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King Cars - A new Start - Extreme difficulty, minor tutorial use
#1
Part I:
http://www.ventdev.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=2837

9th of August 2018: The first attempt at creating a second part was a failure - and I had not enough free time to allocate to Gear City to fix the problems that occured, mostly the not anymore working strategy of aiming directly at the luxury segment. I've got a bit of time on my hands again and I try to restart the AAR.

This first update lacks a bit of structure as I wrote it after the first two years passed by. Smile

Settings:
"ultra deluxe super nightmare hard" with the following changes
- slight increase in customer base and purchase power
- cannot be fired
- no monopoly lawsuit
- random history
- real AI mod with 71 real companies

HQ: New York City

Goals:
- start from the buttom and work the way up
- get the rare achievements
- Do whatever is necessary for success. Screw customers, screw workers. A totally different concept to my earlier attempts.


1900-1902:
Our workers have no skill. They mostly never worked in a factory before and especially not in one with line production. Our engineers aren't skilled either. On the other hand there is a huge market for motor vehicles and only very small numbers are produced.
There are several companies in the luxury segment that's very small to begin with.

There is no real middle segment as people (customers!) are either very rich, so they purchase luxury cars, or they are wealthy and can only afford cheaper cars.

In the cheap segment the so called Phaeton is very popular. There are three models on the market, all concentrate to be of standard quality and manufacturing price - around $550 to $600. Our goal is to produce a full car for a maximum of $450.

Our not yet skilled engineers receive in January 1900 the order to create the cheapes engine. The cheapest gearbox. And the cheapest chassis. Cheap not just to keep costs low, but also to don't care about features. There we go with a 1kW engine that can't pull anything, a two speed gearbox and a very small chassis. The car resulting from this is a bad piece of work. But it drives and there are people who want it.
Also in January 1900 we start the construction of our first factory in New York City. $400.000 of our $900.000 get into a single lane middle technology building complex.

August 1901 is the month of truth. We timed the design and prototype phase of our King Cars Phaeton I together with the finishing of the NYC factory. The first two branches in NYC and Philadelphia were created one month before, both with a two star rating (by the AAA) in dealer and sales resources.

Our factory is able to produce 92 cars per month if we accept a negative production effect. That's ok for now. Our sales director suggests a price of $1000 per car. We start at $1500 per car.

During the following month we adopt a strategy: We open up new branches in huge cities. Boston, Baltimore, Cleveland. This opens the market for more customers - while we don't produce more cars. We therefor increase price per car up to $2000. This keeps our profit, just around $65.000 per month, steady, but allows to build up a dealership base.

We also started the development of a new car. The King Cars Coupe I. With the same components as the Phaeton I, but with a bit more quality and luxury. Not too much. Again we aim for mass, not class.

The loan we had to start our company was also paid back early and we put our first $20.000 into the pension fond. There was no money spent for marketing yet.

In early 1902 we issued $640.000 in Bonds until 1910 with annual costs of $50.000 to finance a $950.000 factory in Chicago. Two lines, full technology. We expect the factory to get online during 1904.

Around this time we also decided to offer our engine, gearbox and chassis for licence. We don't expect someone actually wanting to have these bad pieces of engineering but it's not very expensive to offer them to the market.

Chicago Factory:
[Image: p8ahgm8a.png]

King Cars Phaeton I:
[Image: 6yqsfjy2.png]

King Cars Coupe I (yes, it's named Sedan I. Don't ask biggrin):
[Image: tcfwerft.png]
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#2
Great to see you restarting this AAR.

Little tip for the pictures, we use BBcode, so it would look something like:
Code:
[url=http://www.directupload.net/file/d/4736/3js5r8l8_png.htm][img=100x100]http://fs5.directupload.net/images/170529/temp/3js5r8l8.png[/img]

And that will give you a thumbnail that links to the full picture. Smile
"great writers are indecent people, they live unfairly, saving the best part for paper.
good human beings save the world, so that bastards like me can keep creating art, become immortal.
if you read this after I am dead it means I made it." ― Charles Bukowski
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#3
1903:

In 1903 we had a very obscure business model. Due to lack of funding early in the game we decided to build a single lane factory. That was a smart decision and the only possibility back then.

Now, three years later, we do have two successful car models. Our King Cars Coupe I actually can be produced at the same rate as the Phaeton, at 92 cars per month, but it sells for about 1/3 more in price while it costs only about 1/5 more.

We therefore decided to produce each model for one or two month and then change. This is easily possible as most parts of the cars are the same and we can use the same tools.

However, demand for the cars is constant. As we can influence demand only due to market satisfaction and price and we can't increase the satisfaction but in fact had to reduce it, we increased the price. We sell less cars every month this way but our profit margin increases massively.

1903 is also the year our pension fonds got an additional $80.000, making it $100.000 heavy. Instead of issuing new bonds to increase our growth we decided to grow a bit slower and wait for our new parts and vehicle design to arrive. This time we will aim for actual Sedans with above average components. As we lack factory space we slowed down development, being able to develop all three basic parts for - combined - less than $100.000.

The parts turned out actually really well. They will be used in Sedan, Luxury Sedan und Touring.

1904:

With the new factory arriving mid 1904 we decided to upgrade our first two basic designs. To achieve this we sent the basic parts for major overhaul and created a new trim each to utilize the massively upgraded parts. This also decreases the production cost per car due to better engineers and proven and tested parts. With these new parts we went also for the 2+2 Coupe.

