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Review: World Of Subways Vol. 4

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  • Review: World Of Subways Vol. 4








    Subway Simulator Line 7


    Publisher: Aerosoft



    Review Author:
    Justin Cogo


    Suggested Price:
    $37.99





    Buy Here




    World of Subways Volume 4: New York Line 7 Introduction



    Welcome to the primary metropolitan
    transportation choice for New Yorker's besides walking, the subway!
    I am Justin Cogo and I am pleased to be reviewing World of Subways
    Volume 4 - Line 7!



    My experience with simulators is mainly flight simulators with a
    good amount of train simulator experience as well. As a present I
    got my first flight simulator, Flight Simulator 98, when I was 11 and
    I have been hooked on simulators (and related games) since. I have
    found train simulators detail and realism very comparable to flight
    simulators over the years which is why I like them not only as a
    training tool but as something to do for fun. The train simulators I
    have experience with are Microsoft Train Simulator, Train Simulator
    and World of Subways.



    My experience with the World of Subways series includes playing
    with World of Subways Volume 1 - New York PATH route, which I found
    very fun and realistic. I have visited New York but travelled there
    across country by airplane and did not experience the subway system,
    but I am aware of its vast expanse and density. I am also interested
    in the New York subway because of its great size and New York's
    amazing culture.





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    World of Subways 4



    Aerosoft



    World of Subways Volume 4 - Line 7 is distributed and published by
    Aerosoft. Aerosoft is of course known for its high-quality add-ons.
    World of Subways Volume 4 - Line 7 does not stray from this pattern
    of quality.



    TML Studios



    The creators of the World of Subways series is TML Studios. TML
    Studios has created bus simulators, train simulators and other types
    of simulators. All off their products are very realistic to their
    real-world counterpart and fun for any enthusiast. Aside from
    playing the first World of Subways Volume 1 - PATH, I've played Bus &
    Cable Car Simulator and have found them very life-like and fun!



    World of Subways Series



    The World of Subways series of games puts attention to detail on a
    single section of a subway, unlike 'big' simulators that cover
    different areas or vast expanses. This gives you an immersive
    experience even people that truly know these areas can attest to.
    The World of Subways series is comprised of four volumes, each
    covering a single area of a subway system. The four volumes are:







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    World of Subways 4



    World of Subways Volume 4: New York Line 7



    World of Subways Volume 4 - Line 7 recreates Line 7 of the New
    York City Subway system and is set in the time period of the 1970's.
    During this time, just after the 1960's, the music and arts culture
    was molding, becoming new and racy. Crime ran high and the subways
    suffered from graffiti and of course bellbottoms. Line 7 runs from
    Queens to Manhattan and is a very busy route, even requiring an
    express train to run alongside a local train during rush hours!





    World of Subways 4




    United States seen from space



    Features:




    • 21 original subway stations

    • Eyeshot up to 4 km

    • Playable drivers and conductors

    • Interactive depot

    • New Aggro - Mode for more fun

    • Exciting missions based on stories

    • Schedule rides with shift change

    • Life-like signaling system

    • Realistic KL-train traffic and dynamic passengers on platforms

    • Interactive 3D driver cabin with all relevant operations

    • Interactive 3D conductor cabin for the optional conductor mode



    Getting Started Playing



    After opening the game the way to get started is to first create a
    new game, which you can then save and continue where you left off.
    Each different game you create saves missions, settings and
    interaction status with certain employees.





    World of Subways 4



    Once a new game has been created or you've continued a previous
    game you're sent to the depot where all game playing begins.
    Different ways to play the game are:




    • Exploring the depot and train stations, and even the train track areas!


    • Tutorial to lean to drive a subway train


    • Driving a train on a certain schedule (normal, express, and in different directions)


    • Playing missions (which involve train driving and solving other tasks)



    The Depot



    The Depot is a fully interactable 3D moveable environment where
    game playing is initiated and where one can view different sights and
    departments of the subway's administration facilities. You are put
    at the depot after creating or continuing a game. Different areas of
    the depot house the Director's Office, Staff Office, Canteen,
    Workshop and Kitchen. Company employees populate the depot and can
    be interacted with. Other depot details include working doors,
    burning flames in the kitchen and lit welding tools that mechanics
    use on the trains in the workshop. As you walk around the depot to
    play the game you are also given a real-life experience of how a
    train administration building works! Physically the depot is
    situated on Line 7 at the Flushing/Main Street end of the route. The
    route's tracks extend up to the depot where trains are worked on.





