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x002x
June 6th, 2011, 08:58 PM
I've often thought about this myself, what is my purpose for investing in the Trainz series.

For me, it's all about recreating scenes. I like Trainz in the way that it's extremely versatile in what you can model. More times than not, I'll just put a single train on a map to pose it in a picture.

Seeing as how the AI drivers make it hard to run a "realistic" railroad, I don't really try to be a dispatcher. I'm just curious how you guys use Trainz.

Brousey

cascaderailroad
June 6th, 2011, 09:26 PM
One could use Trainz to plan a Model RR to try it out before investing in lumber and chicken wire.

I am trying to get AI Drivers to follow a path, driving at really slow speeds of 15 mph to 25 mph, without reversing and throwing switchs n their own ... so one could just hit "Drive" and have 50 trains cycling back and forth, all on their own, so I can sit back and just railfan Trainz.

When I am done my Horseshoe route, I think my life will be complete ... then the Spiral Loops, and maybe Feather River, Kedie Wye, and Williams Loop.

x002x
June 6th, 2011, 09:28 PM
That's true, I never thought about the modeling aspect. Btw, how is the Horshoe Curve coming? I can't wait to run some 80Mac's out of Southfork

cascaderailroad
June 6th, 2011, 09:34 PM
It is really comming along nicely ... I have it backed up on a memory stick as a CDP, and on 2 PC's, just in case of catastophic failure ... I had hoped to have it ready for a WIP Beta release by June 1st ... but I am zooming along on it.

lorenw
June 6th, 2011, 09:44 PM
For me it's all about operations. When I find a route I like I make all the industries interactive, then set up a switch list program I have to operate it until I get bored, then I find another route and start over.
Someday I might even build my own route. :)

trainz_andrew
June 7th, 2011, 12:50 AM
I play just for fun. :)

IamKJVonly2
June 7th, 2011, 08:42 AM
I'm with trainz_andrew on this.

It is a never ending hobby for me. Ever since Prowler introduced me to narrow gauge engines I've been hooked. :cool:

I spend all my time modifying std routes to NG routes and running his engines on them.

I particullary love NG mountain routes that follow rivers or lakes.

I will admitt that some times I trainz watch, other times I drive the trains but I spend most of my time in surveyor trying to make the perfect route. :D

Dave

PS: I've often tried standard gauge because of the different big engines out there, but in the end I always come back to NG.:)

Beattie
June 7th, 2011, 08:44 AM
I use trainz because I can't afford right now a model train set. Virural is cheaper than model verison.

bendorsey
June 7th, 2011, 09:31 AM
Have to agree with you Beattie - Model Raildoading has just gotten too expensive. I have a 14 ft 6 in by 40 ft HOn3 pike I haven't touched since getting TRS2004 and Gmax and all I use Trainz for is testing things I make in Gmax before uploading.

$495 for a HOn3 0-6-0T or $950 for a K-37 is just too much. When I was in high school (way back when, lol) I saw a Max Gray UP 4-8-8-4 in O scale for $325. I thought that was the national debt (I used to mow lawns for $2 each). I'd probably drop dead if I saw the price of one today.

Ben

Thad09
June 7th, 2011, 09:40 AM
I'm with trainz_andrew on this.

It is a never ending hobby for me. Ever since Prowler introduced me to narrow gauge engines I've been hooked. :cool:

I spend all my time modifying std routes to NG routes and running his engines on them.

I particullary love NG mountain routes that follow rivers or lakes.

I will admitt that some times I trainz watch, other times I drive the trains but I spend most of my time in surveyor trying to make the perfect route. :D

Dave

PS: I've often tried standard gauge because of the different big engines out there, but in the end I always come back to NG.:)
You said the same exact thing that I do, except coverting standard to narrow gauge. I also use Trainz because I sometimes get problems when building something with my Legos so I take my mind off of it and play in surveyor.

cascaderailroad
June 7th, 2011, 09:46 AM
I used to buy Athearn HO scale Analog locos for $ 20, now they are @ $150.

