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Rollercoaster Tycoon is a real-time isometric amusement park simulation, in which the player takes the role of a theme park manager, creating rides and attractions to amuse his guests, as well as shops and stalls in case the guests are hungry.

Ride stats differ, with some being gentle and meant for "waking up" tired guests, and others being rather intense. Each and every guest has his own excitement and nausea tolerance, which will reflect on the rides' popularity and the park's tidiness. Hence, handymen are employed. Rides can also break down, and some of them can even crash, leading to a tragic ending. Mechanics can be employed to inspect rides for possible errors and to fix already broken rides. Security guards prevent vandalism in their line of sight, and entertainers keep guests happy while waiting in a long queue line.

Guests are also impressed if there is some wonderful scenery scattered around the park, leading to an increase in the park rating. They all have their opinion on the park, so it is a good idea to check their thoughts every now and then, as the park rating depends on the guests' satisfaction.

All these features require money. Loan can be raised from a bank, but the more one borrows, the more the bank asks in return. Certain rides, or even the park itself, can also be advertised, while vouchers are also available for discounts or free rides or food.


RollerCoaster Tycoon Windows A hedge maze. How delightfully cruel !
RollerCoaster Tycoon Windows A new park.
RollerCoaster Tycoon Windows Why did I get on this thing ? !
RollerCoaster Tycoon Windows Got a roller coaster.

Alternate Titles

  • "过山车大亨" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "White Knuckle" -- Working title
  • "RCT" -- Common abbreviation
  • "Guoshanche Daheng" -- Chinese title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Simple, elegant, and (most importantly) fun! Windows Afterburner (477)
Please someone pull me away from this game. I cant stop playing! Windows William Shawn McDonie (1088)
If it were up to me, it would be game of the year for at *least* three years! Windows Meg C (7)
(One part Bullfrog's Theme Park + One part Disney's Coaster ) over Micrpose's Transport Tycoon's Interface = Rollar Coaster Tycoon and a lot of fun Windows Andrew Grasmeder (205)
Everything one could want in a theme-park simulation Windows Null McNull (29)
Greatness takes time. Windows Horny-Bullant (56)
A great way to kill time Windows Jennifer Johnson (15)
A terrific, classic game any gamer will be addicted to Windows Rick Jones (108)
One of the best games ever!! Windows Wolfang (133)
A Sim game for those who don't like a ton of micro-management. Windows Chris Martin (1094)

Critic Reviews

GameGenie Windows 1999 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
Svenska PC Gamer Windows Apr, 1999 91 out of 100 91
GameTrip.net Windows Aug 29, 2013 9 out of 10 90
PC Player (Germany) Windows Mar, 1999 83 out of 100 83
Power Play Windows Mar, 1999 80 out of 100 80
Eurogamer.net (UK) Windows May 18, 2000 8 out of 10 80
Computer Gaming World (CGW) Windows Jul, 1999 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 80
GameSpot Xbox Apr 22, 2003 7 out of 10 70
Gry OnLine Windows Dec 22, 2000 7 out of 10 70
All Game Guide Windows 1999 3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars3 Stars 60


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RCT's format is to give you five possible scenarios to play. Each time you successfully complete a scenario, a new scenario becomes available. Interestingly, there is no "sandbox mode" (i.e a blank landscape where you can simply build an amusement park without having to worry about meeting scenario requirements) until you complete all the scenarios. Once you complete all the scenarios, a "Megapark" scenario becomes available. Equally interesting, and running completely counter to prevailing marketing wisdom in the computer game industry, RCT doesn't come with a scenario editor. This has prompted the fans of the game to make up for these perceived deficiencies, and there are 3rd-party, fan-created programs available on the Internet that will let you play any scenario, or let you play in unrestricted sandbox mode, or let you create your own scenarios.

But for reasons which have never been adequately explained (at least, not that I've seen), Chris Sawyer seems to really really dislike 3rd-party, fan-created add-ons to Roller Coaster Tycoon. He regularly puts out patch updates for the game, many of which serve no other purpose than to defeat the 3rd-party, fan-created programs. Of course, the same fans who created the 3rd-party programs in the first place quickly release updated versions of their programs, versions which will work around the latest patch. Thus resulting in an ongoing, never-ending war of escalation between Chris Sawyer and the fans of his game.

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Contributed to by Brian Hirt (9994) and Kartanym (10733)