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Thread: Open Letter to the Trainz Community

  1. #1
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    Default Open Letter to the Trainz Community


    Hi everyone. Wow! What an eventful and exciting day it has been for Trainz today.

    We’re only half way through the first day of the “Early Access” launch of Trainz Railroad Simulator 2019 and we’ve already seen record Day 1 sales (as well as a wide range of emotions on our forums).

    It’s great to see ecstatic fans enjoying their first foray into the new world of TRS19, however, there are a few fans expressing concerns about some of the options we have presented, or still in need of additional TRS19 info.

    This Open Letter therefore sets out to explain our reasoning behind some of the various options provided for the TRS19 launch, and to hopefully clarify any misunderstandings.

    Subscriptions Versus Pre-Orders
    Today we introduced two new options to access Trainz and DLC items (along with a whole lot of other benefits as well).

    It is important to note that these membership options are not replacing the traditional store purchase method, but are instead providing users with additional choices. The Trainz Store operates today just the same as it did yesterday, with Trainz products, DLC and FCTs available to buy.

    We don’t expect everyone to take up the new membership options, and we’re more than happy for people to decide which option suits them best. By providing more choice, we believe that more people will get to experience more of Trainz. (And judging by the number of subscribers so far, which is well ahead of pre-orders, it appears many people agree.)

    Cost of DLC
    One of the biggest complaints about the train simulator concept in the past has been about the cost of DLC items. The new membership options offer a solution to that problem.

    Instead of people spending hundreds of dollars a year on DLC items (or missing out on a large range of DLC items altogether due to the expense) the Silver Class membership provides the option to access 60 DLC items a year of membership, plus 15 bonus items just for getting started. That’s all included for the price of three or four regular DLC items.

    The Gold Class membership provides all that DLC content as well, and includes access to TRS19 and much more.

    If you’ve been reluctant to spend money on DLC in the past, the memberships will allow you to experience more DLC for less.

    “Early Access” and Pre-orders
    When we worked out our schedule for Early Access release, we wanted to ensure that our Gold Class Members felt extra special. One of the key aspects of Gold Class membership is that you are first to experience everything Trainz has to offer. You get to experience the latest (and best) version of Trainz, you will get to try out the new DLC items before they hit the store, and get to explore new game features long before they reach a full retail product release.


    Pre-order purchasers, by definition, order a product that they need to wait for for some time period. In the past, we have opened up pre-orders a couple of weeks prior to the product shipping. (This is usually to give us time to prepare the boxed versions).

    In this case, the difference is that the product being pre-ordered is already available to be used by subscribers.

    In addition, our marketing message didn’t indicate exactly how you would be able to jump into Early Access, only that it would be available today. We wanted everyone to visit the launch page, find out everything about TRS19, and choose their favourite option.

    Our team have met and discussed this issue, and we’ve decided to lift the pre-order waiting period on Early Access (effective immediately). Our servers and new systems are doing well with the initial rush and we’d much rather see as many people as possible enjoying the new version of Trainz right now.

    So if you’ve already pre-ordered log in to MyTrainz and get downloading!

    Pre-Order Pricing

    The N3V team has invested a massive amount of effort into TRS19, and when you look at the quality we’ve achieved, the results speak for themselves. As such, we feel that with the amount of content included, USD$69 (which is at the upper end of regular game pricing, but certainly nothing out of the ordinary) is quite reasonable.

    Also, when compared to any other hobby, $69 is incredibly cheap. A pair of joggers - $100-$200. A golf club - $500 (and green fees on top). A model trainset - $1000+ (name your price really).

    Pretty much all the sales revenue generated by Trainz is reinvested into more features and more content. Therefore your support of the product ultimately leads to a better, more enjoyable product for the Trainz Community in the future.

    Gold Class Pricing
    At $14.99, some people are getting out the calculator and working out $14.99 x 12 = $180 (possibly missing the option of the annual membership saving $30).
    However, the membership option includes far more than just the game. You also get to explore a couple of hundred bucks of DLC items, explore new DLC items before they hit the store, you get a 25% store discount code, an FCT (RRP $8 a month) - all for $14.99 for the whole month.

    So the game component is only a part of the package. We know from our surveys that the average user plays Trainz for 5-10 hours a week, so we’re looking at something under 50 cents an hour for the average Trainzer to enjoy their hobby.

