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NAM Traffic Simulator and Data View Support Thread

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#1 z1

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Posted 02 April 2009 - 11:46 AM

The NAM Unified Traffic Simulator


The NAM Unified Traffic Simulator (or the NAM Simulator, for short) is a traffic simulator that is derived from the original Maxis traffic simulator, but is also built upon the knowledge gained from all previous NAM traffic simulators, including work by the7trumpets, Tropod, jplumbley, Mott, and z. It uses the Simulator Z core; what makes it a unified simulator is that it makes available to the player all the main features found in all previous traffic simulators. What makes this possible is the Traffic Simulator Customization Tool (TSCT), which can be used to customize the NAM Simulator in any of these ways, and it also allows the ordinary player to safely customize the traffic simulator in ways that were not possible previously. The TSCT is available as an option in the NAM installer when the option "I want to build a custom simulator" is chosen; it is also available as part of the NAM Traffic Subsystem.

Since the NAM Simulator evolved from Simulator Z, many of the features listed here for the NAM Simulator were also present in various versions of Simulator Z. However, many of these versions were never released together with the NAM, and so most people will be seeing the features they contained for the first time here.

One of the main areas of the work on the NAM Simulator involved increasing the efficiency of the pathfinder to close to its theoretical maximum (it uses the "perfect pathfinding" settings), while also increasing the Sims' maximum commute time to be closer to real-world conditions. This allows a smoother distribution of traffic throughout the city, with typically less congestion. At the same time, the congestion that does exist is less likely to lead to abandonment due to commute time; Sims know that they occasionally have to sit through traffic jams, and are a bit more patient. Better pathfinding also means that Sims act much smarter about finding jobs and routes to them; this also results in less abandonment due to commute time. As in the real world, zones can be farther apart without causing problems; this is especially helpful when building existing cities to scale. Finally, running the pathfinder with near-optimum settings allows the simulator to run up to several times as fast as previous simulators.

The second major area of work on the NAM Simulator involved a more flexible distribution of traffic among the various travel types. In combination with the pathfinder upgrading, this allows buses to be counted toward traffic and congestion, just like all other vehicles. This is a significant change from all previous simulators, and it's an important point to remember when planning your transportation infrastructure. More flexible distribution of traffic also means that the NAM Simulator is much more dynamic about allowing Sims to choose their transportation. In cities with excellent highways and road capacity, car usage has been measured at over six times that of previous simulators. Yet for cities with less extensive road networks and reasonable mass transit, car usage is actually less than in previous simulators.

Other changes in the NAM Simulator include the following:

  • More realistic subway costs. Subways in Sim City are tremendously underpriced compared to the real world. The improvements to the pathfinder have made huge networks of subways less necessary, so the monthly cost for subway tiles has been multiplied by six to add more realism.
  • ]More realistic air pollution due to traffic. Until now, the amount of air pollution emitted by traffic has been unchanged from the original game, where it was based on cities that had far less traffic capacity than that used by any of the current simulators. To keep the amount of air pollution emitted by traffic to a more realistic amount, the proportion of traffic air pollution to actual traffic has been lowered in the NAM Simulator. This lower proportion is linked to the Clean Air Act, so it is in effect only when the Clean Air Act is enabled.
  • More accurate numbers for the Commute Time Graph. Due to a bug in the game, it is impossible to get accurate Commute Time Graph numbers for all situations. However, the NAM Simulator has adjusted the scaling of this graph to provide reasonably accurate numbers for most situations.
  • Improved intersection effects. Despite the appearance of stoplights at intersections, Sims don't actually stop; they don't even slow down unless congestion is present around the intersection. the NAM Simulator provides much more congestion around heavily-traveled intersections, thereby doing a better job of simulating stop lights and stop signs.
  • Greater monorail and high speed rail usage. Due to a bug in the game, monorail and HSR usage is generally less than it should be, sometimes by quite a bit. the NAM Simulator compensates for this bug by raising monorail usage to appropriate levels
  • Monorails and HSR have been fixed to contribute to and be affected by traffic congestion, just like all other vehicles.

