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Mr_D

Old Timer
A train leaves a portal and its route instructions say drive via trackmark x and then drive via trackmark y and then trackmark z. The route to trackmark x is also encouraged by a directional arrow and the other choice is discouraged by a directional arrow. Yet the train takes the wrong junction completely missing the drive via command and the next one as well. First time I have seen this. I have tried about everything I can think of. Changin drivers thus rewriting the directions. Deleting the da and replacing it closer to the junction. The second train has the same instructions and follows them to the letter. Any ideas?
 
One thing to remember is that the directional arrows are not absolute. The provide a large but not infinite penalty when choosing a route. If two possible tracks are physically equal then the one with a directional arrow against the flow will look longer to the AI and will not be picked. Unless and this is where it gets tricky, all the other possibilities are blocked. Then instead of waiting, the AI will pick the track with the arrow even it is against the flow. Each AI driver is an independent agent and doesn't know what the others are doing. Since there is no CTC or dispatcher, the drivers sometimes appear to pick the wrong track when in actual fact they are doing exactly what "The" dispatcher, you, told them to do. It's just that what we want and mean is not always what we say in our instructions. :'(
 
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encouraged by a directional arrow
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I may be wrong but the way you have expressed this leads me to think that you may have place the (yellow) directional arrow pointing the wrong way - their purpose is to 'discourage' a train from entereing a track.

The arrow should point towards (or at if you like) the direction from which the train you do not want to access the track would come if it were to access the track.

I hope this is reasonably clear.
 
One thing to remember is that the directional arrows are not absolute. The provide a large but not infinite penalty when choosing a route. If two possible tracks are physically equal then the one with a directional arrow against the flow will look longer to the AI and will not be picked. Unless and this is where it gets tricky, all the other possibilities are blocked. Then instead of waiting, the AI will pick the track with the arrow even it is against the flow. Each AI driver is an independent agent and doesn't know what the others are doing. Since there is no CTC or dispatcher, the drivers sometimes appear to pick the wrong track when in actual fact they are doing exactly what "The" dispatcher, you, told them to do. It's just that what we want and mean is not always what we say in our instructions. :'(

Picking up from where Martin has left off, I have used trackmarks and Drive via Trackmark commands to make sure that the train will in fact take the proper route especially when there are long sidings that run parallel to the main line.

The other things to that can cause this is if one of the trackmarks is facing the wrong direction. I call this Surveyor Dyslexia. We know what we want, and mentally we see what we want, but in reality we've placed the direction marker in wrong direction. If there's a break somewhere on the line, this too can cause the trains to ignore the mark to try to go around the broken track. Check crossings, and any other spline connections along that line to ensure that the tracks are fully connected and aren't just placed close enough to appear that way. A sure way to test this is to drive the section manually. Get in the cab and drive along, or better yet. Go for a ride with an AI driver. They will surely point out a mistake to you this way because they are following their list of commands that you setup in Driver Setup.

There are also a couple of other things that may help your situation. Make sure your default junction positiions are set the way you want them. To set the default junction direction, click on the three-headed arrow button at the bottom of the track-side object placement window in Surveyor. This is the window where you get the signals and bumpers.

Make sure your portal trains have a chance to aclimatize to the route. When they are fresh out of the portal, they don't read their commands and barrel along at the 40mph. I have found that if I place the portals as far away, even on an extra baseboard away from the route, this gives the AI a chance to settle down and follow the commands the way they should.

Hope this helps to give you some ideas on routing the trains in the right direction.
 
I want to thank you all for replying and offering to help. For the record I want to make a couple of statements. First, I have used this forum for a long time and have really found it useful. I have tried never to be insulted or offended by any thing offered as help because I know good will is intended. Second, I hope none of you will be offended at what I say as well.

I thank you for your words but perhaps I should have stated at the beginning that I am not new to this. I have been a map maker since the very first edition of Trainz. So most of the things offered were already done. I understand how the arrows work and the track marks. All are correctly lined up because the track is layed in the direction that the trains are routed. I had just never had a train ignore a track mark before. Several miles down the line the train made the right track choic but when it crossed the track mark the mark stayed on the trains orders as if it had never reached it. Now that I had never seen. Only this one train did that and it had been running for some time when it got there. It would not change any junctions against it even though no other train was coming in its direction. That's what puzzled me.

Now the one thing I had not heard was that coming out of a portal adled the drivers. That was a new one on me. But I am willing to learn and I will try anything. Even though I have used portals a lot, and never saw an adled driver I gave this guy a wait for 30 seconds order before he began his journey to the loading dock. I ran the session twice and both times he opened the junction and acknowledged the track mark. So, live and learn and thanks for this ground breaking news about adled drivers in case I ever have another one.
 
I want to thank you all for replying and offering to help. For the record I want to make a couple of statements. First, I have used this forum for a long time and have really found it useful. I have tried never to be insulted or offended by any thing offered as help because I know good will is intended. Second, I hope none of you will be offended at what I say as well.

I thank you for your words but perhaps I should have stated at the beginning that I am not new to this. I have been a map maker since the very first edition of Trainz. So most of the things offered were already done. I understand how the arrows work and the track marks. All are correctly lined up because the track is layed in the direction that the trains are routed. I had just never had a train ignore a track mark before. Several miles down the line the train made the right track choic but when it crossed the track mark the mark stayed on the trains orders as if it had never reached it. Now that I had never seen. Only this one train did that and it had been running for some time when it got there. It would not change any junctions against it even though no other train was coming in its direction. That's what puzzled me.

Now the one thing I had not heard was that coming out of a portal adled the drivers. That was a new one on me. But I am willing to learn and I will try anything. Even though I have used portals a lot, and never saw an adled driver I gave this guy a wait for 30 seconds order before he began his journey to the loading dock. I ran the session twice and both times he opened the junction and acknowledged the track mark. So, live and learn and thanks for this ground breaking news about adled drivers in case I ever have another one.

No offence taken, Mr. D.

Even though you are a vetran like a few of us still here, it's sometimes good to repeat the NOOB information so that on future searches, the NOOBs will be able to find this informatio helpful if they are so inclined on using the search function. ;)

I found out the hard way with the AI drivers and portals. On my E&E, I have 5 active portals. I had a couple of trains and drivers that would come out completely blitzed and ignore the trackmarks, back up, and totally fouled my mainline! I did everything from reworking junctions, wait times for the regular AI drivers to deleting a whole section and rebuilding.

I then sacked the drivers, rebuilt the consists, and hired a new drivers to no avail. Then one day I decided to work out a new yard, and that required moving a portal down the line quite a bit. Voila!! :D :D This is what did the trick. After that eureka moment, I went about adjusting the position of all the portals on the route, and after that there were no more problems with the AI drivers.

Interesting though isn't it.

John
 
Yes, very interesting. And who would have thought it? I am about to try it again and see if the third time is the charm. Its nice when it works like its supposed to work, huh.
 
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