I Love Me Some RollerCoaster Tycoon – But This Guy? Dayum!

RollerCoaster Tycoon and RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 are quite simply the greatest theme park/management games ever created. Originally released in 1999 from Chris Sawyer and they still stand the test of time today. I did a quick overview of the game right here. I recently re-brought the first three games via Steam with all the added content and I’m currently re-playing through them. According to my Steam account – so far I’ve racked up over 100 hours and that is just on the first game… and I’m nowhere near close to finishing every scenario either.

I thought 100+ hours was a decent amount of time to put into the game… until I found out some guy has spent ten years, that’s TEN YEARS creating his ultimate mega-park.

Mega park.jpg

The above image is the work of one man – Sebastian Brendgen. Just to put things into perspective, the map is 254×254 tiles and that’s 64,516 individual tiles. If you know anything about the RollerCoaster Tycoon games, then you’s know that each and every single one of these tiles has to be placed and decorated yourself… that’s a hell of a lot of work.

Most of my theme parks end up being a mess of rides and attractions, and to be honest – I don’t really plan ahead and just build on instinct as the park grows. I just build because its fun. But what Sebastian did with his mega-park was very carefully pre-plan everything.

“At first I liked the gameplay very much, Later on, I don’t think it was a game anymore to me. It was more like a picture or an art.”

Sebastian used the modding tool OpenRCT2 to help him create his park. Its a tool that removes some of the restrictions the base game has, offers better building controls as well as add some new scenery and attractions.

The park grew and grew and Sebastian began to split it into various themed sections. Pirate Land, Middle Ages, Mountain Top, Mars and even a section based on Tron – he even created a parking lot!

Pirate Zone

His ideas would change and quite often, Sebastian had to destroy and rebuild rides and coasters and even entire sections in order get everything just right. A lot of the attractions in his park are based on real ones he has experienced first hand living in Germany. By the time his park was finished, it contained 255 rides and shops 34 of which are coasters and was averaging around 8,000 peeps in his park at any one time.

“It took me so long and I wasted so many thoughts on it. But I’m really proud of myself that I stuck to it and brought it that far.”

A decade is a hell of a lot of time to spend on any one game… never mind one map. I doff my hat in respect to you Mr Sebastian Brendgen – the king of RollerCoaster Tycoon.

RollerCoaster Tycoon

RollerCoaster TycoonTitle Screen

Little Bit of History:  Released in 1999 for PC – RollerCoaster Tycoon is a construction and management simulation based in numerous theme parks. Designed and programmed by Chris Sawyer.

Little Bit of Plot/Story: No real ‘plot’ to talk of here – you are just given a chunk of land, some cash and the research team to help you develop, design and build your very own theme park. Build rides, attractions, shops and coasters. You can even design and create genre specific scenery and rides, you want a horror, cowboy, space theme along with various others? Well you can  – make enough money and meet mission requirements so you can move onto the next park. You can even download fan made content and parks/rides, some based on world famous attractions from around the world. You can create your very own Disney World.

Little Bit of Character: There are no characters in the game – just random customers who will enter your park looking to be entertained and amused. Though you can rename any of the characters to whatever you like, so you can name your punters after your friends and family… then make then throw up after going on crazy coasters.

RollerCoaster Tycoon

Little Bit of Influence: RollerCoaster Tycoon was not the first game in this genre – but it was the best of the lot (until the sequel). It went on to become a successful franchise with four main games and several spin-offs.

Little Bit of Memories: It was my older brother, Rob who first introduced me to this game and I admit, at the time, I was not too impressed with it. I just found it slow, dull and uninteresting. But the more I played, the more RollerCoaster Tycoon grew on me – as I learned the building mechanic, as I became more familiar with the micro managing – I soon found myself becoming a big fan and before I knew it, I’d sunk hundreds of hours into this game creating some of the most insane theme parks and roller coasters ever created.

Little Bit of Playability: RollerCoaster Tycoon is just as playable now as it was eighteen years ago. I still enjoy losing myself in its charm and deep management gameplay. Though I much prefer RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 over the original, it still holds a special place in my gaming heart. If you like theme parks, roller coasters and games – you’ll not find a better place to quench your thirst than RollerCoaster Tycoon and its sequel… and to a slightly lesser extent the third game – but stop after that, you’ll thank me later.

RollerCoaster Tycoon Box

I love roller coasters and theme parks so much that I have decided to start my own theme park blog; 0 to 4gs. Its early days yet as I’m tinkering with the style, etc – but feel free to check it out – more content coming soon.