Review by smetloos

"The first installment of the RollerCoaster Tycoon franchise is a true example of an instant classic."

A genre I play and like a lot are the simulation games: the SimCity series, Theme Park and Transport Tycoon Deluxe are good examples of the early games in this genre. Transport Tycoon was Chris Sawyer's first simulation game created in 1994 and obsessed by roller coasters, he created RollerCoaster Tycoon. And still after 11 years this game is great and for me the best in the series.

The goal of the game is simple: built an amusement park including the biggest, fastest and baddest roller coasters you have ever seen. This goal repeats itself 21 times, but the different surroundings and kinds of rides and roller coasters make it a very addictive game. Each scenario, you start with a budget and a loan for building the first rides of your theme park to attract people. You can give each ride a name, price and different colours which is fun to do. When building a ride you can choose from a few standard designs, but building and designing a custom design is the way for having a real challenge.

Besides placing rides, you have to have personnel to watch over your theme park. You will need handymen, mechanics, security guards and entertainers for every issue that may occur with the hundreds of sloppy visitors. They vomit, throw garbage, demolish the rides and scenery and are not happy. Well, not always. You can hire enough personnel placing them in your park and they will walk just around or you can hire less personnel and then assign a route to them. The last option has the advantage that for example the mechanics are on time to inspect and/or repair a ride, but it takes more time planning the routes. It is up to you.

As I am not a roller coaster fanatic and therefore do not know all the sorts and names of the turns and stuff, building one is so much fun. How good your coaster is going to be, depends on the amount of money you have to spend. That is an easy rule, but there 3 ratings that can make or kill your coaster. These are the nausea, excitement and intensity rating. A good score on all three, extreme not included, will attract lots of visitors. And a good score on these ratings will cost you. Building above and undergrounds is possible. Building undergrounds is pretty difficult, because it is sometimes hard to see where your entrance path or coaster is.

The graphics and sound are great. The lovely tiny people walking around, the rides and coasters you see are detailed and colourful. Menus are easy to use: the different sorts of rides and the flora and fauna are categorized into tabs.

Overall it is a true fun and very addictive game.

Graphics: 8
Sound: 8
Gameplay: 8,5

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 09/01/11

Game Release: RollerCoaster Tycoon (US, 12/31/99)

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