The following features are new as of the May 2010 NAM:

  • Greater highway usage. The traffic simulator has been tuned so that Sims use highways much more than ever before. This usage still tends to fall short of real world usage, though, due to the structure of the game. The amount of rapid transit available in a city will also have a big effect on highway usage.
  • All mass transit speeds have been recalibrated to provide a more realistic simulation.
  • Improved customer levels for businesses.
  • Capacities and speeds of one-way roads have been raised to duplicate the real-world advantage of these roads.
  • Street capacities have been raised so that they reflect the capacities implied by their speed limits.

There are Park and Ride versions of the NAM Simulator; these can be enabled with the Traffic Simulator Customization Tool, mentioned above. Park and Ride changes the game slightly so that cars cannot reach their destination directly. Instead, those Sims who prefer to drive must park near some sort of mass transit station, and then take mass transit to the stop closest to their workplace. From here, they must walk the rest of the way. For this to work well, you need to have an extensive mass transit system. You also need to build parking lots and/or parking garages near key mass transit stops; generally the best places are at the edges of your residential areas that are closest to your jobs. Or you could just build parking facilities near the Sims' jobs (the ones that come with buildings generally don't count), but this really defeats the main purpose of Park and Ride. If you choose the Park and Ride version of a simulator, but don't build extra parking facilities, your game will not work very well at all. I have found RalphaelNinja's Ninja Boulevard Station and Ninja Boulevard Kiosk to be very useful in general, and particularly useful for Park and Ride, as they both contain large underground garages. I have enclosed modified lot files for both of these stations at the end of this post; the modifications bring the monthly cost down to be more in line with similar stations, and they also double the capacity, bringing them more in line with RTMT (and making them especially useful for Park and Ride). Since the exquisite design of these stations must have cost a lot of money, I left the plop cost alone. Also, since I have enclosed only the lot files, if you don't have these stations already, you'll need to download them from the above links.


What are the different versions of the NAM Simulator, and how are they used?

The NAM Simulator comes in five versions - Classic, Low, Medium, High, and Ultra. The name of the version refers to the network capacities in the simulator. The following is a list of the network capacities for each version of the simulator; all capacities are per tile:

wfs5.jpg

Which simulator version is appropriate for a particular city depends primarily on two things: the population of the city, and the amount of rapid transit (rails) available. Less capacity is needed for lower population cities, but less capacity is also required for cities with a lot of rapid transit. For example, a city of two million Sims has been run quite successfully using the Low capacity version of the NAM Simulator, but it had an extremely extensive subway system. So pick a simulator version based on these two factors; if it doesn't seem the right capacity, you can always switch it out for a different capacity version. Experience has shown that in large cities, the effects of such a switch may take up to five years to fully manifest. You can tell when things have stabilized by looking at the Traffic Volume Graph in the following way: First, let the game run until there is a sudden shift in traffic patterns. Sometimes, this may take over a year. Then run the game until you go at least a full year without any sudden change in traffic patterns. At that point, the transition to the new capacity simulator is complete.

Installing the NAM Simulator

The NAM Simulator is installed during the NAM installation. If you've already installed the NAM, you can reinstall the simulator by installing and running the NAM Traffic Subsystem.

 

Traffic Volume View and Other New Data Views


The Traffic Volume View included with the NAM as of the June, 2009 version offers a number of improvements to the one included with the game. Rather than the seven shades of blue in the original, this version uses the full spectrum of color, including approximately 48 distinct color shades. The maximum volume shown for each travel type has been increased from a flat 1200 for all types in the originalTraffic Volume View to a value which is 300% of the capacity of the underlying network for the selected travel type. (Since only one commute period is shown at a time, this is one half of the standard network capacity, which is calculated for a full day.) The legend has been increased from five to nine entries, and each color in the legend is followed by the percentage of the underlying network capacity that that color represents, as well as the actual number of Sims represented by that percentage. When a travel type may have more than one underlying network (e.g., cars may travel on streets, roads, or highways), a subtext below the legend indicates which network is being referenced in the display.

The colors in the display have been arranged so that they are more concentrated at lower levels, in order to give finer granularity at lower volumes. Between volumes of 0% and 10%, colors change about every 1.5%. Between 10% and 130%, colors change about ever 5%. And between 130% and 300%, colors change about every 10%. Please note that while every attempt has been made to attain the greatest accuracy possible, all numbers are somewhat approximate. The numbers following each color in the legend refer to the approximate beginning of the range of that particular color.

You may notice that starting at 100%, the colors closely follow those in the Traffic Congestion View. However, it is important to keep in mind the difference between theTraffic Congestion View and the Traffic Volume View. The Congestion View is compiled from an entire day's travel statistics, while the Volume View refers to only a single commute period. Therefore, yellow in a single volume view does not necessarily indicate congestion, and blue or green in a single folume view does not necessarily indicate lack of congestion. An experienced player may be able to look at both commute periods of certain volume views and get a good idea of congestion, but it is necessary to be careful here.

Finally, most transit station types light up in all volume views. This does not indicate anything about usage; it is simply so you can identify them easily. Certain types of transit stations do not light up because of the way they were designed.

The Traffic Volume View also includes a new Subway View. The new Subway View acts in most ways like the normal underground Subway View, which is entered by selecting the Subway Tool when you want to build or demolish subways. However, it has included in it the volume display feature of the Traffic Volume View, which allows you to see the usage of your subways as you are building (or demolishing) them. Like the rest of the Traffic Volume View, this view shows the volume of traffic in each subway line visible in the main map, as well as in all subway lines in the minimap.

The last feature included in the Traffic Volume View is a new Subway Building View, which is entered whenever you select a subway station to build. It differs from the standard Subway Building View in that no buildings other than subway stations are displayed; zones are displayed wherever possible; and like the Subway View, the volume of traffic in each subway line visible in the main map, as well as in all subway lines in the minimap. In addition, zones and transit station locations are shown in the minimap.Finally, most transit station types light up in all volume views. This does not indicate anything about usage; it is simply so you can identify them easily. Certain types of transit stations do not light up because of the way they were designed.

A new Zones view is also included with the NAM. The new Zones view is identical to the Subway Building View, except that subway volume levels are not displayed. The new Zones view is currently optional (unlike the other data views described above, so you must select it during the NAM installation if you want to have it installed.

It is strongly recommended that you use the DatPacker if you have a substantial number of plugins. This will not only speed up the loading of your game, but it will also great speed up switching back to the normal view from both the Subway Building View and the Zones View.
 

Patch for RTMT Users


If you are using RTMT, it is highly recommended that you install the latest patch, which is especially important for the NAM Simulator users. You can find the patch here.

Attached Files


Edited by z1, 24 February 2014 - 09:09 PM.


#2 Retep Molinari

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Posted 06 April 2009 - 07:49 AM

I am a bit confused about how to download this. How many versions are there and where are they?

Also, this this a comprehensive explanation of the mod, or is there a more extensive description somewhere?

#3 b22rian

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Posted 06 April 2009 - 01:42 PM

Hello Retep,

There are 4 difficulty levels of Simulator Z..
(low) is the most difficult , giving you the lowest capacity settings for the traffic network..
(medium) is the second most difficult..
( High) is the second easiest..
( Ultra ) is the easiest of the 4 versions.. giving the most generous traffic capacity settings for your traffic networks..

A more comprehensive discussion of the development of traffic Sim Z and its inner working can be found at sim city Devotion

http://sc4devotion.c...hp?topic=5382.0

As far as finding and installing the traffic plug ins..?
This is done when you install the NAM..As part of the install instructions , it will ask you to chose a traffic plug in..
The 4 difficulty levels of traffic Sim Z are part of those options for a traffic plug in, Included with many others..

The latest version of the NAM, is the March NAM , which can be downloaded also from sim city devotion provided you have
registered for the site.. and also registered seperately for the LEX...

(note )- there are 2 versions of the NAM, one for windows and than one if you are using a MAC operating system.

http://sc4devotion.c....php?lotGET=851 ( the windows version)..
http://sc4devotion.c....php?lotGET=852 ( the MAC version )

The new and improved volume Data view , recently created by Z1 comes as part of the package when you chose
traffic Z as your traffic plug in...

