The Return of Talking Time

Go Back   The Return of Talking Time > Talking about media > Talking about television games > Let's Play Already

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #31  
Old 01-24-2015, 09:13 AM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Part 3: We're in the Money (ft. Tha Tycoonzzz)

Alright, when we last left our intrepid railroad he-what the fuck is this.



When trains travel from one territory to another, they ordinarily have to go through customs because that's how The Man shackles us. The Providence junction is on the Massachusetts-Rhode Island border, and the states here are marked as their own territories, but I assumed that the scenario maker turned off customs seeing as they're just states in the Union.

Guess I was wrong. This pretty much has to be some sort of alternate history where the Founding Fathers decided to mandate customs checks for interstate transport. They didn't tell us this shit in the briefing. Typical intel bungle.

So what this means for us is that every run from Providence to Boston, and presumably all other interstate traffic as well, has to wait until it clears customs before we receive our revenue. This might have applied the other way around (not entirely sure) and I might have forgot to show you that when the express first hit Providence at the end of the first update, but now you know.



Before the year is out, though, we get our money.

As an aside, I realized a little while ago that the revenue from these fares (and presumably all other fares and cargo revenues) must be aggregated over time to represent normal service, because unless there's some horrible time-warping secret the railroads have been keeping from us, real railroads don't send trains on one round trip a year and reap all their revenue from that.



Anyhow. We can build customs houses to shorten the waiting time, so I'll put one down in Boston.



1850 is over, and the Annual Report beckons. Let's take a look.



Not bad! Not bad a-you know what screw it, this is a pretty good start.

Most of this is self-explanatory, but I think load-miles hauled is how many total miles of track we've hauled loads over, and revenue per load-mile is how much money we made with every load-mile - revenue from the loads divided between every mile we hauled it over. Or something like that.



The next page is a helpful reminder of our scenario goals. As long as we continue making smart decisions, as I know you people have been, we should be able to stay on top and connect the two cities double time. I'm going to work towards expansion as our next immediate goal, actually.





Yeah, we should be good for now unless our opponent pulls a major expansion out of his ass, and even then it won't guarantee his success. The Company tab has two parts as you can see, the first part displaying revenue and the second part displaying profit.



And here's everyone in the running. Leland Stanford is the guy running the other railroad. Jay Gould might not start a railroad himself, or at least he's going to wait a little while before doing so. He was a notorious market player in real life, and that's how he is in-game, sometimes to the point of preferring to screw with other companies' stocks instead of making his own.

Layabout.



This is what my opponent actually looks like, for the record.

Anyhoo. Staying on top in the personal wallet competition will basically mean getting the railroad running smoothly, then diverting some of its profit into my pocket through a number of methods, just like the robber barons did. I'm probably going to just type out most of the annual report stuff from now on if the company list view's graphs don't prove suitably dramatic.




Stock dividends are paid quarterly, and the last quarterly payment of the year takes place when the new year rolls over. When 1852 looms, I could temporarily jack up the dividend rate in late December and then lower it once the Christmas bonus has found its way into my pocket. You might think this is kind of cheating, but I'm pretty sure the real robber barons cheated like this and worse. It's something to keep in mind when you need to boost your net worth.

(You can switch between company money and personal money by clicking on the money box.)



Unfortunately, our industries are not currently in the money. I think they will in time, though, given another full year to operate.

Now then. Expansion!



This looks like a good place to expand towards New York. There's more produce to haul to towns, and Norwich is big enough to demand both that and the goods, milk, passengers & mail from up north. We don't even have to cross the river right away.

Still no iron anywhere nearby to haul to the tool-and-die to make more goods, but if we haul goods to the port in Gloucester northeast of Boston, we'd receive iron to haul down south to make more goods with. It's something to keep in mind, I suppose. New London not shown to the south is smaller and is nowhere near the logs its lumber mill desires, so we can leave it alone unless you guys are feeling charitable and want me to service it with a branch later so it might grow into a proper town.

We only have around 300k, though. While we can take out another bond, the interest rates are still shitty, not to mention our interest payments are already at a decent amount.



