It would save a lot of clicking so one can focus on the beautification. Think of it as a "track dragging that can go around corners".
The user adf88 recently released his Polyline Track Building Tool patch to address the relative primative building tools.

User avatar
planetmaker
OpenTTD Developer
OpenTTD Developer
Posts: 9358
Joined: 07 Nov 2007 22:44
Location: Sol d

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by planetmaker »

It's also feasible to disallow towns building roads. then they'll only grow whereever the player(s) provided roads for the town to grow on.

ripperdoc
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 3
Joined: 03 Dec 2011 14:11

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by ripperdoc »

Thanks guys for some quick answers!

Polyline definitely looks close to what I was looking for! Even cooler if the track could find it's own way between two arbitrary points (e.g. shortest distance). Of course, if the path finder is poor it won't be much use, but if it was good enough, then I could spend my time tweaking the tricky parts of the rail (junctions, etc) and less on the stretches and turns.

Regarding the town spread out: I'm not against town growth per se - I like my towns getting big. But they are too _compact_. Is it possible to change the algorithm for town road building so that it creates more gaps - more like connected neighbourhoods and less continuous rows of buildings. These gaps will give some "air" to the towns and also allow a bit more space for stations, railways etc - even if the town has been growing on it's own for 50 years.

As Alberth pointed out above can be accomplished with buying town tiles - but it's mighty tedious to start the game by buying tiles all over the place just to force the towns to spread out. I don't think the towns should figure out what looks good - they should just allow more green space between their buildings. Maybe a new option for town expansion, e.g. instead of 2 and 1 tile distance rules.

Eddi
Tycoon
Tycoon
Posts: 7424
Joined: 17 Jan 2007 00:14

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by Eddi »

well, it should be fairly trivial to tweak the town growth algorithm to force more space between roads, the current "better roads" one typically leaves 2-4 tiles inbetween parallel roads. if you yank the restrictions up a bit, you could probably get it to 3-6 tiles, and see how that improves your situation.
You might not exactly be interested in Ferion, but if you are, have fun :)

User avatar
kamnet
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 6984
Joined: 28 Sep 2009 17:15
Location: Eastern KY
Contact:

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by kamnet »

ripperdoc wrote:Regarding the town spread out: I'm not against town growth per se - I like my towns getting big. But they are too _compact_. Is it possible to change the algorithm for town road building so that it creates more gaps - more like connected neighbourhoods and less continuous rows of buildings. These gaps will give some "air" to the towns and also allow a bit more space for stations, railways etc - even if the town has been growing on it's own for 50 years. As Alberth pointed out above can be accomplished with buying town tiles - but it's mighty tedious to start the game by buying tiles all over the place just to force the towns to spread out. I don't think the towns should figure out what looks good - they should just allow more green space between their buildings. Maybe a new option for town expansion, e.g. instead of 2 and 1 tile distance rules.

Personally, what I like to do is use some of the NewGRF and NewObject park tiles to build some spacious parks to break up the monotony of the streets and buildings. It might be a little tedious, but then again I play using ChillCore's Patch Pack with daylength extended out considerably. Time passes slowly in my world, and gives me plenty of time to pay attention to my towns.

Eddi
Tycoon
Tycoon
Posts: 7424
Joined: 17 Jan 2007 00:14

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by Eddi »

example town built with the trivial patch below (expanded town a few times in scenario editor)
Attachments
screenshot#1.png
(331.86 KiB) Downloaded 1 time
town_space.diff
(569 Bytes) Downloaded 57 times
You might not exactly be interested in Ferion, but if you are, have fun :)

ripperdoc
Engineer
Engineer
Posts: 3
Joined: 03 Dec 2011 14:11

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by ripperdoc »

Eddi wrote:example town built with the trivial patch below (expanded town a few times in scenario editor)
Wow, perfect, exactly what I was looking for! What a fantastic community :)

Eddi
Tycoon
Tycoon
Posts: 7424
Joined: 17 Jan 2007 00:14

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by Eddi »

imho the next steps from here would be:
  • reduce the number of town growth algorithms to:
    • natural (formerly original, better roads)
    • grid (formerly 2x2 grid, 3x3 grid)
    • random
  • add new property: town road spacing, and use it for both grid and natural growth.
    • 1 (corresponds to original)
    • 2 (corresponds to 2x2 grid, better roads)
    • 3 (corresponds to 3x3 grid, my patch above)
    • 4, 5, ... (some sane limit to be decided)
  • potentially add a second such setting, to allow some range for random selection
You might not exactly be interested in Ferion, but if you are, have fun :)

Supercheese
Tycoon
Tycoon
Posts: 1660
Joined: 16 Dec 2007 22:24
Location: Idaho, USA

Re: Sparse / expanded towns and point to point track buildin

Post by Supercheese »

Eddi wrote:imho the next steps from here would be:
  • reduce the number of town growth algorithms to:
    • natural (formerly original, better roads)
    • grid (formerly 2x2 grid, 3x3 grid)
    • random
  • add new property: town road spacing, and use it for both grid and natural growth.
    • 1 (corresponds to original)
    • 2 (corresponds to 2x2 grid, better roads)
    • 3 (corresponds to 3x3 grid, my patch above)
    • 4, 5, ... (some sane limit to be decided)
  • potentially add a second such setting, to allow some range for random selection
That sounds like a really good idea, IMO. :)
Eyecandy Road Vehicles | Fake Subways | Supercheese's NewObjects

"Fashions and cultures change, but steam trains shall always be majestic."
-Professor Hershel Layton

Post Reply

Return to “General OpenTTD”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests