Recent posts by Texas on Kongregate

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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Brake Size

Now that I am late game, and I had accidentally managed to research braking, so just to see how this goes I researched it to the upper limit, in part to see if there is a point where I can overlevel brakes and they might reset back to a usable state.

Around 360 Levels of research on Brakes Size and I have managed to start with 500cc brakes, that is about as small as they go, and with over 6000 levels in Brake Power, I can get a maximum power of just under 10K, basically I will not be able to design any useful new brakes and will continue ussing my best older brake design and just focus on weight reduction to improve speed within the same braking limits.

I did research up further to 400 levels just to see if there is any point where I can research enough to overlevel/roll it over and somehow manage to reset the clock but I don’t see it happening. I may try again later when I have more time to waste, as I’m year 2233 and have all achievements and make Quadrillions of dollar balance per year, so I can afford to throw money at silly research questions to see if it does something. I’m also thinking maybe throwing 100s of levels into Quality might also fix the brakes, as I have seen a “quality overlevel” effect for Body and Chassis that occurs somewhere over about 100 levels body and chassis weight of 12.5kg becomes achievable, and I might only hope that similarly there is some level of Brake Quality that restores the ability to make useful sized brakes.

My last “useful” set of brakes is about 40K power with the only difference from above being that I had stopped researching brake size at level 273 when brakes were about 4400cc size and was making up for my error in sizing them smaller by pouring tons of research into Power.

So anyway, there are times say each year in december where I want to spend off excess $$$ to try and keep the balance sheets even and not pay too much tax and throw a little research $$$ into everything, and so if you do this, I’d recommend that you:

  • Never intentionally research Brake Size
  • Set “Stop At” to 1, so that in case you do accidentally research it, it stops at the 1st level before you do much damage to your brakes by researching this area that will just reduce their effectiveness and make your car slower/more costly to research more power.
 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Suggestion: Production past cap.

Yes and of course the better example is Wheels and Tires, since we need 4 of them to produce a car, and you can easily find by trial and error that no matter how many workers you assign to produce a tire, adjust workers on the tire, mouse over it to see the rate, and you will get at best 1 tire every 0.05 sec, or 4 tires every 0.20 sec, so a given car design cannot be produced at a rate exceeding 5 cars per second.

If it were possible to assign 4x as many workers and produce 4 tires every 0.05 sec this would solve many of the production rate issues that otherwise requires designing multiple cars with seperate but similar brake and tire designs to be able to produce more than 5 cars per second, such as georgemklam covers the logistical issues to manage when producing multiple models here:

http://www.kongregate.com/forums/16310-idle-car-manager/topics/593668-ultimate-game-challenge

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Cooling Limited design strategy (for V8, V12, V16 etc)

Well I just converted all of my consumer manufacturing from Small Block to Big Block.

What I’ve described previously above is the “Small Block” strategy focusing on the most powerful motor that weighs around 20kg. This remains the best strategy for Racing motors, as it maximizes speed by minimizing weight by choosing the lightest engine with good power. Recipe to create a “Small Block” remove all points from everything but cylinders and efficiency, then remove cylinders until weight is around 20kg, max out efficiency and then any remaining points into weight and size.

But for the Consumer market, HP is a large factor in CarPoints, more so than speed, and much more so than fuel economy / tank range. So the “Big Block” really optimizes absolute power output, but at the expense of Weight, because we are dealing with boundary conditions, and the maximum engine weight peaks at 500kg, and the maximum engine heat peaks at 10000. So the recipe to produce a “Big Block” is to have a chassis that will handle 650kg or so, and some really strong brakes to handle stopping this HEAVY car, and take points out of everything but weight and dump them all into POWER++ or if you want to get crazier you can also steal the points out of engine Weight but then it will go up to 750kg and I don’t think 5-10% more power for 50% more weight is a good deal, and then you need to spend even more on brakes to handle that. Oh and the other obvious benefit for the “Big Block” motor is that since weight is capped, no penalty for adding all the Quality points you need right here.

