Should Game Automatically Change Your Locomotive From Air To Vacuum Brakes When Coupling Railcars ?

Discussion in 'PC Discussion' started by Vograx, Nov 8, 2021.

  1. Vograx

    Vograx Member

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    I was doing the Sleepy Delivery scenario during the Journey on the West Cornwall map.
    My Class 37 locomotive was set up in Air Brake - Goods mode (I always verify the brake settings before I start).
    After moving up to the Sleeper Wagons and coupling them I noticed my brake pressures were all "messed up" as it were. So I checked the brake mode switch and it had automatically switched to Vacuum Brake - Goods!?!
    However the game had not done anything with my brake pipe air pressure or anything like that to ensure the brakes will function properly. So I set it all up to work properly and use Vacuum brakes to reverse and park the Sleeper wagons in position. Then I had to uncouple to move locomotive to front of the wagons to pull them to final destination.
    And you guessed it!
    By uncoupling the wagons the game, again, automatically set my locomotive to Air Brake - Goods again. This time I didn't notice so I started driving my locomotive, but soon hear superload screeching from the brakes and the wheels and stop it. And of course... since it switched from Vacuum to Air brake the brakes were all fully applied, but not able to release... not until you open the Vacuum Chamber release valve.

    So is this an intended feature for the brake mode to be automatically switched without any notification when you couple/uncouple wagons and railcars?

    On one hand I can understand why it would do this automatically since newer players may not know what brake mode to use or how to tell which brake system the wagons and rail cars use. But if the game automatically switches the brake system for your locomotive then why does it not also automatically release air pressure and such to set brakes up properly?

    To me this seems like a half-way intended feature (auto switching to correct brake system) combined with a bug (not setting up brake pressures after switching).

    I think, if the intention is to autoswitch to help newer players then this should be something we can turn on/off in the settings. Like a realism setting or something. Either autoswitch and set up everything correctly at same time... or don't switch anything at all and let us just handle it ourselves.

    Thoughts ?
     
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  2. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    Never encountered that on other vintage British routes. Must be specific to West Cornwall, because in NTP and TVL the brake settings stay put until manually changed.
     
  3. Ravi

    Ravi Active Member

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    I am pretty sure its a bug in WCL. It is annoying to open and close the Vaccum Chamber after you connect or disconnect from the cargo wagons.
     
  4. chieflongshin

    chieflongshin Well-Known Member

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    How do you open the vacuum chamber? I've flicked the switch behind me but it always seems like it's stopping as soon as I try to coast (up or downhill)
     
  5. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    You have to hold it open until the chamber is fully evacuated
     
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  6. Vograx

    Vograx Member

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    I set my brake to "Emergency" (vents the pipes) and open the Vacuum Chamber Release Valve. Then I wait until everything stops hissing and close up the valve and set brake to "Full Service" and let it fill up again.

    The Vacuum Chamber Release Valve is not on the wall behind you (where the Air Brake / Vacuum Brake switch is) but mounted under/behind the parking brake wheel on the Secondmans side of the cab (at least on the Class 37).

    Also, if you go from Air Brake to Vacuum Brake then make sure the VCRV is closed in both No.1 and No.2 cab.

    Another thing I noticed is that when in Vacuum Brake mode it can sometimes have a brake that's "stuck" even if your VC dial show them as released. To sort this out I hold the brake in Overcharge/Release for a few seconds and it usually sorts it out.
     
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  7. Rudolf

    Rudolf Well-Known Member

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    No, I was a bit unpleasantly surprised to see this happen, besides it also changes back automatically but that is not working to well ... I reported some issues with the class 37.

    It is better to document which wngons need which brake type.
     
  8. Purno

    Purno Well-Known Member

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    It is better to tell the player in game, rather than needing to consult external documents.
     
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  9. solicitr

    solicitr Well-Known Member

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    It's marked on the wagons: on TOPS-era wagons, the third letter in the code is the brake type

    [​IMG]

    In this case, A for Air. B stands for "air with through vacuum pipe" for mixed consists, but there aren't any of those in the game.

    Under TOPS, V stands for vacuum and W, vacuum with through air pipe, but I don't believe that there is any vacuum-braked stock in the game with TOPS markings. Instead we have the older BR system:

    [​IMG]

    Where XP indicates vacuum and AB, air.