I used to buy Con-Cor N Scale locos for $ 50, now they are @ $ 125.

Flex Track used to be 0.89 cents, now it is @ $ 2.75.

No wonder we use virtual model railroading like Trainz.

http://s525.photobucket.com/albums/cc339/cascaderailroad/?

My route would take up a football field in HO scale, and cost millions !

sawyer811
June 7th, 2011, 10:10 AM
Personally, I use trainz for route building. It's the ultimate application of Model Railroader's motto, "Dream it, Plan it (in my case, for about 30 seconds:D), Build it." I always freelance (though i'm building a prototypical route, but i absolutely hate it), and i love the freedom it gives me, where i can dream up something in my mind, like a yard, or a heavy industry, or a large interchange, and, maybe 30-45 minutes later, it's a reality.

But don't get me wrong, i love running my railroads too. I enjoy building sessions for Philskene's routes, and there are those times where, as much as i enjoy building, i want to run through something that has finished scenery:hehe: My favorite routes; the UMR, PO&N, IndustRail, and the multigauge Timber Ridge Line. I've got a big narrow gauge streak in me, spawned by those amazing, beautiful, burly engines at Chama.

as you can see, I love big routes, i love the ability to run long, 70-80 car trains behind big 6-axle diesels (like my favorites, the SD-9 and the SD-45:D) or massive steam engines like 2-10-2s or mallets. Even more than running those, i love running the short wayfreight, switching industries, dodging the trains superior to me, and just having fun. I love switching cars!

so yeah, i vary:hehe:

Thai1On
June 7th, 2011, 10:15 AM
For me it has several different purposes.

One, it is a great way to relax after teaching English conversation all day.

Two, it's helping me recreate a place I lived and railfaned in many years ago and could never afford to build in HO.

Last but not least I will create a fictional railroad to be placed in my families original home deep in the hollows of Kentucky.

Dave

Lataxe
June 7th, 2011, 12:08 PM
A very good question, especially if one attempts to dig below one's mere behaviour with Trainz to the motivations spurring it.

Perhaps at a fundamental level it's about control. We humans do like to feel in control and Trainz provides many modes of control for all sorts of controllable things, from engines to timetables to making whole worlds.

Personally I enjoy enhancing extant routes, not being adept enough to build my own from scratch - although this is a longer term ambition. (I fancy doing the old railways crossing the Settle & Carlisle line, from Darlinton to Tebay, along with the bit down to Ingleton).

Then there is problem-solving. There's a happy balance where Trainz presents a problem that can be overcome with persistence and furtling; and the situation that seems unsolvable. In the latter category lie missing kuids and the more broken assets - although time and more furtling may well have happy results with these frustrations, eventually.

The whole session thing is about dealing with dynamic problems. I often think Trainz would be a wonderful training aid to those who must plan and execute "projects" to achieve this or that complex outcome. Critical paths!? Dependancies!? Not 'arf!

Finally there is the whole virtual reality thing. Dare I mention that some realities are at their best when virtual? Train travel is firmly in that category these days. Have you recently travelled on those so-called trains from Glasgow to London? Bring back the slow chuffing things with corridors and compartments, says I.

Lataxe, usually in his woodworking shed, plucking his guitar or out on a bicycle/archery field doing different species of control, problems and reality.

mrscsi
June 7th, 2011, 04:23 PM
For me Trainz is rather like therapy. After becoming disabled in 2003 and not being able to do a lot of the hobbies that I used to do (radio controlled flying) I really needed something that I could do that could at least keep my mind occupied where I wouldn't focus on physical pain.

Trainz actually fit that bill pretty well, I can combine a hobby with what was my craft (computers) I started off in 2004, I actually got into doing some route creation around 2006-2007, then I beta tested TC 3, after that I bought 2009 and before the service packs it was really a crapshoot whether or not the dang thing would even load without a database repair so I kind of drifted away from Trainz for about a year. I guess I kind of needed that time away because when I came back 2010 had been released so I bought that, I bought my first few pieces of payware, and I bought TransDem.

