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Author Topic: New aircraft market and playability  (Read 426 times)

Offline JumboShrimp

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New aircraft market and playability
« on: February 03, 2016, 05:46:12 PM »
Familiar story:

Player starts late, production lines are sold out for 5-10 years.

On one hand, the player who is profitable and is able to place more orders, have faster rate of deliveries vs. competitor who is less profitable.  It seems fair for players starting at the same time.

OTOH, the challenge for a player who starts late can be overwhelming.

Solution:
Remove caps from the production lines, let them adjust to demand.  The system is already in place, it works great.  The only thing that screws it up is the hard cap.

Real World vs. Playability
In the real world, it may very well be that the rate of deliveries did not exceed certain rate for certain model.  But in the real world, the manufacturers adjust to demand, increase production rate if orders are there.
For example, 737 production line is increasing to 52 per month:
http://boeing.mediaroom.com/2014-10-02-Boeing-to-Increase-737-Production-Rate-to-52-per-Month-in-2018

So when we cap the production of 737 to about 30, we are not following the real world. 

For playability reasons a new player starting, and facing 10 year wait for first new A320 (for example) to be delivered is definitely a bad idea.

To sum it up:
Cap is not Real World
Cap is bad for playability

So all pain, for no gain.

Offline JumboShrimp

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Offline Helix

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Re: New aircraft market and playability
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2016, 07:02:02 PM »
For playability reasons a new player starting, and facing 10 year wait for first new A320 (for example) to be delivered is definitely a bad idea.
While I can see where you're coming from, I feel like you are describing a situation that has a lot of alternatives.

Usually when I join a game world, leasing a brand new aircraft is not the first step I take because
A) I will have to wait a few months for it to be actually built, even when the order book is empty. I could do nothing until then and afterwards growth will be very slow.
B) new aircraft are usually expensive, more so when the type is very popular and as such I feel like (leasing) it is anything but a good choice for a new airline.

With the exception of a new game world the used market has plenty to offer. In my opinion a new player should be pushed to the used market for cheap growth. By the time he grew to a reasonable size he can start buying the model he wants as the production lines will have lightened up a bit.

So when we cap the production of 737 to about 30, we are not following the real world. 
In GW4 (Year 2000) current production rate is 39/month for 737s with over 1000 in the order book. After asking Google the real world production rate has been around 24 during that time. I'd assume the in-game rate will increase further as time progresses?

Perhaps I misunderstood what you mean but the current setup seems reasonable to me.

Offline JumboShrimp

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Re: New aircraft market and playability
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2016, 08:10:56 PM »
While I can see where you're coming from, I feel like you are describing a situation that has a lot of alternatives.

Usually when I join a game world, leasing a brand new aircraft is not the first step I take because
A) I will have to wait a few months for it to be actually built, even when the order book is empty. I could do nothing until then and afterwards growth will be very slow.
B) new aircraft are usually expensive, more so when the type is very popular and as such I feel like (leasing) it is anything but a good choice for a new airline.

With the exception of a new game world the used market has plenty to offer. In my opinion a new player should be pushed to the used market for cheap growth. By the time he grew to a reasonable size he can start buying the model he wants as the production lines will have lightened up a bit.

Of course, but there is usually a time in the game when the used market is just dead.  After about 1 year of game play for next 2-3 years.  Looking at one particular model, 84% of the aircraft stored was sold, after 11 months, order backlog is 4 years, and that's just for a dead end model.

A potential replacement, just launched, within 2-3 hours gets a 4 year backlog, will probably grow to a 10 year backlog within a day.

It is very easy to correct, just expand the production line delivery rate, that opens new production slots.

It is not only what the manufacturer would do (instead of turning customers away, telling them their first aircraft can be delivered in 10 years).
It is also good for playability, so that players joining late are not completely shut out of the game.

A buddy of mine just started playing, I think as a trial in the beginners world.  Wants to join a new full game.  I would have hard time recommending him starting in the newest GW2.  It is quite challenging to start for one of the best players of the game (myself  ;D), it is outright hostile for an inexperienced player.