    Finally there are dual-system wagons (TOPS code H), but I believe the only ones in TSW are the BG coaches, which carry pre-TOPS markings and the brake marking isn't to be found on them, at least I haven't.

    Easiest simply to remember that the old 12-ton vans are the only vacuum-braked freight wagons in the game. Mk 1 coaches are vacuum, Mk 2s (and obviously 3s) are air-braked.
     
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  10. Vograx

    Vograx Member

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    I have seen railcars with YGB on them. Can’t remember where though, but I mostly done Great Western Express, Northern Trans-Pennine and West Cornwall so either one of those had YGB cars.
     
  11. Rudolf

    Rudolf Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for this information. May be very useful. For the West Cornwall Local the Seacows and the other one as well are vacuum braked as well, at least that is what all this discussion is about, because DTG or Rivet decided to switch over to vacuum braking automatically.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2021
  12. Vograx

    Vograx Member

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    Yeah, they switch brake system automatically based on what railcars you couple too... but this is flawed when they don't also vent your brakepipes and such to set up brakes properly.

    Any new player who starts in the Class 37 with Air Brake mode selected, then couples to the Vacuum railcars and has the brake system autochanged to Vacuum Brakes will immediately run into problems with braking... and then not understand what is happening. Which defeats the whole purpose of auto-switching brake system (if the intention is to help out new players anyways, which is my suspicion).
     
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  13. LastTrainToClarksville

    LastTrainToClarksville Well-Known Member

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    It seems to me that the answer to this question is simple: if the real-world engine's brake setting changes automatically (which I very much doubt, since how would it know), then the simulated engine should do the same; if not, neither should the simulated engine.
     
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  14. Vograx

    Vograx Member

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    That's fair, and sensible in a simulator.

    The Achilles heel though is the fact that you don't learn anything about the brake systems, even less so how to understand which brake system is in use and how to set them up properly as there is no real tutorial on this. I had to go to youtube and luckily RailFan had a stream that got posted to youtube where I could learn how to. But it's a 3+ hour stream and not everyone will go through all that to learn it.

    Either way... as mentioned... if the game does it to help the players then they need to go all the way and not just autoswitch the brake system mode but also set up the entire train for either airbrake or vacuum brake. Or just leave the switch alone and let the new players figure things out on their own accord.
     
  15. LWDAdnane

    LWDAdnane Active Member

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    This is why manuals should be standard, and in depth where necessary. If not for this thread I wouldn't have known anything about the brake situation with this loco. I would actually prefer what we have in game to act accordingly to it's real life counterpart, seeing as I purchased a "sim" after all. I want the full releastic experience and am open to learning about operations such as this.
     
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  16. Purno

    Purno Well-Known Member

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    Manuals can provide very useful information, but finding the piece of information you're looking for can be challenging. And not everyone like that. While you consider TSW a sim, I think there's also plenty of people who consider it a game. Therefor it doesn't only need to be realistic (for the sim-fans), but also accessible and easy to learn (for the game-fans).

    I think an ingame interactive checklists would be most ideal. Such a checklist would tell you the steps you missed. It doesn't necessarily tell you the whole start-up-procedure if you only missed one tiny bit of the procedure.

    I guess such a system might be complicated to develop, but I think it's the most ideal situation to keep the simulation realistic, yet easy enough to understand for any who just like to play a game with trains in it.
     
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  17. LWDAdnane

    LWDAdnane Active Member

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    Dovetail are the ones who've labelled it a sim, so I expect as much. If it was intended to be a game, they could've named it something else. However, that's been a long standing argument for probably years now, so no need to delve into that side of things too much. Ultimately, there should be 2 different modes, arcade and simulation, so that we can pick our own level of difficulty. If we're all forced to play arcade, there wouldn't be much learning going on, which alongside myself I'm sure there are others who enjoy that aspect of the sim.

    I agree with the idea of a checklist, that would be indeed very handy. It would also help in differentiating whether an issue we've come across is because of user fault, or if it's a bug.
     
  18. Vograx

    Vograx Member

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    Some trains / routes already have tutorials of sorts on how to operate the trains. Click this, set this switch to that, move this lever into such position and so on to get you into a train and get moving, as well as do various bits of yard work.

