Microsoft Train Simulator

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This article is about the train simulator published by Microsoft. For other uses, see Train Simulator (disambiguation).
Microsoft Train Simulator
MSTrainSimcover.jpg
Developer(s) Kuju Entertainment
Publisher(s) Microsoft
Distributor(s) Microsoft, Ubisoft* Xplosiv, (Empire Interactive), * Atari,*
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows (XP, Vista, Server 2008, 7)
Release date(s) July 2001
Genre(s) Simulation
Mode(s) Single player

Microsoft Train Simulator (abbreviated to MSTS) is a train simulator for Microsoft Windows, released in July 2001 and developed by UK based Kuju Entertainment.[1]

Gameplay[edit]

The simulation allows players to operate a train on various routes in Europe, Asia and the United States. Players need to stop and start the train, couple wagons, using the computer mouse, keyboard or a hardware addition such as Raildriver to operate the controls. Sound effects are enabled.[2]

Routes[edit]

The original game featured six routes:

Route Name Image Featured Trains Rolling Stock AI Rolling Stock Terminal stations miles km Set in Country Notes
Hisatsu Line JR Hisatsu Line.jpg Kyushu Diesels KIHA 31 KIHA 140 Yatsushiro to Yoshimatsu via Hitoyoshi Template:53 Template:85 2000/2001 Japan N/A
Innsbruck - St. Anton Trisannabruecke 3, 1.jpg Orient Express Gölsdorf 380 Gölsdorf 310 Innsbruck to St. Anton Template:63 Template:101 1930s Austria N/A
Northeast Corridor Southbound Acela Express crossing the Susquehanna River Bridge.jpg Amtrak Acela and Metroliner Acela Express
Acela HHP-8
Genesis
Metroliner
Philadelphia to Washington via Baltimore Template:133 Template:214 2000/2001 United States N/A
Marias Pass BNSF GE Dash-9 C44-9W Kennewick - Wishram WA.jpg BNSF and Amtrak Dash 9
GP38-2
SD40-2 (1.2)
Genesis
SD40
Shelby to Whitefish, including Kalispell branchline N/A N/A 2000/2001 United States N/A
Settle & Carlisle Railway Steam locomotive 60163 Tornado LNER Peppercorn A1 class Ribblehead Viaduct The waverley 3 October 2009 image 1.jpg LNER, LMS and GWR Flying Scotsman
BR Class 50 (1.2)
6100 Royal Scot
Pendennis Castle
Settle to Carlisle N/A N/A 1920s/1930s United Kingdom N/A
Tokyo - Hakone OER Tama River Bridge Noborito.jpg Odakyu Electrics Series 7000 LSE
Series 2000
Series 30000 EXE Shinjuku to Odawara Template:55 Template:88 2000/2001 Japan N/A

Included with the game was the Editors & Tools program, which allowed the user to build custom routes, create activities for any route, create custom consists, create custom cabviews, or edit the default ones. The Editors & Tools program is also included with later versions of the game.

Locomotives (1.0/1.2)[edit]

The 1.0 base package contains 9 drivable locomotives and multiple units plus 8 AI trains