To say my eyes were opened would be an understatement, why I hadn't done this before is really beyond me because TransDem opens an entirely different world. Then I decided to branch out even further and take a look at content creation so I settled on 3DS Max 2009 at I've been having an absolute ball ever sense.

So I guess you could say I use it for fun, relaxation and therapy, and to keep my mind focused and sharp and above all to keep learning. Now I won't say that Trainz is everything in my life because it's not, but it is something that I enjoy doing that I actually can do.

olyrailman
June 7th, 2011, 09:57 PM
I use Trainz to play on and have half started some routes just to delete them and strat over may some day finish one to my liking....:D :D

bassist118
June 7th, 2011, 10:42 PM
Route building - route building - route building... I love trainz (although a little frustrating with my c**p computer)....
The routes I have underway are:

Downtown Seattle and Beyond (US)
Shoeburyness - Fenchurch Street (UK)
Sheerness Branch - Sittingbourne hoping to go to Chatham (UK)
Banska Byalska (Slovakia)
Himalayan High Plateau (China)
Lilford Warlf - Lombourne (UK Fictional for when I haven't paid virgin media and my Internet goes off lol)
And my 5 year old is doing a multi-national route that needs a bit of editing mainly to get rid of the very sharp corners (it always amazes me how they can pick it up so quick)

I'll be well over 100 by the time I get these done lol... I've always wanted a good sized model railway but due to the size (or lack of( of UK housing and the cost of a good model layout, trainz more than makes up for it.

Thanks very much N3V for this wonderfull peice of software, give yourselves a slap on the back.

:Y::Y:

Andy

Dap
June 8th, 2011, 12:00 AM
I like to build prototype routes, especially ones that are no longer in exisitence. I enjoy doing the research required to determine just where the tracks went and what industries were serviced. The cool thing with Trainz, is a route can be historically modeled. Every few months, move the calendar forward to when that next section of track got laid (or abandoned) or a short line railroad was purchased and merged into the route.

I enjoy developing the operations for a route. I use the Official Guide to schedule passenger trains and then create freight operations that might be appropriate for the period.

And, I like to switch cars. Yard operations, terminal railroads and way freights are a delight for me.

I figure I spend an equal amount of time in Surveyor and Driver.

I have yet to warm up to content creation. I have used CAD software for the last 25+ years and have found the the user interface for gmax & Blender to be so counter intutitive there is no enjoyment to be found. I have created a few things in CAD and have found a friend that can convert them to a finished Trainz compatable asset. And occasionally, I'll attempt to write some code.

Why do I do it? I like the challenge of learning new things - and with Trainz, it is a never ending process.

MachinistBrazil
June 8th, 2011, 11:06 PM
For me it's all about operations. When I find a route I like I make all the industries interactive, then set up a switch list program I have to operate it until I get bored, then I find another route and start over.
Someday I might even build my own route. :)For me is also all about driving inside my cab, with a good view of rails and gauges, and a nice engine's sound. And a lot a hard-duty work. In 2007 (with TRS2006) I run a scenario almost 12 hours long without breaking, it could be played in 10 or 12 parts, but I did it at one shot, except 10 minutes when refuelling locos sometimes. LOL

Hey lorenw, what's the switch list program you mentioned? Is your own? I am interested in it.

Cheers.

dricketts
June 8th, 2011, 11:59 PM
For me it's about bringing all the dreams you had as a kid about model railroading to life. Now I can build a route I could only dream of because of cost and space restrictions.

I can remember spending hours thumbing through Model Railroader daydreaming that someday I'm going to build a layout like this. Well now I can. Does anyone remember spending hours at the local model train or hobby shop walking the isles? I never came home with much but it sure was fun to look. Well now I can browse the isles of the internet looking for content, getting excited about the smallest piece because it's just what I was looking for. Then I can take it home right then.

