Trainz/Trainz: Ultimate Trainz Collection

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Fundamentals for Trainz Trainees

Version- Trainz: Ultimate Trainz Edition (Trainz UTC)
TOC | BeginningsFun | AM&C | Creation | InBook Refs ORP Refs:  • Index • Containers • Kinds • Tags | Appendixes  • Vers
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 Glossary
 HKeys-CM
 HKeys-DVR
 HKeys-SUR
 HKeys-WIN
 Mouse use
 Notations


Prior Trainz Release Versions[edit]

Trainz 1.3, began as the Trainz Community Edition aka Trainz 1.0 as the original Trainz retail version with the suffix determined by the (which is to say after) three service packs added. These software upgrades were all generated in 2002 in a improvements synergy with a rapidly growing expansion of an online community It was first published and distributed [note 1] about five months after Microsoft Games released the Microsoft Train Simulator (MSTS).[note 2] It is by today's releases standards, a sparse product with few routes and only partial capabilities of what was to come in the next three–four years of rapid development. Developed over three years beginning in 1998 by Auran Technical guru Greg Lane, it was meant primarily to give those trains hobbyists a leg up on route building[note 3] and to give those users much interested in Driving a taste of the upcoming Trainz experience[note 4] with it's more ambitious far seeing design finally realized in TRS2004 and TRS206. Lacking both sessions and scenarios, users had to Drive in a free play mode which first required building a (or loading a saved) consist and manually 'mounting' it (or them if several consists were mounted onto a trackmark (these 'invisible-in-driver' arrow-like guides are still in the game with the same name and appearance—but are now used to act as a route-determining destination point (like a GPS waypoint) for the games AI Drivers).


The product didn't contain Content Manager, any module with an ability to download additional content nor manage assets, so consisted solely of the Railyard (Called 'My Collection'), the run time GUIs early somewhat limited Surveyor, and Driver modules with the bundled software.

Trainz Community Edition Trainz Community Edition was released in December 2001. Service packs SP1 (February[1]), SP2 (April) and SP3 (June) were each released in 2002, these progressively updated the Community Edition, Trainz 1.0 to versions 1.1, 1.2, and 1.3 successively. Two retail builds (retail versions releases) existed; the English/USA version is commonly known as Trainz 1.0. (Box, which included Gmax as an accessory is shown at right in lower left corner of the collection pictured at left above.)

Trainz Retail Edition Trainz Retail Edition was released in June 2002 aimed at the United States and other North American markets with a different distributor[note 5] and featured pre-installed Service packs 1 & 2 and a couple of additional smallish (baseboard counts) routes/layouts (KIND maps) worthy of a basement HO train layout, but nothing sizable.

Service Pack 3 Trainz Service pack 3 (SP3) updated the both the Community and Retail Editions to version 1.3 and was released in August-September 2002. While service packs SP1 & SP2 both added polish and smoothed out graphics, they were primarily bug fixes software updates in contrast to SP3, which introduced GameScript and the TrainzScriptTM development software utility, which allowed run-time software interactivity between modeled assets (ultimately leading to interactive industries in TRS2004 and triggered animated effects—which is to say Trainz vaunted and much valued interactive realism). Despite consistently loosing the 'glamor campaign', with consistently having the second or third best graphics versus various challenging competitors (most of which have ended up defunct and out of business), Trainz continued to grow in features, asset availability and user base. For this reason, many old-time Trainzers consider Service Pack 3 or Trainz 1.3 to be an separate Trainz release altogether—a new product entirely; or at least, the real beginning of Trainz. Scenarios made the software package a formidably flexible hobby. Thus all USA versions are commonly known as Trainz 1.3, for it was now a capable product with playable add-on modules and the product took off in the US and Canada.  

Ultimate Trainz Collection[edit]

The Ultimate Trainz Collection, or UTC, was released on 26 November 2002 in North American as a 3-CD set including extra rolling stock, and a CDROM with TrainzScriptTM based scenarios and route map content based on Trainz 1.3 tech, just over a year after the Trainz 1.0 boxed set was published. That is, Trainz UTC (aka UTC) is a Trainz release with all service packs applied, plus extra content; a formula Auran would reprise again with Trainz Simulator 2004 Deluxe—the stable version of TR04 with four service packs pre-installed.

Trainz UTC was assigned a trainz-build value (TBV) of v1.5, and assets created for UTC will have that value as the TB tag value. The Trainz Paintshed program and the early upload/download manager included with UTC (also) called Content Manager both show V1.4 in the Trainz Windows registry entries. The UTC Content Manager was a elementary Windows App which installed downloaded CDP files and helped uploading them to the infant Trainz Download Station.

