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Static AI
Is it just me or is the AI rather static? I started a game in 1980 and it seems that airlines spawn without any planes and they only slowly build them, being quite immersion-breaking. They are rather slow at picking slots at airports too, even the most important ones like LA, NY, etc.
Yes, the AI is very slow at decision making at the moment. This will change once we have smarter AI.
Is there a rough ETA when that may be? It’s one of the main problems that prevent me from really enjoying this game?
No, sorry. It was meant to be fixed in the first couple of months of 2020, but something different got in the way to fix it.
Will the AI eventually catch on? As in, after a few years, will the AI eventually create a realistic network?
At the moment it's unlikely they'll ever come up with a realistic network.
We still need to do a lot of work on the AI.

Most of them will end up with a network of some sort, but it's likely to be spread out across the world.

That being said, if you start the game with start data enabled, many airlines do start with a realistic network.
I started a game in 1960 and historical airlines start without their real routes and planes.

I guess I’d better wait for the AI update then.
What’s the year when start data routes become active? I haven’t seen them in my vintage campaigns.
It's not a set year. It's just that some airlines have their routes written in the files and others don't.
If you want, you can edit the files yourselves.

You can find the files in data/airlines. And then look for the airline you want to edit.

You can find more information on editing these files here.

You actually only need to add this at the right place:

    <route destination1="" destination2=""/>

With the destinations being the IATA code of the airport.

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