I'm also working on a proto Frisco route from the state of Missouri. The route is now abandoned but runs through lands I spent a lot of time at as a kid with my grandparents and family. I have had just as much fun doing the research for the route as I have building it in surveyor.

mrscsi
June 9th, 2011, 12:03 AM
I like to build prototype routes, especially ones that are no longer in exisitence. I enjoy doing the research required to determine just where the tracks went and what industries were serviced. The cool thing with Trainz, is a route can be historically modeled. Every few months, move the calendar forward to when that next section of track got laid (or abandoned) or a short line railroad was purchased and merged into the route.

I enjoy developing the operations for a route. I use the Official Guide to schedule passenger trains and then create freight operations that might be appropriate for the period.

And, I like to switch cars. Yard operations, terminal railroads and way freights are a delight for me.

I figure I spend an equal amount of time in Surveyor and Driver.

I have yet to warm up to content creation. I have used CAD software for the last 25+ years and have found the the user interface for gmax & Blender to be so counter intutitive there is no enjoyment to be found. I have created a few things in CAD and have found a friend that can convert them to a finished Trainz compatable asset. And occasionally, I'll attempt to write some code.

Why do I do it? I like the challenge of learning new things - and with Trainz, it is a never ending process.

Well if you using AutoCAD you should be familiar with Revit. Revit will actually export to an FBX file that can be directly imported into 3DS Max 2009.

This is how I've been learning content creation because like you I'm familiar with CAD, but I really wasn't able to get my head around blender or 3DS Max or even GMAX. But with AutoCAD and Revit and 3DS Max you pretty much have a direct import/export path for the most part. You can output from 3DS Max into DWG, you can link a DWG in Revit and you can export to FBX from Revit and directly import into 3DS Max:D

Now some of that can be a good thing or a bad thing, AutoCAD and Revit have some really nice components like Windows and doors etc. that look really nice but just have a ton of polys. But it's nice to be able to put something in the 3DS Max and learn to work with that within the program instead of just looking at a box and trying to figure out how to model it, it is for me anyway.

I found that if I just do walls and roof in Revit those components are no more polys than if I did them in 3DS Max. It's just a whole lot faster to create them in Revit.

My latest model I just did walls and floors and ceiling and roof and actually used the Boolean tool in 3DS Max to cut out the spaces for the Windows and doors and learned how to use 3DS Max to create those. They're not as nice as some of the stuff I can get in Revit, but they're a whole lot lighter in the poly department.

But anyway that's just one option you can think about, they have a free trial for Revit, 3DS Max 2009 is rather cheap now considering where it was new, you can pick it up for about 160 bucks many places. Lynda.com is an excellent source for training at 25 bucks per month you can quickly get a grasp of the interface and a lot of the concepts depending on how fast you learn you can do it for 25 bucks.

But I'm really enjoying creating content now. I'm not building locomotives not by any stretch, I'm building structures, and simple ones at that :hehe:

But it gives me something else to learn and explore and I'm finding that with 3DS Max really the sky's the limit, I haven't even scratched the surface of what this thing can do and it's mind-boggling to actually try to comprehend what it's capable of.

mrscsi
June 9th, 2011, 12:07 AM
For me it's about bringing all the dreams you had as a kid about model railroading to life. Now I can build a route I could only dream of because of cost and space restrictions.

I can remember spending hours thumbing through Model Railroader daydreaming that someday I'm going to build a layout like this. Well now I can. Does anyone remember spending hours at the local model train or hobby shop walking the isles? I never came home with much but it sure was fun to look. Well now I can browse the isles of the internet looking for content, getting excited about the smallest piece because it's just what I was looking for. Then I can take it home right then.

I'm also working on a proto Frisco route from the state of Missouri. The route is now abandoned but runs through lands I spent a lot of time at as a kid with my grandparents and family. I have had just as much fun doing the research for the route as I have building it in surveyor.

