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  1. Hi Bobby glad to hear you're getting over the health issues and back to the project. I still reckon you should release the NIR area as an interim product, even if you intend to keep refining it - which could go on for ever! See what happens if you hold back - if you want to be up-to-date, you're going to have to rename Belfast Central to Lanyon Place and re-work the facade and sineage! Anyway by the sound of that you don't have too much left to do, and I'm looking forward to the release, whenever that happens! How about posting some screenshots here? For example, landmarks like Craigmore Viaduct?
  2. I don't think Irish Enterprise (I just have 'North') leaves a whole lot to be desired really, except more route mileage north and south. Especially so in Open Rails. I'm not sure the new sim captures so well the ability of railcar sets to accellerate or brake as effectively as they seem to in real life, but apart from that and water textures...well playing MSTS content in OR, the better graphics and shadows, better view system, optional vehicle sway, longer draw distance and reduced loading stutter make big improvements. And you can activate OR's superelevation effect quite happily in Irish Enterprise, unlike in some routes where it loses the 3rd rail or other non-stock track sections. No more bleeding of textures on platform edges or along vehicle sides, and the effect of a train slipping into and out of the shadows cast by more objects is a joy to behold... Add the Open Rails effect to the realistic station buildings and textures and the general attention to detail in everything else from station sineage to the look and feel of the landscape and other buildings, ample activities and a good set of good-looking and sounding motive power and rolling stock, and I'm sold - as soon as I can find a copy of 'South' to extend the route and preferably also the extra stock pack, whatever was in that.
  3. Some more tasters for anyone else waiting for the release of Bobby's magnum opus, all showing the existing Trainz route 'Along UTA Lines' by Harcourt, available still on the Trainz Download Station. I just recently got this route fully working in Trainz 2009, having worked out that nearly all the 'missing/unable to load texture' errors (resulting in about a brace of objects like platform canopies showing as untextured) could be solved simply by editing the 'broken' asset in Content Manager's 'explorer' mode, finding which [texturename].texture.txt files were (for some reason) named [texturename].convert-tex.txt and replacing 'convert-tex' in each filename with 'texture'. Feeling quite pleased with myself, as this answer was not amongst those that lots of searching turned up! These pics show the Translink-liveried 80 Class by tcorken - a little out of place on a 1960s route but both railcar and route are amongst the best items available for Trainz in my not totally unbiased opinion. The route mixes look-alike structures with more accurate replicas and covers the Larne line, the NCC main line from Belfast York Road to Londonderry Waterside and the Portrush branch and is a wonderful evocation of the original as I fondly remember it from those long-gone days. York Road: Waterside: I think this is near Ballycarry, heading towards Magheramorne: Here we are rolling along the Lough Foyle foreshore towards Lisahally, where I recall that the piers that the surrendered U-Boats tied up at in 1945 could still be seen until about the 1970s: Taken a bit earlier on the same trip, here we are rolling across the runway at Eglinton, with a slightly anachronistic Lancaster bomber waiting to take off by the look of it (my dad, then an RAF mechanic, once got his name taken by a navigator on a post-war silver Lanc at this very location, when he inadvertently forced it to miss an approach by illegally cycling across the runway, to get to a NAAFI van, in the early 1950s): Still travelling back in time, we've passed Downhill earlier still in the trip, having left the Mussenden Temple behind and now out of sight: This is Coleraine, facing north towards the junction with the Portrush branch; the station canopies here were amongst the items that needed the aforementioned texture fix: Not sure where these last two were taken, but they nicely illustrate both the photographic textures on the 80 Class (that the windows are 'painted on' with no interior detail is hardly noticeable, and the engine sound is outstanding) and the scenery density and placement on this most excellent route - highly recommended:
  4. Hi Bobby Thanks for the tip about those other NIR trains - I assume you had this one in mind, I now have one of these going on 'UTA Lines' and have solved the worst of my FPS problems by disabling shadows (not as much a loss in TS2009 as in Open Rails as the Trainz shadows are quite limited by comparison): Some of the guys here have Bachmann Class 170s repainted as CAF DMUs, it's a better likeness than the 165, although that is a fine repaint. I see from images that Google turns up online (possibly including some taken by your friend on your route) that there is an NIR Metrovick available as well as a big GM in NIR livery. I have downloaded the former so far but she does not show up in Railyard so if she works at all in TS2009 I'll need to try the invisivble/black textures fix and if that doesn't work, delve back into the wonderful world of debugging faulty Trainz assets. I also need to work out why, in the UTA layout, some signal posts, and most station canopies, are showing up as untextured pale grey. Content Manager here I come! Shout if you need any pics taken of York Road depot and I will do my best. Send me a Private Message here if willing to share your NIR work with me too - I could post over a flash drive or somesuch with postage. You can't have too much of a good thing in my book and while I'm having a ball with my MSTS routes in Open Rails, including Ballyshannon... ...and Irish Enterprise North... ...it would be great to drive over all of the NIR network in Trainz, and I doubt that anyone else will ever cover it as you have, in any sim! Ivor