A possibly cheaper and more lucrative alternative would be to expand east of Boston into the untamed wilderness hills of inland Mass, connect to the decently-sized Worcester and grab the conveniently-placed lumber mill & iron mine to the north. This would solve some resource problems and give us more steam to build towards NYC, but it's not really in the direction I'm taking to NYC. It would be profitable in general, though, which is also one of our goals and would help with the Norwich connection anyway.

Framingham is next to the route I'd take towards Worcester, and it's a decent village with a dairy farm & tool-and-die I can haul the iron to. If we go to Worcester, I'll very likely connect Framingham as well.





What I know for sure is that we can expand by building a little depot along the main line and buying another freight train to exclusively handle the produce. We can build double track for our main line when we need it down the line. I mean, later. We might need it soon if we have three trains on one track, but not this soon.

I'll take a quick trip to the stock market before we get things rolli-daaaaamn.



Good performance is reflected in a railroad's stock price and vice versa with bad performance, as is the case here. I wasn't expecting such a good price this early, but you guys delivered!



We haven't been at it long enough for the graph to be super helpful, but our stock is doing pretty well. The weighted return is basically a calculation of estimated return on investment, while I'm guessing the book value, revenue and earnings per share are indicators of how well our railroad is doing - higher values meaning better performance/profitability and good omens for investors & the stock itself. It's still worth enough that I can't borrow enough to buy any more of it because real tycoons always buy in bulk (really, you can only buy in batches), but that isn't the case for my rival's stock.



Feel free to laugh at this sorry loser.



After you're done with that, it's time to choose. Will we build towards Norwich, or will we build towards Worcester? Norwich will probably return a decent profit, and it's pointing in the right direction towards NYC. Worcester will return a better profit, and it's pointing in the right direction towards our coffers.

We could also connect to Brockton and/or any of the other small towns in our rival's sphere of influence, just to rub his nose in our petty spite. But not just any petty spite. Gamespite. And because we need at least four wheels to make a train, we could also also expand towards Gloucester and one of only 3 ports on the map, but really the first two options here are the best in my experienced opinion. Making ourselves stronger will weaken our opponent, albeit indirectly, and taking Norwich will deny him that potential expansion, even if it's a bit far it's probably not too far for the AI at this point.

Once you choose, I'll probably have to run the railroad for a bit to build up our monetary reserves and let the produce train stretch its legs, but we should be able to start on that next time because this part's already long enough.

Last edited by Trar; 05-13-2015 at 11:54 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 01-24-2015, 09:52 AM
Teaspoon's Avatar
Teaspoon Teaspoon is offline
This way up
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Here, there and everywhere
Posts: 3,639
Default

I like Worcestershire sauce.

Vote for Worcester.
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 01-24-2015, 02:07 PM
Bunk Moreland's Avatar
Bunk Moreland Bunk Moreland is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: USA (for now)
Posts: 8,172
Default

Worcester for the money.
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 01-24-2015, 06:56 PM
Mr Bean's Avatar
Mr Bean Mr Bean is offline
Chief
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Capital of the World
Posts: 922
Default

I thnk we head towards Norwich to box in our would be rival over there.
Reply With Quote
  #35  
Old 01-24-2015, 07:18 PM
Gerad's Avatar
Gerad Gerad is offline
Holy Swine
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Michigan
Posts: 6,289
Default

Worcester because I like saying it.

Wooster Wooster Wooster
Reply With Quote
  #36  
Old 01-24-2015, 11:42 PM
Torzelbaum's Avatar
Torzelbaum Torzelbaum is offline
????? LV 13 HP 292/
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 9,189
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerad View Post
Worcester because I like saying it.

Wooster Wooster Wooster
So are you saying you're a wooster booster?
Reply With Quote
  #37  
Old 01-28-2015, 03:57 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default

I'm still not entirely sure how this LP already has over 12,000 views, but thank you for reading. You strangers give me motivation. Expect an update before the week is out.
Reply With Quote
  #38  
Old 01-30-2015, 02:54 PM
Daikaiju's Avatar
Daikaiju Daikaiju is offline
King Of Space-Time
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 14,307
Default

What the HELL happened to your thumb?

Worcester. Profit now, Spite later.
Reply With Quote
  #39  
Old 01-30-2015, 05:43 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Part 4: Wooster Booster



Worcester it is! But we need money to get there, and we don't have as much of it as we probably need.