This was the first edition to include the formerly separately retailed PaintShed program and support RailDriver,[2] as well as the first incorporating Trainz user developed freeware content as part of the release, some of which became Trainz staple content in TRS2004 et. al.— a practice which continues as the majority of content distributed through current releases.

New in UTC[edit]

Features/improvements and new content in Ultimate Trainz.

NEW CONTENT[edit]

 

  • 6 new scenarios
  • 9 new locos in 12 liveries
  • 1 new train car set
  • New cab interiors
  • Paint Shed templates for each new loco
  • New passenger car Paint Shed templates
  • New German and Swiss scenery object and track sets
  • New Maps
  • Numerous updates to existing maps and assets
  • Paint Shed - UTC edition

 

NEW KEYS[edit]

  • Trainz UTC pioneered the ACTIVITATION of many Hotkeys most used in various Trainz Modules, easing operation and speeding things up considerably.

 

Surveyor[edit]

  • Options Ctrl o
  • Tunning Ctrl t
  • Find named object Ctrl f
  • Contentual info Alt o
  • Randomise Alr r
  • Edit project Ctrl e
  • Minimap Ctrl m
  • New Map Ctrl n
  • Save Ctrl s
  • Wire frame Ctrl w

 

Driver[edit]

  • Internal Camera 1, F6
  • External Camera 2, F7
  • Tracking Camera 3, F8
  • Internal Cab camera [ = previous ] = next
  • Internal Cab camera Ctrl [ or Ctrl ] to snap to next camera
  • Change consists Ctrl 0-99
  • Move to prev car -
  • Move to next car =
  • Change Fwd junction \ (today is Ctrl-J)
  • Change Rear Junction Ctrl \ (today is Ctrl-J)
  • Auto-pilot toggle Ctrl-a
  • Switch dual cabs c
  • Decrease Speed , or z
  • Increase Speed . or a
  • Stop / or s
  • Handbrake ' or x

 

Scenarios[edit]

  • Work Orders k
  • Most driver keys operate in Trainzscripts (kind Activity), except when disabled by script

NEW FEATURES[edit]

Driver / My Collection[edit]

  • 'Favorites' selection added for My Collection and Driver
  • Dual Cab support
  • Multiple in-cab cameras
  • New external cab camera views
  • Change junction hotkey
  • Select consist hotkey
  • Change car focus hotkey
  • End-of-track buffer physics added
  • Horn, Pantograph and Lights can be operated in My Collection
  • Horn controllable on AI trains
  • Imperial or Metric Surveyor default settings used in Driver
  • New "load saved game" button on main menu
  • New Presets to load consists, settings and terrain with one click
  • Variable tunnel camera positions
  • Movable tunnel camera
  • Improved locomotive performance physics
  • Improved rolling stock resistance equations
  • Signalling and trackwork improvements to original layouts
  • New keyboard shortcuts

 

Surveyor[edit]

  • "All Regions" sort option added to Surveyor for easier object sorting
  • Info boxes increased in size for more text
  • Particle Effects slider added to performance settings
  • Increased texture limit to ~252
  • Compass movement improved (slight pause before moving)
  • Trackside cameras now easier and more accurate to position
  • Display cursor x,y location
  • Improved copy/paste function in Surveyor
  • Added ctrl key modifier to select whole area or baseboard
  • Hotkey in advanced menu works if menu not open
  • Option added to keep title bar visible
  • Ruler text improved
  • Added hot key info to tool tips
  • Fixed get curve function
  • Join height of merge maps now fixed
  • See through ground texture fixed
  • Can't name duplicate trackmarks
  • Cars driver on correct side for region
  • Mini-map loads dynamically to speed up loading times
  • New keyboard shortcuts

 

General[edit]

  • New interface appearance
  • Particle Effects slider added to performance settings
  • Mini-map zoom limits increased
  • Mini-map scroll speed increased
  • Mini-Map signalling display improved
  • Mini-maps scrolling keys added
  • New Save/Don't Save dialogues on exit
  • Sound fixes
  • Improved object lighting.
  • Keyboard settings file added
  • Added caching for dispatcher folder

 

Trainz eXchange[edit]

  • New in-game html window
  • Dynamic loading of html pages for news, reviews etc
  • Seamless download station integration
  • Auto-download of missing assets

 

Content Manager[edit]

  • New custom content management application
  • Group, disable, delete custom content
  • Export KUIDS function
  • Search for content
  • Display KUID dependancies of map content

 

Script Functions[edit]

