Written by: TrainSim-James
Recently, we announced that North Wales Coastal was coming soon, exclusively for Train Simulator 2018, and will feature the Virgin Trains Class 221, along with Arriva Trains Wales traction. Today, we are happy to share with you everything included in the Train Simulator 2018 package.
Mittenwaldbahn: Garmisch-Partenkirchen – Innsbruck
After the first proposals for a railway line between Seefeld and Innsbruck began to appear in the late 1880s, and following many disputes over financing, approval was granted and construction got underway. Seefeld was to be the original terminus, but this was quickly extended to Mittenwald, and eventually to the already existing station of Garmisch-Partenkirchen. While pushing costs even higher, this extension would allow a seamless connection between Munich and Innsbruck.
The line was opened in July 1912; however, it would not be until April of the following year until the planned electrification was complete and in full operation. Most railway lines weren’t built with the wires in mind, however it was decided to construct the Mittenwaldbahn in such a condition to avoid any future work being required; the landscape was difficult to work in, getting everything done at once avoided major developments in the future, despite the initial cost.
The Mittenwaldbahn proved essential to the locals, and saw a significant rise in tourist traffic with various ski resorts being accessible to many, this was particularly the case for the 1976 Winter Olympics and 1985 World Ski Championships. It was round this time when modernisation was undertaken to accommodate, including re-signalling and station re-builds.
Today, the Austrian section of the line (Innsbruck-Scharnitz) is operated as the S5 line of the Tyrol S-Bahn. ÖBB 4020s would have dominated this service back in their heyday, but the more common traction found is the ÖBB 4024 ‘Talent’ EMUs. DB also provide a regular service to Mittenwald from Munich, with occasional trains extending all the way to Innsbruck. The two operators also provide weekly InterCity Expresses, formed of the ICE-T high-speed train and stopping at key stations only. Any freight that traverses the route can often be found behind ÖBB’s modern and powerful 2016 ‘Hercules’ locomotives.
The Mittenwaldbahn for Train Simulator 2018 features the 58 km route between Garmisch-Partenkirchen Hbf and Innsbruck Hbf, complete with a variety of Career and Railfan Mode Scenarios allowing you to explore this classic and eye-catching route, all while putting your skills to the test!
Both the DB BR 442 in DB Regio livery, and ÖBB 2016 resplendent in the bold ÖBB red, will be ready for your remote passenger and heavy freight needs. A selection of freight cars are included for the ÖBB 2016, and the locomotive itself is in clean, weathered and heavily weathered conditions.
Peninsula Corridor: San Francisco – San Jose
Train Simulator 2018’s Peninsula Corridor route extends over 47 miles of multiple track between San Francisco’s bustling 4th & King Street station and San Jose’s stylish Diridon station, and in between features more than 20 intermediate stations served by commuter operator Caltrain.
Formed in the 1980s to take over the legendary “Peninsula Commute Services” previously operated by the Southern Pacific, Caltrain has emerged as one of America’s most innovative and successful commuter rail operators, today serving more than 17 million commuters and travelers annually. On Train Simulator’s Peninsula Corridor route, Caltrain’s popular “Baby Bullet” express commuter trains are featured, and the route includes the distinctive and rakish Motive Power, Inc. (MPI) “MPXpress”MP36PH-3C diesels and Bombardier Bi-Level cab cars and commuter coaches that are regularly assigned to the Baby Bullets.
With 24 intermediate Caltrain station stops to serve between San Francisco and San Jose, commuter railroading on the Peninsula Corridor route is challenging – and often fast-paced (commuter trains operate at up to 79 mph on the line). And this new Train Simulator route masterfully re-creates Caltrain’s many unique stations, such as those at Millbrae, San Bruno, San Mateo, Burlingame, and Sunnyvale. The route also includes Caltrain’s expansive Central Equipment & Maintenance Facility (CEMOF) located near San Jose’s Diridon station.
