Open Transport Tycoon Deluxe is one of the seven wonders of PC gaming. It’s a standalone remake and expansion of Chris Sawyer’s management game Transport Tycoon Deluxe, it’s free and open source, and after over 15 years, it’s still regularly maintained. Now it should hopefully find a new audience, as it’s coming to Steam for the first time on April 1st.
One of OpenTTD’s developers, TrueBrain, posted the news on the game’s official site, explaining that the decision was taken in part because “other people post OpenTTD on some stores.” The game is always free so there’s no revenue to lose, but they can’t guarantee that those versions are updated or unmodified – and so they’re going to bring it to new stores themselves.
It’s already available via the Microsoft store now, and you can wishlist it on Steam until it’s released there. When it does come to Steam, it’ll happen alongside the 1.11 update, which is currently in beta and improves MacOS support, among other tweaks.
Transport Tycoon Deluxe was originally released in 1994 and is one of the seminal management games. You start in a world with a handful of small towns and must build transport links between them – roads, rails, and so on – so that beautiful capitalism can blossom. The towns grow in size, the demands upon your network increase, and soon you’re constructing airports, tunnelling through mountains, and obsessing over your vast logistics empire.
OpenTTD made that 1994 game easier and more pleasant to run on modern PCs, and initially used Transport Tycoon Deluxe graphics and thus required a copy of it to run. It now has its own entirely new, higher resolution tileset however, so is fully standalone. It’s as great a game as it ever was, and for my money, modern successors such as Transport Fever and Rise Of Industry never recapture the same sedate joy of tinkering with trains and lorries in OpenTTD. It rightly sits on our lists of the best building games and the best management games.
The seven wonders of PC gaming, by the way, are all things that could only exist on PC and which have stood the test of time. Dwarf Fortress is one. The Bloodlines fan patch is another. I’m not going to tell you the rest right now.