  • Control particle effects on and off in scenarios
  • Ability to interact with user through html mini-browser
  • New function to fade screen to black
  • New function to create entire consist through config file
  • Debugging error window
  • Call stack logging
  • Script Exception Handling:
  • Add -script option to trainzoptions.txt
  • Hookup ThreadException callback to script.
  • Show exception dialog on exception
  • Show stack and all threads.
  • Handle continue and end scenario

 

Content Creation[edit]

  • Improved particle effects control. Can now specify start and end color and set emission cone size.
  • Splines can now be lit by ambient lighting.
  • Fixed 'case-sensitivity' of aliased asset textures
  • Paint shed templates can now be packed into .cdp files
  • True type font support for easy translations

 

Custom Content[edit]

Your Trainz installation will include a variety of folders designed for use by your very own content. Choose to make your own textures and objects, or download free content from the Auran Trainz website: www.virtualtrainz.com Using Windows Explorer, Browse to your TRAINZ installation and locate the CUSTOM folder. Opening it will reveal a folder for each of the user-created elements Trainz supports.

A word of warning: some of the objects you can create yourself and include within Trainz are complex, requiring a high level of 3D modelling experience and technical understanding.

Many of the custom content folders will require the use of a config (configuration) file. This is always called CONFIG.TXT and should be located in the folder of the asset you've created.

The CONFIG.TXT file contains a few essential fields and parameters, provided in the examples found in the Custom folders.

DISPLACEMENT MAPS[edit]

Found at local root path: TRAINZ\World\Custom\Displacements

The easiest user-created element you can create is a Displacement Map. By placing a square grey-scale bitmap image in this folder, you'll be able to select the image in Surveyor > Topology > Advanced> Displacement maps.

Image restrictions are:

.bmp format 128*128 pixels 256*256 pixels 512*512 pixels 1024*1024 pixels 8-bit greyscale or 24-bit

You may keep as many displacement maps as you like.

GROUND TEXTURES[edit]

Place in local root path: TRAINZ\World\Custom\Ground

Each ground texture is a 24-bit bitmap image requiring their own folder. Check out the example: World\Custom\Ground\MY_TEXTURE

You'll find an example .bmp file, MY_TEXTURE.BMP, and a CONFIG.TXT. The .bmp image MUST be located in a folder which MUST be named identically. Trainz searches for folders first, then automatically looks within for the same name with the correct file extension, so if named wrongly, the texture will fail to appear.

The .bmp must be 128*128 pixels. Any difference to this will result in a white block appearing in place of your created texture.

The Config.txt file need contain only one line:

KIND groundtexture

'Kind' is the field requirement for Trainz, and 'groundtexture' the parameter for a ground texture... !

Once you have created the folder, have a texture and a config file ready, it will appear in Surveyor > Paint > Regions menu > Custom.

To have your custom texture show in the minimap as another color (other than black) add the line

rgb 0, 0, 0

Replace the 0’s with red, green, and blue values. The range is from 0 to 255. eg 255,255,255 is white. 0,0,0 is black.


ENVIRONMENT TEXTURES[edit]

TRAINZ\World\Custom\Environment

Dynamic Skies[edit]

Each sky is produced as a 'set' of sky maps, providing you with the ability to create your own main (clear day) sky, storm clouds and a night time sky. To accomplish this, your folder within the Environment folder should contain all the variants, along with a CONFIG.TXT to define the names of the individual skies. Check out the example: Custom\Environment\SKY_EXAMPLE

You'll find three .tga files, .texture.txt files and the CONFIG.TXT.

The SKY_EXAMPLE_STORM.TGA is used to varying degrees dependent on the weather conditions set within Trainz.

The last image, SKY_EXAMPLE_NIGHT.TGA is a 32-bit targa whose alpha channel determines how many stars can be seen through the cloud (black areas of the alpha channel will show stars through).

All sky images are 256*256 pixel 24-bit targa format, with only the _NIGHT image including an extra alpha channel, making it a 32-bit targa.

You'll notice in the example that an additional .texture.txt accompanies each texture. Each of these contains the following:

Primary=NAME_OF_TEXTURE.TGA Tile=st

When creating your own sky sets, you will need to create these in order for TRAINZ to load the texture.

The Config.txt file contains the following lines:

KIND environment NORMAL sky_example STORM sky_example_storm NIGHT sky_example_night

Following the 'Kind' field is the parameter for an environment element. The 'Normal', 'Storm' and 'Night' fields are each followed by the name of the appropriate image file (minus the .tga extension which the field assumes).

When creating your own sky set, create a folder inside Custom\Environment that you want to appear in Surveyor > World > Sky Set menu. Within this folder, place your config.txt, .tgas and .texture.txt files as described above.

