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Author Topic: Tungstennedge Air  (Read 1996 times)

Offline tungstennedge

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Tungstennedge Air
« on: October 19, 2020, 06:24:35 PM »
This speedworld I'm going to use to experiment with using 4+ fleets, in combination with 1000+ AC.

I've noticed in many of my worlds airlines flying 4+ fleets with up to 1000 aircraft, with seemingly no repercussions on profit.

The majority of experienced players on this game obey a strict 3 fleet rule, and some even fly with 2 fleets to keep one available during transition periods. I'm going to experiment how many aircraft I can get away with with over 3 fleets, and occasionally take note of how much staff training and fleet commonality is costing be at breakpoints like 500, 1000, 1500 AC.

I'm starting to get the impression that in shorter worlds, like MT, Speed world, or challenge worlds, its useful to fly 4+ fleets purely for the reason of increasing delivery rate and time to market. Maybe, medium sized airline with less than 500, or maybe even 1000 AC should start to look to fly 4 fleets, especially if its a cargo airline with larger margins.

Offline LemonButt

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Offline Talentz

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2020, 09:59:57 PM »
eh about 1300 or so before 4th fleet starts to hurt IMO. I think Schro mentioned the pain starts around 1500 or so.

But if a 748F flies 100% LF on cargo... ask yourself this: Does the penalty truly matter? You already know the answer to this though  ;)

As long as your profit margin is absurdly high, things are possible™.


Talentz
Co-founder and Managing member of: The Star Alliance Group™ - A beta era, multi-brand alliance.

Online gazzz0x2z

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #3 on: October 20, 2020, 09:19:59 AM »
(.../...)
As long as your profit margin is absurdly high, things are possible™.

I always said that, and most people didn't believe me. They either forget one part of your sentence, or the other one.

Losers forget the "as long as your margin is high" part. Commonality costs a few points of margin. If you're at 3% profitability, well, stick with your current fleet groups, or you're dead meat.

Purists forge the "things are possible" part. I recall, when that game began in 1950, I had 35% post-tax margin in Poland. Adding a 4th fleet group made it go down to 31%, but helped me conquer the market. I think I even briefly went up to 5 fleet groups. Frames were so scarce that anything flying was precious, and IL12s actually were useful to me. Yes, IL12s. I don't think it's gonna happen again, but it happened.

Offline sanabas

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2020, 10:05:16 AM »
I think my last game it was late 60s/early 70s Japan, with ~1200 planes, mostly DC8s and Bristols. I certainly had enough profit that I could eat the 4th fleet penalty and still be profitable. But even if I could use a fleet of 100 medium planes to fly to all the size 1 airports I had to leave untouched, I wouldn't have produced enough extra profit to offset that penalty, I'd have ended up with significantly less profit overall. And with the available routes only being enough for ~40 turboprops at most, it was definitely not worth it.

I also had my initial DC8s in storage for up to 5 years before being able to switch away from Connies, because again actually flying the DC8s as they arrived, I'd have still made money, but I'd have made significantly less money. Instead, I flew connies + bristols + turboprop, stored DC8s, and when I was finally ready to start taking DC8s out of storage and flying them, I immediately scrapped the entire medium fleet. Because it was clearly more profitable to do it that way, and it wasn't close.

Going to 4 fleets caused my main competitor's profit to drop to zero, and coupled with too much cash required to service new plane orders, it resulted in a cash-flow crisis and BK, and they only had ~500 planes or so, maybe even less.

Once you do go to 4, there's virtually no extra penalty to go to 6. If you do need to go above 3 long-term due to scarcity, due to delivery times, to help you expand, get slots, increase RI, etc, nothing wrong with doing that. Nor with deliberately sacrificing profits for slightly bigger pax numbers. But with any sort of large airline, you'll almost certainly be making less money overall.

*edit* https://www.airwaysim.com/forum/index.php/topic,82188.msg499927.html#msg499927 is me talking about that Japanese airline, with some more numbers and a few ideas. I think the biggest problem is that the current system is not transparent, that it can result in counter-intuitive, airlin-killing, gotcha moments. I don't think the existing structure for commonality costs is very good, but at least if it was objective and transparent, it'd be easier for people to plan ahead, easier to know what they're getting themselves into by making that choice to go above 3 fleets for a significant length of time with a significant overall fleet size.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2020, 10:12:47 AM by sanabas »

Offline MikeS

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #5 on: October 20, 2020, 07:22:09 PM »
That's the main issue: IT'S NOT TRANSPARENT!
For me it's so muddled that I just avoid the subject and stick to 3 fleet types. It also happened to me once that commonality costs didn't go back down again
when th 4th type was eliminated (I had to open a bug report) so I also feel I cannot trust the system behind it.....