I've always said that about Trainz, it's the model railroad you always wanted as a kid but your parents wouldn't let you have and the one you always wanted as an adult but couldn't afford or didn't have space for:hehe:

JCitron
June 9th, 2011, 12:20 AM
For me it's about bringing all the dreams you had as a kid about model railroading to life. Now I can build a route I could only dream of because of cost and space restrictions.

I can remember spending hours thumbing through Model Railroader daydreaming that someday I'm going to build a layout like this. Well now I can. Does anyone remember spending hours at the local model train or hobby shop walking the isles? I never came home with much but it sure was fun to look. Well now I can browse the isles of the internet looking for content, getting excited about the smallest piece because it's just what I was looking for. Then I can take it home right then.

I'm also working on a proto Frisco route from the state of Missouri. The route is now abandoned but runs through lands I spent a lot of time at as a kid with my grandparents and family. I have had just as much fun doing the research for the route as I have building it in surveyor.

This sounds very familiar to me too. Trainz for me is a way to build the route of my imagination without the space requirements and cost.

My route, which is the virtual version, and much, much larger version of an N-scale model railroad that I started many years ago. When I got TRS2004, the spiders moved into the physical layout, and the virtual railroad was born.

The fictional railroad, known as the Enfield and Eastern, is about 190 miles long and consists of some mergers and acquisitions, some custom building, and some DEM-generated terrain, which I've taken license and put in some rails where none have existed.

John

Dap
June 9th, 2011, 12:38 AM
. . . what's the switch list program you mentioned? Is your own? I am interested in it.

Cheers.

I use CMTMSystem2, available on the DLS. Every freight car can have multiple destinations, even trains arriving via Portals.

macart52
June 9th, 2011, 02:25 AM
Well I reckon I spent to much money, before Trainz. I was always looking for something to build with the computer. I tried a cad program and , wow thats too tough for me. I'd have to be a rocket scientest to do that. So I went along and bought Sim City. That didn't cut the ol mustard for me and too complicated. My search went on, with different sites with games and so fourth. So then I bought a download for Sid Meier's Railroad. Now that, I had a lot of fun with, but it was another game and basically, I'm not into games. Especially that one as it ends. Shifting back in reverse here, I had a big HO setup back in the 70s. I built it but never really knew how to run it with all the switches, I had to turn off, on different trains etc and was always wrecking them. So I figured, I'd go along and watch for an N scale package deal, as space is limited where we live at now and maybe I could actually run a layout, now that I'm old. So I was a buzzin around on fleabay, looking for N. Now to this day, I don't know how I stumbled onto Trainz, but there it was. 2010 in fact, so I was a readin along on what the product was and what kind of game it was, which really didn't tell me much about it,the feller's description that was. So I went and Googled it. BANG!!! I found the video for it. I was definately sold on it and had to have it and I bought it. The big reason here is, well when ya get old and wore out, ya gotta keep the mind a goin. You can't let that get like mush, like the rest of you're body. So here I am, tryin to learn about it and build a couple things. And like a lot of fellers said here, it's a boat load cheaper than model railroading. That's the great part.

mrscsi
June 9th, 2011, 02:49 AM
Well I reckon I spent to much money, before Trainz. I was always looking for something to build with the computer. I tried a cad program and , wow thats too tough for me. I'd have to be a rocket scientest to do that. So I went along and bought Sim City. That didn't cut the ol mustard for me and too complicated. My search went on, with different sites with games and so fourth. So then I bought a download for Sid Meier's Railroad. Now that, I had a lot of fun with, but it was another game and basically, I'm not into games. Especially that one as it ends. Shifting back in reverse here, I had a big HO setup back in the 70s. I built it but never really knew how to run it with all the switches, I had to turn off, on different trains etc and was always wrecking them. So I figured, I'd go along and watch for an N scale package deal, as space is limited where we live at now and maybe I could actually run a layout, now that I'm old. So I was a buzzin around on fleabay, looking for N. Now to this day, I don't know how I stumbled onto Trainz, but there it was. 2010 in fact, so I was a readin along on what the product was and what kind of game it was, which really didn't tell me much about it,the feller's description that was. So I went and Googled it. BANG!!! I found the video for it. I was definately sold on it and had to have it and I bought it. The big reason here is, well when ya get old and wore out, ya gotta keep the mind a goin. You can't let that get like mush, like the rest of you're body. So here I am, tryin to learn about it and build a couple things. And like a lot of fellers said here, it's a boat load cheaper than model railroading. That's the great part.

