- The origins of Train Valley
- How the community shaped the game
- Favorite levels and lessons learned
I have been interested in railways and train sets since I was a child. One of my first sources of inspiration was the DOS game short line. It was already a very interesting puzzle game to play on my friends computer.
Railway Valley is one of the first Flash games we created at Flazm. But we ran into major issues with the engines and goblin cars that had to be rotated and colored. So when we decided to make this game in Unity3D, it was clear that we needed 3D.
At first, the game was called Railway Valley 3Dbut it wasn’t the most successful name, and we renamed it train valley. Despite train valley It has many basic mechanics of its predecessor, it is more advanced in every way.
Initial reception and the importance of listening to suggestions from your community.
We have been lucky with the community. Our players range from four to over 80 years old, and almost all of our feedback was helpful, constructive, and enjoyable. Thanks to our players, we quickly realized that the game is difficult to play for colorblind people and we added the colorblind mode. There was also an exciting request for a sandbox mode where you could play with kids without the pressure of money and time. This mode also appeared solely thanks to our players.
Technical challenges that appeared during development
There were quite a few challenges as this was our first “big” PC game in Unity. For example, in the first few videos of the project, you can see that we experimented a lot with flexible routing (lots of math behind it), but eventually abandoned it in favor of tile-based routing. We also had a lot of issues with Unity’s basic terrain, which adds a lot of restrictions to level design. But we’re happy with what the game ended up being.
My three favorite levels in the game and why.
I love the volcano level of the European season. There, the “tightness” of the track construction is a full participant in the game for the first time. Then most of the Japanese season because it’s wonderful (we try to capture the charm of the sakura, Mount Fuji and the first shinkansen). And, of course, the rocket launch at the Baikonur Cosmodrome – we created slow train mechanics especially with rocket parts for it, and it’s hard to pass.
Top lessons we learned as a team from the development of Train Valley and the achievements I’m most proud of in retrospect.
The biggest thing we learned while working on the game was how important it is to stay in touch with players and take feedback into account. We have a great community of train enthusiasts who have tried to reciprocate! We are so grateful for your input and advice, and glad we have each other!
we hope you enjoy train valley as much as us. It is now available on Xbox!
Train Valley: Console Edition
Build railways to connect cities, tunnels and bridges. New railways are cheap when laid over bare fields, but can be expensive when demolishing forests, towns, and other existing structures. Manage increased traffic by building switches, sidings and spurs so multiple trains can run without delay at the same time. Stay accident-free by precisely controlling trains during crucial moments, using planning pause (you can build railways and schedule trains while paused). Play 5 seasons: Europe (1830–1980), America (1840–1960), USSR (1880–1980), Japan (1900–2020), and Germany (1830–2020). Complete the story mode with real life events such as the Gold Rush of 1849, the construction of the Florida Overseas Railroad, World War II, the Cold War, the launch of the first manned space flight Vostok 1, the fall of the Wall from Berlin and more. Explore the game in different game modes: in story mode (5-10 minutes), in random mode (15-20 minutes: the level looks and unfolds differently each time you start it) or in box mode. arena (can be activated for both story and random modes. Allows you to play without time and money limits). Discover 30 types of trains, from the first steam locomotives to the modern high-speed trains, driving 18 types of cars, from the old passenger cars to the hoppers and tankers and the platforms of weapons and tanks of military use.