One of the frequent complains I receive from our fans is that the railcars in Train Sim are always empty. This breaks some of the immersion and is an obvious an area for improvement.
However in the past I have been reluctant to add more details to the interiors of the trains to ensure that Train Sim performs well on slower devices. Adding more polygons (3D Models) to a scene can easily overwhelm the GPU and crash the game on older phones and tablets.
The solution that occurred to me is to enable the high quality passengers for newer and higher powered devices and keep the older passenger models and empty railcars for devices that are older and less powerful.
So to that end here is a small preview of the new passenger models I am adding to the interior of railcars. I will also be replacing the passenger models currently used when onboarding and departing railcars when the train is stopped, with these higher quality ones.
Sometimes you just want to build a train. Coming soon to Train Sim, a new Train Yard level that will allow you to shunt cars into trains to your hart’s content. I am even thinking of having a random car setup every time you start the level. Let me know what you think.
This weekend has been very rainy in my home town of Calgary (Canada) so I was able to focus more on deploying the new version of Train Sim to the other platforms.
So far I managed to convert and test the new version Train Sim for iOS and uploaded it to the Apple App Store (should be live on your favourite iPhone or iPad within a in a day or so)
While I was testing the iOS version I found a few bugs so I also released a beta version for Android with a few of these bug fixes: (link: http://bit.ly/2YcVK77)
The new beta version of Train Sim has the following fixes:
– Fixed an issue where Steam Train Wheels would some times not turn – Rail Crossings now have flashing lights (again) – Weed whacked some grass that grew over the Train Tracks in the Desert Level – Fixed some tenders were jittery
All of the above fixes are already present in the new iOS version.
Completely redesigned rail system that allows me to produce fully
3 dimensional tracks as well as full 3D Electrical Wires. So far only the rails are rendered in full 3D,
the sleepers or (crossties) are still just a 2D texture, mostly for performance
reasons on mobile. However as mobile
devices get faster, I will easily be able to extend this to full 3D sleepers
(crossties) at very little effort.
In fact, I can now place any 3D object along or on the rail continuously
or in spots. This opens many new
possibilities in the future to allow Train Sim to grow well into the next decade.
Why did it take so long?
This was a complete redesign of a key system in Train Sim
that affects every level. The rail
system is so core to the game that updating it required rewriting other key
systems such as track switching, track connections, train controller, wagon
controller etc. Don’t even get me
started on testing, every train wagon, track connection and level had to be tested. And then when a bug is found, it had to be
fixed and re-tested again.
Once the 3D model is complete my next focus will be to add
the Pacific Surliner to Tran Sim as fast as possible.
Work continues on the next update to Train Sim with the main focus on improved 3D Rails & Electrical Wires.
This turned out to be more difficult than I originally thought, due to the fact that I had to update a major system in Train Sim that creates the tracks and wires on a predefined path. This means that all the tracks in Train Sim had to be remade & then re-tested.
Also because the the height of the 3D tracks have changed, I had to re-test all the Trains & Cars to ensure their positioning on the tracks is correct.
After a month of work and quite a few 12AM nights, I think all the tracks & trains are now positioned correctly. However I still have to check the positioning of all the cars & perform a full test cycle of the game.
Train Sim 3.4.3 was release for Android. This is a rather large update that added a new Subway Train and an amazing 3D Cab for the Challenger Locomotive. This means that The Flying Scotsman is the last train to feature a 2D Cabin and I hope to have that fixed in the next release. In this release I also made it possible for all opposite trains to stop at stations, making their behaviour slightly more realistic.
Here is the list of new features in Train Sim version 3.4.3:
-3D Cab for Challenger Train
-Track Switching to the Desert andMountain Scenes
-Metrovagonmash 81-760 Subway Train
-More Historically Accurate Flying Scotsman Tender
-Opposite Trains now stop on stations
This weekend I will try to get Train Sim iOS version updated as well, which means it could go live within 7-10 days.