    Still Confused?
    There have been a number of people confused about membership features, boxed versions, FCT Discounts, existing FCTs and so on. We’ve prepared an FAQ page that addresses your questions and we encourage anyone who isn’t sure about any aspect to check out the page.
    http://www.trainzportal.com/pages/trs19-faqs

    The TRS19 Product
    Oh wait - there was a product release today as well - I almost forgot :-)

    With our amendment to the pre-order process, more of our fans will be experiencing the latest version of Trainz sooner. We’d love to hear your thoughts and feedback (and see your screenshots!).

    Our beta testers have been telling us for weeks that this is easily the best version of Trainz ever, and I’m pretty sure people are sick of hearing that from us, so now it’s your turn to let everyone know what you think :-).

    Thanks once again for your support. We’re a small team, and we’ve worked long and hard to keep on improving Trainz. Today we’re very happy to be delivering a great product to our great Trainz Community!

    Tony Hilliam
    CEO, N3V Games

    Last edited by Tony_Hilliam; August 23rd, 2018 at 02:13 AM.
    Tony Hilliam

    Got questions about TRS19? Click here for TRS19 FAQs

    Looking for answers to in-game functionality? Click here for help

  2. #2
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    Thanks, Tony.
    I actually came here to seek some clarification on the early access.
    You always spell things out for us and you've done that in this message.
    Ta very muchly.
    Now I can think about my $ spend.
    Speak the truth, follow right conduct; all else will fall into place.

  3. #3
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    Thank you so much for letting myself/others download TRS2019 now with having pre-ordered.

    Yes I was under the impression prior to day, that we would be eligible for the early access generally when having ordered. I was a bit disappointed earlier this morning to read it was not available unless Gold membership.

    I have just finished downloading as am writing this and am really, really looking forward to moving my routes over.

    Thank you once again.
    "Every day may not be good, but there's something good in every day."

  4. #4

    Default

    hi Tony,

    i get a gold membership....why?

    im one of those they make TANE alive...it was worth for this outstanding Hobby.

    Now a new Call of Duty remind me : its worth or not? im a owner of a lifetime ticket and its runabout 22 years left.

    many want keep this Hobby alive for many, many years. So i think its worth....


    Yeahh....download and install without probs..then open.... A new Dimension was born, like the days i get TANE.

    You can see trailers,vids but never the same you open your own Trainz. im know, many probs need to be solved...but today was myday and i want see it.

    im a Goldmember now, hell, im proud of it...
    KICKSTARTER BACKER

  5. #5
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    I am less that the brightest person and I proved it. All the hype about EARLY ACCESS was viewed in my warped mind as access meaning getting the actual product. Instead all it meant was the release of a marketing campaign. The N3V management made no attempt to tell ME that we would only have an opportunity buy an early copy of the product and the pricing would be the only release - not the product.

    You were doing ok with the standard leaking, inside peeks, at the product. However, I felt very foolish to have believed I could get the product today. Instead all I received was a typical gaming marketing campaign aimed at people as dumb as I am. I felt insulted. Your marketing skills parallel those of the DTG genius Sir Paul.

    I will show that I am even dumber. Yep, I will purchase the new product. I do that on the basis of supporting the people who worked to bring it to fruition. I am not happy that you will skim off the top.

    My check will be in the mail. Let us all hope we do not see repeated, as has been seen many times, an endless string of delays due to a defective product at release. Right now that appears unlikely due to the almost 100% attention paid to graphics. Had you actually fixed, and improved, some of the AI, signaling, and other areas of a real technical nature, I would not be surprised at the usual delays.

    Now, is the early access price just that, the usual effort to get cash to pay off short-term loans? What will the normal on-going retail price be?

    Sincerely,
    A reluctant customer

  6. #6
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    @ bolyed

    It is now available today for normal purchases.


    From the initial post

    In addition, our marketing message didn’t indicate exactly how you would be able to jump into Early Access, only that it would be available today. We wanted everyone to visit the launch page, find out everything about TRS19, and choose their favourite option.

    Our team have met and discussed this issue, and we’ve decided to lift the pre-order waiting period on Early Access (effective immediately). Our servers and new systems are doing well with the initial rush and we’d much rather see as many people as possible enjoying the new version of Trainz right now.