We have just enough to build to Framingham, though.



Since we can only take passengers, mail and milk from here (it's too small to demand anything other than what the industries demand), we'll route our produce train to do that as well as act as a mail service between the two bigger cities on our main line. I put down a post office in Framingham and at the Providence Junction so the mail can stay in storage longer, meaning we'll have longer to wait before it disappears, probably to be sent by horseback.

You'll notice I'm using a different cargo flag. Train #3 is taking mail from Providence, then dropping by Framingham to pick up more cargo to deliver to Boston. The yellow flag in Framingham means the train will not deliver the mail from Providence to Framingham, but instead keep it on the train. I could deliver it if I wanted to, but since it would pay extremely little due to the utter lack of demand, I don't want to.



I'm not entirely comfortable with three separate trains sharing one main line. But I don't want to take out another bond to pay for double track just yet, seeing as we're paying 59,000 dollars a year in interest on the one we have already. And that's not to mention the dividend.

Besides, it probably won't be too bad. Let's get these trains rolling!



After I lower the dividend by 17k due to low funds, of course.



Shortly after unpausing, I realized I wanted the Percy Express to go faster, so I boosted the throttle. The train will now go slightly faster, but the breakdown rate is increased by slightly less than a percent. It'll be worth it because more speed = more revenue. What's a slightly higher chance of a horrible accident when there's more money to be made??



As the Percy Express blazes it down the line, Jay Gould proves my prediction of his behavior right by fucking around with our stocks.



I could buy up more of our stock, since my purchasing power is now good enough, and the dividend combined with the rising value will cover my debts, but I'm pretty sure a 2-for-1 split will happen soon which by the way is a thing in this game. This will basically preserve the total value of the stock while making individual shares cheaper, which means I can buy up more of them.



Jay, meanwhile, went into debt to buy our high-valued stock immediately.



...a couple of months later and our stock value has actually dropped. The express hasn't reached Providence yet, which would likely boost the share price because earnings are tied to stock performance, but I'm going to go ahead and buy some anyway.



There we are. Buying on margin is usually a good idea if the stock's going to keep rising, although here it jumped up in price due to my purchase. Usually this means buying your own company's stock, because you're in control of your own railroad and you're probably smarter than the AI when it comes to keeping shares up with better profits...and other means as well.



Not quite 88, but still respectable.



This happens when there's not enough money left in the coffers to reasonably pay the dividend rate you set.



We can still keep paying the reduced rate for a little while, but if we had to keep running into the red, we would have to stop dividend payments entirely.



As it is, we can raise it again. I'll put it at 34k.



While we're cooking the books, I'll hire a better manager. The better the railroad performs, the higher caliber managers we can choose from, and I'm liking Strong here.



You'll notice I'm pretty much stealing passengers from under our rival's nose. (Two carloads, to be specific. The third car is grayed out because it's empty. It's usually better to quickly deliver some passengers than wait around for them if they're not there already.)



That's not hard to do when his only train is still waiting for passengers because those two houses will only produce 0.5 each per year because he couldn't place a station properly. I know this is 1998 AI, but come on.



Spying on looking at his books, he hasn't made a single delivery this year. And Rudolph Diesel is his current manager. You know, the guy who lowers a company's stock (which can be useful if you want to buy some on the cheap) and gives good discounts for a type of locomotive we won't see for about a hundred more years.

He could have started in New York City. He would have been a real thorn in our side then. I highly doubt he'll be able to get there. The only thing is that if the company goes bankrupt and he resigns with enough seed money to start another company, he could find a better position on the map. Some scenarios restrict bankruptcy claims and the ability to resign, but the briefing didn't mention either.

One other thing that's also restricted sometimes is the ability to build track anywhere on the map; if that's the case you must build one contiguous network. That's not the case here. We could actually build a station in New York and start laying track in the other direction if we wanted to, and it's certainly a decent option after we connect Worcester. The only thing is that we'd need to build two new stations instead of just one.

But whatever, one step at a time.



Periodically, towns and cities will offer bonuses like these. Even if one of these places is a bit out of the way, the reward money is good to cover a medium station or a small station with an expansion or two. Let's just see wher-



Oh.

