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Are diesel locomotives useless?


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A lot of the commentary and strategies on most scenarios in RT2, nobody ever seems to use diesels in any capacity, and jump to electrics as soon as the GG1 arrives, and never use diesels,

I can definitely see the economic advantages of electric locomotives, and I have used them myself. But it's alongside a diesel or steam fleet. 

Is there no viable reason to use diesel locomotives in RT2? 

I'm considering boosting the reliability of the SDP40 and SD45, which aren't so hot, and aren't reflective of their real-world counterparts. (Especially considering the SD45 is supposed to represent the SD40-2 witth its 1972 intro date, which has been in service for 40 years now, and still has superb reliability.)

Edited by SD45
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The game probably makes track electrification too cheap (for both the upgrade and for maintenance), hence the easy rush from steam to electric. In reality, electric is probably only economically viable in dense urban clusters like in Western Europe, central Japan and America's NE corridor. The game also makes the GG-1 too powerful, taking the best stats from the end of its run, inflating those, and offering them starting in 1935. The 1935 version wasn't nearly as powerful or reliable.

Something like that also happened with the F9 diesel. I have no idea why it got the power and speed the game gave it (my mod pegs it back to what I've read about it).

However, the GG-1 is not available on all maps. In fact, electrics need not be available on all maps.

Something to try tactically: Haul your passengers with diesels, and haul freight with electrics. Then be careful about which tracks and stations receive electricity. This could segregate your fast versus slow trains (keep the slow freight off of your express lines).

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I'm pretty sure the GG1 had the same stats in real life for it's entire 50 year service life. But they still seem kinda exaggerated, I'll admit.

And while we're talking about overpowered locomotives, let's talk about the FP45... I can't really remember right now, but the real-world FP45 didn't seem overly impressive. 

Could I also submit some changes for your EXE? Mainly,  I plan to boost the reliability of the SD45 and possibly the SDP40 to good or above. (The SD45 being a expy of sorts for the SD40-2.) I also would like having the SD45 available in the end-game as a mid-powered locomotive for lines with lighter traffic, and to reflect the SD40-2s longevity.

I will try that tactic with electric-freight and diesel-passenger when I can sit down for a while. 

Edit - I'll think I'll hold off on those locomotive mods until I can remember how to use a hex editor...help?

Edited by SD45
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Lots of the strategy stuff was made long ago. With more maps and slowly more information over time, those are more or less outdated in terms of specific accuracy. As a general idea for someone struggling any idea can be a good one.

The GG1 is a super engine as noted above. But the earlier diesel engines have reasonable running costs and can also go up grades. In fact, diesels on a non-electrified system do in fact win out for a CBV race. For example to get the secret gold on the Heartland, USA map without stock tricks.

Electric track on Expert seems to cost $6k per section for single and $9k per section for double. Regular single track on cleared flat ground is priced @ $2k per section, double is @ $3k per section. Obviously there are gradients to contend with on a real map, but it's pretty safe to say that electrifying can easily double your track cost.

However, in modern times the E-111 exists. Fuel cost on the E-111 is more or less half that of the diesels. The AMD-103 and FP45 are unfortunately hopeless on grades. It has been reported that this game sees corners as an addition to the existing gradient, for example +2% grade. By extension these engines are poor at corners especially if there's a whiff of a real gradient on said corner. This problem has the worst effect on gameplay, it's the main one that limits how involved I can get with the game.

That leaves the Dash-9 and the Class 232. These are slower than the E-111, so not only are all their costings higher, they lose outright revenue to the E-111 on any express traffic. Therefore, Diesel isn't really a viable proposition in a default modern game.

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