Mike

Offline tungstennedge

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #6 on: October 20, 2020, 07:57:10 PM »
Yeah, lack of transparency about the exact may commonality costs is why I'm kinda of trying to experiment with this in Speed World. Low competition means notoriously high margins in this world, so I should be-able to survive as a far from optimally run airline. I'm always gonna pick fleets with the intention of being able to go back down to three fleets if things don't work out, but I want to see just how bad 4 fleets can get.

I know margins I should be getting based of my cargo LF's, should be around 60% pretax with no competition open routes, 105% pricing, at 500 fuel, and I can use this as kinda a benchmark of how I'm doing in comparison.

Offline knobbygb

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2020, 03:46:05 AM »
1)  With a decent cargo network your profit margin will be such that going above 3 fleets will have little consequence.

2)  Don't think 4!  If you're going to have 4 fleets you may as well have 7 as there's no further penalty (or very little).  Imagine the flexibility that would give you to absolutely milk every single available market.

Some stats to help:  I'm flying 1300 a/c with 6 or 7 fleet types (depending on transitions) out of Japan. Staff training (which is where the majority of the "pain" shows up) is just 5.6% of my turnover and Aircraft Maintenance is around 7% of turnover.  I haven't been down to 3 fleets since I was tiny but, even if you assume the training figure would drop by 90% and maintenance would drop by about 40% (I think that's pretty typical) I would save about 8% of my turnover by going back to 3 fleets. My after-tax profit would be about 18% higher than it is now, so my profit margin would go up from 24% to 28%.  That's not really a significant amount unless your margin is very low and I'm sure I'd lose a lot more money than that with all the routes I'd have to close.

I will eventually be over 1500 fleet, and I'll review the situation then, but I can't see it making much difference anyway. I estimate my margin could drop to around 5% and I'd still be able to buy every widebody and every slot I'd ever need.

I've said this many times before -  as long as you're making enough money to never have to actually look at the bottom line - i.e you can buy whatever you want whenever you want, anything else is pointless as it's NOT REAL MONEY.  You can't take a dividend and go and improve your real life.  I'd rather make a smaller profit but have better stats/score and also have a lot MORE FUN!
« Last Edit: October 21, 2020, 03:48:19 AM by knobbygb »

Offline tungstennedge

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2020, 07:03:27 AM »
If there is only a 10% hit to margin with with 7 fleets, Ima going to keep every dam VL production line open! 747-8if here I come

Offline sanabas

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2020, 08:41:32 AM »
I haven't been down to 3 fleets since I was tiny but, even if you assume the training figure would drop by 90% and maintenance would drop by about 40% (I think that's pretty typical) I would save about 8% of my turnover by going back to 3 fleets. My after-tax profit would be about 18% higher than it is now, so my profit margin would go up from 24% to 28%.  That's not really a significant amount unless your margin is very low and I'm sure I'd lose a lot more money than that with all the routes I'd have to close.

Go to the commonality page, look at the first set of numbers, you can ignore the 2nd set with engine commonality. What's that monthly cost as a % of revenue, as a % of weeekly pre-tax profit? Because going to 3 would see 90-95% of that cost disappear.

As I said, with ~1200 planes in ~1970, I was making ~125 million/week. Don't remember the margin, but I'd guess ~30-40%, 320-420 mill/week turnover. Adding 4th fleet was going to cost 40-50 mill/week. So margin would drop 10-15% pre-tax. So again, could certainly afford it, wouldn't risk BK by doing it, but would lose 30-40% of my overall profit. And my competitor, with ~500 planes and a significantly smaller margin, did lose virtually all his profit by adding a 4th fleet, and that did cause cashflow crisis & BK.

If there is only a 10% hit to margin with with 7 fleets, Ima going to keep every dam VL production line open! 747-8if here I come

I haven't tested anything other than the 3-4 jump for a long time, but when I did test years ago, there was another significant jump at 6-7. Going 4-6 was a negligible difference.