    So if you’ve already pre-ordered log in to MyTrainz and get downloading!
    Thanks Tony, my faith in N3V is now restored!
    Last edited by clam1952; August 23rd, 2018 at 06:22 AM.
    Malc


  7. #7
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    WELL!!! Finally a good and obvious move. Lesson - when setting expectations be very clear. Customer angst when you release a new product is the last thing you want. Now, let's move on, pay the price, and see what evolves from this new product!!!
    Dick near Pittsburgh, Pa. i5-2500K 4.3ghz, 8gb memory, GTX1060 4gb video card

  8. #8
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    Thank you Tony for this update.
    John
    Trainz User Since: 12-2003
    Trainz User ID: 124863
    T:ANE Build: 94829
    TRS2019: 98592

  9. #9
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    US dollar is in mind here. I love how you really overstretched the price of a trainset. Over $1000? REALLY!? Yeah right, you can get a full starter DC trainset for $70 or $80. DCC ones are around $300 from Bachmann which is super overpriced, but not even close to $1000. I don't know where you pulled that price from, Lionel maybe? "Upper spectrum" on the price, in fact, I think it exceeds 99% of all default/vanilla games prices. Games with similar graphics are are $40-$50 and have many discounts throughout a year. Go look some up! Any that are $60-$70 have DLCs involved.
    Last edited by MTH_ELECTRIC_TRAINS; August 23rd, 2018 at 08:53 AM.

  10. #10
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    I just looked at the web page for a local hobbyist supplier of model train sets. Prices for a single loco (in $AU) ranged from $200 to $700. Throw in enough carriages, freight wagons, etc to make a train set and yes you could easily reach $1,000.
    A member of the "Party Machine". Now if only I could remember where they are holding the party!

  11. #11
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    Ah, but that is Australian dollars. I guess I should have said that the post above refers to US dollars. I also specifically said a cheap, DC one as an option. DCC is much more expensive of course but if you want a simple train set, you can get a full one with USD for around $300 which is $412 AUS dollars.
    Last edited by MTH_ELECTRIC_TRAINS; August 23rd, 2018 at 08:59 AM.

  12. #12
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    Tony:

    Questions:

    1. I am the holder of a Life Time FCT. How does that fit into this attempt to get folks to buy into a subscription game service?

    2. Also I get my game software now only through Steam. When do you plan to deploy TRS2019 to Steam and how is it going to be handled? So far in your posts, unless I missed something, I have seen no mention of Steam.

    Bob

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    Hi Tony --

    U guys should sell Trainz Logo T-shirts -- I still got mind for yesteryears, still in plastic!

    Kind Regards
    Ish!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTH_ELECTRIC_TRAINS View Post
    US dollar is in mind here. I love how you really overstretched the price of a trainset. Over $1000? REALLY!? Yeah right, you can get a full starter DC trainset for $70 or $80. DCC ones are around $300 from Bachmann which is super overpriced, but not even close to $1000. I don't know where you pulled that price from, Lionel maybe? "Upper spectrum" on the price, in fact, I think it exceeds 99% of all default/vanilla games prices. Games with similar graphics are are $40-$50 and have many discounts throughout a year. Go look some up! Any that are $60-$70 have DLCs involved.
    But also, you're probably not going to spend $1000 in one go, it's gonna a few dollars here & a few dollars there.

    Peter
    ~Peter


    I do not provide support via PM.
    Now at a new location!
    www.americantrainz.com

  15. #15
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    Right, I don't know who would spend $1000 in one go on one train. Thats just nuts! I look for sales and discounts on everything that is expensive. I just don't understand how the game can be so much when like 30% of it is actually their work and most of it is the communities stuff they have just shoved into it. Dovetail made everything for TSW from scratch and it all has more detail, functionality and the same graphics for cheaper. You also get $77 USD off by purchasing the game which has bundled DLCs as well for $50 USD. Its normally $130 USD. This doesn't have any of that and is $70 USD which is just an absorbent amount for 1 game. Very few other games go for that much. Yeah I will buy TRS19, when it is on sale for like 60% off, if that ever happens...
    Last edited by MTH_ELECTRIC_TRAINS; August 23rd, 2018 at 10:48 AM.

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