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Planet Coaster OR "what happens when you actually care about your product"

Miss AshleyJ


I've always had a soft spot for strategy and simulation games. By the time I was in Junior High, along came Roller Coaster Tycoon and I was in love.


One of my many, many hobbies is theme parks and their history. I've ridden every major US Disney coaster built prior to 2015 (last time I was at a Disney park) with the exception of California's Space Mountain (not for lack of trying, but for lack of the damn thing working. I was in Disneyland for five days and EVERY time I went near it, it broke down.)


I have every major release RCT and while I enjoyed one and played the HELL out of 2 (even built my own Disneyland, but no longer have access to that save)


Then came Three. It was OK, the 3D rendered environment vs the 2d isomorphic took some getting used to, but I played it a lot two, But I liked a lot of the ride options in 2 better to be honest. 


So you can guess I was excited for Roller Coaster Tycoon World, right? ….right?


Actually I was when I first found out about it... but once I got to actually play it... Wow that was underwhelming. 


Then I found out why. 


It was rushed out the door by Atari to compete with another game, Planet Coaster. How rushed out? They came out a DAY apart. 


Planet Coaster was made by Frontier Development, who had worked on the RTC tycoon, including the Xbox port of 1, the expansion packs for 2 and the entirety of 3. they took the lessons of 3, learned from them and made a muck better game with in. They decided not to try and license the Tycoon brand because they felt the shovelware titles using the name have devaluated it. (Which is a fair argument, the original Tycoon game line, Sid Meier's "Railroad Tycoon" series, dropped Tycoon from it's most recent release in 2006 and instead emphases was put on the man, the myth, the legend himself in it's title, much like Civilization.)


how much of a difference is there between World and Planet. Planet coaster has an 84/100 on Metacritic.... RTCW has a 43/100. Ouch.


Positives of Planet Coaster.


More unique rides.

I'm surprised there isn't a deal with Disney given how much of the ride content is directly based on real Disney attractions. The Steam train ride is a replica of the Disneyland Railroad, the monorail looks exactly like the Disneyland Mark 7 monorails and they even feature the Florida people mover.


They even have a ride that, in function, mimics the Florida "Twilight Zone Tower of Terror".



Rides can have triggers placed on their tracks to set of special effects nearby. No plop and it looks good but has nothing to do with the ride. You can time it right down to the fraction of a second. 






If you want to build a proper dark ride with a show building, clear your schedule. 


Just to show how creative players have gotten with it, here's a video I found featuring a coaster themed to this girl's favorite Disney Princess. (I wanted to show you guys another cool, long one based on Moana, but they forgot to mute the rider sound effects...)




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