As busy – and challenging – as contemporary commuter operations on the Peninsula Corridor route are, hauling people is not the only story on this highly authentic new route. When, in 1996, Southern Pacific was merged into western rail giant Union Pacific, the UP assumed freight operations on the Peninsula. Union Pacific operates switching, local, and road-haul freights out of the snug freight yard at South San Francisco, and Train Simulator’s Peninsula Corridor route features a Union Pacific Electro-Motive GP38-2 and accompanying UP freight rolling stock, providing the opportunity to test your skills at freight duties.
Train Simulator 2018’s Peninsula Corridor route includes seven career scenarios (re-creating a variety of Caltrain and Union Pacific operations) as well as three railfan scenarios, and this authentic and famed rail route promises fast-paced American commuter railroading – and challenging freight operations – along California’s legendary and vibrant San Francisco Bay Peninsula! – Gary Dolzall
North Wales Coastal: Crewe – Llandudno & Conwy Castle
Ever since the Act of Union in 1801, which saw Ireland become part of the United Kingdom, people have strived to improve the connection between the two isles. The 19th Century was still young, and all communication was bound by horse-drawn transport and sailing ships of the day. Ships for Dublin would arrive at Dun Laoghaire (formerly known as Kingstown), and frequently departed Holyhead, Wales – this was the shortest trip for boats to take.
As years went by, many improvements were made to existing roads in order to make the journey to Holyhead that much easier; however, nothing would revolutionise Welsh/Irish connections like the arrival of railways in the 1840s.
Two railway companies would form the basis of what is today the North Wales Coast Line. The first was the Chester and Crewe Railway, which linked the two communities in 1840, and only a few years later, the Chester and Holyhead Railway was incorporated. The latter’s route was proposed by the Father of Railways himself, George Stephenson, knowing full well that the coastal route along the Irish Sea would be best for hauling mail traffic to and from Ireland.
The full line was soon completed, and was ready to transform communications across seas by August 1848. Irish Mail would regularly work from London to Crewe, along the path of the West Coast Main Line, before continuing onwards to Holyhead and finally Ireland. By this point, the original Chester and Crewe Railway had already been absorbed by the Grand Junction Railway, and the Chester and Holyhead Railway followed suit in 1859 when it became part of the London and North Western Railway (LNWR).
The LNWR, being in control of the West Coast Main Line and now the line to Holyhead, saw an opportunity for a spike in tourist traffic. Trains were put on to serve seaside resorts like Rhyl, Colwyn Bay and along the Llandudno branch, setting in stone the line’s popularity. Without a doubt, the most iconic and historic point along the line is its proximity to Conwy Castle; in fact, the railway itself uniquely passes right alongside the ancient structure, and even passes through still-standing city walls.
With the grouping of railway companies in 1928 to form the “Big Four”, the LNWR network became part of the London, Midland & Scottish – a further popular era ensued. As British Railways arrived however, certain specials were cut from the timetable, and the North Wales Coast Line would enter the diesel age as it started, a freight-heavy powerhouse. Today, freight is less common among the line, although it has remained a local and long-distance passenger haven with over 90 trains a day.
You’ll be visiting the seaside with North Wales Coastal, and enjoying the views from the cab of the Virgin Trains Class 221 ‘Super Voyager’, along with the BR Class 175 and BR Class 158 of Arriva Train Wales. Career and Railfan scenarios will bring the experience to life!
If you’re new to Train Simulation, the TS Academy acts as the perfect starting point for you get to grips on a variety of locomotive types and operational procedures, and is set upon multiple short routes depicting various landscapes and differing training environments. At your disposal are the BR 189, SD70MAC, Fowler 4F & BR Class 170, plus a selection of rolling stock – you’ll be up to speed in no time with the TS Academy!
So, that’s three routes, plus the TS Academy, exceeding 150 miles (240+ km) of thrilling Train Simulator experiences with 11 varied trains at your disposal! Train Simulator 2018 will be available for PC November 16th, so if you still want to get the 4 routes of TS2017 at a bundle price, your time is limited! (Head to the Store by clicking here).
We will have even more details regarding the release of Train Simulator 2018 closer to the time, so keep an eye out for updates! ■