Well it depends on how much you can learn or are willing to, and just how deep in the rabbit hole you really want to go:hehe:

Because Trainz is great, surveyor's a blast, but if you want to kick those into overdrive you got to have TransDem, that'll be the best 30 bucks you'll ever spend. It has a little bit of a learning curve but if I can learn it anyone can.

When it comes to content creation you can go the free route with user written tutorials. Or you can put out a little cash for a copy of 3DS Max 2009 and go to Lynda.com for 25 bucks a month and learn and it didn't take me the full month to go through what they had but it's very good material.

So it's really what you want to do actually because they can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be.

captainkman
June 9th, 2011, 03:47 AM
Heres something different!

I use Trainz's chat feature to make friends! It sounds weird, but it works! I just add everyone to my buddy list, and when they're online, drop them a message. Sad, really, isn't it.:hehe:

The reason I use it that way is thast I am guaranteed to talk to someone who shares my passion for trains, which can't be met in the real world. I only know 4 or 5 people in real life who like trains as much as I do, but there are many more people here!

macart52
June 9th, 2011, 03:58 AM
Well it depends on how much you can learn or are willing to, and just how deep in the rabbit hole you really want to go:hehe:

Because Trainz is great, surveyor's a blast, but if you want to kick those into overdrive you got to have TransDem, that'll be the best 30 bucks you'll ever spend. It has a little bit of a learning curve but if I can learn it anyone can.

When it comes to content creation you can go the free route with user written tutorials. Or you can put out a little cash for a copy of 3DS Max 2009 and go to Lynda.com for 25 bucks a month and learn and it didn't take me the full month to go through what they had but it's very good material.

So it's really what you want to do actually because they can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be.
Thank you very much for the Transdem info. This is exactly what I'm looking for. It's the wee hrs of the morning now and have to get to work, pushing some fill later across the road, as we have a lil ol farm here in MO., but I will definately look into this more.

phimat
June 9th, 2011, 04:32 AM
Keeps husbands quiet...

Steamdemon
June 9th, 2011, 05:23 AM
I use Trainz as a way of killing my boredom. From creating hilarious scenes to testing new locos and roling stock I do that sort of thing.

rogjohn
June 9th, 2011, 07:07 AM
I spend a good deal of time in hotels, so even a small n guage is not an option!

MachinistBrazil
June 13th, 2011, 12:09 PM
I use CMTMSystem2, available on the DLS. Every freight car can have multiple destinations, even trains arriving via Portals.Tnx for the clue ;) BTW do you have TS10 or TS12? it seems CMTM System 2 is having some problems with TS12.

Dap
June 13th, 2011, 09:04 PM
CMTMSystem2 has not been adapted to TS12. It was written for 2010. WHen the bugs are fixed in S12, I'll take a look at updating CMTM2

mikeaust
June 14th, 2011, 06:51 PM
I use trainz as a therapy, I am an amputee on a pension and it keeps me sane.
I use a modified version of the old Austral Bay 5a, get as many industries setup as the computer can take then get as much rollinstock running as I can.
I have had up to 50 trains running at one time, I get so busy I forget to stop for food sometimes.
Oh and then I m a rollingstock junkie, have to download it in case I want to use it some day......
Cheers,
Mike