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jeffryfisher last won the day on May 24

jeffryfisher had the most liked content!

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About jeffryfisher

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    Game Developer
  • Birthday January 1

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    Vancouver WA
  • Interests
    History, Business, Computer Programming

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  1. Few players ever even tried multiplayer, much less succeeded at it. What speed settings did you try on each side? When I play (single-player) I pause at least once each month to save my progress. If I see a project that needs building, I might hold the game paused for an hour or more. I never did see how RRT2 could work as a multiplayer game. I think that you and your brother will be teaching us.
  2. Probably not, since we don't even have a chief technologist. All I know now is that the ancient tech inside RRT2 needs to be replaced. That means that any project in this area will need to reinvent the entire game (or those parts deemed worth reinventing). Multiplayer never attracted much interest, perhaps because players need pauses to plan and build. Much programming complexity can be avoided by dumping MP. I think everyone here would rather see a more viable 'AI'. After that, the main mystery for me is the graphics and animation. OK, I'm also somewhat baffled by Windoze message-based program structure, but I just need an example or two to get me started. I just wish we could recover the path-finding algorithm used in RRT2. It was one very tricky problem that was solved almost perfectly. Otherwise, my hurdle is money. I've spent too much time unemployed to commit to freeware project. I could do most of this with a little help here and there, but I need to find paying work instead. PS: If RRT2 were reinvented, it would need a unique name to avoid trademark violations, and it might need some re-skinning to avoid copyright violations. In other words, we would imitate the game, not copy it.
  3. You could probably resurrect a dead thread. The game hasn't changed since the last patch in 2003, so the nettiquette disdain for "necrotic" threads shouldn't apply here. As for cornering, each corner acts as if its grade were 2% worse than what it would be straight. To combat that, I level my corners. I don't obsess about avoiding every corner possible. In fact, as my RRs mature, I tend to add zig-zags to create more diagonal-on-point crossings. Powerful engines can handle corners and accelerate out of them well enough, but they can't do anything if blocked by other trains, which is my primary problem when I have ~400 trains (and the trains are much longer than in the early game). What I really need is the discipline to completely isolate freight tracks from express tracks.
  4. OK, I've tested it and seen it with my own eyes. Each company has its own "prime" rate. If an event trigger has checked the box per-company, then a prime rate change in the effects will only affect the company that satisfies the trigger. What that means is that the prime rate isn't really prime. It's more of a "best rate at the bank down the street from your company headquarters". The reason I found this hard to believe is because each company already has a credit rating to individualize its interest rate. From both a game-play and a programming point of view, customizing prime rate per company makes no sense (and yet there it is). As a map designer, I wish we had a clear view of exactly which effects could be changed per which game elements (players, companies, territories). Heck, what I really want is the source code so I can go to town fixing some things.
  5. Will the game allow multiple mergers close together? I think there's a prohibition that shows up as a regulatory / stock exchange ruling or some objection from the board of directors.
  6. The only way I've kept my opponents from coming back is by bankrupting them (though you might slow them down by connecting to all towns on the map). Their companies can take a LONG time to die, but weak AI means that they'll eventually screw up and lose money. Computer players can sometimes be knocked out by depressions / panics hitting when they're heavily margined (and they can be helped along by carefully timed bear raids). I haven't played that map, so I don't know all of its particulars, but requiring you to eliminate all rivals sounds fishy. Such a victory condition should be combined with a restriction such as preventing new companies. Without such protection, the scenario design is suspect. Maybe someone who has played it can comment.