    World of Subways 4




    The depot is shown via diagram





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    On the left is a hallway, on the right the maintenance area





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    World of Subways 4




    On the left is the breakroom, on the right the kitchen



    Tutorial



    In the depot, to learn how to drive a train you'll need to
    complete a tutorial which takes you through setting the train up to
    drive, leaving the depot and driving along the route stopping at
    stations. To get to this menu you'll need to go into the 'staff'
    office at the depot. Once in the staff office you talk to the Shift
    Supervisor sitting at the chair, interact with him and a menu opens
    giving you options for either starting the tutorial, driving a train
    on schedule or driving a train right away.



    Driving the Train on Schedules



    To just drive a train you can either create a specific situation
    with your own choice of game settings including:




    • Date and time

    • Weather

    • Train starting location

    • Train stops (local or express)

    • Train direction



    The other way to driving a train is to use the 'Quickstart'
    feature which put you at Times Square in a train immediately. Both
    of these menus are available after interacting with the shift
    supervisor.





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    World of Subways 4



    Missions



    In this simulation there is the option of going on a mission,
    which recreates a realistic subway situation which you must complete.
    There are eight general missions and one bonus mission. The missions span
    different times of day, weather situations and tasks that must be
    completed from finding a bomb planted on a subway train to installing
    lights in a dark train station.



    Missions are started by interacting with a subway employee in the
    depot. These employees are either in a certain location or walking
    around the depot and you must interact with them to begin the
    mission. Each mission has its own backstory which the depot employee
    you interact with will gladly explain to you. These missions bring
    real-life scenarios to the game and make you feel like you're really
    working for the subway.





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    Interactable subway employees - people with green circles



    Aspects Of The Train Line



    The following are aspects of the subway line in the game:




    • Trains

    • Local & Express Route

    • Tracks

    • Train Yard

    • Dynamic People

    • AI Trains

    • Dynamic & Customizable Weather

    • Extra / Small Scenery Details

    • Surrounding Scenery



    Trains



    In the subway system the trains included that drive on the subway
    are the R36/R33 - "Redbird" trains. These trains run on electricity
    via a 'third rail' sitting adjacent to the two main rails. These
    trains are around 51 feet long and can reach a top speed of 55 mph.
    The trains are painted in a red color to deter graffiti. Wear and
    tear as well as examples of this vandalism can be seen on station
    walls. In this World of Subways you are able to walk about the train
    and train stations seamlessly. For instance you can be on the
    platform and walk right on the train, up to the drivers cab and drive
    the train. Another cool feature is AI trains which I'll talk about
    later.





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    World of Subways 4




    On the left is front of train, on right rear of train



    The trains are textured with highly detailed textures, even
    showing the rivets making up the train body. The metal top of the
    train is also realistically shiny when it is sunny out. The insides
    of the train are nicely modeled and textured according to real world
    specifications. Inside of the subway car details include
    seats, passenger handles, advertisements and subway maps, making
    the inside of the train feel real.





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    Various screen shots of outside and inside the trains



    The drivers cab is textured in a detailed fashion and includes all
    the real buttons, handles, and other train controls and indicators.
    The controls, buttons and indicators move when interacted with and
    display their true indication as you play the game.





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    World of Subways 4




    The Drivers Cab



    In the 1970's these subway trains required both a driver and a
    conductor. The driver's job is pretty straightforward, but the
    conductor performed a special job that you can actually play in the
    game. The doors of the train can be controlled either by the driver
    or conductor, so when playing the conductor you can open the
    conductor's window, look out and down the tracks, and have control of
    the doors and buzzer. You can switch between being the conductor and
    driver cabins by using the 'F10' key. There is an option when
    starting the route to have an AI conductor automatically open and
    close doors when you arrive and are scheduled to depart stations as
    well.