But further reading on the Z's traffic volume graph can be found here..

http://sc4devotion.c...hp?topic=5409.0

Thanks, Brian

#4 Retep Molinari

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Posted 06 April 2009 - 06:07 PM

I'm not savvy enough to understand this--

what fits the "realisitc" bill? Let's use's Europe's transit use rates as a bar.


#5 z1

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Posted 06 April 2009 - 09:12 PM

After much discussion with members of the NAM team, along with much experimentation and research, it became clear to me that "realistic" in SC4 means "values that make the game as a whole behave realistically."  The game is built in such a way that using completely realistic numbers everywhere leads to unrealistic results overall.  Furthermore, terms like "commute period" aren't clearly defined; beliefs as to what it meant varied from one hour to half a day.  So Simulator Z was built so that the overall behavior of a city corresponds as closely as possible to the real-world behavior of a similarly constructed city.

The network capacities that are used by the various versions of Simulator Z are all listed in the first post in this thread.

To be a little more specific than Brian, Simulator Z can be selected during the NAM installation on the page after the license agreement; you have to click on the plus sign labeled "Click to select traffic controller files" to see it.  Its various versions are at the end of the list, and are described in full in the first post in this thread.

#6 SnakeChomp

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Posted 12 April 2009 - 10:41 AM

This should be an easy question, but I couldn't find anything specific enough for me in the readme or other threads. The new commute time graph display seems to have changed the Y axis value from minutes to something else. Is the Y axis now in hours or is it an arbitrary unit of measurement? Is there a new range where you know commute times are starting to become a problem, such as when the old graph climbed above 120 minutes?


#7 z1

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Posted 12 April 2009 - 12:17 PM

The Y axis is still minutes, but it's been adjusted to give a more accurate reading.  Unfortunately, when you have intercity travel, commute times shoot way up, much more than they should.  The new commute time graph adjusts partially for this, but as a result, commute times for a single city with no regional connections are a bit lower than they should be.  It is not possible to get these times perfect for all circumstances; this is a game bug.

The unreliability of the numbers on the Commute Time Graph has long been known by the NAM team, and they should be used only as an approximation.  Instead, you should look at the trends in the curve to see if your commue times are increasing or decreasing.  Simulator Z allows for much longer commute times, which are realistic for the size of the tiles, so this graph is not as important is it is for other simulators.  The added realism is also why the numbers tend to be lower; they are closer to the actual number of minutes it takes the Sims to commute, as the speeds and distances are both known quite accurately.

#8 Calvin K

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 06:17 PM

i tried Simulator Z for the first time and found that suddenly most of my sims have abandon using the bus or walk... instead they are all driving now! Ridership for bus has more than halved (few stations that had about >600+ usage now have single digit, some stations are not used at all). The plus side is more sims are using subway and train, but a lot more are driving (more than doubled).

Is that an intended adjustment for buses?

#9 z1

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Posted 17 April 2009 - 08:59 PM

Simulator Z differs from all previous traffic simulators in that buses now contribute toward traffic congestion, so the simulator has to balance bus usage with total road traffic.  Most of the time bus usage does not drop as much as you report; a drop of 20% or so is more common.  But Simulator Z's pathfinder is also much smarter, so if your bus routes largely overlap your subway and train routes, the Sims will choose the much faster subways and trains over the buses.  Finally, Simulator Z is somewhat more biased toward car traffic than previous simulators, to better approximate real-world conditions.  But if you put enough rapid transit in your city (i.e., various forms of trains), the Sims will shift a lot of their car usage to the rapid transit, because it's much faster.  Of course, if you've built lots of highways in your city, they may end up sticking with their cars anyway.

The easiest way to increase your bus usage is to put your bus stops where there's no other forms of mass transit nearby (since buses are the slowest).  Or save some money and tear down some subways.  A certain proportion of Sims will always prefer mass transit to driving; it's just that now they take the fastest form of mass transit available.

