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Thread: When you download a route do you also download all sessions?

  1. #1
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    Talking When you download a route do you also download all sessions?

    I have a question out of curiosity.

    I have a route on the DLS called Electro Island (in different versions). Each time I make a new release I try to do some sessions for it. I feel it gives the user some starting points as well the sessions can serve as a sort of tour of the route.

    But I am curious about what you think. Are sessions actually necessary for you to enjoy a route or can you do without?

    Personally I think a route is less attractive if there are no sessions for it. For example. I just downloaded some routes from other creators like Rocky Mountains Montana Track and NorthEast Metro v4 (I believe). Both came with nice sessions. So for me this means that I get more enjoyment from such a route. And we all know the famous Razorback Railway system which had a lot of sessions.

    I ask this question because I see download numbers on my own route like 800 (don't know if each download number stands for a completed download) and then see that sessions for the same are downloaded about 123 times or less. So it seems to me that some people don't really care about sessions and/or enjoy just Quickdriving. Or am I wrong?

    So what do you find important aspects of a route?


    And if anybody can recommend nice routes that comes along with nice sessions then I'm all ear..,
    Last edited by pagroove; November 7th, 2016 at 04:12 PM.

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    Pagroove, your observations are correct. Looking at the downloads figures on the DLS website, I have yet to see a session that has nearly as many downloads as the route it is based on. Certainly this is true of my own session and route uploads.

    The reasons for the difference in download numbers are many. I am certain (based on the anecdotal evidence of various posts in these forums) that there are users who download routes simply to capture as many new scenery assets as possible - it is quicker than downloading the assets individually. There are others who download only routes because they are interested in route building techniques, not in constructing sessions. And lastly, as you have suggested, many users want to create their own sessions with their own favourite rolling stock - after all, who would not want to see the mighty UP "Big Boy" tackle the London - Edinburgh East Coast run? I am sure that there are just as many other reasons.

    That is part of the freedom that Trainz provides. For my routes, I try to provide sessions that are also prototypical - using rolling stock, schedules and runs that would have been typical of the route in that era, but not everyone will share the same enthusiasm for accuracy.
    TRS19 Plus build 111951 and build 113142

  3. #3

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    I can only speak for myself, but if I know which sessions belong to the route, I would certainly download them.


    Quote Originally Posted by pware View Post
    Pagroove, your observations are correct. Looking at the downloads figures on the DLS website, I have yet to see a session that has nearly as many downloads as the route it is based on.
    I haven't checked recently, but to my experience the download counter of something goes up if it is the dependency of something else.
    So if you have a route and a session and someone downloads the route first and then download the session, the route will get scored 2 downloads and the session 1.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oknotsen View Post
    So if you have a route and a session and someone downloads the route first and then download the session, the route will get scored 2 downloads and the session 1.
    Interesting thought. I suppose (and I am hypothesizing here) that when a session is downloaded CM will automatically request that all its dependencies also be downloaded and those that it already has installed will be skipped over - I have noticed something like this in the stream of messages displayed in the download dialogue box that is opened by CM.

    Most of the sessions that I upload have HTML asset as dependencies. You would expect that both the sessions and the HTML assets would have very similar download numbers, but not so. In many cases the difference is in the order of 20-30%. In one particular case, the HTML asset has twice the downloads of the session - which may be explained by your hypothesis.
    TRS19 Plus build 111951 and build 113142

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    Quote Originally Posted by pware View Post
    Pagroove, your observations are correct. Looking at the downloads figures on the DLS website, I have yet to see a session that has nearly as many downloads as the route it is based on. Certainly this is true of my own session and route uploads.
    Indeed. That was partially the reason for my question.

    The reasons for the difference in download numbers are many. I am certain (based on the anecdotal evidence of various posts in these forums) that there are users who download routes simply to capture as many new scenery assets as possible - it is quicker than downloading the assets individually.
    Mmm that was a reason I hadn't considered yet.


    There are others who download only routes because they are interested in route building techniques, not in constructing sessions.
    Ah yes as a sort of example. Although I never did that. I used the inbuilt routes for that.

    And lastly, as you have suggested, many users want to create their own sessions with their own favourite rolling stock - after all, who would not want to see the mighty UP "Big Boy" tackle the London - Edinburgh East Coast run?
    Ah yes that is a fun part of Trainz. That you can come up with unlikely rolling stock combinations.

    That is part of the freedom that Trainz provides. For my routes, I try to provide sessions that are also prototypical - using rolling stock, schedules and runs that would have been typical of the route in that era, but not everyone will share the same enthusiasm for accuracy.
    Yes and that was also the reason for my question. For example. A large part of my route is Japan based. But I ask myself if it is actually worth the effort making sessions. Because a lot of time is spent on bug fixing unwanted ai behavior in sessions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oknotsen View Post
    I can only speak for myself, but if I know which sessions belong to the route, I would certainly download them.


