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This thread was triggered by the current promo and the RCT games never failing to shoot up that bestselling list every time they're on sale. Despite them having been on sale so often and so long, they never fail to be immensely popular. I suppose that's due to the fact any gamer, of the casual to the hardcore persuasion, of any age can thoroughly enjoy these. Am I wrong in the impression that GOG was the first to offer the first two as a digital purchase? Anyway, all three are great in their own regard and good management games like them just don't go out of style or so it seems.

Bringing us back to the original topic, it does seem like we'll be having a genre revival on our hands soon what with Atari finally making a proper RCT4 - let's just all try to forget that mobile crap happened - Frontier starting to work on their own theme park IP, and an as of yet fairly unkown indie dev working on Parkitect.

Let's just review a little of the info that is available on all three:

<span class="bold">Parkitect</span> - Texel Raptor
Now this to me is the most exciting one as of this moment, mostly due to the fact we know more about it than the other two, most thankfully due to their weekly devlogs that goes fairly in-depth into what they're working on and what may have been tweaked.. Supposed release date is September of this year, but as always this may still end up shifting by a month or two.

Look familiar? Yeah, it does very much appear like the first two RCT games but now in an actual 3D environment. That said, there will be a good number of deviations from the classics a la supply chains and more in-depth staff management that are more akin to Bullfrog's original genre-introducing game Theme Park. Most of all the addition of modern sensibilities will be welcome like a clean and easier to use UI, top down camera view for easier building, along with a host of other features. It's still very much in development so there's things that haven't been mentioned yet.

It's being built with Unity so that could go either way, seeing as the engine has some optimization issues especially in the wrong hands. That said, I do hope it works out well for them because I really want this one to be a resounding success. Lastly, you can check out a very early interactive demo - Unity browser plug-in required - they used during their Kickstarter campaign. It's a neat little showcase, but the game appears to be already vastly bigger and better already than what was shown here.

<span class="bold">RollerCoaster Tycoon World</span> (RCT4) - Atari
Not a whole lot is known about it yet even though it's supposed to release early this year - I'm actually expecting a bit of a delay in that release. Yet I've checked on their few blog posts and they do mention some interesting ideas like more expensive restaurants in addition to food stands. The most interesting I read about their approach of coaster building in the latest post where they mention it having the classic grid build AND a more freeform node build for coaster creation. I can definitely see the latter being a rather nice addition. Also instead of paying as you create the track it'll be more like a coaster blueprint mode and you'll only pay once the track is finalized. That does sound very good to me as I've always been annoyed by how much money I was able to lose trying to fix mistakes in my coasters.

As usual, there's a lot of PR bullcrap in those posts but as you can see there are interesting tidbits to be found here and there. I'm definitely intrigued so I will keep checking on those blog posts periodically. I'm definitely interested in the project, but who knows how it'll turn out eventually. It sounds like there should be some interesting online features for it this time around, but I'm hoping they won't force some online requirement on us.

<span class="bold">Coaster Park Tycoon</span> - Frontier
Well, next to nothing is known of this project as of yet since Frontier just announced the existence of this game at the end of January with a supposed release sometime in 2016. I suspect they will build on their experience with RCT3. It'll be interesting to see in what direction they will take that. Though with their Elite shenanigans of late I'm wondering how DRM-ed this one will be. Could go either way.
Welp, the initial teaser trailer for RCTW wasn't all that impressive, looking like a slightly upgraded RCT3 at best. Supposedly it's still in pre-alpha, and it'll look much better later. We'll see if that's just BS. I just find it odd that they would even bother showing a trailer with in-game footage if they knew it was below par. Doesn't quite sound right, does it? In any case, at the same time I found out it's being made with Unity 5 now, so that's interesting.

Parkitect development keeps trucking along.

Nothing of note from CPT yet.
Well, it's time to write another quick update even if no one ever pays attention to this thread. =P So sue me. I love coasters. I love theme parks. I love simulations of both. Anywho...

The only actual newsworthy item is that Frontier finally revealed a bit more about their game now titled <span class="bold">Planet Coaster</span>. That pre-rendered trailer looks quite nice, but it's only as usual a marketing showpiece if you will. That said, there are three early (and what appears to be real) models to ogle over. Those peeps certainly look nice. If they can keep that kind of visual fidelity that should be one sweet looking game. Now if my current PC would be able to run it is a completely different matter... as well as worries about Frontier trying to make that an online-connected title as well.

Parkitect is still trucking along. If you check out their site again you'll see that it resembles a 3d-ified RCT1/2 even more, now that they've added water and other assorted tidbits. Definitely crossing my fingers for this one to be a good one. It certainly looks like to have the potential.

Atari has had a few more updates on their devblog for RCT World, but all it is a bunch of talk about them diligently working on their game without any real progress to show other than some ho-hum looking concept renders for coaster bits. Maybe they'll end up surprising us after all, but I ain't betting on that just yet.
are there any free/open source roller-coaster games available?
Time for another update! Wheee!

First off, Parkitect seems to be coming along nicely, and they just released the pre-alpha for KS backers and pre-orderers through the Humble widget on their site. I'm a bit ambivalent about the actual look of the game as it does look a bit bland at times with all its more simple geometry. Still, I'm very much following its weekly development blog with interest.

RollerCoaster Tycoon World seems to be shaping up quite a bit better than expected after they changed gears with a new development team. The just posted video commentary by Lazy Game Reviews definitely shows that it actually may have some promise now. I really like the look of coaster-building in that PAX demo as it's very much free-form. I love RCT3, but that grid-based tile laying can become a bit infuriating at times, especially when one has to delete half the coaster just to tweak one bit of section; let's not even talk about paths not matching up. Anyway, RCTW is still knee-deep in development so I'm really wondering if they can pull off a planned Q4 '15 release without compromising the game in the process.