You can also use one of the Park & Ride versions of Simulator Z, described in the first post, if you really want to cut down on your car traffic.  Just be sure to build enough parking facilities around your key residential mass transit stops.

Overall, I think that if you stick with Simulator Z for a while, you'll find the new traffic pattern quite realistic.


#10 yamaneko

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Posted 29 April 2009 - 08:49 AM

Is there a way to de-install Simulator Z, or at least lower the optimization? It uses perfect pathfinding, but perfect pathfinding is computationally demanding and perhaps a touch unrealistic since it assumes that the sims have perfect knowledge of traffic conditions when we humans usually do not.  I have iLive, and the pathfinding algorithm parameter in SimCity_1.dat is 0.09;  would a change in that suffice? 

This is an issue because my computer is over six years old. 







#11 z1

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Posted 29 April 2009 - 10:26 AM

The term "perfect pathfinding" as used in SC4 is a bit of a misnomer; the pathfinding in SC4 is never completely perfect because speeds aren't fully taken into account.  Nevertheless, you are correct in that the pathfinding heuristic controls the accuracy of the pathfinding, and the value of 0.003 results in the most accurate pathfinding.  It should probably be called "best pathfinding."

The effect of the pathfinding heuristic on speed is nonlinear; you are again correct that lower values in general require more computation time, but this is not always the case.  The reason for this is that exponential efffects start to turn linear as the ideal value of 0.003 is approached.  For example, in Simulator Z, it takes no longer to run with a heuristic of .003 than one of .009.  In Simulator A, by contrast, a heuristic of .009 is used, and the traffic simulator takes three to four times as long to run as in Simulator Z.  So I don't think switching simulators is your best strategy here; Simulator Z is heavily optimized for speed.

So what's the best approach?  In order of preference for game playing, the first one, which I understand may not be possible, is to get at least a somewhat newer computer, or even an upgrade for your current one.  Simulator Z was developed on a five-year-old computer, and it runs fine here.  If you are memory-bound, spending as little as $15 on more memory could not only speed up SC4, but probably a lot of other things you do on your machine as well.

But if this is not your problem, or you can't afford any computer upgrade, your next best bet is to play in smaller tiles.  If you're using large tiles, switching to medium tiles makes a big difference, as they're only a quarter of the size.

Finally, if all else fails, raising the pathfinding heuristic high enough will speed up the simulator, although at the expense of noticeably reduced accuracy in pathfinding.  Still, at any given value for the heuristic, I think you'll find that Simulator Z still runs the fastest, and it's also compatbile with all NAM add-ons.  I would recommend trying a heuristic of 0.020, and then varying that up or down in increments of 0.005, depending on your results.  If 0.020 is still way too slow for your machine, you might want to try increasing it in increments of 0.010.  It's true that the original Maxis simulator uses a value of 0.09, but this is so high that I've seen people write, "My Sims are so stupid, they couldn't find a job if their lives depended on it!"  You shouldn't have to go anywhere near a value that high.


#12 yamaneko

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Posted 02 May 2009 - 07:53 PM


I think I found and fixed the problem.

1)  I reduced the pathfinding heuristic from 0.09 to 0.03.  

2)  I rebooted the computer before running Sim City.  

My guess is that #2 was more effective.




#13 z1

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Posted 02 May 2009 - 10:05 PM

If you're using Simulator Z, and you used Ilive's Reader to change the heuristic in SimCity_1.dat from .09 to .03, then that change had no effect, since that value is overridden by Simulator Z's copy, which is .003.  So if that's the case, it definitely was the case that rebooting the computer is what helped.  This would also point to a lack of memory as being your main problem.


#14 timpotte

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 08:21 PM

Ok so I have simulator Z and people have abandon the Monorail system. Is this now do to the faster and better transits system? The rider ship was not great but did it get use. Why has this happen?



#15 z1

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Posted 13 May 2009 - 09:59 PM

Most likely, the Sims found faster ways to work.  Does your monorail go directly between your residential and commercial/industrial areas?  Does it have plenty of stations on it?  Is its route at least as direct as subway lines or other rail lines, and does it have as many stations?  If you answered "no" to any of these questions, it probably means that although the monorail travels at a faster speed, the total trip time would be longer.