Phaeton I 1903:
[Image: j2j99lnj.png]

Coupe I 1903:
[Image: kzgkjinx.png]
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#4
1905:

January 1905 we decide to upgrade the newly build and from the beginning too small Chicago factory for $1.700.000 to six lanes. The New York City factory will be redesigned for maximum technology and four lanes as well.

We also open branches in St. Louis, Detroit and Cleveland and recondition all other branches.

Our new car designs are doing ok. We don't deliver to the masses as we lack production capacity.

Branch Detail:
[Image: c7sz2f67.png]

I'm now ok with the prices as we do actually deliver some sort of quality for the money. We still produce at maximum level so quality declines but from a fairly ok starting point. We simply will not afford to take the ~50% profit hit by running the factories at quality-efficient-level.

City Sales 1/1905:
[Image: 8i6sycgy.png]


As we still don't have marketing but a bit surplus in cashflow we decide to max out our branches in Chicago, Philadelphia and New York City. Those three are the million population cities in the US right now.

Sedan I:
[Image: 5pnkfy3b.png]

Luxury Sedan I:
[Image: 2y7vdr9c.png]

Touring I:
[Image: 2g2tl8zk.png]

2+2 Coupe I:
[Image: snoarh63.png]

During the year we invested some cash in available stocks of other companies and sent some more cash to the pension fonds. Weirdly the fonds is decreasing, not increasing.
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#5
Great to see you back again! Thanks for the good read! I look forward to reading more exploits of Kings Cars. Smile
"great writers are indecent people, they live unfairly, saving the best part for paper.
good human beings save the world, so that bastards like me can keep creating art, become immortal.
if you read this after I am dead it means I made it." ― Charles Bukowski
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#6
1906:

This is the year we change our strategy from small future investments in laying the foundation of a huge company in the next decades. Hopefully not too early.

Changes include:
1) Marketing budget of about $180.000 per year combined. All channels, all branches.
2) Lobby work is set to $110.000 per month (roughly 50%, locked).
3) Research is set from 0 in all four branches to 100%. This creates a huge financial hole as the expense per month is about $415.000.

To further manifest this strategy we also went all-in with out Chicago factory. The $13.500.000 project will see a 29-line factory with state of the art technology.

As we spent so much money we need to earn some more. This is right now done with expanding the portfolio. The growing Pickup-Truck market in North America is our next cash goal. We developed a new chassis big enoug for a Pickup and used the overhauled but still old engine and gearbox from our smaller cars. Actually the gearbox got licenced by several other manufacturers and is used widely. It'll arrive early next year.

For earning even more money we need to spent more money, too. Utilization of our old parts is nearly maxed out and there is no market for compact cars or micro cars right now. Market research showed the Sports car segment is severely underserverd. Our first try in engine development was a failure, as the engine was too big to fit into the current possible chassis. However, we learned a lot from that and took the flat 8 engine, size it down a bit and developed chassis and gearbox, too. All three products turned out well - at least with estimated figures - so we spent even more money for designs of landaulet and limousine. All three car models will not hit the market before the next 16 month. Development of them is a huge financial burden if done fast and we want to gather experience and keep our losses small.

Monthly Summary December 1906:
[Image: 8gmcuqmx.png]

Current state of construction and development:
[Image: lie6f2u3.png]

Pension funding is now $5.000.000 and it sometimes makes slight profit.
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#7
@Eric

Edit: SOLVED. I downloaded the game again via Steam and it works. I'll keep the log file for you online until tomorrow or so, maybe it's a general problem. Steam hat to redownload 5 files. Smile

1907-1908:

Nothing to see here. We ordered the usual new designs of parts and vehicles but nothing came online. Actually we tried to set up a new smaller car base for Phaeton, Coupe etc., but the newly designed parts were way worse (or way more expensive) than the ones we use since 1901. We still developed one pair of parts and gave a study for a new Phaeton into order but I'm not sure if we'll actually sell it.

Next year will be a year of big updates in many topics.
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#8
Glad you got it working!

Unfortunately, there are times I have to sleep, and you caught me at one of them. Smile
"great writers are indecent people, they live unfairly, saving the best part for paper.
good human beings save the world, so that bastards like me can keep creating art, become immortal.
if you read this after I am dead it means I made it." ― Charles Bukowski
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#9
1909:

What a year! Through the last two years we noticed competition brought better cars on the market. This was partly harmful as some of our designs are simply old and therefor lose interest/quality (Ingame: score) over time and we can't really steer against that with the still very limited number of production lines.

For the pension we have $15.715.00 in the bank account at January 1909. It started to generate profit. Finally!

In 1911 we want to expand overseas, mostly to Europe. This includes a completely new factory out of Paris. Paris is geographically ok in Western/Mid Europe and it offers a quality workforce. The five star factory (31 lines, ~5.980 cars) will costs us around $16.000.000 and it will be ready mid 1911.

To keep up with North American production, in February 1909 we gave the order to expand the New York City factory to the same level (31 lines, ~6.014 cars). The costs are around $14.000.000 but it will take until mid 1912 until completion. Same is for our new Philadelphia factory.

Branches overview January 1909:
[Image: k53y4hzo.png]

We introduced the King Cars Landaulet and the King Cars Limousine. Market is very small for those cars. We do sell around 10 each per month, meaning one month production (120) lasts a year.

Mid 1909 we increased world wide marketing budget from $180.000 to $300.000.

Our transition from small manufacturer with high prices a mass manufacturer is complete. We'll see how this will turn out.
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