OpenRCT2

Re­turn­ing to RollerCoast­erTy­coon2 with new tools.

PC GAMER (US) - - MOD S P OT L I GHT - By Daniella Lu­cas

Roller­Coaster Ty­coon 3 may have been taken down on Steam, but the su­pe­rior sec­ond en­try in the se­ries is still there to grab, and by down­load­ing the open source OpenRCT2 Project along­side it, you’ll be able to unlock the game’s true po­ten­tial. The project adds a load of new fea­tures, such as be­ing able to fast for­ward your sce­nario and adding mul­ti­player, as well as fix­ing many old bugs and rais­ing a lot of the game’s lim­its so you can cre­ate the park of your dreams. It may come as a sur­prise to see the RCT com­mu­nity con­tin­u­ing to flour­ish 20 years on from the first game, and de­spite the fact that more re­cent en­tries in the se­ries by Atari have been aw­ful. In­stead of div­ing into new games in the genre, such as the ex­cel­lent Planet Coaster and Parki­tect, play­ers con­tinue to be drawn back to the sim­ple iso­met­ric charms of Roller­Coaster Ty­coon, cre­at­ing mas­ter­pieces in the process.

Filled with nos­tal­gia and the over­con­fi­dence that I too can be­come a mas­ter de­signer, I’ve de­cided to put OpenRCT2 through its paces and will hope­fully man­age to build some semi-de­cent rides in the process. I’ve picked For­est Fron­tiers and Dy­na­mite Dunes as my starter sce­nar­ios (you can also ac­cess the orig­i­nal RCT tracks in RCT2) to ease my­self in while try­ing to add a few flour­ishes along the way.

While oth­ers are cre­at­ing far more im­pres­sive rides and parks than you’d ever think pos­si­ble with the base game, I’ve found it much eas­ier to ex­per­i­ment with my de­signs here. The most note­wor­thy thing OpenRCT2 gives you is the free­dom

to play with the scenery more. Money is no longer a con­cern when you can gift your­self reg­u­lar cash in­jec­tions, and you can turn off height clear­ance so that your paths and build­ings can be placed closer to the sup­port beams of your rides. While it was pos­si­ble to craft build­ings to house your rides or huge towers to add am­bi­ence in the orig­i­nal, the changes cer­tainly make it eas­ier here. I found my­self pok­ing around other peo­ples’ parks for any coaster de­signs I could save

Af­ter un­nec­es­sar­ily wor­ry­ing about my bland log flume, I re­al­ized I could take my time adding water fea­tures and tun­nels, el­e­vat­ing my sad lit­tle course from a wooden turd nav­i­gat­ing a chute to some­thing Walt Dis­ney could be proud of. The ride trav­els around other at­trac­tions, at one point dis­ap­pear­ing un­der­ground for a de­cep­tively long drop. The ‘cheats’ added here may seem ba­sic, but they also make it eas­ier to re­lax and go wilder with your de­signs.

Park envy

The mul­ti­player servers are a fun ad­di­tion and source of in­spi­ra­tion if you don’t mind beat­ing your­self up about how tal­ented ev­ery­one else is com­pared to you. You can ei­ther start your own park or join some­one else’s server and start build­ing. While, in the­ory, you could mess with other peo­ples’ builds, the com­mu­nity seems very wel­com­ing and is happy to col­lab­o­rate, even if your ad­di­tion of a go kart track uglies up a beau­ti­ful cas­tle theme. Other servers are also a great source of ideas—I found my­self pok­ing around other peo­ples’ parks for any coaster de­signs I could save to use in my own parks. I end up pinch­ing a wooden coaster, a sus­pended one and a cute-look­ing gen­tle car ride for later be­fore hav­ing a lit­tle cry over my lack of tal­ent.

An­noyed that my coast­ers still have a long way to go, I leave the rides and park man­age­ment side of things alone while I at­tempt to cre­ate some pretty gar­dens in­stead. In­spired by the on­line servers, I try my hand at build­ing a small barn us­ing the miscellaneous pieces pro­vided and stick a burger shop in­side it. With ev­ery­thing tick­ing over nicely, I fast for­ward the game pace to watch the money roll in and speed to­wards my com­ple­tion goals. It’s a handy lit­tle tool when so much of your park’s life can feel like slow going. There’s also an op­tion to end a sce­nario early if you’ve met the con­di­tions well be­fore the timer runs out, which I had not. That’s be­cause my gar­den pre­oc­cu­pa­tion had come at the ex­pense of the rest of my park.

Over­whelmed by vomit from a slightly too in­tense roller­coaster I’d built, my park is look­ing less like a beau­ti­ful day out and more like the pave­ment out­side a ke­bab shop on a Fri­day night. Thank­fully, there’s a new but­ton which in­stantly clears the drip­ping chunks from my path­ways, mean­ing I can con­tinue to pre­tend I’m a com­pe­tent man­ager. It’s also pos­si­ble to do the same thing with the grass, in­stantly mow­ing fields so ev­ery­thing looks neat enough to win you that cov­eted ‘ti­di­est park’ award.

All of th­ese lit­tle ad­di­tions change Roller­Coaster Ty­coon from be­ing a man­age­ment game into a de­sign one, and that’s no bad thing—the longevity and joy of RCT is in the free­dom of its creative side. You can build the park of your dreams with coast­ers that no sane per­son who val­ues their in­testines would think about rid­ing. It’s a great way to re­turn to such a won­der­ful clas­sic PC game. I’ve be­come hooked all over again.

How build­ing should be done.

Fenc­ing in a track and them­ing the area is a great way to add re­al­ism.

My prized log flume show­ing off as guests walk into the park.

A be­gin­ner’s at­tempt at gar­dens and build­ings.

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