Railroad Simulator 2012 - A Mainline worth of Session Bugs.


New member

I'm wondering if anybody out there is experiencing the littany of session bugs that I'm finding. Even the main executable stops working too often, The Surveyor keeps grinding to unusability. I've been forced to uninstall it. Sadly I've lost months of work creating the Midland Great Western Railway of Ireland. Everything from the recreation of the Broadstone Station, up to an incomplete Liffey Junction has been lost.
I bought Railworks 3 to see if that was any better, it's executable is at least as unstable as Railroad Simulator 2012 however of 70 Scenarios (Their Sessions) that it came with only one 2 have bugs! Their world builder works much better, I've got the Midland Great Western Railway running from the Broadstone as far as Leixlip Confey, there's still a long way to go before I get to Westport in Mayo and there's the various branch lines to build. It's running great using some Somerset - Dorset Steam engines. There fun to be had shuffling goods trains between the Broadstone, Liffey Junction or the Northwall Goods Yard complete with the Point Depot Warehouse. It's graphics are not as finely tuned as Railroad Simulator nor are it's Cab Controls as accurate but I want a WORKING simulator so I'm prepared to put up with it's foibles.
A list of the issues are as follows,
Mojave Subdivision - The DPU Push - Couplers break nearly all the time over 2mph. (I've traced this problem to an issue with the Cab Control most notable in the lead engine, watch the Ampmeter as you bring the throttle up, it goes off the scale at 3, try it in the Pushing Locomotive, it reads as it should), Edit the Session and give it DCC Control and it will work (But the end doesn't trigger).
Mojave Subdivision - Mojave to Bakersfield - In Cab Mode the couplers will break a few miles in. You can only complete it in DCC Mode.

Southern China - Coal to Gong Tang Power Station - Locomotive won't couple to the consist in Cab Mode. Works in DCC Mode.
Southern China - Passenger Service - Regardless of the type of control you choose you get a DCC Controller. If you choose Cab Mode you get the DCC Controller and the locomotive speed tops out at 75kph. For full speed go with the DCC Controller.

ECML - All Sessions started out OK, but after few weeks a bug developed that meant you could not get any information from the Guard. So you are on your own, if you Speed or fail to pull alongside the platform properly you get a nice bug symbol.
ECML - Lincon Relief - This train gets stopped at a signal because the goods train ahead of it won't move even though the signal it is facing has cleared the road, (To find that train double click on the Stop Signal, the game might freeze when you do it). As such you cannot make your stops on time and get penailised for it.
ECML - Christmas Mail - Try stopping at a station when the textures don't load and you can't see it. Problems start between the first and second stops.
ECML - Hull Executive - With 3,300HP you should accelerate reasonably quickly with a passenger train, you may as well be pulling a freightliner up a 2% grade loaded to the max with lead. It's so slow you won't make any stops on time. Railworks Deltic Locomotives perform better in this regard, you'll make full speed with 75% throttle, and can maintain it at 40%. That's more like the Deltic I remember.
Norfolk & Western - West Bound Merchandise - This is a intermittent bug, you must stop at a Red Signal shortly after entering Bluefield Yard, Double click on the signal and it bring you to the Points you need to set to get Yellow. Sometimes those points are locked out and you can do nothing. Session over, because if you reverse and take a different route the session will not end - though once, when I did get access to those points and took the train to the end the session end didn't trigger anyway. It seems as though if you save the session at all before getting to that signal and seting the points, you get the locked points!

One of the Hungarian sessions didn't work either.

So I've given up - I'm about to chuck this thing in the bin unless anybody has any advise on what can be done to get this working as it should. As a software engineer I am familiar with corporate ideologies such as meeting the deadline for a lauch regardless of whether you are shipping "Sh!t in a box" and then working on in-lines to fix the issues.
Does the Simulator work? :confused:
I would strongly advise that you create a forum thread in the TS12 forum, as advice cannot be given properly in a blog post.

As a beta tester, I can tell you that all these problems are being worked on, and should be fixed in the next few patches.

Hang in there. :)

Whilst the details of particular issues may be better left to forum threads, you do raise some very interesting points in your blog worthy of general discussion in a blog.

In the first of your "issues list", you mention that "after a few weeks a bug developed". By definition, if it was working on day one, and wasn't working on day 2, then something within the system has changed. The possible list of causes is almost endless, but conflicting 3rd party content, updating of assets causing failure, or even patching of the program from build X to build Y could be the cause. The key issue to address is that if it was working and then stopped, what changed? It could even be an operational issue within a session. Are you starting a session from a saved game where a Rule is not being executed when the session is restarted (it is quite possible in Rule design to create a Rule that does not allow for Save Operations to restart correctly).

Part of the "challenge" of the world of Trainz is that it is totally extensible. We provide a set of tools that content creators to develop a limitless amount of content. Those scenery objects/vehicles/sessions/routes can then be re-used in a limitless variety of ways. Then users can interact with this content in another set of limitless interactions. Do they drive at the speed limit? Do they ever speed?

If a player exceeds the speed limit and faces an oncoming train with signals locked, just as in the real world, someone may need to communicate with the other driver or even hop out of the cab and change a junction manually (certainly possibl ein past eras, upon which many Trainz sessions are based).

The point is that there is an exponential number of interactions to identify and prevent from occurring.

The good news is that all the tools to solve the problems are built in to the software. In many cases of Red Light "bugs" our programmers will add or tweak Rules within Surveyor to ensure the problem is less likely to happen. These same tools can be used by every Trainz owner.

Think of this another way. If Trainz is a camera, do you post on the Nikon forums saying that all the photos are blurred or over exposed? It is true that N3V Games not only provide the "camera" but also a set of "interactive videos taken with the camera" (i.e. routes/sessions/content) and so there is greater onus on us to ensure the videos play smoothly. However, if the video volume is too loud on a TV, you grab the remote and turn it down. in Trainz, the "volume control may include adjusting session Rules that are far more frightening than a 37 button remote control (of which only 7 are ever used).

I am not saying we are faultless, or that "all content works as intended". What I am saying is that after 12 months of testing and fixing, we are still finding bugs in Trainz 12 SP1. At some point, we will release an update for TS12 and it will be, in the majority of cases, far superior to the current version. Unfortunately, it will also introduce new bugs that will infuriate some people. Ultimately, it comes down to a balance between providing content that "works" or waiting until all bugs are fixed and going out of business due to $0 sales from the product that never got released.