So, after a week of testing out the features of ACEO, the one major gripe I have about the game is the AI pathfinding for taxiing, which is almost certain to lock up in every airport due to planes taking strange routes to the runway, planes waiting on the plane behind them (which is, in turn, waiting for the first plane to clear the path), etc.
Watching this atrocity unfold before me, I assume the issue is that the taxi paths are just define the taxi destination, and dont take intersections into account. I also assume it is safe to say the game gives priority to aircraft based on when they begin taxiing, causing issues with right-of-way (ex: a plane with a gate very close to the runway is waiting on another plane that is taxiing from the other side of the airport).
I believe implementing a checkpoint system (like how FSX handles its taxiing) would solve these issues. Much like how block signals on railroads work, if the path between the current checkpoint node and the next is occupied, an aircraft will wait at that checkpoint node until the section ahead is cleared to continue taxiing.
Another solution would be to compute the aircraft order and right of way on the fly, instead of at the start of the taxi. While this would affect performance somewhat, the realistic and predictable taxiing behavior would more than make up for it, in my opinion.
Anyways, those are my thoughts on the matter. Granted, I’m no game designer, so I have no idea if what Im describing would actually solve the issue, but then again, its just a pitch.
Feel free to recommend your own solutions. The more ideas, the better the experience will be.
Totally agree with the blocksignal method
train-like block signal is good but a bit too static - could be load-balanced but that is an additional complex step.
I suggest a routing system for the player to design routes to and from runway, and apply prioritisation to those routes for different aircraft types Commercial before GA, and in a longer future when the idea of being an airline hub takes shape for airline(s) too. BA goes before RyanAir, kind of thing.
The route tool would be paintable by the player on taxiway nodes. Multiple routes will be allowed to occupy single taxiway node. In the absence of a route - then the current first come, first served should be observed.
In the state of deadlocking a default route (probably the one you compute today) should be defined and used in those cases. The route tool should provide a check of validity of the route(s) and maybe display to you intelligent suggestion to optimise the routes and prevent deadlock.
Apply the same mechanism for passengers and staff too. Routes are you solution here
I would like to point out that the taxiway routing system is generated by Air Traffic Control, which is flawed at this point. I am not one to suggest solutions, but plane path-finding on the ground will definitely get better as ATC gets better.
I totally agree, a block system or other method that looks at closer points would be a huge help. I have recently begun experimenting with placing multiple taxiways to get to the terminal and it has helped some, but still planes will wait for one behind it and so on, causing massive pileups that I have to unstick, and then I have done that too late and it leads to delays for all the planes.
The ATC isn’t the best at giving aircraft instructions at this stage, the devs have said they will be fixing this in future. It isn’t a big priority currently though
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