Configurable Water[edit]

You can add your own water textures for use in your layouts. As with skies, your water will need a unique folder name inside Custom\Environment. Check out the example: Custom\Environment\WATER_EXAMPLE

Two images are needed and referenced in the CONFIG.TXT file.

WATER_MUDDY.TGA is a 128*128 pixel 24-bit targa file. Again, the .texture.txt file must accompany the texture. The second image file is an 8-bit bitmap called WATER_MUDDY_R.BMP.

The Config.txt file for this water folder looks like the following:

KIND water NORMAL water_muddy REFLECTION water_muddy_r

The field 'Kind' is followed by the 'water' parameter to declare how this folder is used by Trainz. The 'Normal' field is followed by the name of the targa image file (minus the .tga extension). The 'Reflection' field is followed by the name of the reflection map for the water, so should only be an 8-bit .bmp file.

You'll notice in the example that an additional .texture.txt accompanies each texture. You will need to create one of these for each of your textures.  

Trainz UTC resources list[edit]

Editor's note: The following links hold resources and were still valid and available for download 2015-0308. Any party interested in content creation is urged to drop everything and download them ASAP, as similar resource links and pages for later Trainz releases have disappeared without warning in the past.
Complete UTC Content Creation Procedures - Download from www.auran.com/trainz/ultimate.htm

Contents Page Released January 2003 File size: 75kb File type: .zip Released: January 2003

Chapter 1 - The Basics - Released January 2003 File size: 118kb File type: .zip Released: January 2003

Chapter 2 - Classes and Codes (UTC) - Released January 2003 File size: 147kb File type: .zip Released: January 2003

Chapter 3 - Config and Kind (UTC) - Released January 2003 File size: 220kb File type: .zip Released: January 2003

Chapter 4 - Modeling Guidelines (UTC) - Released January 2003 and Directory Structure File size: 381kb File type: .zip Released: January 2003

Chapter 5 - Particle Effects and Scripts (UTC) - Released January 2003 File size: 183kb File type: .zip Released: January 2003

Chapter 6 - Utilities and Kuids (UTC) - Released January 2003 File size: 174kb File type: .zip Released: January 2003


Highland Valley Scripts (v1-3) - Released 17th July 2002 File size: 5.63mb File type: .zip Zipped file types: .txt, .wav, .tga, .bat, .gs, .tso Released: 17th July 2002 Description: The Highland Valley Scenario including scripts.

Trainz Custom (v1-3) - Released 30th January 2002,updated 17th January 2003 File size: 3.1mb File type: .zip Zipped file types: various Released: 30th January 2002 Last Updated: 17th January 2003 Description: Sample Trainz files including config files

Source Files (v1-3) - Released 30th January 2002,updated 17th January 2003 File size: 6.3mb File type: .zip Zipped file types: various Released: 30th January 2002 Last Updated: 17th January 2003 Description: Sample 3D Studio Max and gmax files including textures.

Paint Shed Content Creation Guide (v1-3) - Released 8th May 2002 File size: 1.4mb File type: .zip Zipped file types: .pdf Released: 8th May 2002 Updated: 9th May 2002 Status: Beta Release Document  

Right-pointing hand in green octagon.svg
Editor's note: While these materials are somewhat dated, they are still mostly valid and useful. You've been advised!

Notes and Footnotes[edit]

  1. first published in November 2001 by Australian Auran Games, Pty Ltd, Queensland and distributed by Auran's regional partners (software publishers) from December.
  2. Like most Trainz products, the initial release was premature, an trend continued today under N3V Games operations with TANE, which four months after release is still shipping test releases weekly to it's Trainz-Dev users with fixes for omitted or unstable features to eventual put together an initial Service Pack. Per phoncon, Jcitron, 2015-0808
  3. Trainz 1.0 ... launching at birth with the primary world building tools of Surveyor organized much as they are arranged even today
  4. and to get a foot in the door, least Microsoft steal the lion's share of a niche market without relevant competition. Publishing a somewhat rough version, with a lot of up side potential, was both excitement making to dedicated trains hobbiests, and a good business practice assuring the conversation would include the forthcoming improved product.
  5. Auran has a tradition of releasing distribution rights via local regional software publishing companies, used to complying with sometimes strict or restrictive differences in international law. For example, UK releases typically are required by UK copyright law to require a CDROM or DVD disk in the drive to run the software—a DRM convention that would literally not be tolerated in the much larger USA and Canada markets.

Footnotes[edit]

  1. per in-box documentation by Canadian distributor for North America Strategy First [homepage], which installs as v1.1
  2. "The Ultimate Trainz Collection". GameZone. http://pc.gamezone.com/gamesell/p21095.htm. Retrieved 7 March 2010. [dead link]