  5. Shout, if you need any 'boots on the ground' research including pics on the NIR network around Belfast, Bobby, happy to help, as might be others here. Your marathon efforts deserve every support! The depot site is hard to get a view of, thanks to the M2, the lie of the land and the lack of ready pedestrian access, but one vantage point for a long enough lens is the footbridge that crosses the motorway to where the old UTA workshops were, from where I think this pic (not one of mine, just located by Googling 'York Road Station') was taken. I have recently downloaded 'Along UTA Lines' once more... ...and while my PC has come on a bit since I last tried it out (in TRS2004 probably), the route is still a major frame rate killer regardless of settings, in TRS2009. Far too much scenery, I think - Trainz by nature of its world-building abilities and 'virtual model railway' tendencies, seems to encourage people to plaster the landscape they create with objects, while in MSTS, route builders seem to concentrate on the view from the line and at ground level, often using 'flats' or a backscene to portray housing etc that is further away. It looks worse if you 'helicopter out' but is fine otherwise and is kind on the framerates. I may clone it and use Surveyor to remove most or all of those cows and sheep - many fields seem to be full of them - and see if that makes any improvement. Of course it's set in the 1960s complete with the early LMS-NCC colour light signals and doesn't really suit modern NIR stock. Years back, I did a repaint of a Trainz Metcam DMU into UTA green with wasp stripes but that's long lost. I have seen a couple of repaints of the 80 Class in Youtube videos, 'Sandite Yellow' being one and one of my favourites, Suburban sector, being the other, the latter as seen in this clip but not released: I hope your routes will work in TRS 2009; if not, it looks like I'll be in the market for a fifth version of Trainz! Ivor
  6. Hi Bobby I'm eagerly awaiting the release of this route/set of routes, and hope you will upload it soon, rather than waiting until you have finished - the coverage of the lines completed so far is more than good enough already! I have TRS2009 (plus three earlier versions!) and recently downloaded the Trainz 80 Class, seen below on one of the original routes. How much better she will look on her home turf! Ivor
  7. Just to update the 'running on laser rails' issue, Open Rails has a 'vehicle sway' feature which can be set in-game to off or three successively higher levels. As well as superelevation, which works fine with Xtracks as used in Irish Enterprise North, and the ability to activate point crossing and curve squeal sounds, this clip shows vehicle sway at the lowest setting. This is apparent in the form of subtle lateral movement in the cab view, and from the outside, from movement of vehicles in relation to their bogies and in relation to other vehicles in the rake. The effect is significantly more apparent at the higher settings, rather than the low one used in this clip.
  8. For those who have deep enough pockets for a PC able to run it and the extra 'DLC' content like the Armstrong Powerhouse series, TS 20xx provides visuals and sounds able to match anything I've seen from FSX, or the new iteration of IL-2: Even the deepest of pockets can't get you anything like what's available, much or it free, for MSTS. And with Open Rails, for one who's happy with Lima OO levels of detail and finish, it's visually more than good enough for me. Yes the stock MSTS-era 2d cab overlays and the distant scenery 'backscenes' can often be blocky, but OR supports higher res screens, higher res cabs and even 3d cabs. The graphics in MSTS+OR are fine for me, just as I'm fine with the look of Il-2 '46 and on balance, much prefer it over its later namesakes for its far greater scope. PS I'm experimenting with a way of adding 'automatic' sounds (as opposed to those which may not be build into a particular route) for crossing pointwork and curve squeal, which method is described in the Open Rails Manual, tho no joy yet. PPS I now have the extra track sounds working now, thanks to help received at Train Sim Safe House - apparently I needed to update to a later version of Open Rails, now done. This clip shows the results, before any fine-tuning: I'll wind up with a few more screenshots from London SE and Enterprise North, the latter featuring some additional stock from Ballyshannon and UKTS:
  9. If suspension movement is your thing, there's always Diesel Railcar Simulator, which is just out, inexpensive and due for expansion: OpenBVE, though still optimised for a straight ahead cab view, is also very good at bouncing things around a bit, though I don't recall any local railcars swaying due to passenger boarding: The way I look at this is, I now have a local layout with 50+ scale miles of double track main line; scenery that's not up to 'diorama' level but as good as many modellers like me could manage and well creates the line as I knew it; functional signaling; numerous pieces of rolling stock that's visually better than Lima OO, sounds better than tinny soundchips & has working lights; and a score or more of activities that simulate operational situations, and all for the fraction of the price of a single piece of rolling stock these days. Plus several other layouts from different parts of the world, including Ballyshannon and London South-East where I can drive EMUs, diesels and DEMUs out of several London termini to the south and east. And as much stock and other routes as it takes my fancy to download. And it all fits onto the desk I'm sitting at. And I also have Trainz; and Train Simulator too, if I fancy something with better visuals for a change. So I for one see trainsimming, for all the vicissitudes or limitations of whatever product one chooses, as an equally valid outlet for anyone interested in railways, including railway modellers. The glass is way more than half full, at my end of the bar Gotta go, I've a late-running local service to take from Lisburn to Central!
