Most simulations can be played by several players over a network or the internet. When in operation, the simulation runs on the lines of a real control centre, with the Host/Box manager running the simulation, and one or more Clients/signallers setting the routes.
One user, the 'Host', runs a master version of the simulation, and one or more 'Clients' can join in by linking via a network/internet connection. Usually the Clients are allocated particular panel(s) to control/manage, while the host (box manager) retains overall control of the simulation. Clients can also join in just to observe, which can be useful for newcomers to learn operation and techniques, especially on the more complex simulations.
Only the Host has control and viewing rights over certain aspects, particularly the F2 Train list (on pre-loader era sims), editing of timetables if required and depending on the simulation, some aspects of train control.
Clients have the ability to operate any part of the simulations. However, they will normally be allocated an area by the host and should only work that area. The Host may ask a Client to cover additional area(s) if necessary to cover a short-term gap as for example a Personal Needs Break (PNB). A Client may also be asked to cover more than one screen or area where there are not enough players to give one-to-one coverage.
As the Host has to coordinate and supervise the running of the simulation in general, it is recommended that the Host not take control of an area, or only takes a lightly-loaded area. Otherwise the Host can get overloaded with demands from the Clients as well as the normal workload.
When the Host sets up an area to play, it can be more interesting for the Clients - and indeed more realistic - if the simulation is already populated with trains. Usage of the Save and Load feature can achieve this.
A Client connects to a multiplayer game by starting the Loader (using the correct version as noted on the posting) and selecting the option 'Join a multiplayer simulation'. After selecting the simulation, enter an ID, and enter the host name or IP address followed by the port. On selecting connect, the simulation should join to the host, who can accept or reject the connection.
It is recommended that you avoid placing blanks in the middle of the 4 character ID, though it is fine to have them at the end.
By pressing F10, you can then send text messages to all the other players on the simulation.
Make sure you tick the box marked Client(s) or server (playing the same simulation) otherwise nobody else will get your messages!
It is important that when asked to take control of a panel or workstation you actually do so; this will ensure that relevant telephone calls will be directed to you rather than the host, and let other players know who is in control of that panel. You do so by selecting the Multiplayer/Workstation control menu option, selecting the required workstation(s), and then clicking 'Take control'; your ID should then appear in the duty box. Control is relinquished by the same method.
(On very old sims that have not been "refreshed", the relevant menu option will not be present. If so, insert your initials into the "on duty" box as you would for inserting a Train Description (TD). The duty box can be cleared by right click/cancel.)
Clients do not have access to the following:
Clients have restricted access to the following:
Note that .exe simulations do not allow any access to the train list, and do not feature the Simplifier at all.
Once a Client has taken control of a workstation, relevant calls from that panel will be directed to the Client. All other calls, and those from unassigned panels, will go to the host.
Clients will receive telephone calls from trains waiting at red, and on answering the call have access to the same options as in single player mode.
More complicated functions (editing and reassigning timetables, etc.) must be done by the host.
Reports of failures appear in the message box as usual, and working of trains around or through the failures is dependent as per the preceding section.
On those simulations with level crossings, any calls for exceptional crossings should come to the client as shown in the duty box, and be dealt with accordingly. See Level Crossings .
See the etiquette page for general guidance.
Two final tips:
Last edited by Steamer on 26/05/2019 at 15:09