HomeReviews3.5/5 ReviewTram Simulator: Urban Transit Review

Tram Simulator: Urban Transit Review

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Did you know that the first passenger tram was horse-drawn and operated from 1807 in the Mumbles in Wales? It then turned to steam some seventy years later, the electric tram following not long after. Another more interesting fact is that Elton John once brought a tram, realising his mistake the morning after. Do you know how tricky it is to ship a tram?

But unlike Elton, you don’t have to worry because in Tram Simulator: Urban Transit you get to create your empire of trams in a fictional city, built entirely for your pleasure. 

Tram Simulator Urban Transit review 1
Your tram awaits

At the beginning of Tram Simulator: Urban Transit, from the same makers as Bus Simulator, you get four choices. You can go for the Career mode, through Sandbox or into the Story mode. But the one you should be tackling initially is the driving school mode. There is a narrator here who tells you that his kid has made a simulation trainer for you to practice on, just like playing a video game. But here you get to learn all the tricks and turns you need to operate a tram. Honestly, don’t skip it. You’ll regret it.  

The Story mode is a good place to start from there, as you are given the chance to work through some ten missions, taking you across a big fictional US city. There are three parts to these missions too, involving creating a specific route across the city. Here you link stopping points and collection areas, then you drive the route on your tram, keeping to a set time and avoiding fines. And then, with experience points, you can level up a certain area of the city getting more benefits. The story mode is surprisingly engaging with a nice narrative and a pretty interesting way of playing.  

Driving the tram is quite straightforward. You have an accelerate button and a brake button; there is no reverse as trams just can’t do that. You have speed limits for the outer city area, as well as that of the inner city. You can switch tracks according to the routes taken, and have to indicate so cars know where you’re going. It’s nice and easy, as you are literally on rails. Picking up passengers and pulling up to a stop is essential of course and the more you play, the greater access you get, adding in more trams including heritage trams which is a nice touch. 

Tram Simulator Urban Transit review 2
It’s pretty easy to get this thing moving

Career mode is where the longevity of Tram Simulator: Urban Transit will be found. Here you can start your own company from scratch, making the most of limited funds, slowly and surely building things up, expanding the business. This is very much for the long-haul players who are up for creating an empire. And then there’s the Sandbox mode which gives you all the freedoms of the city with nothing locked down and all the money in the world. It’s here where Tram Simulator just lets you have fun.  

Tram Simulator: Urban Transit is designed around an interesting and diverse city, with different areas like business centres, suburbs, and countryside with beautiful lakes. It feels like a city that has been thoughtfully designed, rather than one that has just been slapped together. However, Urban Transit does feel empty at times and the passengers you pick up seem to have a bit of a zombie look about them; a problem with many games of this type. There is also a small amount of jagged pop occurring, especially when swapping camera views. 

It’s all pretty nice in terms of the audio effects too; they are good, with all the authentic tram sounds you could wish for, as well as some city buzz.  

Tram Simulator Urban Transit review 3
A well designed city

It means that Tram Simulator: Urban Transit is one the better travel sims out there, with some pretty hefty modes added in, giving purpose. The city is well designed and tram fans will like the range of vehicles involved. If you’re not particularly fond of a tram, then there’s going to be little to get excited for, and you will need to look through the rough edges, but ultimately this is probably the best tram sim game currently available on Xbox.  

SUMMARY

Pros:
  • Story and career mode
  • City design
  • Trams!
Cons:
  • Trams!
  • Some visual rough edges
Info:
  • Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, astragon
  • Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One, PS4, PS5, PC
  • Release date and price - 21 March 2024 | £16.99
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>Story and career mode</li> <li>City design</li> <li>Trams!</li> </ul> <b>Cons:</b> <ul> <li>Trams!</li> <li>Some visual rough edges</li> </ul> <b>Info:</b> <ul> <li>Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, astragon</li> <li>Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One, PS4, PS5, PC <li>Release date and price - 21 March 2024 | £16.99</li> </ul>Tram Simulator: Urban Transit Review
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