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Zephead
26th Jun 2013, 07:47 AM
Don't know if this is the right area to post this, well anyway here goes. Cleaning out my loft for my new layout, and came across my old Microsoft Train Simulator game. It would not work in my new computer. Thou I will be getting rid of the desk top, again for more layout space, and moving towasrds a good laptop. Whats out there today? Got to imagine they have improved in over ten years. Also track planning software, especially geared towards Kato Unitrack System. Can any of these software items work well on a laptop.

Thanks for any input!!!

Zephead

BryanC (RIP)
26th Jun 2013, 08:45 AM
Welcome, Zep! http://www.nscale.net/forums/mysmiliesvb/mysmilie_392.gif

For track planning software checkout the software section of our Links Directory (http://www.nscale.net/forums/links/index.php). Lots of good stuff there, both free and pay!

kalbert
26th Jun 2013, 09:25 AM
I gotta admit, I found Train Simulator and Trainz2000 to be ultra dull. About as much fun as Flight Simulator. Really cool that something with that level of reality exists, but really boring to run a train or fly a plane for 20 minutes between points of interest! Hands down my favorite railroad video game is Sid Meyer's Railroads. Not an operations simulator at all, more of an economic simulator. Plan routes, schedule trains, meet demands. It's more fun IMO but obviously everyone has their own idea of fun!

magi46
26th Jun 2013, 01:14 PM
2 CENTS and Welcome to the forum. I have used HP products for years with no problems.

Quetzal
26th Jun 2013, 01:31 PM
DON'T use Trainz or something similar for actually planning the layout. It is made for simulating real trains, not models, and has no tools for curve radius, turnout number, etc. It is especially bad if you use sectional track.

For general track planning, seeing what fits in your space kind of stuff, do it on grid paper or use software that was made for model railroad planning.

HOWEVER, there is one really good use for Trainz and other simulators, especially if you are trying to realistically model prototype operations. Once you have the basic plan in your track planning software, loosely transfer the plan to Trainz or whatever. Run trains on it, without worrying about how far apart things are or how sharp the curves are. This is great for finding out how many yard tracks you really need, where a switch should go, whether you really need a crossover there, which industry should get another siding type of things. Fine tune your plan with the railroad simulator.

If you do get Trainz,get an old version, like Ultimate Trainz Collection. The newer versions are more expensive, more confusing, use more computer memory, and have a steeper learning curve.

Also, my vote for best video game of all time (not just trains) is Railroad Tycoon 3. You must try it!!! Its also kinda educational, but in a really fun way.

hminky
26th Jun 2013, 03:15 PM
If you do get Trainz,get an old version, like Ultimate Trainz Collection. The newer versions are more expensive, more confusing, use more computer memory, and have a steeper learning curve.
Don't get anything earlier than TS2010:

http://www.pacificcoastairlinerr.com/image/ek3-3.jpg

Anything earlier has nothing available.

Virtual Trainz is a relaxing way to operate if you don't have a layout available.

But not as much fun to build as solid:

http://www.pacificcoastairlinerr.com/image/june_07.jpg

Harold

Bronman
26th Jun 2013, 03:57 PM
Hey, Harold... how 'bout a close up of that creek bed (in a separate thread so as not to hijack this thread further)? Great looking water effects... Please share more!

Zephead, if you are patient, you can wait until around Christmas to download Railworks Train Simulator through Steam for around $5, but it's a lot like MSTS.

hminky
26th Jun 2013, 04:08 PM
Hey, Harold... how 'bout a close up of that creek bed (in a separate thread so as not to hijack this thread further)? Great looking water effects... Please share more!

Zephead, if you are patient, you can wait until around Christmas to download Railworks Train Simulator through Steam for around $5, but it's a lot like MSTS.
Railworks requires a whole bunch of horsepower to run and a lot of expensive DLC.

The creek is from my old On30 layout:

http://www.pacificcoastairlinerr.com/rushing_water/

Harold

Zephead
27th Jun 2013, 03:16 AM
So it seams the concenus here is Trainz for playing and a seperate software for planning

Thanks people!!

Zephead

hminky
27th Jun 2013, 08:27 AM
So it seams the concenus here is Trainz for playing and a seperate software for planning
If you are planning a railroad for "operating sessions" Trainz can help in planning the track arrangements.

Trainz 12 has a route that has a car forwarding system that allows a never ending session in real time.
This is the main classification yard in the route:

http://www.pacificcoastairlinerr.com/virtual/image/yard.jpg

The yard is truly dreadful for classifying trains.

A model railroad can't be designed in Trainz but operating kinks can be worked out.

Harold

grrf
27th Jun 2013, 09:24 AM
Sry I think railworks is way better than trainz both in looks and running. , and runs on my 2ghz dual core , at lower settings.Just my opinion though, If want to plan a proper layout try using Anyrail and the plug in for that that lets you run trains on it.I cant remember its name, but it advertised on the anyrails site.

hminky
27th Jun 2013, 09:35 AM
You can make a Trainz layout to test your ideas in a matter of minutes. TS2010 costs $10 bucks at staples.

Trainz is so easy to build layouts this caveman can do one in an hour and is easier to run trains than all the other train sims.

Railworks looks pretty but isn't very good. I have about $1500 dollars in payware from 50% off sales and rarely run Railworks. Nothing beats being an hour into a run and get "AI train has derailed" ending the run or the "Something bad has happened" screen every other session.

The learning curve on track design software is very steep.

Harold

kalbert
27th Jun 2013, 09:46 AM
On the order of track planning software, XTC is pretty good and it has capability to run trains around the exact track plan.

http://www.xtrkcad.org/Wikka/RunningTrain?show_comments=1

coffeeman
27th Jun 2013, 03:01 PM
On the order of track planning software, XTC is pretty good and it has capability to run trains around the exact track plan.

http://www.xtrkcad.org/Wikka/RunningTrain?show_comments=1

i use Xtrkcad too. It's not one that you can download and just go but if you read the tutorial then it's pretty straightforward.

I got that rail simulator during the Xmas sale one year. It does need a but under the hood of the computer but looks nice. I just never find the time to do it. I rarely find the time to do layout stuff lately.......

kalbert
27th Jun 2013, 04:04 PM
i use Xtrkcad too. It's not one that you can download and just go but if you read the tutorial then it's pretty straightforward.

I got that rail simulator during the Xmas sale one year. It does need a but under the hood of the computer but looks nice. I just never find the time to do it. I rarely find the time to do layout stuff lately.......

+1 for the tutorial. I floundered for two nights on my own, on the third night I spent a half hour and did the tutorial, and an hour later was finished with my plan!

Zephead
28th Jun 2013, 01:54 AM
Ok, my friend is ordring me a laptop, built for me. When I told this to my nephew, he said make sure to get a good graphics card. When I tell my friend that I want the laptop to play train simulator game snd a track planning software, what do I tell him(the specs)

thanks