In GW4 (Year 2000) current production rate is 39/month for 737s with over 1000 in the order book. After asking Google the real world production rate has been around 24 during that time. I'd assume the in-game rate will increase further as time progresses?

Perhaps I misunderstood what you mean but the current setup seems reasonable to me.

I have seen game worlds where A320 / 737 were stuck in low 30s, even with 10 year backlog.

But this problem is far more acute in new game worlds.  The stock of aircraft in storage is probably 25%-30% of what is needed to meet world demand (I did a calculation way back to calculate this, I am not pulling this out of thin air).  New game world starts with 500+ players, who empty the UM, and then the only option for growth is new market.  (unless you sit in front of the computer 24/7 and can scrape something from the bottom of the barrel of the UM.

Now, year 2000 is different.  In most game worlds is the time when the equilibrium is reached.  The worlds stock of aircraft = world demand.  It is not 737 NG or death.  There are classics, DC-9 etc.)  New aircraft just replaces the old, and serves new growth.

That's why I think it makes sense to remove the caps, let the production lines produce 30, 40, 50, even 60 aircraft per month (as the 737 news linked above suggests).  Whatever is needed.

Doing so would bring the worlds supply and demand into equilibrium quicker, while new players, or players starting late have some options to play.  Getting 1 of expensive aircraft per month is nowhere near as good as getting 10 cheap used aircraft per month, but it is far better than getting zero aircraft period, with something coming in 5 years (way past the rage quit point).

Here is different way to look at it:
Capping the production and having the game world starved of aircraft for first 5-7 years is great for the best players who start early, lock up the current and future supply.  They earned it by starting on day 1, by getting profitable quickly, locking up the supply for next 5-7 years to increase their advantage further.  And as a result push weaker or newer players into a desperate situation.  But is it good for AWS, as a game, that wants to expand the player base?

There are limits in place for aircraft delivery rate, so that higher production rate would not benefit the strongest airlines.  All it would be a lifeline to newest, the least experienced airlines early in the game world (who are drowning).
« Last Edit: February 03, 2016, 08:44:46 PM by JumboShrimp »

Offline Helix

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Re: New aircraft market and playability
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2016, 09:47:10 PM »
Of course, but there is usually a time in the game when the used market is just dead.  After about 1 year of game play for next 2-3 years.  Looking at one particular model, 84% of the aircraft stored was sold, after 11 months, order backlog is 4 years, and that's just for a dead end model.
I still feel like there is always an alternative. A new game world is a challenge and if I would not have started GW2 as early as I did, I likely would not join it now with an (essentially) empty used marked and long waiting times on most models. However, a new game is a special situation but even right now there is an alternative available with the Caravelle. Sure the early models are nothing to write home about but it's a start and you can keep ordering the improved versions as you grow slowly along.

That's why I think it makes sense to remove the caps, let the production lines produce 30, 40, 50, even 60 aircraft per month (as the 737 news linked above suggests).  Whatever is needed.
I agree the rates should move along the real world example. However, availability can and should be a deciding factor for fleet planning and IMO it adds value to the game if a player is forced/prefers to order something different because of it. If we have Boeing and Airbus produce "whatever is needed" then it kills dynamic I'd expect.

For example in GW4 I'm planning to join long-haul and I was initially interested in A330/340 because of the flexibility with the different types but I'd have to wait at least 5-6 years for the frames to arrive. So I look around and find 767s, 777 or even A310s and DC10s available as a temporary alternative.


Offline JumboShrimp

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Re: New aircraft market and playability
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2016, 10:55:01 PM »
I still feel like there is always an alternative. A new game world is a challenge and if I would not have started GW2 as early as I did, I likely would not join it now with an (essentially) empty used marked and long waiting times on most models. However, a new game is a special situation but even right now there is an alternative available with the Caravelle. Sure the early models are nothing to write home about but it's a start and you can keep ordering the improved versions as you grow slowly along.

But this is the time period when most players start, the time period when players who may have been in beginners world start a fresh new long world.

It's when you have the most players chasing the smallest number of aircraft.  A brute force approach could be to double or triple the size of the UM.  But IMO, far more elegant approach is to allow the new market to be allowed (not be artificially capped) to meet this demand.