Locomotive Image Ingame Number Type mph km/h Built Country Route Livery(s) 1.0 1.2 Player Driveable Notes
Flying Scotsman LNER Pacific 4474 on King's Cross turntable (CJ Allen, Steel Highway, 1928).jpg 4472 Flying Scotsman Steam 100 160 1923 United Kingdom Settle & Carlisle Railway LNER Green Yes Yes Yes N/A
Royal Scot Royal Scot 2109460.jpg 6100 Royal Scot Steam 90 145 1927 United Kingdom Settle & Carlisle Railway LMS Red Yes Yes No N/A
Pendennis Castle 5029 Nunney Castle Didcot old slide.jpg 4079 Pendennis Castle Steam 75 120 1924 United Kingdom Settle & Carlisle Railway GWR Green Yes Yes No N/A
BR Class 50 Class 50 diesel-electric locomotive number 50015 Valiant.jpg 50015
Valiant
Diesel 100 160 1967 United Kingdom Settle & Carlisle Railway BR Blue No Yes Yes N/A
Gölsdorf 310 N/A 310.23 Steam N/A N/A N/A Austria Innsbruck - St. Anton OBB Yes Yes No N/A
Gölsdorf 380 N/A 380.119 Steam 43 60 1911 Austria Innsbruck - St. Anton OBB Yes Yes Yes Cabview comes from Gölsdorf 180 Steam Locomotive
Dash 9 BNSF Dash 9-44CW 5518.jpg 4723 Diesel 70 112 1993 United States Marias Pass BNSF Yes Yes Yes N/A
Genesis GE Genesis P42DC 97, Sparks, Nevada, 1998.JPG 705 Diesel 100 160 1994 United States Marias Pass
Northeast Corridor
Amtrak Yes Yes No N/A
GP38-2 BNSF 2276 at Seattle SODO (Public Domain).jpg 2081 Diesel 70 112 1972 United States Marias Pass BNSF Yes Yes Yes N/A
SD40 BNSF 6367 EMD SD40.JPG 7171 Diesel 83 134 1966 United States Marias Pass BNSF Yes Yes No N/A
SD40-2 MRL 250.jpg 8010 Diesel 70 112 1972 United States Marias Pass BNSF No Yes Yes N/A
Acela Express Acela old saybrook ct summer2011.jpg 2001 Electric 150 240 1998 United States Northeast Corridor Amtrak Yes Yes Yes N/A
Acela HHP-8 HHP-8 664 at Wilmington Station.jpg 651 Electric 135 217 1999 United States Northeast Corridor Amtrak Yes Yes Yes N/A
Metroliner E60 604.jpg 620 Electric 90 145 1972 United States Northeast Corridor Amtrak Yes Yes No N/A
KIHA 31 Kiha31 hitoyoshi.jpg 3112 Diesel 60 95 1986 Japan Hisatsu Line JP Kyushu Yes Yes Yes Red Interior (Blue Interior When in Passenger view)
KIHA 31 Isaburo-Shinpei Kiha31 hitoyoshi.jpg 3112 Diesel 60 95 1986 Japan Hisatsu Line JP Kyushu Yes Yes Yes Blue Interior (Red Interior When in Passenger view)
KIHA 31 Isaburo-Shinpei has placards on its front and rear stating that it is the Isaburo/Shinpei sightseeing train.
KIHA 140 Hayato-YoshimatsuDieselCar.jpg N/A Diesel N/A N/A 1977 Japan Hisatsu Line JP Kyushu Yes Yes No N/A
Series 7000 LSE Odakyu 7000-Hakone 20120219.jpg N/A Electric 70 110 1980 Japan Tokyo - Hakone Odakyu Electric Railway Yes Yes Yes N/A
Series 2000 Model 2000-Second of Odakyu Electric Railway.JPG N/A Electric 60 100 1995 Japan Tokyo - Hakone Odakyu Electric Railway Yes Yes Yes N/A
Series 1000 (referred as Series 2000 Odakyu1000.jpg N/A Electric 60 100 1987 Japan Tokyo - Hakone Odakyu Electric Railway Yes Yes Yes Only in 8 car formation
referred as Series 2000)
Series 30000 EXE OER Romancecar Hakone -EXE-.jpg N/A Electric 75 120 1996 Japan Tokyo - Hakone Odakyu Electric Railway Yes Yes No Centre Gangway Cabs cars 4/5 or 6/7 depending on Train Direction never modeled, Uses End 1 and 10 cabs instead.

Gameplay issues[edit]

The original version contained many bugs. For example the "front coupling bug", where the locomotive's front coupler would not work, the "white void bug", where the route scenery disappears, leaving a white void, and the "end-of-the-line bug", where the locomotive, if it crashes through the last buffers on the route, would fall into an empty void. There are also issues with the signalling and AI dispatching. The game is also notoriously unstable with unusually high tendencies to hang, crash without giving reason, and display error messages incorrectly and/or at the wrong times. In many instances, out-of-place error messages, usually for missing files, will cause a highly undesired crash at the wrong time. MSTS 1.2 addressed some of these issues.[3]

Updates[edit]

v1.2 added new items such as British and American rolling stock, namely the British Rail Class 50, British Rail Mark 1 Coaches, an EMD SD40-2 and general US freight cars, along with two new activities each for the SD40-2 and Class 50.

