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Miscellaneous => Archives => (archive) Game talk - The Jet Age #2 => Topic started by: COUGAR on July 19, 2010, 02:04:17 AM

Title: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 19, 2010, 02:04:17 AM
My main competitor is clearly resorting to EK-style capacity dumping tactics - deploying over 320 daily seats on a route that supports 90! He is clearly loosing money considering that I have 35% of the market with just 55 seats deployed on the same route. So ultimately its about sustaining with cash reserves.

 Legitimate game strategy perhaps regardless of the ethics.

any good ideas to combat this kind of capacity dumping?
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Sigma on July 19, 2010, 02:42:19 AM
Dumping 320 seats on a route with just 90 demand is against the rules, as that's about 350% demand and you're allowed only 200%.  So my suggestion would be to report it to sami, as that's really the only "strategy" that one can take against such behavior.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Curse on July 19, 2010, 02:45:41 AM
Have you sent him a message? Maybe he hasn't noticed this violation or doesn't know the rules.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 19, 2010, 09:14:08 AM
i notice that my competitor IATC is suddenly dumping capacity the moment I enter a route. It is clearly intentional.

http://www.airwaysim.com/game/Routes/planning/vabb/vabo - Route Capacity:160/day. VDA: 156. IAT:419.

http://www.airwaysim.com/game/Routes/planning/vabb/vanp - Route Capacity: 70/day. VDA: 52. IAT:217.

To mention just 2 routes.

Here is what the rulebook says:

Quote
The airlines may not oversupply the estimated passenger demand on a route in large numbers. Airline may not supply over 200% of the estimated passenger demand on any route.

Competition is generally free in the sim but any clearly unfair competition measures such as flying routes with huge overcapacity and with very low prices and deliberately targeting many/all routes of a single airline are considered unfair competition, especially if the "target" is a new / small airline.

It is clear therefore that my competitor is guilty of violating the rules of the game. I leave it to SAMI to take disciplinary action. Sent him a PM
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: swiftus27 on July 19, 2010, 02:23:45 PM
Good idea.  Sounds like something against the fair play policy.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 20, 2010, 03:14:59 AM
the problem is the member in question "lastchancer" hasnt replied or taken any remedial action. and in the meantime the bloodbath continues...

I just took some time to go through his routes and it seems he is over deploying capacity on ALL the routes though not to this extreme. On an average the capacity deployed on routes is twice the capacity of the route which pushes down the yields and blocks out valuable slots. Surplus planes, slots are clearly blocked by him, since the moment I enter a route (like VABO), he triples the capacity on that route! Look at the graph below: 8 Avro 748's (thats 440 seats) on a route that supports 150!

I understand now that what he is doing is against the rules. But another question is how does he make any money at those yields?
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Curse on July 20, 2010, 07:41:39 AM
He must have some routes which gaines him the money.

Sometimes I have also routes I put by mistake >200% on it, for example if I reschedule new aircraft and forget to cancel all routes on the older aircraft.

But what this player does is either ignorance or intention, so a PM to sami and a PM to a WorldLink (his alliance) Moderator should help a lot.

Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: swiftus27 on July 20, 2010, 01:09:28 PM
Those pictures show me that the player is doing almost exactly 200%. 


The first route graph shows 80 demand.  you are flying 52 seats and they are flying 165.  NOT 200%

The second route graph shows 190 demand.  You are flying 208 seats and they are flying 419.  Yes, over 200% by 39 seats.

This really isnt as "unfair" as you claim.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 20, 2010, 01:40:07 PM
Quote
The first route graph shows 80 demand.  you are flying 52 seats and they are flying 165.  NOT 200%

:) So what would 200% of 80 be?

by the same logic what is 200% of 190?

200% of 190 means he can offer 380 seats. right now he is selling 440! Thats SIXTY over the count.

Since realism is the key to this simulation, i dont think this kind of scenario is realistic. No regulatory authority would allow this kind of "dumping".

I think SAMI should consider putting this down on the feature list: There should be a restriction to the number of seats sold by an airline on a route: say 105% of the total seat capacity. This will put an end to predatory tactics like those we are seeing here.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Sigma on July 20, 2010, 01:58:51 PM
On the first one, he's alright.  Demand averages about 85/day (when I checked several times, your guys still aren't great at estimating demand as noted on your chart), meaning he can supply about 170/day, and he's doing about 165 so he's fine.