#16 micromanager

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Posted 18 May 2009 - 02:40 PM

I have a situation which I just can't figure out.

I used simulator Z High (I had the 2008 NAM with Simulator A Easy) and my car usage dropped by 10,000 or so. Pedestrian and subway usage increased greatly, because I'm guessing people can now walk farther distances. This is fine, but I'd like to have sims use my highway system to commute to jobs outside of the city (my main city is bordered by two industrial cities on either side). After I installed simulator Z, my sims flooded onto the passenger trains to commute to jobs in the neighboring industrial cities. So now my highways are empty, and my sims are using passenger trains to get to their jobs in the neighboring industrial cities.

Here's the mystery: while there are passenger train stations in the main city, there are no passenger train stations in the neighboring industrial cities. I have no idea how my sims are getting off the train once they cross the border. I've run my city for 10 years or so, and there is still significant passenger train usage. How is this possible? Does simulator Z make train stations unnecessary for leaving a passenger train? Any help would be greatly appreciated, because simulator Z works well in every other aspect. Thanks!


#17 z1

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 01:07 AM

Simulator Z is actually significantly more biased toward car usage than any previous simulator.  However, Sims can be lured out of their cars if there is a big enough time difference in their commute by switching to mass transit.  This appears to be what's happening to you.  The pathfinding in Simulator Z is very precise, so Sims are very smart about which is the fastest way to their jobs.  Subway usage jumped because subways are much faster than cars.  A lot of the increase in pedestrian usage is Sims walking to the subway or train station. 

The reason your lack of passenger train stations in your neighboring cities has no effect on train usage in your main city is that your main city has no knowledge of the internals of any other city.  The track doesn't even have to go anywhere in the other city; it just has to cross the city boundary.  In time, though, this may create certain imbalances in your secondary cities, and in your region as a whole.

If you want your highways used more, the best thing to do is to put them on important routes that aren't served by subways or passenger trains.  Many people put lots of subways in their cities, which is not the way most cities work, as subways are terribly expensive to build.  But if they're there, the Sims will tend to use them, especially if they have lots of stops.  If you had a subway or commuter rail line that got you to work much faster than the highway, wouldn't you take it?


#18 micromanager

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 12:24 PM

Ahhhh - thanks for the explanation. I love Simulator Z so far because it's very realistic (I cut back on subway construction because of the higher cost), but this seems very unrealistic (it seems like most passenger train lines that cross the city boundary would be the preferred choice for sims, even though their trip doesn't end at the city boundary). Do you know of any fix that prevents passenger trains from leaving the city? Maybe similar to the "No Freight Truck" road pieces that you can use to channel freight traffic onto rails? Passenger trains play an important part in commuting inside my city, and I'd to keep them if possible.

#19 z1

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 12:31 PM

Sure, just break the intercity connection by demolishing the track on the edge square.  You can then run the track back up to the very edge - just don't recreate the connection.  Your commuter rail traffic may drop off a bit, since Sims can no longer get to the other city, but other than that, it should be unchanged.

The whole way multiple cities work in SC4 is a bit of a hack - time warps and all.  Certain unrealistic behavior involving city boundaries (such as the eternal commuter loop) is a result of this.


#20 micromanager

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 12:53 PM

sorry - I was unclear in the last post. I also have pretty sizable freight-train travel between cities (I like my industry to use freight trains instead of trucks so I use the "No Freight Truck" traffic control road pieces to push my freight traffic onto the rails. It helps with congestion). If I destroy the intercity connections, my industry can't get their goods out of the city and I'll be forced to open up the roads again, which I ideally don't want to do. I guess I could build separate rails for passenger and freight, but I was wondering if you knew of any "traffic control" rail pieces that I could use to prevent passenger trains from leaving the city. You know, like the ones that allow you to prevent buses or freight trucks from driving on certain roads?

This may be impossible, and I might just have to compromise, so just let me know if this is the case. Thanks again for your help!