    World of Subways 4




    The Conductors Cab



    For driving or conducting the train, there is a pop-up window that
    gives you train and route status beneficial for playing. In this
    time period (1970's), the trains were not computerized and relied
    upon analog gauges or status information. The conductor would have a
    paper schedule and some kind of other simple electronic piece of
    equipment to help in his train duties. In this game three beneficial
    pop-up windows give you this information:





    • Date & Time display

      This shows the current day and time.


    • Route Monitor

      This give you the train's speed, current train speed limit, current and next signal information, train type (local or express), and start and destination information.


    • Stations Monitor

      This monitor gives you information on the current or next station, departure time, and door information.






    World of Subways 4




    On the left are the three pop-up windows



    Local & Express Route



    Line 7 of New York Subway runs from Queens to Manhattan. In the
    screen shot below you can see a diagram of the entire New York City
    subway (circa 1970's). Line 7 is pointed out running from the NE
    (Queens) to the West (Manhattan). Line 7 is 15km long and has 21
    stations in which some are above ground and some underground. You
    will also see other subway lines of this system intersecting Line 7
    at certain stations.





    World of Subways 4




    The New York Subway Of The 1970's



    The subway stations are very diverse and very detailed. The World
    of Subway series is known for its detail and this volume does not
    disappoint. Stations also show the culture of their time with
    graffiti lining some walls of some of the stations and a grimy
    appearance in certain areas. Stations' style and realism looks close to
    their real-world counterparts and it has been fun to wander around the
    stations and just view some of the architecture and style.
    Paying real attention to detail some stations even follow the
    engineering in real life, for example one station is not flat and
    curves up and around in the center. There are some really nice wall
    advertisements and station signage as well that are custom to each
    station. Out of the 21 stations there are a few that are very
    similar, but this is just how it is in the real world. Yet there are
    other stations that have great style and offer a great viewing
    experience.





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    Two types of routes exist on Line 7, the Local Route and the
    Express route. Both routes run the entire length of the line, but
    whereas the Local route stops at every station the Express route
    stops at fewer stations. The express route also has its own
    'separate' tracks allowing it to bypass the local routes stations and
    tracks. The express route only runs during morning and evening rush
    hours when demand is heavy.





    World of Subways 4




    The express route's tracks are seen sitting on top of the local tracks



    Tracks



    The tracks of the subway line are highly detailed. Track nails
    and fasteners are visible, as well as the third rail. One thing I
    noticed was that you can explore the track area but won't get
    electrocuted when walking over the third rail. Other track details
    include working track signals, track signage, staircases for walking
    up to the platform areas, and even tunnel lights (blue lights) for
    lighting up special areas of the track system.





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    World of Subways 4



    Train Yard



    The train yard is a part of the Line 7 system and connects 'The
    Depot' with the subway line on the Flushing/Main Street area of the
    line. You can drive from the train yard but only in tutorial mode as
    far as I've tried.





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    World of Subways 4



    Dynamic People



    In this game there are dynamic people that move around the game.
    In 'The Depot' they can be interacted with and are the starting point
    for missions. On the subway line there are other train drivers you
    can interact with when beginning or changing shifts, and there are
    train passengers that use the subway.



    The train passengers wait at train stations and ride on the train.
    They move from the platform to the subway train when you open the
    train doors. The passengers are in high number so it feels like a
    real immersive subway. Adding to the realism, passengers even sit
    themselves down in a realistic fashion once they get on the train, of
    course that is if there is an available seat. Going along with the
    70's, the passengers are dressed in this period's style, featuring
    bell bottoms and colors / shapes typical to this era and occasionally
    you'll see people in suits.





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    AI Trains



    In this game AI trains populate the tracks in both directions and
    even queue up behind you if you're stuck at a station. The AI trains
    also are rideable which makes for a fun experience if you'd like to
    just play the part of a passenger and have the ability to get off at
    any station you like, and at some stations, walk to the other side of
    the station and catch the train going in the opposite direction.





