Rail Simulator 2: Railworks – The evolution of Rail Simulator

I appreciate that some of you have been waiting (patiently) for the promised announcements concerning Rail Simulator. This brief note outlines the key points of our strategy - we’ll be elaborating this in the coming weeks.

Over the past few months, we have been planning the future direction of Rail Simulator and as part of that process, we have analysed your feedback and assessed our position in the competitive marketplace. Based on this analysis, I am pleased to announce that we will be releasing Rail Simulator 2: RailWorks (working title!) in June 2009.

RailWorks will represent a new approach to simulation. Instead of providing a product, we are attempting to provide you with a platform on which you can build and operate virtual railways. We will continue to support and develop this platform over the coming months and years, adding new features to make the simulated environment ever more compelling. We will also be focusing on a number of facilities to allow you to share and even trade elements of your virtual world with other users.

Unlike Rail Simulator, RailWorks will include all the tools that were previously downloaded separately. In addition, for those of you who are online, we also plan to make use of Valve’s ‘Steam’ technology to simplify the process of supporting and upgrading the product. Don’t worry, we’ve worked hard to ensure compatibility with content created with Rail Simulator and will continue to make backward compatibility a key priority.

There will be one world-wide version of RailWorks that will include improved versions of all the routes currently in the European and North American version of Rail Simulator. In addition, we will have new routes and new locomotives along with new scenarios and significant graphical advancements. I don’t want to say too much about the new routes now, other than that one is North American, one European and one UK based. These are in the later stages of development and all are looking very impressive. I’m confident that you are going to enjoy them all.

With the launch of the RailWorks platform, we continue to demonstrate our long-term commitment to the rail simulation community. We have listened to your feedback and created RailWorks to better meet your needs.

So, to summarise: I appreciate that we’ve been quiet (thanks for your patience!), we’ve spent the last couple of months restructuring the business, realigning our product releases to meet the changed competitive environment and establishing new ways of distributing the product. Rail Simulator 2: RailWorks will provide a single platform for all of our customers with an exciting set of new content and features.

Everyone at RSDL remains committed to this hobby and going forward we want to work with as many of you as possible to make an even better product. In the coming weeks we’ll tell you more about:

  • The new routes
  • The new locomotives
  • The new distribution channels
  • The reorganized company (but don’t worry, Derek and the boys will still need biscuits, so keep the supplies coming!)
  • The improvements we’ve made
  • The New features for sharing content

Tim Gatland