    How hard would it be to add a few extra steps like “press this to activate AWS. Now that AWS is active you need to press that button when you pass over the magnet in front of a signal that is yellow or red. Lets try this now!” and then have you drive a few hundred yards to see it in action.

    A complete tutorial/scenario to teach new players about whichever safety system is available in a specific UK train would take less than 10 minutes total.

    Likewise a tutorial / scenario laying out how air brakes vs vacuum works and how to switch between the two would also take under 10 minutes.

    I’m honestly surprised that they aren’t in already. Knowing nothing about trains two weeks ago I know exactly how to handle DRA, DVD, AWS, TPWS, Air brake to vacuum brake switching and vice versa. It took some reading and youtube, but it isn’t rocket science. And again, could have been explained in brief scenarios on a train type basis in a matter of minutes rather than scouring the internet for information (and info on trains is actually harder to find than you might think).
     
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  19. flghttrainsm#6320

    flghttrainsm#6320 Member

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    Not if that how loco works in real life , this is supposed be a simulation not an arcade game
     
  20. Purno

    Purno Well-Known Member

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    I'm not talking about tutorials. The HUGE downside of tutorials IMO, is that when you'd run into problems during a service, you need to quite your service, and walk through the WHOLE tutorial, just to find that one bit of information you need.

    For example, I once had forgotten the correct procedure to switch from overhead to third rail power on SEHS. I knew the whereabouts of the buttons, but halfway the service I couldn't get it to work. Fortunately a quick google found me the answer, so I could continue the service. Turns out I shouldn't have put the reverser into neutral, but just leave it into forward while making the power switch.

    Imagine I had to give up my service, and need to rerun the whole tutorial, just to find this piece of information. And that's even with the chance I'd have forgotten the procedure again by the time I needed to make the power switch with my 2nd attempt of the service it all started with.

    An ingame interactive checklist which I could access during my service, which would tell me which buttons I have forgotten to press, would IMO be the most ideal thing to do.
     
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  21. Purno

    Purno Well-Known Member

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    It's a simulator game. It has some simulation aspects, and it has some game aspects. Looking at the other train games around, I think TSW is one of the more realistic ones around, especially at the bigger titles.

    Train Simulator had 2 different modes; Simple and Expert. In the end, several DLC didn't work in Simple mode so switching to Expert mode was recommended even for new players.
    I know the Trainz series also have two different settings for controlling the train. But I'm not familiar enough with the series to judge the realism of the simulation.

    The thing with pure simulation is, it's way too complex for most people, and you'd have even a smaller player base than this niche genre even has (and that means less revenue for DTG, and thus higher prices for the customers). I've tried playing X-Plane as well as OMSI 2, but thanks to their focus on pure realism, the learning curve was like a straight wall. I couldn't do it, and I certainly have tried with my fair share of watching videos and consulting manuals. And I've completed a higher education, so it's not because I'm simply not smart enough.
     
  22. LWDAdnane

    LWDAdnane Active Member

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    Doesn't necessarily mean that such a feature would be broken on TSW as well. By starting afresh DTG would ensure that it works correctly. Also as it's no longer a free for all in terms of DLC, anything that's released, in theory, should work alongside the feature no problem.

    I get that TSW2 being a "game" means a larger playerbase, and that's fine, but perhaps they should've chosen a name without "sim" in it. That would also calm the players who complain about the lack of realism in routes and locos, because we wouldn't be owed absolute accuracy. If i was to compare it to the racing genre, if need for speed put itself out there as a simulator, could you imagine the uproar? But barely anybody complains about physics and sound etc being true to life because that's just not how it's marketed. Assetto Corsa on the other hand, markets itself as a simulator, and holds itself to that. When something is off with a car or track, the community voice that.
     
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  23. meridian#2659

    meridian#2659 Well-Known Member

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    There should be a "simple mode" for newbies or casual gamers.

    Selecting the brake mode automaticly ruins my experience. That amount of detail makes tsw to what it is.

    The brakes are messed up if somebody handles them wrong. I spent hours of testing the brakes and multiple loco working on the classic uk diesels.

    My conclusion is you can literally drive them by the "british rail" driving manual. Dtg did a top job on simulating this.

    I understand the aspect of inpatient players. Saw negative reviews of ntp on steam wich said "my train isnt moving..." . So an expert mode would solve this without going to introduce nonsense like a auto selecting brakemod.
     