Well...we could cross the bay with an ocean span. They're the only type of bridge you can build across ocean tiles as opposed to river tiles. They're quite expensive: just laying track to Newport in one direction would cost a couple hundred thousand. Ocean bridges aren't in the vanilla game, either, so if I were playing that version we wouldn't have any choice in the matter.

One house and yet another textile mill isn't worth an expensive bridge. Not unless you people say so, but so far you've displayed remarkable focus towards the scenario's goals. Go TTeam!

Last edited by Trar; 05-14-2015 at 07:46 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #40  
Old 01-30-2015, 05:46 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Part 4, Act 2



It's now August and our stock is falling again.





November. The Express is just outside Boston, and a freight train's about to hit Providence, so that dip should turn into a mountain soon enough. Meanwhile, that rise in our rival's stock is a bit distressing...





Looks like he's finally brought his game, or at least made enough money to buy another train. He's making far less in passenger revenue than us but more than double what we're making on freight transit, which means mail transit since that's literally the only other thing he can haul. Of course, we've only just inagurated a dedicated mail train that has far more ground to cover.





The Percy Express didn't have to go through customs when it arrived in Providence, but it does when it arrives in Boston. I'm going to kick up the dividend while we're waiting t-



Oh, there we are.





On the sixth day of Christmas, my railroad brought to me~

A whole shitload of money~

(This looks like a scripted event. Pretty fortunate for us!)



1851's performance. We're a bit slower than last year, but only because I haven't splurged on double track yet. I don't think we need to hire Garbe again unless we need another 4-4-0.







*ahem*

On with the new year then.



Our credit is good enough to grab a second bond that has a one percent lower interest rate than our current bond! Woo!





haha yeah okay

You receive half the purchase price when you sell industries. We're not using this farm enough to keep it in the green, so it's outta here.



2,000 more shares later...



Yeah, that's more than enough.





We're finally connected to Worcester. Laying track and building the station only cost us a laughable 196k - and an update twice as large as any of the previous ones so far. I think next update we'll get around to routing trains, connecting the wood and iron up north and building any needed stuff in our stations. Suggestions and questions are welcome as always.

Last edited by Trar; 05-10-2015 at 06:08 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #41  
Old 02-07-2015, 09:57 AM
Daikaiju's Avatar
Daikaiju Daikaiju is offline
King Of Space-Time
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 14,307
Default

To VERMONT! We need some of that sweet Maple Syrup money. And our pancakes are bland with just butter.
Reply With Quote
  #42  
Old 02-07-2015, 03:03 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default

If nobody else has any other routes to suggest soon, we'll do this to our goals Vermont:


Last edited by Trar; 02-07-2015 at 03:15 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #43  
Old 02-10-2015, 07:42 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default

Yes, I know it's been a little while, but I'll have an update out before the end of the week. Still on track for Vermont unless anyone says something else.

Last edited by Trar; 02-10-2015 at 07:56 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #44  
Old 02-14-2015, 05:41 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Part 5: Syrup Tycoon

First things first, we finish building at Worcester:





Since the depot is a dead end, I'll put down some telegraph poles to shorten the turnaround time. It's also a good idea to check your manager applications every so often, so I'll do that now.



Well, that's pretty good. Ben is a higher tier manager to be sure, but I'll hire Garbe again for a little bit before I switch to him, because...



I would have sent the Percy Express to Worcester, but that would mean less time to steal passengers from Providence (which is very important) so I bought a second express train. The other trains' routes have been adjusted to service the city as well. And since we're going to buy at least one more train for those new raw materials we hooked up to the north of town, all that means...



Double track, finally. 160k is a small price to pay for less congestion between our three main stations. I also set the freight trains' priority to lowest and the second express train's to regular, while the Percy Express stays on top.



We're not connected to any lumber mills to haul the logs to, and I don't want to haul iron because we're already delivering a good amount of goods, so I'll take the pulpwood to make paper. Incidentally, the nearest lumber mill we can connect to is in Lawrence, that village we looked at before across the river to the north. We'll see about connecting later, because we've already spent $500,000 in this update alone.



