Free & open source game of
rail & business simulation

March 15, 2008

New Forum

Filed under: News — charlie @ 12:48 pm

We have moved forums to here:

Unfortunately it was not possible to carry over the contents of the old forum due to the host charging for it.  However we now have an total control over an ad free forum on Sourceforge.  It’s phpBB3 and avatars and attachments work fine.  I hope to see the old forum posters rejoining the new forum soon.

We are still looking for somebody to design a new logo and even skin the website / forum.  We will probably install a wiki in the next few days as well in order to provide decent online documentation for FreeTrain.

August 13, 2007

Progress Update

Filed under: News — daniel @ 1:21 am

Here are some highlights of recent FreeTrain developments:

  • Steven is tirelessly continuing his one-man project of porting the whole game to Mono+SDL. It is not a smooth ride, apparently, as the various technologies don’t play well together. Feel free to go give him a helping hand!
  • Forum user Digitalicious has written a realism tutorial that gives some tips on how to add details to your city. It also contains the most gorgeous screenshot ever produced by the English-speaking FreeTrain community!
  • I myself has translated the Hatsumelo or departure bell plugin uploaded by forum user djmaiku. This plugin contains hundreds of little melodies you can assign to your platforms, all recorded from real-life Japanese stations or trains. For all of you who have spent a longer time in Japan, this will be a nostalgia ride!
June 6, 2007

Updated PluginsExtra + New Tutorial

Filed under: News — daniel @ 5:22 am

The PluginsExtra package has gotten a new release! The most important update is that all structure contributions have been converted to the ‘generic’ format, which means that you can use the much more usable and powerful ‘type tree‘ interface for most of your construction needs! To celebrate this occasion, I wrote a brief tutorial on how to use this function.

A few more train descriptions have also been translated to English, among other minor tweaks and fixes.

Follow the download link in the box here to the right to grab the new package. Unzip and copy the contents to your FreeTrain plugin directory.

June 3, 2007

Third Release

Filed under: News — daniel @ 10:16 pm

You can now download the third FreeTrain SE release. Some plugins have been improved and updated, while several menu options and window labels have been tweaked for better consistency and accuracy. Last but not least, the serious bug that rendered the train trading dialog unusable has been resolved.

If you download the release, please consider posting your comments over at the forums or contributing screenshots of your progress!

May 31, 2007

Serious Bug in the Second Release

Filed under: News — daniel @ 10:11 pm

It has been reported that our second FreeTrain release has a serious bug that prevents you from buying or selling trains, leaving you with only the tree starting ones. Due to the seriousness of this bug, this release has been removed from the download page. We are working hard on fixing the issue and will make a new release ASAP.

For all of you who downloaded the second release, it is advised that you get the first release instead in the meantime. The difference between the two is minimal feature-wise.

May 22, 2007

Second Core Release

Filed under: News — daniel @ 3:59 am

Our second release of the FreeTrain package is now available for download. Among the features are an improved main toolbar and a functional “structure type tree” that makes building structures a breeze! This release also fixes some crashes within build dialogs when no appropriate plugins were loaded, as well as a number of minor tweaks and fixes.

May 16, 2007

Release of PluginsExtra Package

Filed under: News — daniel @ 6:42 pm

After weeks of translating, the 233-member package of plugins has now been released and is available for download from SourceForge!

It adds hundreds of trains, structures, terrain features, and countless of other goodies to the game. The sheer density of content in this package will blow your mind! Try it out today!

For installation instructions and technical details, refer to the release notes.

Remember that this is a first release, so it is expected to contain typos, untranslated parts (especially train descriptions), and other glitches. Please report any weirdness you stumble upon to our bug report forum.

May 10, 2007

Translator’s Diary #7

Filed under: News — daniel @ 5:55 pm

Translating the description texts for the trains is an educational experience. The amount of details is sometimes stunning, and is a testament of the plugin authors’ love of trains. You learn all about formations and facilities, which lines they operated, when they were introduced and taken out of service, and what purpose they served, just to mention some.

Did you know, for example, that the 911 Shinkansen locomotive was the fastest and strongest Japanese diesel locomotive ever. It was able to haul 16 cars at 130km/h, but was never used in practice because of security concerns. Or that Japanese National Railways 157 Series was used as the emperors personal train, running on routes to the Imperial Villas of Nasu and Izu until it was replaced by the 183 Series in 1983. Or that JNR’s DD54 20 Series codenamed “Blue Train” was praised during its heyday as a “hotel on wheels.”

In fact, all these train descriptions is what’s stopping us from finishing up the translation of the plugin pack. To get a release out there sooner, I might translate only the train data of the remaining plugins, leaving the descriptions for later. Do you support this idea, or would you prefer to wait for a complete translation?

May 6, 2007

Translator’s Diary #6

Filed under: News — daniel @ 10:18 pm

With the help of c477 and Steven Hoefel, the translation of the ‘Additional Plugin Set’ is going ahead at a breakneck speed. All structures have already been translated, so what remains is the majority of train plugins. There are dozens of them, though, and contain in total well over a hundred different trains, so it’s no easy task. Almost all are Japanese trains, but there are also a lesser number of American, French, and Italian ones.

Elsewhere in the news, FreeTrain has been steadily climbing in rank at Before the first release, our rank hovered around 20,000 but soon after the release, it jumped to 683. As of writing, it has climbed to 384 putting us among the top ten simulation game projects, ahead of heavyweights such as OpenTTD!

May 1, 2007

The First Release

Filed under: News — daniel @ 7:12 am

The first release of FreeTrain English is now available for download from the SourceForge Files page! A big thanks to Charlie Goodwin, c477, and Steven Hoefel, whose hard work has made this release possible.

This is a Windows-only release and requires the .NET Framework to be installed on your system.

Since this is our first release ever, it is expected to contain mistakes and glitches. For a list of known bugs, see the release notes. Please report any other bugs or glitches to the developer’s mailing list or the discussion forum (follow the links to the left.)

Happy FreeTraining!