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  24. meridian#2659

    meridian#2659 Well-Known Member

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    For people want to know more about the Brake modes (Air, Vac & Dual) here a technical manual and explanation where to use the selectors and timings:

    http://www.locodocs.co.uk/brmanuals/DriversBrakingInstructions-33056-3-1982.htm

    Here a video of the West somerset Railway, she explains in detail how vacuum brakes are working:



    edit: for some reason its not showing so its on youtube called:

    Railway Fundamentals - The Automatic Vacuum brake
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2021
  25. roysto25

    roysto25 Active Member

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    One comment on this thread - the general absence of manuals (and the lack of detail in those that exist) - or to take a hint from the aviation sims (and the real world) - checklists - is a fundamental weakness and is one of the (unfortunately too many) major weaknesses of DTG support for the two train sims. I can understand the frustration of Purno with X-Plane, but the big difference is the extensive operational documentation usually provided with X-Plane aircraft simulations, of an order well beyond that provided by DTG.
     
  26. flghttrainsm#6320

    flghttrainsm#6320 Member

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    Not knocking your higher education qualification but that does not necessarily mean you can get the knack and programme complex aircraft , how long have you been trying , What exactly are you struggling with in xplane ?. I have 2 GCSEs as I had to come back to UK living abroad around from Greece second half at near 16 ,I have no problems programming the majority of complex aircraft ,self taught myself engineering knowledge , physics I went to amrc advanced engineering experience and on the test I scored higher in the top %5 in the group of other students ,in the robotics experience I was helping many to programme and coordinate the robots within minutes who were struggling , (the welding experience I was terrible at have dyspraxia and poor fine motor skills ) it was first time I had done that aswell and they had A level engineering qualifications and higher , work experience too , me who's had none of that just have a passion for science , I wasn't able to get on the programme apprenticeship despite my talent technical ability and robotic programming skills because of the only 2 GCSE s , you can be smart and intelligent and not have many qualifications for whatever reasons. I do agree maybe some processes could be more simplified in the manuals for less adept players to understand and for tsw2 manuals would be great for begginers
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2021
  27. Purno

    Purno Well-Known Member

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    Getting my flight path entered into the system (forgot the name, but I guess it's best compared to a GPS navigation system). Couldn't get it to work, despite consulting a few manuals, some guides, video tutorials, and asking questions at a forums where people mostly replied it wasn't all that complicated...

    The kind of thing Microsoft Flight Simulator X (so not the newest one) could easily do for you in its GUI, but X-Plane forces you to do it the real, complicated way. It's the difference between a pure simulator, and a simulator meant for home entertainment.

    I tried a few hours on a few days. But when I want to play a game, I don't want to make it into an education. I'm playing simulators as my hobby. I don't mind learning, but I prefer to do it while playing. Basically I've learned the German signalling system simply by playing and recognizing patterns, rather than consulting manuals.
     
  28. meridian#2659

    meridian#2659 Well-Known Member

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    Thats the point, devs should solve this by a simple mode for people dont want to make a life mission out of the technical details (which i can understand). Especially if somebody isnt coming from a technical or Railway background, with the lack of a manual its almost mission impossible.

    By the way if DTG would implement the entire machine room and procedures like pmdg simulates there 747, than 95% of the players would be lost and a class 33 addon would cost 80 Euro. Probably with planes its different, but i doubt for railway there is a business case for this. Only maybe todays EMUS, where DTG could sell as a trainer for operators.

    I for my self changed to tsw because that amount of detail, i dont want a "kiddy phantom", which operates my brake selector and makes a "all do it automaticly show" out of a simulation. Oh dear, how i was sick of the loco addons in ts, where you could operate just the same 3 buttons over and over..., totally lack of detail. Im happy we passed that point kinda :)

    So here the solution:

    For casual gamers:
    - Simple mode (activated in the settings)
    - Handles brake selector automaticly during coupling
    - Keybinding between "cold and dark" and "ready for service"

    For simulator drivers:

    - Unhook the simple mode in the settings for the most accurate experience

    Thats just the way it was, uk trains were fitted with Dual brake mode, so simulate this was the right choice of dtg for sure. My opinions is clearly all switches in the cab should be working (of course the heating has no function, but the button should work). Its just the quality standard today, and tsw should make progress, not going back to oldschool.
     

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