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Old 01-24-2015, 09:13 AM
Trar Trar is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: East Grestin
Posts: 1,983
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.
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collective masochism , let's play , railroad tycoon , screenshot lp , trains

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