On the second he's slightly over, but hardly something sami's gonna do a whole lot about.  Demand is 196/day on average (average of 3 checks), meaning he's limited to supplying 392 seats/day and he's actually supplying 415/day, a difference of about 5%.  Sami's not gonna make a guy do much about 205% instead of 200%.

The rule was created to prevent people from doing several thousand percent, as used to be the case.  The spirit is to truly keep people from flooding a route and to protect people from gross abuse by others, not to force people to reconfigure their aircraft so they can eek just below the 200% mark.  If they guy removed a few seats a day to comply, you wouldn't notice it one bit.

In your first post, you described a scenario that was grossly breaking the rules -- if they guy was doing 350% of demand on a route, sami would eventually close the route after providing the player with time to comply themselves.  In these ones you posted however, he's not.  He's skating right on the line, so he clearly knows what he's doing.  It's unfortunate for you, there's little you can do as a young airline against it, but it does comply with the rules and I absolutely do not seem them changing.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 20, 2010, 02:15:43 PM
where did you get the figure of 196/day? The demand on the route averages between 180 to 190 and he is supplying 419 (he seems to have reconfigured some of the 748's since i last checked) which is still more than 200%.


and these are just 2 of the routes.

I have spent a good amount of time studying this users route planning and the basic idea seems to be to block off prime slots and dump capacity to prevent competition.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 20, 2010, 02:22:27 PM
It's unfortunate for you, there's little you can do as a young airline against it, but it does comply with the rules and I absolutely do not seem them changing.

For one it DOES not comply with the rules. and secondly it is game plays like these that reveal the need to make changes in the game logic to prevent established players from cornering off the market.

Real life airline scenarios, both from operational and from regulatory standpoint, would not allow for this kind of seat deployments would they?
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Sigma on July 20, 2010, 02:38:25 PM
where did you get the figure of 196/day? The demand on the route averages between 180 to 190 and he is supplying 419 (he seems to have reconfigured some of the 748's since i last checked) which is still more than 200%

On the very chart you yourself posted it varies from 179 to 229, so I have no idea how you're getting "180-190".  When I check it, it reads slightly higher than that on average as my guys are a little better at guessing demand than yours, and the average of 3 separate checks, 21 data points, was 196/day.

Quote
Real life airline scenarios, both from operational and from regulatory standpoint, would not allow for this kind of seat deployments would they?

In reality, 200% deployments aren't unusual.  In real-life most planes fly 50-70% full due to oversupply of demand.  In-game, there are plenty of reasons to supply well over 100%, not the least being that demand figures are only estimates and with superior RI/CI and pricing, you can actually (just like real-life) create demand and achieve as much as 150% of the demand on some routes.

There's about a billion different things that various regulatory agencies the world over would have as means of protecting smaller airlines, but it's difficult to do them all (or any) in-game.  There are virtually no blanket 'rules' in real-life, instead protections involve multi-year-long negotiations and concessions and things like that.  This is what we have now, it's an evolving thing for sure (and new for that matter), and while other changes may be seen, I doubt we'll ever see the rule about available supply drop below 200%.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: swiftus27 on July 20, 2010, 03:12:38 PM
Sigma, he may not understand the graph too.


Left bar = Total Demand as calculated by your staff (they are often off by up to 10-20%)
Center Bar = Total Capacity flown by ALL airlines
Right Bar = your total capacity.


Therefore if ( Center - Right ) is less than 2x the Left, then they are not breaking the rules. 
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 20, 2010, 03:53:20 PM
@swiftus: I DO understand the graph and how they function! This isnt my first time out here! :) The difference is I see this site as a simulation not as a game.

if you read the rules carefully, there is a section under Small Airlines New Entrants, which i believe does address the issue i have raised.

Quote
Any coordinated "attacks" by single airlines, alliances, or by any other group of airlines, to prevent some airline from operating on a route or to deliberately push some airline out of the simulation are not allowed. Competition is generally free in the sim but any clearly unfair competition measures such as flying routes with huge overcapacity and with very low prices and deliberately targeting many/all routes of a single airline are considered unfair competition, especially if the "target" is a new / small airline

The specific routes in question, VABO in particular, I saw the opponent drastically ramp up capacity the moment i entered the market. Is this as per the rules of the game as mentioned above?



Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Sami on July 20, 2010, 04:42:30 PM
The player is flying too much seats on 2-4 routes and has been notified, and has still one day to act (according to the rules) whichafter I can take actions and close the routes. However the overcapacity is not that great and really is not the only reason for possible financial problems of other involved airlines. But still as rules are not followed completely he has been notified...
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: swiftus27 on July 20, 2010, 04:43:46 PM
So the problem isnt really capacity dumping it is because he is putting 200% on the routes you flew.  Okay, now I understand what you are saying.  

As you can see above, Sami is taking care of it as best as he can.

But to me, its like pulling the other person over for speeding 57 in a 55 zone.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: ukatlantic on July 20, 2010, 06:17:31 PM
So the problem isnt really capacity dumping it is because he is putting 200% on the routes you flew.  Okay, now I understand what you are saying.  

As you can see above, Sami is taking care of it as best as he can.

But to me, its like pulling the other person over for speeding 57 in a 55 zone.

I think the problem is not just the dumping of capacity, but the clear targeting of all an airlines routes - it should not be allowed to happen.  This is a simulation and everyone should be able to pay their money and enjoy it without being forced into bankruptcy by another airline through over supply and route dumping - I see it all too often and its mostly brushed away with 'the player is within the definition of the rules' and 'hey they aren't hitting the 200% demand rule so they can do as they please', its an element that takes the enjoyment away from any player regardless of how long they have ben playing and the rules could  certainly be evolved further. 
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Curse on July 20, 2010, 08:47:27 PM
Well said. This is not Unreal Tournament where the goal is to kill your enemy under all circumstances.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: orionmco on July 20, 2010, 09:20:27 PM
Okay this thread has me thinking.  I read the game rules and didn't remember the "targeting other airlines" part, but there it is.  I am not sure if that is what I am doing or not.  Air Ohio opened operations at my base airport (his home base also).  I had ordered specific aircraft for a specific purpose.  That being to fly all the short hops out of Cincinnati that I could.  What I am doing could be perceived as "targeting" them, however, it is merely been the goal of my company for quite some time to fly these routes.  I started out wanting to build a regional carrier.  Unfortunately, in this game, this does not seem to be easy without being a larger airline first (due to staff costs, etc...), so I hope that I am not playing this simulation unfairly.

Orion
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: JumboShrimp on July 20, 2010, 10:04:55 PM
Well said. This is not Unreal Tournament where the goal is to kill your enemy under all circumstances.

That's news to me...   ;)

Anyway, with the slots being fixed and every slot that you competitor at the same base takes is one less slot left for you, and there is no benefit whatsoever (such as connecting traffic), all the incentives in place are to do exactly that - to try to kill the competitor and free up the slots.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Curse on July 20, 2010, 10:20:42 PM
For myself I have no problem with one or two other smaller airlines at my hub. If the slots are gone the game has run some month... this is mostly the time I have massive profits and the game, the battle for money, has ended  ;)
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Sigma on July 20, 2010, 11:21:51 PM
Okay this thread has me thinking.  I read the game rules and didn't remember the "targeting other airlines" part, but there it is.  I am not sure if that is what I am doing or not.  Air Ohio opened operations at my base airport (his home base also).  I had ordered specific aircraft for a specific purpose.  That being to fly all the short hops out of Cincinnati that I could.  What I am doing could be perceived as "targeting" them, however, it is merely been the goal of my company for quite some time to fly these routes.  I started out wanting to build a regional carrier.  Unfortunately, in this game, this does not seem to be easy without being a larger airline first (due to staff costs, etc...), so I hope that I am not playing this simulation unfairly.

Orion

In this way there's a bit of an "honor system" involved that's difficult to actually control.

The question is -- are you opening the routes you always intended to, or are you specifically targeting just those that your competitor is operating on first?

One is clearly trying to take out the newer, smaller guy.  The other is simply normal operating procedure of opening new routes.

I'm "going after" a guy at my base in MT2.  He was, in fact, significantly larger than me for quite some time.  I have slowly whittled away.  Meanwhile other airlines have come into DFW and I have completely left them alone.  They haven't survived long, but that's entirely their own doing, I didn't touch one plane, one route, or one price on anything they were flying.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 20, 2010, 11:47:55 PM
That's news to me...   ;)

Anyway, with the slots being fixed and every slot that you competitor at the same base takes is one less slot left for you, and there is no benefit whatsoever (such as connecting traffic), all the incentives in place are to do exactly that - to try to kill the competitor and free up the slots.

Fair enough. if you are looking at this as a "game"... yes. the objective is "shoot them up". And i think that has what AWS is turning into: just another game site. Especially in the latest iteration.

