Plan B: Terraform – Using Intermediate Depots as “Smoothers” for Long Routes

This guide will outline a concept to use additional depots for long routes so that they function similar to shorter ones.

Introduction

I’ve found I run into difficulties when supplying a good via trucks from one location to another using a long route – something like 200 tiles or more.

You run into problems like:

  • Having to assign a lot of trucks
  • Having to add trucks in intervals so they’re evenly “spaced”
  • Your industries run out of material sometimes because the time between the last leaving truck and the first arriving one is too long

Adding an Intermediate Depot, and Why

The Problem

Here, the distance between New Toronto and the sulfur mine is fairly large, over 250 tiles. So any truck going from New Toronto to the mine and back has to travel one ingame year to deliver a single load of concrete.

The game just has a provision of adding trucks till the yearly demand of the city is met, but it doesn’t address other problems:

  1. What if an extractor runs out of sulfur to mine and you only find out because your truck came back empty?
  2. The mine is far from everything else, so anything else in the area needing concrete also has to travel all the way to the extractor to get it.

Adding a Depot

You want to add the intermediate depot in the middle. So at the 50% point if you want to add one, at the 33% and 66% points if two, and so on.

You then set this point as the destination of your original first truck route, and this point as origin and your original destination as a second route. You’d also split the trucks assigned to this route in two parts; so 8 original trucks means 4 for the new first route and 4 for the second.

The benefit of this is that it adds a second “source” for the trucks coming in from the city which is closer, plus as in the image, the midpoint can be used as a branching-off point for more routes. In this specific case, you can add four more routes going in other directions from this point. Then you can add more trucks between the mine and this depot to fulfil the additional demand.

You also have less time between the last truck leaving the supply center and the first truck arriving, so if the demand for concrete has increased, you have more breathing room.

Note that the number of trucks stays the same, even if the distance travelled/time taken by one truck has been cut in half.

Created by cst1992

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