Train Simulator 2014 brings the new edition of the popular train-simulation to your PC. Players must direct trains to transport people, meet schedules, and observe all the rules of rail transport.
On top of that, the editor lets you create route networks and share them on the Steam Community with other train enthusiasts.
Train simulation with limited features
You can get acquainted with the controls in Train Simulator 2014 using the tutorial, which will prepare you for a full campaign or a quick game. Among the different scenarios, there are simple transport orders from A to B, as well as challenging rides or changing routes in different weather conditions. You can estimate the level of difficulty before starting a route.
The scope of the full version of Train Simulator 2014 includes 16 motor coaches and trains, including Southeastern Class 395, Southern Pacific Dash 9 and DB ICE 2. You can create your own routes and share them on the Steam Community with an integrated track editor. More lines and trains are also available as paid downloads, although if you want to buy them all, you'll be paying more than $2800 out of pocket.
Realistic expert control
Train Simulator 2014 has both a simplified and an expert mode. In expert mode, you have to turn with the mouse or keyboard, release the brake, set the correct direction, and then adjust thrust. Your goal is to keep to speed limits and observe route signals or you'll be faced with penalties. When it comes to stations, you have to let passengers on and off the train, waiting as long as it would take in real life.The train journey itself is in real time too!
An overview of the current mission and the tasks you must perform in Train Simulator 2014 is provided by an expandable card at any time. It provides information on traveling to stations or any other important points along the way.
Good graphics and sound effects
The changing weather and light conditions make the trains in Train Simulator 2014 very realistic. Shadows and light reflections can be seen on the cars, and rain drop must be kept clear from the windows with wipers. The day-to-night cycles with the corresponding lightening and darkening of the sky are also excellent. Players have a view from the cab or from one of the many externally mounted cameras.
Train Simulator 2014 is accompanied by authentic sound effects. It rumbles splendidly through curves and turnouts. Purists will love the realistic sound effects without music.
Something that didn't quite fit into the picture, however, were the numerous crashes that we experienced during our tests.
Conclusion: Very good train simulation but a bit of a rip off
Train Simulator 2014 brings everything you would expect from a good train-simulation: a lot of realism, sophisticated lines, spruced-up trains, great sound effects, and a realistic time frame for travel times. Traveling on a well-known railway line, everything was very well considered, including the environment, train speeds- even details like remote country houses and vegetation were adapted.
The ability to create your own routes in Train Simulator 2014 with the editor is a nice addition, but it's hardly a fair exchange for the outrageous DLC prices. If you want all the routes and trains - including a number of regional trains - you'll have to pay more than $2800, which is a ridiculously unnecessary charge for a game you're already paying for. When you add this to the crashes we experienced during our test, it does somewhat tarnish the overall positive impression we had of Train Simulator 2014.