Like it or not, targetting a new entrant is what happens all around: in the "Modern Times" scenario, the competition introduced routes 7 days after i did (these were unserved routes earlier). I cant see his fare levels (again not realistic) but even with unsustainable $50 fares my loads have crashed to less than 20%. which means he is clearly undercutting: objective again: to push out the new entrant.

With multiple hubs, the earlier entrants in the game get an unshakeable foothold being able to route aircraft at will and attack from multiple hubs. Even if i find a new "virgin" hub, my competition which has been in the market can create a new hub in my station overnight, while I have to twiddle my thumbs for a year by which time I will be dead. Is this realistic?

Thus it becomes impossible to enter ANY market after about 30% game play as all lucrative bases are taken up by then. In earlier iterations of AWS, the hub restriction ensured that some play was possible even late into the game. Now its impossible.

Multi-hubbing the way it has been introduced is not realistic and has only contributed to the general bloodbath. Lesson learned: after about 30% play, the game is effectively closed for new entrants.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Curse on July 21, 2010, 12:27:32 AM
Hm, than I must do something wrong.

I (re)joined ATB after most slots were gone and now have the far biggest airline at Taiwan.

Oh, I joined after the biggest airline there declared bankrupty. Maybe it is an advantage not to join Heathrow with 6 competitors  ;)
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: ukatlantic on July 21, 2010, 06:42:51 AM
Okay this thread has me thinking.  I read the game rules and didn't remember the "targeting other airlines" part, but there it is.  I am not sure if that is what I am doing or not.  Air Ohio opened operations at my base airport (his home base also).  I had ordered specific aircraft for a specific purpose.  That being to fly all the short hops out of Cincinnati that I could.  What I am doing could be perceived as "targeting" them, however, it is merely been the goal of my company for quite some time to fly these routes.  I started out wanting to build a regional carrier.  Unfortunately, in this game, this does not seem to be easy without being a larger airline first (due to staff costs, etc...), so I hope that I am not playing this simulation unfairly.

Orion

My interpretation is that you should be ok provided you are not targeting every route the other guy if he is a 'younger' airline as that could be seen as an attempt to force him to either shut the routes or declare bankruptcy - I think what needs to happen is very clear black and white 'rules' of what you can and cannot do with anything going outside of those definitions becoming a breach and you ultimately pay the price for that breach.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: COUGAR on July 21, 2010, 08:12:47 AM
@ukatlantic: I am not sure it will be possible for sami or anyone else to physically verify every single route operated by every airline.

I closely studied the operators in India, and deploying upto 200% or even WAY more than that seems to be the de-facto strategy now: kinda like marking territory. There are people here deploying 522 seats on a route that supports 120!
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Sami on July 21, 2010, 09:28:33 AM
Sorry but instead "yelling" (not the right word but anyway .) it like that you should report them, IF there is something new from the previous of course. Otherwise there's nothing that can be done to enforce the rules since I don't know that someone is acting badly..
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: Sami on July 21, 2010, 06:01:08 PM
FYI, the user of that airline has not been online for a few days and he has thus not acted to the warning in the required timeframe, so I have closed a number of routes from him due to oversupply that exceeds the rule limits.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: ucfknightryan on July 21, 2010, 11:22:37 PM
Like it or not, targetting a new entrant is what happens all around: in the "Modern Times" scenario, the competition introduced routes 7 days after i did (these were unserved routes earlier). I cant see his fare levels (again not realistic) but even with unsustainable $50 fares my loads have crashed to less than 20%. which means he is clearly undercutting: objective again: to push out the new entrant.

Assuming he's an older incumbent airline, I bet the low load factors have far more to do with his CI being much higher than yours + you still having fairly low route image + possibly him operating more frequently then you and very little to do with him undercutting you on price.
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: gposey717 on July 22, 2010, 02:14:12 AM
Same thing with me even though i started late some of my routes started with no competition such as mu flights from KEWR to MDT Air Atlantis is trying to kill my airlines every route i opened hes swampped the market to where i cant make a decent enough profit to sustain my airline  >:(
Title: Re: Capacity Dumping
Post by: GDK on July 22, 2010, 02:49:01 PM
Same thing with me even though i started late some of my routes started with no competition such as mu flights from KEWR to MDT Air Atlantis is trying to kill my airlines every route i opened hes swampped the market to where i cant make a decent enough profit to sustain my airline  >:(

That's what happening in almost every airport in AWS. Pity you guys...