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    World of Subways 4



    Weather



    In this World of Subways series the weather is customizable and
    there are some nice precipitation features only recently seen in
    video games this day in age. The weather can be changed between
    sunny, cloudy, foggy, rainy, and snowy. Rain and snow can be seen
    falling from the sky and when it snows the ground is visibly covered
    in snow. Another highly technical feature is rain that falls on the
    windshield of the drivers cab. As the drivers cab is pelted with
    rain you can activate the windshield wiper and see the rain being
    scraped off the window!





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    World of Subways 4



    Extra / Small Scenery Details



    Throughout the subway route there are many small details all over
    the place to be seen. One I think was really cool was graffiti
    fitting the time era of the 1970's. There are many small scenery
    details like signs, track signals, trash filled containers, station
    equipment, advertisements and subway route diagrams that are actually
    readable as well. I think one of the best features are the stairs
    linking the subway platform to the track level so you can walk around
    the tracks themselves and explore.





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    Surrounding Scenery



    Lastly, this subway simulation not only includes the trains and
    station features but city scenery. Surrounding the stations and all
    areas of the line are city features with populated scenery. There
    are buildings, roads and moving road traffic all over the place. At
    night road traffic lights up the streets with white and red lights
    too! Another big scenery item is Shea Stadium which is situated next
    to the Mets/Willets Point station. It can be seen from the station
    and has pretty good detail for being just an extra piece of
    scenery.





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    Computer Requirements:




    • Operating system: Windows Vista / Windows 7 / Windows 8

    • Intel i5 or comparable

    • RAM: 4 GB

    • Graphics card: NVidia GeForce GTX 560 or comparable AMD Radeon

    • DirectX Version 11

    • Installation-size: 10 GB



    My Computer Specifications:




    • Operating system: Windows 8.1

    • AMD A10-5800K 3.8 GHz

    • RAM: 8 GB

    • Graphics card: NVidia GeForce GT 545

    • DirectX: DirectX Version 11





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    Performance



    With my computer I seem to have good performance with most games
    that are out now and I'm able to turn the game settings up. I had
    good performance with World of Subways Volume 4: Line 7 with the
    settings at maximum. With enhanced game details like swaying train
    cars, weather effects, seamlessly connected game areas (station
    platform, train car, drivers cab) with no loading in between, dynamic
    passengers and AI trains, the performance is above what I expected and
    makes for smooth game playing.



    Gameplay & Technical Summary



    World of Subways aims to recreate a specific area of a subway
    system, focusing on high detail and an immersive experience to show
    you what it was like and how it feels to be there. I think they did
    a good job recreating Line 7 of the New York subway from the 1970's.
    I can talk to subway workers dressed in clothes of that time period,
    see graffiti strewn about the Hunters Point station, and feel like
    I'm really in this area of New York during this time period.



    This game has a small learning curve which doesn't take much to
    get over. The technical beauty of the game is great to behold once
    you get to know the game and its intricate details. For instance at
    first you feel like you're just driving from station to station and
    "what's the point"? Then you realize there are hundreds of
    passengers waiting at your stations, you're under time constraints,
    the weather may not be cooperating and as you look out over the
    tracks there is a bustling city below you with many sights to see
    along the way. There are some real-world sights to see if you want
    to get off the train and explore the stations, which all are fairly
    unique, especially the underground stations. After I got this game
    and realized it was set in the 1970's time period I decided to figure
    out what it was like on the subway during these years. After
    watching The Warriors, about street gangs of New York fighting each
    other and using the subway for transportation I started to see some
    of the style and architecture of the 70's come out in the game. I
    really feel like I'm in the 70's when I play this game and I get a
    big feeling of nostalgia when playing it as I travel through the vast
    expanse of Queens, where it feels like the stations never end and
    apartment complexes flood the horizon.



    This is a game I'd play again and again so I could pretend like
    I'm in the 70's in New York or just experience the intricate details
    of trains. This game is as good as other World of Subways volume's
    I've played and definitely not your run of the mill train simulator.
    It aims to create a specific experience for you in depth. I really
    like it and think you will too.




    Aerosoft - World of Subways Vol. 4 New York Line 7



    Justin Cogo




    Purchase World of Subways Vol.4 New York Line 7



     
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