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Train Sim World 4 Review

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A couple of years ago I interviewed one of the development team behind the Train Sim World franchise for TheXboxHub Official Podcast. My final question was a silly one in which I asked if it would be possible – one day – to drive any train on any route across the UK or even the world. He laughed, before humouring me by saying he wished it could happen.

But strangely with each yearly iteration of Train Sim World, and the DLC that is slowly added, that dream is becoming more of a reality. Not only do you get to drive modern trains across the world, but you can also drive the old steam ones as well.

And that’s the case in Train Sim World 4. Let’s go trainspotting. Again… 

Spot the trains in Train Sim World 4

The good news about Train Sim World 4 is that any content you may have collected from the previous games can be downloaded as free DLC. That’s a plus. But if you are new to the whole train driving experience your best bet is to start in the training centre. Without out, you’ll be left stumped going forward. Here you wander around in first person, in a sort of corporate building where dreams go to die. But what it does do is give you a detailed instruction manual on how each train drives and operates. It will seem overwhelming at first but Train Sim World – as a whole – is extremely good at holding your hand and helping you through matters.  

After the training course, a few options start to open up your train life. You can choose a route – from an absolutely shed-load of them – and go from one place to another, picking up passengers and arriving on time. You can also take in scenarios; something which is up there as part of my favourite moments of Train Sim World; the nearest you’ll likely get to a campaign and story mode. This mode gives a good insight into all the tracks and trains on offer. There is also a free mode which allows you to drive any train, on any track, in any location. 

The new stuff on offer in Train Sim World 4 is pretty exciting too. There is the Antelope Valley line which goes across the borders of Los Angeles, taking you through the countryside, mountainsides, and deserts. Keeping on the mountain theme the next track whisks you off to Austria for the S- Bahn Vorarlberg. Lastly, but by no means least, and we head back to Blighty with the East Coast Mainline, running from Peterborough to Doncaster with over 80 miles of track. New trains and new tracks will certainly keep the train person very happy.

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A railway fanatic’s dream

There is also the chance to design liveries and scenarios, before sharing them online. It’s a mode that I stare at for minutes and hours, hoping that my imagination will allow the creation of something wonderful. It usually fails me, but for many, this will be a hugely entertaining element of Train Sim World. However you tackle this game though, there are – quite literally – hundreds and hundreds of hours of gameplay on offer here, especially when you go including all the DLC you can download. But does that mean we need a new game every year? I’m not so sure. I don’t know if you could say the same thing about a FIFA or COD. 

Visually, Train Sim World 4 adds some more nice lighting effects and the game feels smoother than it’s ever been. In fact, at times, switching the camera angles between interior and exterior feels seamless. There’s no doubt that the team behind it know their trains, with every one of them painstakingly recreated. It’s probably this which means Train Sim World 4 will be seen as the perfect game to allow railway fans to live out their wildest dreams, stepping into the driving seat as they go. It helps that the menus are very clear and nothing seems cluttered too.

The sound design is as excellent as usual; once again with a high level of detail on how each engine sounds or the opening of a door or a certain train. There is some upbeat instrumental music in between things too, whilst a good range of voice-over actors provide useful pointers on how to begin each area. 

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Where will this latest journey take you?

There’s no doubt that Train Sim World 4 is yet another strong entry in the Train Sim World series. A game that is capable of offering up hundreds of hours of gameplay, the only real question is whether or not we really need a new iteration already. But for fans of the railways, the lure of new tracks and trains will always be a draw, as will some visual improvements.

SUMMARY

Pros:
  • New tracks
  • Improved visuals and performance
Cons:
  • Do we need another so soon?
Info:
  • Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, Dovetail
  • Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One, PS4, PS5, PC
  • Release date and price - 26 September 2023 | £39.99
Gareth Brierley
Gareth Brierleyhttp://www.garethbrierley.co.uk
I am an actor and a writer. I act quite a bit on stage, a little bit on tv and never on tuesdays. I have had some of my writing published and have written for TV and stage. I have been playing games since they begun and don't seem to be getting any better.
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<b>Pros:</b> <ul> <li>New tracks</li> <li>Improved visuals and performance</li> </ul> <b>Cons:</b> <ul> <li>Do we need another so soon?</li> </ul> <b>Info:</b> <ul> <li>Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, Dovetail</li> <li>Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One, PS4, PS5, PC <li>Release date and price - 26 September 2023 | £39.99</li> </ul>Train Sim World 4 Review
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