So the truth of the matter is ironic. As you go higher in Racing levels, the tracks get longer. You get a maximum of 3 pit stops. Currently at level 108 I see races around 1200-1500km sometimes, so racing becomes more of an “economy challenge”, and currently my Race Car has a 1 cylinder engine around 600hp with a 250L tank giving about 1600km tank range so I don’t need to worry over pit stops, and nominal top speed around 2500kph, and high quality rating is good to prevent dropouts. Quality should be like 2x the league#, this is far more important than HP. My Consumer car is now a major contrast with the “Big Block” power around 32000hp and a 25L tank and 4km range. For my consumer, I hope wherever you are driving you don’t mind stopping for fuel every city block/freeway offramp. But thats just how CarPoints figures, less weight = more speed*3 which is a much bigger factor than tank range/10, so a consumer car with a bigger fuel tank will sell more slowly. So this is the irony, my race car is an economy car, and my consumer car is a dragster, living life a quarter mile at a time, but they are selling like crazy for 1.2billion.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Suggestion: Completely change selling

Just to note, the current detail that makes it EXTREMELY DIFFICULT to sell different car models at the same time is the SellDuration formula.

Because the CarPoints of the “Best Car” are factored in, once you have produced a high HP / high speed consumer supercar, you’ll not be able to successfully sell a lower cost economy model.

It is this specific detail that encourages producing a large number of virtually identical cars, ensuring that each model change is only a minor increase in car points or else ensuring that all the old models are completely sold off before you introduce a new breakthrough model with dramatic improvement in CarPoints.

Currently I just went from producing a 2500hp consumer car to a 32000 hp consumer car, and the moment I introduce the new one, which due to large HP increase is a sudden drastic change in Car Points so I have to heavily discount that old 2500hp car to like 1% of max price to unload inventory. And the point here being that now that I’ve sold 32000 hp cars, I’ll never be very successful in selling less powerful cars as HP factors heavily into the CarPoints, much more so than fuel economy, range, looks or quality.

Possibly if there were different categories as suggested, there might be different CarPoints figured where…
Economy Car: fuel efficiency/range and low price may be primary factors
Minivan/SUV: passenger/cargo capacity (unallocated Body Capacity) may be primary factor
Sports/Performance: HP, Accel and speed may be primary factors
Luxury: Looks and Quality may be primary factors, and possibly larger size/weight is also considered beneficial

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Efficiency caps?

Yes efficiency max is 100%.
And practically it is usually better to blueprint parts with 95% efficiency and then design 50+ levels to max out the efficiency.
Once you hit 100%, further design iterations don’t add efficiency but still reduce heat and increase quality.
Once you design to level 101 you don’t get any more efficiency increase or heat reduction.
These details are in INFO / FORMULAS near the bottom.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Future Updates

Drivers never die? Seems like it should be possible for a driver to die if race car is unsafe. I’ve successfully won several seasons with 70% braking efficiency, but more realistically that might mean a car gets planted into a wall because it can’t slow down in time for a turn. Also it may be natural to expect drivers to die of natural causes after 80 years or so, and they might just like to retire before then. Jeff Gordon retired at age 45. The oldest NASCAR racer I can find reference to is Morgan Shepherd age 72. And if you are messing with drivers, it might be nice to add some female driver names, perhaps one that resembles Danica?

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Future Updates

Car with fastest acceleration: 0 sec to 100km/h

Seems like that should be a worthy accomplishment with some car souls.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Swapping drivers -- how do slowpokes earn high sponsorship $$$?

Well I don’t see much answer here, and now that another 40 years have elapsed, I should just describe the history/experience with driver swap.

In 1890, I picked the 2 cheapest drivers Slowpoke and Beers.

Around 1970, I saw some discussion in chat about swapping drivers one at a time, and thought to try it, I swapped out Beers for Tim Cool, and I was expecting to wait about 8-10 years before he’s competitive.

