The Production Of A God (RCT To Some People)
the first feature here are RCT Resource, we will look at the evolution of RCT
and how it started from a simple model of Transport Tycoon into the game we
know and love. Please note that there are a LOT of images on this page, so it
may take a while to load on slower connections, but it is worth it to see
06 September 1996
17 September 1996
Some of the earliest trial graphics created for RollerCoaster Tycoon - Wooden track and steel track.
19 September 1996
24 September 1996
30 September 1996
08 October 1996
Next to the roller coaster car you can see the first trial 'people' graphics. Also in view are the first incarnations of an inverted coaster car.
24 October 1996
Modeling the vertical loop took a long time and great deal of calculation, and this early mode shows how NOT to do it. To keep the model simple, Chris had hoped to use a fixed radius for the upper half, and a larger fixed radius for the approaches, but as you can see, it doesn't look right. Most real-life coaster loops have a constantly tightening radius towards the top of the loop (called a 'clothoid' loop), and eventually this is what was created for RollerCoaster Tycoon.
27 October 1996
Some strange 'tunnel' graphics. These look more like underground drainage pipes than anything else and they never made it to the final game. Next to them are some early blond-haired passengers in a roller coaster car.
Only a few months into the project, and this is the state of RollerCoaster Tycoon. Compared to many other games, this looks amazingly cohesive already. A variety of different roller coaster types are implemented, along with some of the control systems and scenery, but no sign of those little people yet. If you look really closely at the bottom of this picture, where the messages would appear in the final game, you can see that the game, at this stage was called "White Knuckle"!
15 March 1997
04 April 1997
07 April 1997
Not content to have only square entrance and exit buildings for rides, these are some trial circular entrance buildings, including a circular name banner which scrolls around the top. However, there were too many problems with entrances of this shape, so they never made it into the final game, but, just wait until Loopy Landscapes!
24 June 1997
For a short time, the game interface took on a 'woody' look-and-feel - in fact, the ideas for the buttons in this interface took shape a few months earlier, as you saw. It looked great for a few weeks, but had too many drawbacks. It had some nice features though, including buttons at the top of the screen which 'swung' gently back and forth while selected or clicked. However, before long, the game adopted a much 'cleaner' look which allowed more information to be displayed clearly in more compact windows.
04 September 1997
And, here is that 'cleaner' look to the interface and windows. At last, there are little people wandering around and riding the rides too. Notice that, at this stage, the game is still called "White Knuckle"! You can also see a lift on a roller coaster without a chain! Look closely, you will find it!
07 November 1997
How about this military tank vehicle for the car ride? This never made it into the final game which seems a shame as it looks really cool and chunky.
item shows one of the 'car' models that were built. This wasn't built for the
car ride but was originally intended to be used where public roads and car
parks were to appear in the game.
Many styles of pavement were experimented with before the final selection was made. You can see a few styles that were not used in this example. A few new paths do appear in the add-on packs though.
27 November 1997
A guest playing mini-golf. Although this was used in the expansion pack, it didn't make it into the original game. This meant that these graphics sat unused for around 18 months.
01 December 1997
Not only did rides change during development but some were created and never put into the game. Here, we can see a section of a multi-lane slide with steps up the side. (The picture on the right is the same ride viewed from the back.) The ride would have consisted of several of these sections, to create a large slide. I think it was a shame that this wasn't included, it would have been a great creation.
15 December 1997
rather lazy handyman sitting and eating his lunch. Sadly, this was never used
in the game, but knowing how hard everyone works their handymen, it's unlikely
they would have much of a chance to eat lunch anyway!
23rd January 1998
This great looking robot entertainer costume was never finished. Shame really as it looks great and would have fitted in really well with a future themed area.
More scenery and themed buildings were suggested and experimented with but these never got past the trial stage, thank God! I really don't like the look of these.
16th April 1998
22nd April 1998
Another house but this time a more complex town house which, like the previous house, didn't make it into the original game, but it is in the add-ons.
14th August 1998
I hope you enjoyed this little tour through the development of RCT. Look out for a new feature in about two weeks time.
If you have any comments about this feature, or want to suggest a title for a new feature, or even if you want to write one yourself, why not have your say on our message board?