In the German gaming magazine GameStar (issue 03/2000) RollerCoaster Tycoon received a special award as "Most Surprising Hit in 1999".
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.
Chris Sawyer did all (or almost all) of the actual game programming himself, without assistance.
If a guest is freely rowing around a lake, lower the land where the person is rowing and they will appear to be rowing in midair.
Rollercoaster Tycoon was voted #31 overall in PCGamer Magazine's Readers All-Time Top 50 Games Poll (April 2000 issue).
The background of the game is slightly interactive. In scenarios that have lakes, click on the ducks that wade in the ponds.
In any scenario, try clicking on the ballons that float away:)
Just for fun, try naming your guests any of these names and they will do a little something extra now and then.
Simon Foster- Will stop every now and then to paint a picture. Melanie Warn- Guest will be happy (for a change) and spend lots of money. Damon Hill- Drives go carts faster. John Bubrough- Does something every time you push the "L" key. John Wardley- "Wow". Chris Sawyer- Name of the games designer. Will stop to take photographs. Katie Brayshaw- This makes your guest wave to the other guests. John Mace- Pays twice as muchfor all the rides. Tony Day- Constantly hungry.
For those of you who want to know around the top Gees a rollercoaster can get in the game, its about 6 gees. I know cause I created one with that many (amazingly) that was under 10 intesity!