Written by: TrainSim-James
Engine Driver author and Steam Workshop scenario creator Fringe Stalin is here with some tips and tricks onmaking a scenario forTrain Simulator.
One of the most beloved features of Train Simulator has been the ability to create your own scenarios. All of them have different levels of greatness, and are of course different in their own way. If you want to make your scenarios more professional and more realistic, here are a few tips to help you…
When creating a scenario, I recommend getting to know the route and gaining a certain amount of route knowledge. You should learn the stopping patterns, the station order, the amount of platforms at certain stations, the approximate distance between them, areas where bi-directional travel is forbidden (though mostly not the case), manual points locations, and also know how long it will take to travel on your intended journey. It isn’t mandatory, but it would be helpful if you knew the platform length beforehand rather than find out your express train doesn’t fit into it in the middle of your service. It would also be a shame if you missed an AI train passing simply because the speed limits meant you couldn’t go fast enough from a branch line to join the main line where you intended to pass it. Knowing the station maping could help with knowing what platform to direct the trains in. A simple thing to note is that you should know what side of the track to put the trains on. In the UK, it will always if not mostly be on the left, in Germany on the right, and different in the US, as some are on the left and some others are on the right.
GO VIA and WAYPOINT
This is an instruction we normally see in developer scenarios, but it isn’t limited to them. It is very easy to find too. On the scenario tools when clicking the timetable button after inserting a driver onto a train, there is the “Stop At” option which is a finger pointing to the right. When you go to select the station the train would stop at, there is a “0mph” further down the board before you select the list of stations. Change this to “1mph”, and the instruction will turn into “Go Via”. You can set it above “1mph” if you wish, but then you will have to “Go Via” at the selected speed, and not doing so will fail the instruction, thus failing the scenario at the end. Additionally, there is a red flag icon further to the right, and this is simply a waypoint, and a “Go Via” without the instruction actually appearing. It sends your train the way you want rather then letting it make it’s own way.
PICKING UP PASSENGERS
The best option is to select the icon to the right of “Stop At”, which is the “Pick Up Passengers” instruction. Before you select the station, there is a clock icon beneath it. Click this, and then you can chose how long you will be picking up the passengers for. The default is 35 seconds, but you can pick however long you want, it is written in HH:MM:SS (H for Hours, M for Minute, S for Second). You can even select an option somewhere on the same tab to unload passengers at a certain station such as a terminus station.
I wouldn’t start adding AI until you have set your train’s path first. But when you do, make sure it won’t cross into your path. I would suggest going from your train along your intended path and then adding AI into the game, and giving the trains instructions one-by-one. In order for safe running purposes, I recommend running trains at least three minutes apart. Unless you are on London Faversham High Speed where there is in-cab signalling, in which case you can run them closer together than normal. Unless you want a lot of AI trains, I would keep them at the minimum to nine trains per scenario. Don’t try to put in too much, as ergonomically spaking, it may cause some computers to lag and render the scenario unplayble. I would also suggest variety between trains, such as a certain order (Express, Stopping, Freight and so on). Try to make them different colours unless you want a fully dedicated scenario to a certrain train (Such as my one called “Pendolinos Everywhere”).
If you want to customise your consists, I would suggest doing it in the custom consist creator in Quick Drive. This might be the same as simply building it in the scenario editor, but make sure to plan the custom trains first. In the long-run, it is much less time-consuming, and you won’t get a “Static Consist Clash” error on the creator. (This error won’t affect the scenario too drastically if at all). You must also know the train you want to drive in the scenario, as some are slower than others, or take longer to accelarate and decelarate. It is another helpful piece of knowledge when you miss an AI Train when you join onto the main line from the branch line because your train wasn’t fast enough. The Scenario can be created in one go before testing, but if you absolutely need to, time the scenario in normal circumstances before placing AI trains so you know when to have them pass the player.
So there you have it, some new tips for scenario editing. I hope you enjoyed this article and found it informative…