Around 1990, after seeing Tim Cool winning no points for 20 years and stats still seeming well behind Slowpoke where speed=200+, I decide maybe I should have listened better and swap useless Cool to a faster driver Anton.

As of 2013, I have Anton earning 2nd place points occasionally, usually only on difficulty 1 track with Aggressive driving tactic specified. Most of the rest of the time he’s still back of the pack.

In summary Driver Stats seem to be FAR MORE IMPORTANT than the actual car stats for winning races. And having discovered this, I find that Slowpoke with speed=292 and 845kph car can beat lesser drivers in 1300kph cars so I can keep advancing leagues without putting too much effort into car upgrades, and I’m doing car upgrades more to attain achievements than to be competitive. Anton after 20 years or so has speed=185 and is #13 driver for the season in league 32. And actually other drivers have higher Speed ratings, so the only driver stats that I see I’m better on are:
Slowpoke: Experience 1473
Anton: Experience 312
while in comparison other drivers in the league have better speed/control etc, but only less Experience and Popularity.

So to sum up, if I were to think through this again, next time i time machine, i wouldn’t swap drivers, I like much better how Slowpoke is doing now that he’s got 120+ years of racing experience.

“Old age and treachery will always beat youth and exuberance.” — David Mamet

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Swapping drivers -- how do slowpokes earn high sponsorship $$$?

Around 1975, still racing with my original 1890 drivers, I decided to change 1 driver.
My race car is 639kph. But with the new driver, seems like he’s really to scared to drive fast, he spends an extra hour to finish the race.

The amazing thing is that Advertisers still love to pay $300K to sponsor this guy.
The way I figure it is that Tim Cool doesn’t have a high Speed rating, but he has a good Popularity rating, and if he spends one hour longer on the track than everyone else, and the event is televised for the full duration, that is one hour of exclusive advertising, so the sponsors are eager to get the extra exposure.

But if this were a more accurate simulation, a driver that is 1/3 the speed of other drivers wouldn’t get any sponsorship opportunities, he’d fail to quality and summarily retire.

And just to sum up, it doesn’t matter if your car is 50kph faster than the others if you don’t have a driver to match. If you swap 1 driver at a time, it is possible to win a season just with the good driver always finishing first, and the bad driver always finishing last, and hopefully eventually he will learn to drive a fast car, but I think he’s been trailing the pack for 10-12 years now and puzzling to see how long it will take him to catch up especially as I continue to advance racing leagues.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / A Way to Get Rid of/Destroy Cars?

Also, that probably means you have a problem with QUALITY, so once you delete that car and are ready to produce a new car, go to the INFO screen for it and mouse over QUALITY and a message at the bottom of the screen like

Current quality standard is 36

Make sure that the quality of the new car you are producing is at least 5-10 points above the quality standard. If you produce cars below the quality standard, you will get sued. If the difference is great you may need to time machine. That is how my first game went, because I was producing multiple new car designs per year through the 1920s and then in the 1930s I was like 10 levels behind on quality. Quality standard increments +1 each time you produce a new production car design, so be careful to just do one new car design per year, or possibly sell the same design for 2 or 3 years if you can and this will increment the quality standard more slowly so you aren’t as likely to get sued.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Cooling Limited design strategy (for V8, V12, V16 etc)

Yes, I could say the more practical question, for folks that are looking to BE SUCCESSFUL racing V8, V12, V16 etc, is….

What is the most powerful engine you can build that weighs under 25kg?

This is because I found in the 30s I could build a V8, but it would be around 100-120kg, and that means I need bigger more powerful brakes too, and then the bigger brakes generate more heat, and then the cooling is compromised and I needed more powerful cooling and it was a somewhat frustrating design iteration and I went back to slightly less powerful 6 cyl for a while, and my current SSS 397kph car (which I call “Lotus Elan”, it is 1962) is a 4 cylinder 76hp, engine is 21kg, car is 291kg, and I get 244km range with Alpha tank. Engine generates 60 heat, brakes generate 14.5 heat, and G1.36 tires generate 212 heat, +=286 .5 heat and I have a P576*E.614 cooler so i can absorb 353 heat, actually enough heat budget I will try going back to a 22 kg 90hp V8 as I go up to SSSS.

