OK I need to get this off my chest and hopefully I'll remember to link this article over to one of the newcomer pages or even the welcome screen.
RTS has been here since before day 1. I was a member of the beta team and I've seen progression from months before the release to where we are today. We were the 1st available server to go online, the 1st 24 hour server, and the longest running. That will remain as long as I have loyal users to support it. As of this posting we run at least 2 servers 24/7 and 1 or 2 other experimental servers that go up and down from time to time. We are available to those who want to seriously run a Selkirk Server. Florida has a strong base, and here in California where it all began for us we have had our ups and downs.
We are different because we emphasise car movement or simply meeting trains or worrying about train volumes. We can't wait to see AI come to Run8 and looking forward to it, just like all the other many updates that have come over the years from the Run8 team.
Today in California as of this posting on March 31, 2016 we routinely still get about half a dozen users on at a time in peak periods. That's not much considering the amount of real estate available in California. Not sure about Florida's numbers but being a smaller territory I'm sure they rock pretty good as their cycles are shorter than ours.
Now 13 is considered an unlucky number to some, and honestly that number will be beat when AI comes out either with or without human interaction. We are not about getting meets together, or being a social portal, it's all about car movement.
That being said we do have plenty of opportunity to run a to b trains with no interaction or switching and that is the majority of our trains. Our essential trains however is the life blood of our operations and keeps yards, switch crews, and mainline trains very active.
I know many other servers who now or in the past has been able to easily have more than 13 users as a time. For me that is as I said meaningless. Sure I can't wait to dispatch again as I haven't done so for a very long time. Dispatching less than 6 trains for me is not a challenge or worth the effort though some do it on our servers.
But of all the servers that have come, gone, or are still around nobody has moved as much manifest freight into or out of a yard than we have. I can't prove that but considering our emphasis and from what others tell me since it's such a critical aspect of our operation. Take the number of years we have been around, multiply it by the number of full cycles, we've easily dealt with what in real life would be almost 2 months worth of manifest traffic. Doesn't sound like a long time, but remember a real railroad runs hundreds of trains on a daily basis.
RTS has the car forwarding software and is supported by me and we continue to devlop and enhance it. Welcome to RTS and we hope this is for you regardless if you like to switch or not. Your part of our system, and our system is all about purpose.
Our purpose, car forwarding with realistic operation goes hand in hand with the best phsycis operation train simulator on the planet. It is simply what we do best.
I think this is great Sean. RTS is truly different from other servers in the method of our operation. This is the key to what brings Run 8 to life for me as well as many others. It is also the reason why RTS requires users to be familiar with procedures, follow the Wikia, and to ask questions where needed. New users would be wise to operate crew changes and non-essential trains to get familiar with the system before digging in deeper to yard work etc. It can also be handy to ride along with experienced guys on a local or in a yard to learn the ropes. This is how it is done in the real world too.
As far as numbers, A-Line has need probably about 6 crews on a busy night. This is typically a Sunday night. Each evening there are 2 users on just about every night, then others like myself filter in and out. Most of the work is getting done between 4 and 10 PM EST.
We are bringing into the A-Line about 3784 IM cars per week of cycles and 1750 Manifest cars. This does not even count the coal and rock trains. We plan for about 685 manifest and IM carload movements per cycle. Its a lot of work to do and each car and movement plays an important role.