  7. I think the cannery might also display this "feature", as its steel input is replaced by aluminum. However, there's a period of overlap. It could be that my mods created the situations where I now see this happening. What's really fun is when 2 inputs are required for a number of years, so one of them can be stockpiled. Then a tech change creates a conversion for the stockpiled input to work by itself. When the next load of that input hits the building, the entire stockpile converts. I see this also in my weapons plants that need steel + wood during the 19th C but steel alone by WWII. If steel has been stockpiled (instead of the wood that somehow transmutes into aluminum), then one more steel load can release rush of weapons. Talk about arsenal of democracy! My next trick will be to release a pile of hazardous waste. It's 1953, and I've been delivering coal to some powerplants for a few years. The coal can't convert into anything yet, so it's just accumulating. In a few more years, my PP's will start returning 1 waste per 3 coal. I'll be watching for that 1st delivery to each plant after the announcement.
  8. Just over 8 years, but who's counting? This forum has been so quiet lately that any and all activity is welcome. Compared to 2009, my US History map will be new for you. It has almost 500 events, so it's like a whole game on top of the game. I hope you have a chance to try it sometime (I spent 2010 and 2011 developing it, so I am pleased whenever somebody besides myself plays it).
  9. There are (or were) some discussions years ago. You might try digging into the archives here to find them. From what I recall, the image produces a naked height map that then needs decoration, rivers, borders, econ areas (with industry settings) etc etc. I know more about the etceteras than the PCX conversion.
  10. Sounds like advanced AI. The kind of predictive, opponent-adaptive awareness you suggest is uncommon even among us humans. For each Napoleon there are thousands McClellans.
  11. No, I don't think the AI is sophisticated enough to analyze human behavior and exploit habits. Instead, I think the baron randomly needed to start a company but then failed to find a short-line to build. When a new AI company fails to find a route at start-up, it will randomly pick one of the names from the language file. The fact that the baron had little stock suggests that he had little to invest, which may have left his company undercapitalized and hence unable to build a route. Congratulations on helping him out of his rut. As for Conrail, it's one of the names in the lang file (at least in my modded version). It can come up at random. What was more amazing was when a baron in one of my games started up Transcontinental RR and eventually connected to Galt's Gulch. I just about fell on the floor when I saw that announcement!
  12. A nondestructive bug like this is euphemistically called an "undocumented feature".
  13. All of you know that if you deliver one of two demanded inputs to a factory building, the building will accumulate it hoping for the day when the missing ingredient will appear, enabling the building to produce its output. What I first suspected years ago and have recently confirmed is that if a building's recipes change over the years, then it is possible for an accumulated input to magically change its identity. I'm not yet quite sure what the "rule" is, but it's something like this: In my modified EXE, I can combine wood and steel in a 19th C weapons plant to make weapons. After a certain date, there's a new recipe using rubber + aluminum (representing plastic + aluminum to make planes). If I pile on unrequited wood during the 19th century, then WWII sees a stockpile of aluminum awaiting rubber deliveries. Somehow the wood delivered over the previous century has been transmuted into aluminum! Has anyone else witnessed this phenomenon? I'm tempted to analyze the specific rule for how an input to one recipe will turn into the modern input to a new recipe. With foreknowledge, a forward-looking rail baron could cash in (as long as the factory doesn't vanish!)
  14. The 1929 crash in my US History map often provides such takeover opportunities. Unfortunately, by 1929, you can be about 100 years into the game, so most of the AI companies are debt-laden husks sporting crap rail that you wouldn't even want to pay maintenance on. To compound the disaster, a well educated player will know that stock prices will continue to suffer for about 25 years. In the rare case that an AI company somehow reaches the 1930's in the black, I won't touch it until after the depression within a depression "strikes" in 1937-38.
  15. Oh wow, I forgot about this theory. I have since made more discoveries (but neglected to update this). When my esteemed AI rail barons are way out on margin and stock prices decline suddenly, they will receive margin calls. They're then forced to sell, which drives down prices more, which cascades to more robber barons and more selling etc. This turned out to be the real reason that my already-devastating 70% downdraft was magnified to 98%. Because each company has different levels of AI player investment, each company was affected to a different degree (mine least of all because I held most of the shares and had no debt). Thus we have a general safety tip for map designers: There may be knock-on effects of your event's effect. In the case of the US History map, I think I dialed back my event's effect so an "average" end result after magnification is somewhat like the historical crash. YMMV! PS: Right after such a crash, if not all of the AI dominoes have fallen, then that might be a golden opportunity to run a "bear raid" by shorting a few shares aimed to topple the next tycoon over the edge.