While our railroad makes some more money, I'll just check where you guys want me to g-

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daikaiju View Post
I...alright. Let's just see whe-



...okay then.

That's pretty out of the way, and across another river to boot. At least there's another paper mill in Brattleboro, the closest town. We'll need to make some money first and maybe refinance our bonds before we grab our maple syrup. (There is no maple syrup in this game, so we'll have to substitute liquefied wood pulp. Hopefully, nobody will tell the difference.)



Overhead isn't the most painful expense, but it's good to save money any way possible. Mail, meanwhile, is slow to appear but quite profitable. And we have a train exclusively dedicated to hauling mail and produce.



That double track really pays for itself.





This is a good thing, if you didn't already figure that out. A more vigorous economy means companies and passengers will pay more for our services. It also means our stock will do better, new track is slightly more expensive to build, and lower interest rates. We can get as low as 9 percent now!!



There's a slight extra fee if we refinance - IE, pay bonds off early and take out newer ones with less interest - but it's worth it. This way, we're saving around 25k a year on payments.



Yeah, I think I'll bump up the dividend to 101k while we're at it.



No, this was a brilliant investment.



It is now March. Between floating a third bond and our increased revenue stream, I think we have enough to build to Vermont. We're paying slightly more in interest now with the three lower-interest bonds than we were at the start of the year with the previous two, but that's still manageable.



I was hoping to build at a lower grade, but this is the best I could do. At this point in the game, we have two types of bridge available to us. Wooden bridges are the cheapest, but can't be double-tracked and slow trains down 40 percent while crossing. Stone bridges are much more expensive, but can be double-tracked and don't slow trains down, so they're only really worthwhile for main lines and express branches. We're economical wood pulp syrup barons, so wooden bridge it is.



And now we have a small depot in the Green Mountain State, by way of New Hampshire. I put up a post office, water & sanding towers, and telegraph lines.



I also put a small station at the other end of the branch to act as a service depot. Since there are no other stations between Brattleboro and Providence/Boston for a train to pass through and restock, a train would probably run out of sand and/or water if it were to travel along our Vermont branch line sans depot. That is Not A Good Thing.



And we'll have our newest train use the branch, because it's already hauling dolla dolla bills paper.

Next time: paying off our ludicrous debt of 1.5 million dollars over the remaining nine months of 1852! Unless you want me to dig us deeper connecting to all the different states, that is.

Last edited by Trar; 02-14-2015 at 06:05 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #45  
Old 02-14-2015, 11:27 PM
Kalir's Avatar
Kalir Kalir is online now
Crabjörn
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Utah
Posts: 5,729
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trar View Post
Seems legit.
Reply With Quote
  #46  
Old 02-15-2015, 07:14 AM
Mr Bean's Avatar
Mr Bean Mr Bean is offline
Chief
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Capital of the World
Posts: 922
Default

After you pay off he debts, I think it's time to head to NY so we can make some bank hauling tourists up to Vermont to see the foliage.
Reply With Quote
  #47  
Old 02-15-2015, 07:21 AM
Daikaiju's Avatar
Daikaiju Daikaiju is offline
King Of Space-Time
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 14,307
Default

It's all about them Green Mountains. Green with MONEY.
Reply With Quote
  #48  
Old 02-21-2015, 08:50 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default

Update 6 is going to come within the next week, most likely after Tuesday.
Reply With Quote
  #49  
Old 02-22-2015, 02:44 PM
Teaspoon's Avatar
Teaspoon Teaspoon is offline
This way up
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Here, there and everywhere
Posts: 3,639
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Bean View Post
After you pay off he debts, I think it's time to head to NY so we can make some bank hauling tourists up to Vermont to see the foliage.
yup, this sounds good
Reply With Quote
  #50  
Old 02-24-2015, 09:14 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Interlude 2: A Most Delicious Development

Quote:
Originally Posted by Advertisement for Daikaiju Brand Premium Hi-Quality Maple-Wood Syrup circa 1855

An Illustration of one of the Facilities used in the Production of the Fabulous Product that you will shortly be educated about



YES!
Introducing the New
DAIKAIJU BRAND PREMIUM HI-QUALITY MAPLE-WOOD SYRUP!
From Daikaiju Paper & Syrup Incorporated

The Maple Syrup you all know and love, now NEWLY IMPROVED and FORTIFIED with EXTRA TREE PRODUCT!