  10. And here's 'one I made earlier', just unedited footage from am 'Explore route' session - the actual thing runs more smoothly, and looks a whole lot sharper, than in this low-resolution clip, showing a GM running from Central to Finaghy: The jointed track sound from the coaches is an additional effect I had left enabled, probably not appropriate if CWR was installed on that stretch of line back in the 1990s.
  11. Irish Enterprise North, using Open Rails: ...and South, in native MSTS: Both halves of the soute, again in MSTS: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pqKxJZarENI Ballyshannon in MSTS, filmed from the monitor by the look of it: Kerry MSTS route, but with diesels: Not loco hauled, but Trainz 80 Class, first two clips I think on the 'Along UTA Lines' route mentioned in the first post: o And the UTA route itself, the last time I wrestled with that accursed Download Station in an effort to get this running, I could not find a good many of the separate items you need:: Some of the stock linked to above in Train Simulator 20xx, better graphics than MSTS apart from the annoying visible draw-in and at a price in the much higher PC requirements, and better simulation of AWS/TPWS, but much less content:
  12. In case anyone else using Open Rails to run MSTS content is experiencing track shimmer with routes which use UK finescale track, a fix that worked for me was the utility from Slipperman12 linked to here, over on Train Sim Safe House: http://tsforum.freeclanforum.com/t1285-shimmering-track#16748. Fixed track shimmer on both 'London South East' and on the freeware 'Steyning' route from UKTS: Never affected 'Irish Enterprise North'... ...with which I'm still having a ball, not least with the c.20 included activities, like this evening service from Portadown, which starts with a signal check waiting for a down service.
  13. Yes the sounds are a particular strength, Mark! The big GMs sound like I'm standing next to the real thing, likewise unless it's a placebo effect, the 'thumper' sounds which were good in 'Ballyshannon, are almost knee-wobbling in their realism and depth. Adds a lot to the immersion. And the 80 Class 3d models are visibly better, notably around the cab ends. The red and grey seat upholstery is also most convincing. I wonder if the other liveries available on UKTrainSim can be 'ported' to them. I just drove this set into GVS, into the old 'railmotor' platform, and after admiring all the neatly-parked buses in their various authentic liveries next door, using the OR 'free cam', I was a bit disappointed to find I couldn't work out how to (or whether I could) switch cabs to the drving trailer end and take her back to Central! At least, the staff are keeping the flowers in the tubs on the platforms tidy and well watered!
  14. It's arrived... Driving's an experience and a half, not just because of the well-rendered stock and scenery, including many a building instantly recognisable. But to be able to see my train blast through Botanic, where I stood just days ago watching the latest Enterprise roar past...apart from the passage of a few years in timeline, looking and feeling spookily 'just like the real thing'... Not to mention sliding into the same platform I stood upon in GVS, just the other day, albeit during this virtual visit, completely forgetting about how I was going to make do with no pilot loco and no run-around facilities... This add-on is a most excellent piece of kit - I wish I'd got 'Irish Enterprise North' years ago. There is the occasional simplification here or there and possibly due to being rendered in Open Rails, one or two angles or places where you can see a 'seam in the sky' like the top edge of a model railway backscene, but mostly, it's a stunner. And everything seems to work out of the box. With the same company's 'London and South East' add-on... ...I'm getting track shimmer in Open Rails and some translucent areas which spin around EMU wheels, and in some areas I'm getting concrete-sleepered track with no third rail, tho I'm not having to hand-edit files to get some locos and trains to run right or at all, a problem in Mid East UK, which I got at the same time as the trouble-free 'Ballyshannon'. 'Irish Enterprise North' is definitely a keeper. The sounds are at least as good as the visuals and whether the engine is at the right end of the train or not, this was always much my favourite diesel-era Enterprise livery, elegance with a light modernist touch. Super!
  15. PS I see there is a 201 Class & train available for Rail Simulator, which latter I already have (predecessor of Railworks, evolved into Train Simulator 20XX) over at UKTrainSim.com : http://members.uktrainsim.com/filelib-info.php?form_fileid=22774 ...designed to run on a Dublin to Limerick and Cork route: http://members.uktrainsim.com/filelib-info.php?form_fileid=30145 ...for which some expansions or activities are also available: Plus from the same bulder, some Irish steam age routes, seemingly using default BR stock for now; this one for Railworks... http://members.uktrainsim.com/filelib-info.php?form_fileid=25170 ...and this one for Rail Simulator: http://members.uktrainsim.com/filelib-info.php?form_fileid=22843 I have just ordered Irish Enterprise North for MSTS and am looking forward to running the 450 Class DEMU, the 071/111 and the other additional locos over the Belfast-Dundalk route, with the improved performance and visuals of Open Rails.
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