GameOver Game Reviews

Game & Publisher Railroad Tycoon 2 (c) Gathering of Developers
Overall Rating 85%
Date Published , , ,

Divider Left By: 2XHelix Divider Right

I'm finally glad to see a game such as Railroad Tycoon 2. For months, there have been endless amounts of 3rd person or 1st person action games. Because of my computer, I am unable to play such action games, so I am reduced to playing strategy games more often than not. Although some good strategy games have been released, few are as good as Railroad Tycoon 2. Railroad Tycoon 2 (RT2) is obviously a sequel to the first game, and many advances are notable.

First off, the graphics are sprite based which means that objects are not rendered on the fly. Sprite based games have a great advantage as the graphics can be very elegant and detailed. This holds true in RT2, from trains and stations, to houses and buildings, each are beautifully created. However, certain minor details such as the smoke from the train lack the transparency a 3Dfx enhanced game would produce. The game can be played under 1024 x 768 which is much higher than most games, such as Starcraft that plays under a measly 640X480. RR2 also runs very smoothly on my computer, which is a p200mmx. This game displays not only an astounding graphical appearance, but also unmatched realism.

Every aspect of the environment plays a role in Railroad Tycoon 2. While placing tracks, a player must decide whether to take a shorter route but risk the hills and mountains, or take a much longer route but with the surface of the track is on a flat plane. Each station must be carefully placed to ensure that the most revenue can be attained. Furthermore, each station has numerous add-ons, such as Salons, or Hotels that are required to increase the revenue and the number of passengers that ride your trains. If a train is not maintained properly it may break down, or if sections of the track are in the middle of nowhere, bandits may come and rob it. Trains also have the ability to transport much more than passengers. Like the previous Railroad Tycoon, cattle, grain, goods, cars etc. must be transported to industries in the cities. Unlike previous games, the company stock actually makes a difference. Investors will give support your company if your future looks good, however if your future looks dull, investors pull out. For those that do not understand the implications of this, a strong company gets stronger, while a company which is stuck, will remain stuck, unless a suitable solution is found. Such details make the game more challenging, and more enjoyable. Note, this game is not for those who have a limited attention span, or for those which would rather crash trains together. This game is not a simple experience so you should expect to spend about one hour to learn the basic strategy when playing on easy mode. Add another hour to understand the hard mode, where landscape and stocks play an increased roll.

The sound effects in Railroad Tycoon 2 are about what I expected. How exciting can a train sound be? During the game, there are many ambient noises such as birds singing and water flowing. However, the sound effects are not the reason why this game is so enjoyable.

Railroad Tycoon 2 supports multiplayer. When the maps get larger, and more tracks are placed, I felt that the game started to slow down. Although nothing as bad as Red Alert was, the support for multiplayer is adequate. When playing multiplayer, you can send your trains onto your opponents' tracks, although you must pay a fee for use of their rail.

As I said before, this game is not for everyone, and I would not suggest it if you do not enjoy detail and complex strategy formation. This game requires an extensive amount of time to understand as its realism is unsurpassed by any other strategy game in the same genre.

Graphics: 18/20
Sound: 10/15
Gameplay: 28/30
Fun Factor: 16/20
Multiplayer: 4/5
Overall Impression: 9/10


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