Manufactured and shipped straight from Brattleboro, in the fine State of Vermont, with patented Eastern wisdom resulting in the finest Flavors available.

ASK YOUR LOCAL GROCER IF DAIKAIJU BRAND PREMIUM HI-QUALITY MAPLE-WOOD SYRUP IS IN STOCK!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Partially recovered letter to the CEO of Talking Tracks Railroad from the president of DKJ Paper & Syrup Inc. June 3rd, 1854

CEO,

We are pleased that you have notified us of your intention to continue supplying our facilities in Brattleboro with pulpwood from Mass. I am confident we will both continue to profit handsomely from this enterprise.

I am also pleased to note your commitment to supplying us with increased quantities of pulp if we express need for more material, even going so far as to lay track to New York to ensure a steady supply.

I hope I can also be assured that you will refrain from supplying our competitors in either the paper or maple syrup industries - or if you must, do so at a reduced rate with lower priority trains.

At that, however, I must caution you. The board here recently got it into their heads that you might try and buy us out. They are strongly opposed to the idea, and I must say I would prefer if you not perform such an action. Surely we can continue to grow our businesses with cooperation.

In addition, some of my workers have recently reported strange and dangerous behavior from one of your freightmen at our main depot. According to witnesses, the man repeatedly kept dropping [unintelligible due to moisture damage] told them "Sorry, boss." [unintelligible] most concern, and I urge you to make an examination of [unintelligible]

S[unintelligible]

[unintelligible]

Last edited by Trar; 02-28-2015 at 11:37 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #51  
Old 02-25-2015, 05:18 PM
Daikaiju's Avatar
Daikaiju Daikaiju is offline
King Of Space-Time
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 14,307
Default

Reply With Quote
  #52  
Old 02-25-2015, 05:25 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default

Reply With Quote
  #53  
Old 02-25-2015, 10:14 PM
Mightyblue's Avatar
Mightyblue Mightyblue is offline
Are You Sure About That?
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Somewhere cold. And frosty.
Posts: 19,948
Default

Needs a Percy peeking out from around the back of the house.
Reply With Quote
  #54  
Old 02-28-2015, 12:21 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Part 6: Increased Monetary Funds, Increased Difficulties



It's a long way to NYC, we're short on money, and we already owe 1.5 million in bonds. I think we'll have to let our railroad do what it does best for a little while.



Here's an interesting sight. Train 5 is leaving Framingham, but all of the cars don't 'spawn' until they pass by the station, leaving train 4 to roll past despite having the same priority level.





Paying off this bond in September with the money from the Worcester train saved us 45k a year in interest, and our credit rating even went up to BBB.

Which reminds me of something. As good as this game is at simulating most aspects of railroad finance, there's nothing about the railroad workers themselves aside from scripted scenario messages/choices. We've seen about one event so far, and it didn't have to do with workers. You don't control the hiring or firing of anyone other than the managers (and to a limited extent yourself), you don't control their wages, and aside from scenario events you don't hear about any strikes or labor disputes or really much of anything.

Basically, this game covers the mechanical aspects of being a robber baron, but not so much the political/societal side of their day in history.

I'm going to look at our finances after 1853 is out and refrain from changing managers until then, so I can determine how exactly we pay our railroad's workers. I'm not entirely sure what expense covers their wages as of yet.



Anyway. I laid some telegraph poles in Worcester to shorten the time spent between making loads of money and making more loads of money.





Oh look, our first breakdown. Train 3's only been in service for a year hauling mail and produce - a relatively light load - and I didn't even push up the throttle or let it run out of oil. Yet it has a 1.8% breakdown chance...

Fortunately, no trains are heading in the same direction right now. It should be fixed before too long. We're lucky this wasn't one of our cash train express trains.



Because the Percy Express hit Boston and spewed out a ton of money, the demand for passengers in Boston is lower. (It makes sense from a gameplay standpoint.) This means passengers on train 4 from Worcester won't pay as much for the same privilege, and so this trip lost about 80k in value. Cheapskates.