Still nothing new on the Coaster Planet front since the initial announcement by Frontier.
Post edited September 11, 2015 by mistermumbles
Time again for another update to a thread that nobody reads: ;)

Even in its alpha state Planet Coaster looks to be coming along very nicely.

In contrast the somewhat troubled RollerCoaster Tycoon World still looks very janky. Just look at that lag! If I was the developer I'd feel embarrassed to have to show off something like that. Not to mention a lot of things still look rather bland.

Parkitect keeps doing its own thing per usual, and the more it progresses the more it looks like it'll actually have definite improvements over ye olde isometric RCTs. Still not sure how much personality it'll have, but things are looking up.
Post edited March 06, 2016 by mistermumbles
Thanks for updating your blog! I mean, your thread ;-)

J/k, interesting overview! Added to my favourite topics.
mistermumbles: Time again for another update to a thread that nobody reads: ;)
Hey!!! >:O

I've got this thread marked as a favourite for 6 months or longer and I wasn't aware of Parkitect before you mentioned it. ;)
Alright, boys and girls, it's time to check in again.

You may be aware that RollerCoaster Tycoon World has opened for business as an Early Access title on Steam a little while back, and it has gathered quite the negative attention. Clearly it's not anywhere close to being ready for primetime. Can't say I'm surprised. It'll be interesting to see whether Atari will stick with it and iron out some of those massive kinks.

Planet Coaster's Alpha is also available for an indecent price right now. Even though roller-coaster building isn't officially supported yet, it looks like everybody unlocked it with a cheat code anyway. It appears to be the true successor to Frontier's own RCT 3. It sure looks and runs better than the aforementioned RCTW.

Despite its current limited features and toolset it's quite impressive what some can come up with. Check out Silvarret'ss series on his current park. Of course us mere mortals probably would not get such impressive results as he mentions in one of his videos that he has already spent thousand(s?) of hours on designing all sorts of stuff in ye olde RCT 3. Either way it does show quite well how flexible the system is.

Last but not least, Parkitect will be opening for its own Early Access program on May 5 as it switches tracks from pre-Alpha to Alpha status. It's steadily improving and adding things. I love the way (in-game built) buildings and rides blueprints can be shared via simple .PNG files as those items' data is encoded within the pictures themselves.

It also boasts quite the impressive community scene for such an early build of a game. Hell, some clever souls have been able to add a first person park view toggle as well as a ride cam option for some time. Clearly the game (and the possibly engine) wasn't really meant for this, but it is a neat option to have. Just [url=]at this! Cool stuff.

So yeah, for the latter two things are definitely looking up. That said none of these three have an actual fleshed-out game component yet as they all just feature sandbox environments at this time. Parkitect may very well end up being the most in-depth one in that aspect should it be able to reach its dev's ambition where actual management of the park is concerned.

Lastly, I shall leave you with a quite timely comparison video in which NerdCubed tries to build similar mini-parks in all three games. Usually I don't like watching his stuff as some of his mannerisms can be quite annoying and his voice for some reason starts grating on me after short while, but for this instance it's actual a fairly decent video; until he starts complaining about RCTW that is. =/
Post edited April 11, 2016 by mistermumbles
mistermumbles: Time again for another update to a thread that nobody reads: ;)
Speak for yourself!
I'm terrible at these games, dude. Though I gotta admit that I had tons of fun with RT on...



.... the original XBOX!
Great way to play these games, eh? :D
I wonder if we will ever see stuff like Thrillville: Off The Rails, Theme Park World (Sim Theme Park) and Theme Park Inc here on GOG.

I kind of expected for the new RCT to be a mess, seeing that at least two other developers worked on it. And knowing how much post-launch support ATARI offers...not exactly an incentive to buy it.
wolfsrain: I wonder if we will ever see stuff like Thrillville: Off The Rails, Theme Park World (Sim Theme Park) and Theme Park Inc here on GOG.

I kind of expected for the new RCT to be a mess, seeing that at least two other developers worked on it. And knowing how much post-launch support ATARI offers...not exactly an incentive to buy it.
I don't actually trust Atari.
They abandoned the new "Asteroids" pretty quickly.
It's still in Early Access but it seems like they've taken down the servers and it's no longer playable.
I have no idea how the frag they are still alive. They were already downhill when Infogrames took over and continued to hemorhage money. They've lost many IP's and they will probably decide to sell the remaining ones at some point (probably no too far in the future), so they would be able to cover the debts they have.

The new Alone in the Dark games were mediocre at best, with the last one being a true disaster. Ghostbusters was another mediocre game, though the IP has a lot of potential.

Right now, ATARI is the synonym for mismanagement and their chances to recover are next to none. Seriously someone should put them out of their misery.
omega64: I don't actually trust Atari.
They abandoned the new "Asteroids" pretty quickly.
It's still in Early Access but it seems like they've taken down the servers and it's no longer playable.
I think it's a safe bet to stay away from Early Access games. I have a gigantic backlog, I don't think I need to add unfinished games into it.
Parkitech looks brilliant! Perhaps it's still a bit early, but there are way to few patrons on those screenshots.

All I'm waiting on at the moment though is OpenRCT2, hopefully with at least two additional features apart from widescreen
1.) Better path-finding algorithm so I don't have 100 people stuck in a few squares somewhere deep in my park.
2.) Any park you can choose (pay at entrance / pay for each ride / both)