Offline tungstennedge

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2020, 09:38:15 AM »
Go to the commonality page, look at the first set of numbers, you can ignore the 2nd set with engine commonality. What's that monthly cost as a % of revenue, as a % of weeekly pre-tax profit? Because going to 3 would see 90-95% of that cost disappear.

As I said, with ~1200 planes in ~1970, I was making ~125 million/week. Don't remember the margin, but I'd guess ~30-40%, 320-420 mill/week turnover. Adding 4th fleet was going to cost 40-50 mill/week. So margin would drop 10-15% pre-tax. So again, could certainly afford it, wouldn't risk BK by doing it, but would lose 30-40% of my overall profit. And my competitor, with ~500 planes and a significantly smaller margin, did lose virtually all his profit by adding a 4th fleet, and that did cause cashflow crisis & BK.

I haven't tested anything other than the 3-4 jump for a long time, but when I did test years ago, there was another significant jump at 6-7. Going 4-6 was a negligible difference.

Heres the thing, after learning the basics of this game, most of us more experienced players, especially those who play cargo end up with so much money it become meaningless. My LHR world I joined in 1982 never dropped below 25% pretax margin ever and is usually significantly higher, despite me neglecting it to the point my fleet was 24 years old on average at one point. It currently has 533 billion in cash, I could buy over 20 000 very large aircraft, or loose 20 billion a quarter for the rest of the game and still be alive. I simply don't see money as a real challenge in this game in larger bases, and I'm thinking that it if, what you and some others who have tried is true, and margins tend to only drop about 10-15% pretax for up to 6 fleets, it may be the most fun (but maybe most not profitable) way to play the game.

Currently the holy trinity for this game is a320/737, 757, and a330/777. These three fleets alone cover 95% of the AWS market, only missing on lvl 1 airports. Otherwise this is a perfect fleet selection. These three fleets alone have basically no weaknesses, except the fact it takes forever to deliver the quantity of 757's needed to cover cargo demand before the a330-200f/777f is is released.
What I'm saying is that if a player wants to play a perfect game they will pick these three fleets, transition into these fleets by flying 757's domestically until dc-10>a330/777 is done, and then add a320/737 for the rest of the game. Its simply the best strategy, and anyone maxing out their airlines has likely done this at least once. However, its honestly kind of boring, and the fact its so good means that doing this exactly will result in a meaningless amount of money being made once these three final fleets have been achieved.


Now, I'm not saying goind 4+ fleets is meant to be a competitive or reliable strategy, as it simply deletes a portion of your margin, but if the pentalty is as small as players are describing, I dont even understand why players dont go 4+ fleets for fun. Most good players still will never be in risk of dieing. A well run cargo company will likely have enough to buy a complete fleet replacement mutiple times over after just a couple decades, as the margins are so damn high. If you choose the right bases and understand how to pull demand around, achieving 50% pretax margin is not difficult in the right bases. Some players like to play it safe so that they can never die, and thats fair, but while I've only been playing for 2 years I've really only seen one or two major airline collapses  (1000 + AC) which were not due to player boredom, and hundreds or even thousand of unused AC. (Keep in mind i'm still only talking about cargo airlines since pax margins are so bad).

Going 6 fleets, for me atleast would be super fun, as it would let me experiment with worse aircraft, less used types, or expanding at a spectacular rate due to having 6 fleets being actively delivered. If this run goes well, and sees decent enough margins, I way want to go 4+ fleets in the future purely for challenge and fun at some point. In AG, I'm experiencing my first truely major transition, 800+ VL aircraft and its been going on for 20 years now, and its boring enough that opened two other worlds to keep me busy, and I have so much money I couldn't burn all of it.

If 2000+ AC 4 fleets is possible in this speedworld, Id love to try replicate it in a real world and see the added challenge of playing with a lower margin in exchange for time to market, seems like a fun and interesting tradeoff.

« Last Edit: October 21, 2020, 09:44:34 AM by tungstennedge »

Offline sanabas

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Re: Tungstennedge Air
« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2020, 12:49:01 PM »
Yep, nothing at all wrong with using 4+ for fun. No different to staying away from 757/320/340 for fun. Might not be optimal, but it is doable. Partly contingent on not having much comp, and the penalty will get bigger as your airline does.

 

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