Then again, it might go back up a bit as demand increases. We'll have to see.



Look out, it's 1853.









(Bonus points if you can tell me who that is.)



We can afford to refinance our existing bonds and possibly even take out a third bond to finance expansion again. Our stock might just split again by the end of the year, too.



Our track maintenance has increased by a factor of five, though, probably thanks to our little Vermont adventure. At least we're making enough money to cover it and still make extra, but that's still a lot.



I also took the liberty of selling the unprofitable textile mill in Boston and buying up the produce orchard & sheep farm up north, which we seem to be utilizing enough to generate 3k in profit each. I also also turned back the throttle on the Percy Express so it didn't have a relatively ludicrously high chance of crashing horribly. 1.4% > 2.7%

After that business, as well as refinancing and taking out another bond, we have about 800k. That's probably enough to expand into Connecticut, which if you didn't know is in the direction of New York. We could hire Ames again for cheaper stationbuilding, but I don't want to lose Ben, and I want to keep him for the duration of this year for Reasons.





Since this is part of our main line, I opted for a double-track stone bridge.



I put down a saloon and a post office, then took out an extra bond for a water tower/sanding tower because that damn stone bridge ate up most of my expansion money, and I wanted a service checkpoint for trains heading to/from Rhode Island. That bond was at 9%, and I had to lower the dividend to 71k. 71k. And we're paying 164k a year in interest. Don't those creditors know mercy?!



And also I built this.





Train 4 and the Percy Express are now scheduled to go to Norwich, at least. Next time: routing freight to Norwich, and also maybe expanding some more if we can pay our even more ludicrous debt!

Last edited by Trar; 03-11-2015 at 08:16 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #55  
Old 03-07-2015, 04:28 PM
Daikaiju's Avatar
Daikaiju Daikaiju is offline
King Of Space-Time
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 14,307
Default

Should we connect the western line with the VT branch? Establish the golden triangle of Maple, Cod and Mystic Pizza?
Reply With Quote
  #56  
Old 03-08-2015, 09:52 AM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default

It's, uh, certainly possible. Would be expensive, though. I'm likely going to connect New York first.
Reply With Quote
  #57  
Old 03-08-2015, 09:53 AM
Daikaiju's Avatar
Daikaiju Daikaiju is offline
King Of Space-Time
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 14,307
Default

Fair enough. I hear it's a helluva town.
Reply With Quote
  #58  
Old 03-11-2015, 09:56 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Part 7: Deep in the Heart of Connecticut

It's been a while, so I'm giving you a larger than usual update. Some of the screenshots in this update might look a bit different than normal due to an oversight on my part, which I took care of only after I wrapped everything up. Hopefully it shouldn't look too different.



Let's start it off with a screenshot of the river crossings I missed when I first looked at Newport, the ones that would allow me to lay track without a stupidly expensive spanning bridge. I am observational!





Routed two of our three freight trains to go to Norwich. I considered buying a sixth train, but we don't really need another one just for that town. Seems about time we unpause time and let our trains do their thing.





This arrival gave us enough money to pay off that 9% interest bond. I'd still like to let our trains stretch their metaphorical legs (and literal wheels) before we expand further. It's only March, after all, so we have time.



August. We have enough money to do something about the congestion, which was starting to become a problem. I had a goods train bound for Worcester that was held up in Boston by no less than three other trains, so I switched some priority levels and built this branch line between the two cities. Let's hope the engineers use it automatically so I don't have to set waypoints for them.



I was trying to take a picture of the Percy Express, but got this instead. 1853 went by pretty quick, but that's normal when you don't expand much. Let's see what's inside.



Huh, there's some money stuffed inside.



That's...



A decent amount.



Here's that train I was trying to photograph before, at least.



We can now hire a new manager! Holladay is okay, but we can pay less and save more with Schmidt. Garratt's fuel reduction is tempting, but train speed is directly tied to revenue, and I'm pretty sure you want higher average speeds if you want people to like your railroad. He'd be more worth it if we were running 50 trains, but we're not.



Here's our total income over four years of existence. Note how we make most of our money with passenger service. Fuel expenditure isn't the worst of our expenses (not when we have track in no less than five states now), but it helps to pay less for it. And-wait a minute.