    I haven't checked recently, but to my experience the download counter of something goes up if it is the dependency of something else.
    So if you have a route and a session and someone downloads the route first and then download the session, the route will get scored 2 downloads and the session 1.
    Yes. I don't really get the download counter behavior.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pagroove View Post
    A large part of my route is Japan based. But I ask myself if it is actually worth the effort making sessions. Because a lot of time is spent on bug fixing unwanted ai behavior in sessions.
    Not just debugging the AI. The sessions I am currently working on for a T:ANE route I created use no AI controlled trains but require a very complex set of shunting actions to be performed by locos that are manually controlled. I am using the new navigation points and popup messages now provided in T:ANE to give the instructions and this, as it turns out, is no easy task. I have spent a lot of time designing, testing and debugging the session rules. I can see why this does not appeal to a lot of users.

    I am providing 3 alternative sessions for one scenario
    • BASIC with lots of navigation points and popups designed for beginners
    • ADVANCED with just the key navigation points and a few popups
    • EXPERT with no navigation points and popups, just a set of train orders at the beginning of the session.


    For another scenario (the same route) I am providing BASIC and EXPERT level sessions only. The ADVANCED session has proven to be just as complicated to create as the BASIC

    All of the above sessions take over 3 hours to complete - which makes full testing even more difficult.

    And a final scenario is "Free Roam" with all the correct rolling stock in place but no session objectives - this was the easiest to create
    TRS19 Plus build 111951 and build 113142

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    Quote Originally Posted by pware View Post
    All of the above sessions take over 3 hours to complete - which makes full testing even more difficult.
    I had that problem and solved it like this:
    I split the scenario into two sessions. In the scenario the driver goes on a coffee break halfway his/her activities. That is the point where I put in the cut.

    This makes testing easier, but also the user experience as you don't have to reply 2 hours of session if you screw up in the second half.

    For an example, search for my B.O.O.M. sessions on the DLS.

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    In future it would actually be nice if we can have some sort of Session testmode. A mode with no scenery and only a map view with a fast forward button on it. It could be nice if you could fast forward and rewind through your sessions.

    But that's another thread. So it seems most developers find session developing as tiresome as me. Well it gives you satisfaction if everything is working correctly. But yeah. When you then upload it to the DLS it is substantially less downloaded compared to a route.

    Most of my sessions are auto AI-sessions. Which give the player the ability to sit back and wacht and you can take control of a train at any moment. But I like interactive sessions also. Till now I have made one but that was for me to learn the first steps in making an interactive session.

  10. #10

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    Offtopic, but still:
    Quote Originally Posted by pagroove View Post
    A mode with no scenery
    For testing, you could hide the route layers with scenery and achieve this already.

    Quote Originally Posted by pagroove View Post
    It could be nice if you could fast forward and rewind through your sessions.
    I thought there was a fast-forward mode. I just can't remember how or where to find it (or if I am remembering it right).
    Maybe this rings a bell to someone who could jump in and let us know.

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    I thought there was a fast-forward mode. I just can't remember how or where to find it (or if I am remembering it right).
    Maybe this rings a bell to someone who could jump in and let us know.
    Enable debug features, hold down shift key.
    Malc


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    Quote Originally Posted by clam1952 View Post
    Enable debug features, hold down shift key.
    Thank you! That was it.
    Still can't remember how to activate the debug features though (as I never used this myself). Could you point me/us in the right direction?

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    Quote Originally Posted by clam1952 View Post
    Enable debug features, hold down shift key.
    My God!!!! (bangs head repeatedly on desk) it works - and why did I never know this?

    I have spent weeks testing a number of sessions with long stretches between yards at the normal speed and have literally wasted hours watching the trains "crawl" along. Even running the trains at their maximum engine-spec speeds, way above the posted speed limits, it has taken ages to get from point A to point B.
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    Quote Originally Posted by pware View Post
    My God!!!! (bangs head repeatedly on desk) it works - and why did I never know this?

    I have spent weeks testing a number of sessions with long stretches between yards at the normal speed and have literally wasted hours watching the trains "crawl" along. Even running the trains at their maximum engine-spec speeds, way above the posted speed limits, it has taken ages to get from point A to point B.

    Thats why I think Trainz should have come with a big manual instead of the current documentation and a not so user friendly wiki. On the surface Trainz looks 'simple' but it is as deep as the Grand Canyon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oknotsen View Post
    Thank you! That was it.
    Still can't remember how to activate the debug features though (as I never used this myself). Could you point me/us in the right direction?

    Trainz Settings > Dev tab > tick Enable advanced Debug Tools

    Or In game

    Settings > General settings > Tick Enable debug Features
    Malc


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