That and I’m choosing to stay in SSS and keep winning and getting 13 car souls per year until I have enough R&D improvements to make my next race car +50kph faster.

Overall summary point, managing weight and power to weight is more important than maximizing power and trying to build the biggest engine, though may be good for the ego, big heavy engines generally are harder to work with. And though it is a puzzle how my tires are connected to my radiator, I’m generally believing more heat budget should be spent on tires grip than on engine.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Acceleration Formula?

Well in terms of physics it should be proportional to HP / weight ratio.
And in chat I found someone with a less powerful and heavier car than mine but with higher grip tires and his accel was better than mine, so I presume this is also effectively factoring in Grip.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Cooling Limited design strategy (for V8, V12, V16 etc)

For a high power V8 or larger, the main design issue will be cooling.

Effective heat absorption of cooling is the power*efficiency, for me currently I have a P576 cooler * 0.612 efficiency = 353 heat capacity

Heat is generated by Tires, Brakes and Engine.

For Tires, maximizing size and grip generates maximum heat, so to leave more cooling for the motor, back off grip and increase points on HeatProduction until heat is under 5. For my tires with 4.5 heat per wheel I name these H18 tires.

Similarly for Brakes, put everything into Power, and then back off power and add points to HeatProduction until heat is under 5. For my brakes with 4.5 heat per wheel I name these H18 brakes.

For each part I design, I include Hxx as part of the name, and for brakes and tires I multiply by 4, so I can take H353 – H18 brake – H18 tire and see I have 317 heat left for engine.

So I can design a V8 engine with about 325-330 heat, and then iterative design improvement will get the heat down to 317 before I can use it.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Brake Size

And what a high performance brake is supposed to look like, yes it should look bigger as the power is increased…

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Brake Size

First off, from a RL simulation perspective, bigger brakes have more surface area so more stopping power. One of the RL reasons to swap to larger wheel size is so it provides clearance for larger brakes too. Or one of the things that looks Noob / Ricer is to swap on +3 mags but have the little tiny stock brakes visible behind the huge wheels.

but anyway good news is in game, if you study size it doesn’t make the brake smaller, it makes it more efficient braking for its given size.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Efficient Researching

Actually 2 more tangent points to make here,

1. When I actually build the component such as Tire, I will usually subtract ALL points from other than Grip and add all points to Grip. Similarly for Electronics i may subtract everything and add to Efficiency. These are optimizations for RACING purpose because those key variables affect the Top Speed formula (see INFO / FORMULAS link in game). So in this sense I have also studied some non-essential research areas so I can subtract a few points that were cheap to study and use up excess capital prior to year end accounting. And for CONSUMER version, I may either make alternate consumer component where I didn’t steal Quality out of it, or I may just Design Optimize it 25+ levels which will more than bring back the quality I stole out of it to make it grip better. Currently my Consumer car is like my Race car with the exception of smaller engine and larger fuel tank.

2. NEVER DELETE ALPHA TANK, or be careful in general about deleting old fuel tanks, because guess what, once you research large tank, you can’t build a small one anymore, and there will come the occasion when it is minutes before March and you need to build your race car, and the engine barely doesn’t fit, and you need to make it fit by say adding a smaller fuel tank. So I may have researched and maintained a list of tanks in 5L increments, and when stuff doesn’t fit with minutes to go, I can put together something that will work (and at race time, check the option for multiple pit stops). Maybe also good to keep some spare bodies with different capacity, or do mockup builds to check the fit of your components in December or January just to check if you might need to adjust something else to fit this year’s bigger race engine, especially if you are adding Cylinders or Power what is added to engine is subtracted somewhere else to fit.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Efficient Researching

What I’m researching, ordered by priority…

Chassis (Weight)
Tires (Size, Grip, Heat, Weight)
Brakes (Power, Size, Weight, Heat, Efficiency)
Engine (Cylinders,Size,Weight, Efficiency, Heat)
Electronics (Efficiency, Weight, Size)
Cooler (Power,Size,Weight,Efficiency)
Tank (Capacity,Size,Weight)
Body (Weight, Capacity)

And in order to avoid end-of-year taxes in the month of december I may put 1 point into everything to spend my profits before the accountants tally my earnings. So I have researched Chassis Size and some other minor nonsense.