I agree the rates should move along the real world example. However, availability can and should be a deciding factor for fleet planning and IMO it adds value to the game if a player is forced/prefers to order something different because of it. If we have Boeing and Airbus produce "whatever is needed" then it kills dynamic I'd expect.

There is already price that is very dynamic.

Also, the production line expansion, when it occurs, lets you place some orders, but you can never match the rate of deliveries of the half empty production line.  With various line compressions, you can get 2 large aircraft per month on half empty line, if you chose a popular line late in the game, you are paying 2x the price vs. the unpopular aircraft, and you get at best 1 aircraft per month.

And when the production line expand, the gaps open up at some point in the future, like a year or so, vs. getting an aircraft from half empty line in 6 months.

So you still get quite an advantage.  2x delivery rate, 1/2 price, when you chose alternatives.

I could not be more impressed with the way the production line dynamics works, Sami did a great job on that.  But then he kills half of the benefit by putting caps on the lines.

But if for whatever reason you need a particular aircraft, and alternatives will not work (your example of Caravelle - I have only about 7 airports that it can reach, another 400 beyond its range), there is light at the end of the tunnel, if the production line increases, where as now, there is not.

For example in GW4 I'm planning to join long-haul and I was initially interested in A330/340 because of the flexibility with the different types but I'd have to wait at least 5-6 years for the frames to arrive. So I look around and find 767s, 777 or even A310s and DC10s available as a temporary alternative.

These would remain valid alternatives.  In longer running game worlds, you have fleet transitions, and you generally want to get it done quickly, in order to not be flying too many types.  See differences in rate of deliveries above.

Sometimes, 767 is just a superior choice.  I played Mexico, Turkey, and in both, 767 is just a superior aircraft to A330.  It can profitably fly thinner LH routes.  But at LHR, FRA, LAX, you do need A330, 777, even if you have to pay premium to get it, get them at slower pace (if you are ordering them late)

Online gazzz0x2z

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Re: New aircraft market and playability
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2016, 08:29:11 AM »
The new player that plays at LHR shall not expect to be overperforming the veterans. I've built my first 2 GW3 upon smaller craft, and I had plenty of choice. I went CRJ-then-A148 in the previous one, and ERJs-then-EJets on the current one. I had also a few 737, but not enough to be annoyed by the points you make. in the RJ domain, There are more than enough alternatives(and many dry up out of production). I finished 50th in airline value in my first game, I'm 36th in the second one, with only 169 737, 471 Ejets, and 124 metros. Never BK'd.

Today, after 2 full game worlds, I feel I'm strong enough to attack bigger airports, where I'm gonna face real plane availability problems. But if I'm not ready to face them now, I never will. When a new player arrives, does not read the rules(as I did), does not read the excellent guides of the forum(as I did), and expects to have the best planes(i.e. A320 or B737) falling from the sky so that he can conquer the world, well, noone should be surprised he ends up upset. He shall play inferior games without any competition.

I mean, if one strategy does not work, you shall change it. In my first GW3, I was thinking about playing CRJs up to the end. But the acquisition costs were getting insane, 25M for a CRJ200, 40M for a CRJ700. I could get a A148 for merely 16M(and it went down to 12M later). So I changed strategy. It was a 10 years nightmare of route adjustment, but really worth it. The A148 is inferior to the CRJ700. But when it costs 3 times less and the build lines are filled only with your own planes, who cares? I saved my game like that. I had to make a strategy change, because my strategy was not working. Having a player going to the best airports, and losing money because it's leasing a brand new A320, on overcrowded routes, whining instead of looking for a way out, well, bad for them.

Current GW3, I played the fairchild metro and had plenty of fun with them. Those birds make money, at their scale, and allow completely unlikely routes. I'm serving all Sweden from Visby with those. This strategy worked. On previous GW3, I went up instead, toying with 777. From Glasgow, those are really too big, and my success was modest. I did not insist. What you want is people with poor strategies being rewarded instead of having to look for other strategies.

fp5461

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Re: New aircraft market and playability
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2016, 08:42:15 AM »
What you want is people with poor strategies being rewarded instead of having to look for other strategies.

Well said! I happen to enjoy the difficulty of this current game.


 

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