Part 1: Explaining MechanicsExplaining Mechanics
Speaks for itself, really. We need to make the right business decisions to achieve global domination within 20 years.
Of Air Travel.
(That "Europe" will be replaced by whatever your home region is)
Aerobiz divides the world into 7 regions. Each airline can own a single hub in each region, located in one of its major cities. All your Air-Business will consist of routes between your hubs and other cities. An airline can spread from one region into another by connecting their hub to a major city in another region, then laying down some time and a pile of cash to build a new hub in that city.
A close-up of the Euro-region. Its major cities are in green, its minor ones in white.
Here is where the fun starts. Cities and their traits are core information we'll need to make it big in the aero-biz. Every city is part of a country, and has population, economy, and tourism ratings that describe how prosperous it is. Linking highly rated cities is how we get bodies in seats and bring in the stacks of air travel dollars.
Up in the top right corner you can see the city's opinion of you. The more they like your airline, the easier it is to do business there. Initial relations are set based on your airline's country of origin vs the country which rules the city. This screenshot was taken from a game based in London, so all cities ruled by the UK love them. Events can cause cities to change hands, and give you chances to
Centre-Right, those six icons represent notable local businesses. We can lay down money to purchase these, generating modest profits and often presenting side-bonuses to our air routes through the city.
Finally, that middle bar is all about the business end of the city - their airport. A city's airport is described in terms of how many flights per week it can handle. These schedule slots can be purchased by airlines, and are then put to use by their routes. A flight requires a slot from the city on each end of its route. This means you want to buy up as many slots in your hub-cities as possible so that your airline can grow. There's a cap on what fraction of a city's slots one airline can own, preventing absolute monopolies, and whenever a city hits that cap work will begin on expanding their airport to accommodate even more business.
The fun continues with our separate-but-equal partner in this industry, planes. Aerobiz contains Real Aero-Planes(tm) forged by Real Aero-Smiths(tm) during Real Aero-Times(tm), along with some high-tech works of Aero-Fiction(tm) from The Future!! Our assorted vendors will supply us with the tool of the trade. What's up for sale will depend on what year we're playing in, and how much it'll cost us will depend on who we are. Vendors will cut discounts for airlines from their home countries, or who already use notable numbers of their craft, and will outright refuse to sell anything to buyers from the lands of their enemies.
This bites hardest in the early scenarios, where being on the wrong side of the iron curtain will cut you off from half the world's supply of aircraft for a very long time.
Aircraft stats are largely straightforward. Each plane has a range, capacity, and fuel/mechanical efficiency. They self-explain nicely. Long range planes can handle bigger routes, larger planes can swing more tickets with each flight, and higher fuel and mechanical ratings reduce the cost of keeping them flying. Those last two numbers are for planes in service and held in stock by our line. There's a 1-turn delay on buying planes, so be sure to order them in advance of when you need them.
Put A and C together and you get these. Link a city to a hub, assign some number of a make of plane, tell 'em how many laps to take and slap a pricetag on it. Now you're in the Aero-Biz. Fine-tuning all the options on your routes is one of the game's main decision-making points. Do you own enough space at your airports to assign more flights? Got the planes to do the work? Are the fares worth the price of flying it? Would you still be filling every aisle if you charged a little more? Could you steal customers from those other fuckers if you charged less? The dance of air and business turns and turns again each quarter, until only one remains.
All routes have a base fare determined by the distance flown. You can chose to charge +/-50% of base, as suits your needs.
Your other main decision points are these clowns. Each airline has four agents which they can deploy into the world, inflicting their will upon it. We use these folks to buy airport slots, invest in businesses, set up hubs, and run ad campaigns. Each can only be in one place at a time, and will be stuck there for a span of time depending on the nature of the mission and how much the local bureaucracy despises them.
Our 5th beatle on the side there is always around to do the opposite of everyone else, selling back things if you don't want them anymore.
The portraits are randomly selected with each new game.