A-Train

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''A-Train''
Missing image
ATrain-original-box-cover.jpg


Developer(s) Artdink
Publisher(s) Maxis
Release date(s) 1992
Genre Simulation
Mode(s) Single player
Rating(s) ESRB: K-A (PlayStation version only)
Platform(s) Amiga, DOS, PlayStation
This article is about A-Train the videogame. For other uses, see A-Train (disambiguation)

A-Train is a 1992 computer game published by Maxis. In the game the player is in charge of a railway company. There are no rival companies, the player controls the only one in the city and the game is fairly open-ended.

There are two types of transport that the player's company can take: passengers or building materials. The former is more likely to be profitable, but building materials allow the city to grow.

Wherever the building materials are delivered, they can be taken and used to contruct buildings for the city. These start with houses, but eventually, as an area grows, roads, and shops and other buildings are built. These can provide extra revenue for a passenger service, but also allowing the city to develop and grow can be seen as a goal in itself.

As well as the buildings built by the computer, in response to the materials being present, the player can construct their own buildings, such as ski resorts and hotels, and make profits from them if the conditions are right.

The game was tremendously popular in Japan, thus motivating Maxis to license it for US distribution. Unfortunately for Maxis, aside from those spurred to purchase the game based on Maxis' then-stellar reputation (fresh from the successes of the early SimCity games), very few copies were purchased in the US. Some supsect that US gamers were not interested in the level of detail and micro-management that captivated the Japanese audience. The fact that it is a game about managing a train system cannot be the reason it sold poorly, as Microprose's Railroad Tycoon remains one of the bestselling game series of all time in the US. Even the release of an add-on pack for the game failed to stir up any real support amongst the gaming community. The game was the first major failure from Maxis.

In later years, the development of A-Train moved to console platforms; the fourth title of the series (A4, released c. 1997) would be the last released for PCs.

The most recent game of the series, A6, is available on the PlayStation 2 in Japanese only.

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