So what does Chassis Size mean? In modern unibody cars, the chassis is integral to the body so one might expect that it is consuming space in the body, so less chassis means more luggage space, fuel, bigger engine etc. But back in the 1890s up until the 1970s it was common to build a frame that holds the engine, suspension etc and mount a body on top of it, and this is still the common method for trucks and SUVs, and in that case the chassis is definitely separate from the body and not contained within it but underneath it. So a smaller chassis would then possibly reduce the height and improve handling.

In my fantasy concept, Chassis Size might be the difference between a Highboy roadster and a Lowboy roadster.

Highboy (body on frame):

Lowboy (chopped and channeled so body is lowered to mostly contain/cover frame):

Though this could also just be about studying Looks, but if we’ve dropped it chopped it and channeled it, we’ve lowered the center of gravity and it should perform a little better on the race track, but for the end consumer is mainly a visual difference, and a slightly shorter step up into the drivers seat for minor comfort/convenience.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Bac0n's Suggestion Box

I agree that research in “real life” produces dramatic breakthroughs such as new materials such as aluminum and alloys, new thin-wall casting techniques, double overhead cams and multivalve cylinder heads, rotary engines, fuel injection, electronic ignition, ECU, variable length intake geometry, variable lift/rate cams, desmodromic valves, rotary valves, electric cooling fans, dual clutch transmissions and too many other little innovations over the years each of which may improve performance or efficiency.

But the way I see it, if you had to list a selection of materials or other specific innovations, then your list might leave out something that is what I am role playing. So I like it more that it is abstract selection of weight, power, efficiency and cylinders and there are enough variables to adjust to meet desired HP within size and weight and heat dissipation capability of your other available components. And that we just need to research Size and Weight to achieve the benefits of using lighter materials.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Profit

Click BALANCE to see your balance sheet, which will total up Earnings and Expenses.
If Earnings > Expenses then you’ve made a profit and pay some extra fee in proportion to your net profit.
The trick to avoiding this is to buy lots of buildings or do lots of research/design in the month of December so you spend all the money you made and end the year “break even” and pay little or no extra fee.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Some quick game suggestions

And as I reference Colin Chapman, at the first autocross event I attended as a young child, I saw a Lotus 7, similar to this one…

Top time of day car, acheiving good handling and good lap times and achieving good power to weight ratio by minimizing weight ~400kg while using a fairly average 1600 cc 4 cylinder 90hp in the typical form, though the particular one I saw had a 200hp ported Mazda Rotary in it. So what I mean to say, I’ve seen in real life where little tiny cars with little engines are corvette killers.

Can’t argue that we can make fast go carts. It is just cooler if the engineering model is cool enough that I can choose between an Offenhauser 4cyl turbo with 4 bars of boost vs a Cosworth V8 normally aspirated. I can see how subtracting cylinders and adding boost might add weight, but if I take a 60kg V8, lop off 4 cylinders and add the resulting points into power I get a 200kg 4 cyl that is more powerful than the V8, but now it won’t fit in my Lotus 7 body, so that’s a discard.

I’m choosing to be size limited rather than cooling limited in my current game iteration, as we recognize you like the little car. My consumers love the Traubi…

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Some quick game suggestions

LOL, I was role playing Carroll Shelby / Cobra V8 in my initial game, and in the 1930s had a flathead V8 with about 40HP stock and with lots of design and in a race car just breaking 50hp, and had to derate the power to keep the cooling efficiency close to 100%. To make this V8 semi-usable, I had to design 0 heat brakes and 0 heat tires. I would look forward to being able to fit a larger cooler, or multiple coolers if needed because conceptually, maybe I need a radiator, an oil cooler, an intercooler, and maybe for consumer use an air conditioner, if hypothetically my high cooling race radiator in a production car maybe the extra capacity provides for the AC condensor.