Reception[edit]

The game sold over a million units.[4]

Microsoft Train Simulator 2[edit]

On May 7, 2003, Microsoft announced that it would be making a sister game of MSTS called Microsoft Train Simulator 2[5] and it was first demoed to the public at E3 on May 15.[6] Seemingly its main improvements were the addition of people to the game (e.g. passengers waiting at the stations, people operating the new locomotive roster, etc.), more realistic crashes and other accidents, and turntables. It was being developed by Kuju Entertainment, the original MSTS creators. Despite restructuring efforts at Kuju, the project was however handed over to Microsoft Game Studios on August 18, 2003.[7]

This project was ultimately halted, as the following statement on April 24, 2004 from Microsoft confirmed:

Microsoft Game Studios has halted the Windows-based game "Train Simulator 2.0." The decision to halt "Train Simulator 2.0" was made some time ago and was based on a long, hard and difficult look at our business objectives and product offerings. We remain focused on the simulations category with successful, platform-driving franchises such as "Microsoft Flight Simulator."

[8]

On January 19, 2007, Microsoft announced the relaunch of the Microsoft Train Simulator project. This time the game was being made in-house by ACES Game Studio (Microsoft Game Studios) known for its long line of Microsoft Flight Simulators, as a part of the "Games for Windows" initiative. The game would have used the Microsoft Flight Simulator X graphics engine and it was planned to be compatible with both Windows Vista and Windows XP. A post on the 'The Little Wheel Goes in Back' blog, written by one of the developers, on August 23, 2007 suggested the working title was 'Train Simulator 2'.[9]

On January 23, 2009, Microsoft announced that it was permanently closing ACES Game Studios, the internal development studio responsible for both Microsoft Flight Simulator and Microsoft Train Simulator. As a result, all future development on Train Simulator 2 (which was entering the final stages of development at the time of the closure) was immediately halted, marking the second time that the project was terminated. While Microsoft states that "they are committed to both the Flight Simulator and Train Simulator brands", it is currently unknown if the Train Simulator 2 project will ever be resurrected and completed sometime in the future. Many former employees of ACES Game Studios went on to join Cascade Game Foundry, a new company that was itself founded by two ACES alumni. Cascade Game Foundry focuses on developing entertainment simulations.[10]

Notes[edit]

  • * Distributed under license.

See also[edit]

  • Train simulator – reference article to other train simulator products.
  • Open Rails – a free software successor to MSTS which uses current technology.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Amazon sales page for MSTS
  2. ^ Marchelletta, Courtney. "Fuill Product Review Microsoft Train Simulator". About.com. Retrieved January 20, 2009. 
  3. ^ Train Simulator Add-on page
  4. ^ Hilliard, Kyle (6 September 2014). "Gears Of War's Rod Fergusson On the Franchise's Past And His Optimism For The Future". Game Informer. GameStop. Retrieved 7 September 2014. 
  5. ^ "Microsoft Train Simulator Review for PC". GameFAQs. Retrieved January 20, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Train Simulator 2 Impressions – PC News at GameSpot". uk.gamespot.com. Retrieved January 20, 2009. 
  7. ^ "Microsoft takes over Train Sim 2 – PC News at GameSpot". uk.gamespot.com. Retrieved January 20, 2009. 
  8. ^ "Train Simulator 2 canceled – PC News at GameSpot". uk.gamespot.com. Retrieved January 20, 2009. 
  9. ^ "The Little Wheel Goes in Back : Guter Tag von Leipzig!". blogs.msdn.com. Retrieved January 20, 2009. 
  10. ^ "The Simulation Game – games TM". www.gamestm.co.uk. Retrieved April 2, 2012. 

External links[edit]