Turns out I wasn't utilizing these industries enough to turn a profit, since our 4-4-0 Americans are too frigging slow to cover all that ground in a year and still return to the depot more than once. I'll get a nice cash boost from selling these, at any rate, and I'll refrain from buying any more businesses unless I know they'll be lucrative.



So, we're going to need yet more money to expand. And, I also want more money. Fortunately for us, we happen to have an untapped resource at our disposal, and all we need to do is double-track this spur and buy a sixth train.



This will do nicely. I have this train delivering goods to cities that are already receiving goods made from wool, but there's still enough demand for goods for it to work out. This train is also in a good position to deliver goods to cities down the line to New York. The future line that is, to the future.





I'm also going to plonk down two large restaurants, one in Boston and one in Providence. These are usually a great investment, and we are great businesspeople, so we'll get along like a house on fire.
Reply With Quote
  #59  
Old 03-11-2015, 09:57 PM
Trar Trar is offline
Doin' up the house
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New England
Posts: 1,961
Default Part 7, Act 2



Now, expansion. We're headed to New York, but we still can't just build in a straight line until we hit the Bronx. We will, however, continue our game of strategic play-by-mailcar leapfrogging. In this case, we're going to leap over the Connecticut River and connect to Hartford, because it's closest and has the most resources. See those cattle south of Hartford? We can take those to Boston and slaughter them to make delicious beef, and we might even be able to buy the industries in question and actually turn a profit with them.



Ideally, I would build a separate branch for Hartford so I don't end up clogging the mainline even more. That ridge would be troublesome to just lay track over it. I took out a bond (we're back to owing four, but they're all at 8% interest so it's alright) to prepare for construction.



I decided to go around the hill and spent 550k just to cross the river. I might joke about making shittons of money, but if you want high-quality tracks you really do need it.





I've laid track to Hartford proper, but I don't have enough money to place the stations I want and I don't want to take out a fifth bond. What do I do?



This, that's what. Normally, this isn't a good idea because this gives your opponents more stock to buy, which means that much less of your company's stock (and therefore dividends) will be under your control. The AI can't merge companies and put you out of business that way, but you'll want to have at least 50% ownership of your stock. This gives you majority ownership, and besides the fact that being secure in your own company is always a good thing, having that majority in any company you're not leading lets you assume the chairmanship of those companies. And that means you can pretty much own more than one company in all but name, hiring and firing yourself from each one you want to control. The AI can't do this either, to my knowledge.

Owning more than 10% but less than 50% of a company's stock, though, lets you call a vote for chairmanship. How the shareholders vote largely depends on how many of the public shareholders feel you'd do a better job as CEO than the guy you're looking to replace, and whether your rivals that also own stock in the company feel like supporting you or not.

Of course, human opponents in multiplayer don't have any restrictions. The only thing they need to ruin your day is a better railroad...and also Hamachi, because you need that to play multiplayer in this game. Which I'd totally do with any of you, by the way.



We could also merge with our competitor if we really wanted to. It's in our price range, and even if we really wouldn't gain anything from it other than Gamespite, it's an option. Stockholders vote on this action too, and they're swayed by how much you pay per share (anywhere from the current share price up to twice that amount), and how much of the target company's stock any of your rivals own. If you successfully acquire the company, you receive everything they own - including their debt. I haven't really done any of the shenanigans I described above (yet), but I have done a couple of mergers in my day.



Our opponents seem to not care about our stock for the time being. That, or they just can't afford it right now since it's doing well as usual. I already have enough of a lead on them in the Wallet Race that issuing more stock won't hurt me more than it will help me in the long run.

Hi ho, financial recklessness! Away!







We finally connect to Hartford with only 37k to spare. Next time: paying for all this crap.

Last edited by Trar; 05-10-2015 at 06:08 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #60  
Old 03-12-2015, 06:09 PM
Daikaiju's Avatar
Daikaiju Daikaiju is offline
King Of Space-Time
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 14,307
Default

The maple money will see us through to NY. mmm, maple glazed beef...
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
collective masochism , let's play , railroad tycoon , screenshot lp , trains

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:21 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Your posts ©you, 2007