How it works: City consumption

Dear railways friends,

Today I would like to explain which factors influence the goods consumption of a city in Rail Nation.

A city consumes goods every 15 minutes. But how many tons are required and what are the factors that determine the amount that is consumed? Many Rail Nation players have asked about this. Today I would like to give you a detailed explanation.

In total, there are six parameters that influence the goods consumption of a city:

  1. Type of good
  2. Game progress
  3. Number of active connected players
  4. Required vs other goods
  5. Maximum consumption
  6. Endgame


Rail Nation Browsergame City Consumption

I’ll now address each of these parameters in more detail.

1. Type of good

Each good has a set base consumption (see table), e.g. coal has 18%. That means every 15 minutes, 18% of the stock will be deducted. If 10,000 tons of coal are in stock, 1,800 tons will be consumed and 8,200 tons will remain.

Resources here have a higher consumption than products that require one or more incoming goods.

Some examples:

Era 1: grain 18%, boards 14%, iron 13%, leather 12%
Era 2: pastries 14%, textiles 12%, hardware 11%
Era 3: quartz 14%, glass 13%, wire 12%, packaging 12%
Era 4: stainless steel 13%, silicon 12%, lamps 11%
Era 5: household supplies 14%, bauxite 12%, food 11%
Era 6: all goods of this era have a consumption rate of 15%

2. Game progress

The base consumption is multiplied by a factor representing the game’s progress. A level will be calculated that the cities should normally have reached according to the time passed. The actual value will then be compared to this calculated value. If the level of a city exceeds the calculated value, the coefficient is greater than 1 and the city’s consumption increases. If a city is trailing and the coefficient is smaller than 1, the city’s consumption will decrease.

The increase in consumption is not linear, so a doubled city level does not result in double the consumption.


The game round is in era three, the game has run for 35 days.

City A is at level 28 and requires copper (base consumption 12%)
City B is at level 14 and requires textiles (base consumption 12%)

Consumption in city A would be 16.67%, whereas in city B it would only be 10.26%.

3. Number of active connected players

First of all, it’s important to note that each player who is connected to the city through their railway network, and who has been online at least once within the last three days, influences city consumption. The more active players are connected to a city, the higher its consumption. However, consumption increases only very moderately as more players connect to a city.

If a player doesn’t log into their account for three days or has a sitter working on the account, the number of active connected players decreases and so does a city’s consumption. For the consumption calculation, it is irrelevant whether or not a player actually delivers goods to that city or whether they have connected other cities as well.


Let’s take city B from the previous example. With 100 connected active players, the consumption will be 10.26%. If the number of connected active players doubles to 200, consumption will increase to 11.81%.

4. Required vs other goods?

The rates mentioned in the examples above apply to goods required for city growth. The consumption of other goods is halved.

5. Maximum consumption

The maximum consumption is 30%. This value cannot be exceeded.

6. Endgame

During the endgame, consumption of all goods is the same. The base consumption is 15%.

The endgame’s progress also influences consumption. For each city, the system calculates since when it has been a megacity, and how many goods have already been fully delivered. The more goods that have been pushed through in a short time, the higher the consumption will become. Here, the influence of the game’s progress is greater than during the other stages of the game.

The connected and active players have the same influence on consumption as during the normal game.

The maximum consumption increases to 80% during the endgame.

I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into the bowels of the calculations running in the background. Please understand that I cannot disclose the exact formulas used.

Wishing you loads of fun with the game,

Game Designer