#21 z1

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 01:22 PM

I see your dilemma.  Fortunately, you are in luck.  Cogeo, that great master of mass transit, has created a Rail Traffic Controllers pack that does exactly what you want.


#22 Subbub

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 01:49 PM

where can you dowload the traffic control road pieces??? please leave a link

#23 z1

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 03:26 PM

There's the Bus Blocker, and then there's the BRF UrbanLegend Traffic Control Pack, which includes a truck blocker and bus-only lanes, along with a "road closed" option.


#24 micromanager

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Posted 19 May 2009 - 05:36 PM

awesome - this is perfect. Thanks so much!

#25 aaaling

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Posted 25 May 2009 - 07:49 AM

I recomend Z Ultra!

Check out The Simtropolis Vending Machine!

Looking for ebina’s files? Click this link to download his files on MediaFire!


#26 chris0101

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 04:23 PM

Generally speaking, Sims seem to prefer their cars and subways in this simulator. I think it is because most Sims feel that it is the fastest way to go.

I built lots of highways in my city and a lot of subways to help them out - I'd recommend that you do so as well. I find that monorails simply don't justify the amount of space that they take up. However, I hear that in the new NAM, there may be another puzzle piece where we have a monorail or bullet train on a road or avenue, so that may make it more worth it.

Any idea whether or not parking garages encourage more mass transit usage?


#27 chris0101

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 04:24 PM

By any chance, is the Z Simulator compatible with this?:

http://www.simtropol...ls.cfm?id=14767

I have quite a few of these in my city.



#28 rudric

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 05:12 PM

Im really thinking of changing to Z as im building a new city now, but, it seems im not quite liking all the ideas in Z. I have A medium now.
Im doing plenty of transport option in my city, bus system, rail (intercity), monorail(intercity), subways and highways.
Im not sure im fond of the idea sims prefering cars as busses add to congestion. Well maybe it's realistic. I most certainly do want sims to use all the traffic systems available, also the monorail.

Im aiming to build a city of at least 650 000+ sims, region together 1 200 000+ sims.

Should I stick in A? How resource hog Z is? I dont have a superfast computer. mem 1 gb, cpu 1800mhz.

#29 z1

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 05:48 PM

Originally posted by: chris0101
Any idea whether or not parking garages encourage more mass transit usage?


Yes, they do, especially if they're placed in stragic locations, such as the edge of residential zones.

By any chance, is the Z Simulator compatible with this?:

http://www.simtropol...ls.cfm?id=14767

I have quite a few of these in my city.


Yes, as you might gather from my avatar, Simulator Z is completely compatible with all types of road top mass transit.  (The team I lead is responsible for developing Cogeo's version further.)

Originally posted by: rudric
Im really thinking of changing to Z as im building a new city now, but, it seems im not quite liking all the ideas in Z. I have A medium now.
Im doing plenty of transport option in my city, bus system, rail (intercity), monorail(intercity), subways and highways.
Im not sure im fond of the idea sims prefering cars as busses add to congestion. Well maybe it's realistic. I most certainly do want sims to use all the traffic systems available, also the monorail.

Im aiming to build a city of at least 650 000+ sims, region together 1 200 000+ sims.

Should I stick in A? How resource hog Z is? I dont have a superfast computer. mem 1 gb, cpu 1800mhz.


In general, bus traffic is almost as high as car traffic in Simulator Z.  Some Sims, especially lower wealth ones, prefer to use mass transit instead of cars.  The main reason Sims don't use buses for some people in Simulator Z is if there is a subway line that follows the same route; subways are just a lot faster.  And monorail usage in Simulator Z has been specifically tuned to be much higher than any of the other simulators.

As for resource usage, Simulator Z uses far less CPU time in general than Simulator A.  As a result, tests have shown it running three to four times as fast as Simulator A, with the overall game running about twice as fast on high speed for a big city.



#30 rudric

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Posted 10 June 2009 - 08:43 PM

How is Z tuned? How they choose monorail? Whats the mechanic behind this? I don't want to force my sims. I like the idea of taking the fastest available, but this should not be forced to max i think.




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