So in my current game, I’m thinking more like Colin Chapman / Lotus, which is the minimize weight in order to maximize the power to weight ratio with a basic 4 cylinder economy motor.

Oh and the other silly thing is if * have 8 cylinders, and delete 4 cylinders and then increase power, the HEAT may be significantly decreased and I can get a 50hp 4 cylinder but the 4 cylinder is now double the size and weight of the V8 I was trying to make work. So I’m presuming that 4cylinder must have a roots-type blower or something really heavy to make it twice as heavy as a nearly equivalent HP V8, and as was already noted, POWER is a “delete” option, as adding POWER adds way more size and weight than can possibly be acceptable.

I think the “real life” rule of engine building that I might find myself quoting occasionally is that the optimal size for a cylinder is around 500-600cc to provide power in a familiar RPM range somewhere in the 2000-5000 rpm typical road use case, so typically you get 2 liter 4s, 3 liter 6s and 4 liter V8s, and us Americans like V8s bigger still but it moves the RPM range down to where they provide a big gut punch off the line though really more appropriate design for a truck to tow a trailer with. Piston Speed provides a design limit, so large cylinder reduces RPM.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Chassis Size

I was researching Body Size with the expectation that for the Consumer market, I would produce a smaller, lighter, more economical car, and for the Racing purpose, and I’m thinking like Malcolm Cambell Bluebird here, I want to build a really large chassis with capacity for a V12 or V16. I can think of several historic examples to roleplay here, BlueBird is one of my favorites:
http://img.phombo.com/img1/photocombo/5209/cache/prewar-racing-28.jpg_1932_daytona_-_malcolm_campbell_bluebird_2539_mph_display.jpg

But then my actual experience is that larger chassis DOES NOT provide any volume capacity increase. So the only benefit at the moment for researching size is to produce a short wheel base fat bubble car that is slightly lighter, and I can still fit a V8 in the smallest chassis with the largest body that will fit on it.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Quality Bug

One other observation, I bought Car Showcase x4.
This feature encouraging producing 4 cars at once.
As you’ve described, you have Qualilty Penalties / Lawsuits that appear 10 years later if you do this.
So I would recommend that you Delete the Car Showcase, or clearly label it as a deathtrap that will likely produce lawsuits if you actually want to produce an economy sedan, a luxury sedan, a sports car and a truck all in the same year as many real life manufacturers do.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Quality Bug

Ok sorry I figured out my real quality problem was worker pay, now that I boost it to Ideal Pay I am producing a Q52 product to more than meet Q46 demand and replacing the Q37 car that was actually selling better and at a higher price but risking lawsuits every other year or so. Had to take points out of fuel capacity, engine efficiency and tire grip to move everything into quality to produce a less desirable, less performant consumer product in order to minimize the risk of lawsuits.

 
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Topic: Idle Car Manager / Future Updates

How about a making Payload Capacity a feature with Sale Value?

Minivans, SUVs, Station wagons and such have some extra value based on their ability to carry stuff around.
Oh yeah and even just to carry passengers. Are we building RC cars, or do we need at least 66kg free capacity to seat an average driver in a race car? And 1 or 2 seat cars are marginal value on the consumer market, if we are trying to simulate reality, I need a family sedan with 6 passenger capacity x 66kg per passenger = 400kg and some extra capacity for my dog, my golf clubs and other random stuff my family needs to carry around, thats why family folks love those SUVs and minivans, and your current sale value formula doesn’t capture this need.

And so from a design perspective, I might have for consumer sale a “minivan”, and then for racing purposes, I can subtract seats to make room for a big engine bay and have a race car that resembles what my average joe consumer is buying. Win on sunday, sell on monday.
http://i2.wp.com/hooniverse.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/lil-red.jpg?w=500