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In Transport Tycoon, you are in charge of a transport company starting in 1930 in the midst of The Great Depression, and your aim is to build up an empire of trains, ships, lorries, planes and helicopters, with technological evolution to be taken into account. You can play alone, or with a number of computer-controlled rivals.

At the beginning of the game, you (and your rivals) have a large terrain at your disposal. The terrain includes hills, rivers, lakes, bridges, industrial facilities and a lot of small towns. It is up to you to decide how to start building your empire.

The game is shown in isometric projection. An icon bar at the top of the screen allows you to bring up the map, see the stats, or construct stuff.

Maybe you can begin by connecting two towns with a road, building a vehicle depot somewhere next to the road, and setting up bus stops in both towns. Now just buy a bus (initially, there are just a few models available, but more buses appear with time), set its schedule, and watch as it goes between both bus stops, taking passengers and unloading them, earning you money.

You can also transport passengers by building train tracks, sea ports, or airports and then buying appropriate vehicles - trains, ferries, planes.

If you set up a station next to an industrial facility (such as a factory, a power plant or a farm), you can also transport various cargo, such as coal, livestock or wood, which allows you to earn much more money than transporting passengers. Of course, you'll have to buy special lorries and train cars if you'll want to deal with these. Most businesses offer certain types of cargo and are ready to pay for transporting other cargo to them; for example, a steel mill has a lot of steel to fill your cars, and will gladly accept iron ore if you have any.

Clicking on any of your vehicles brings up a small window where you can observe a live feed of what the vehicle is doing and look up its status. If anything important happens during the game (such as a particular station accepting its first vehicle), it is shown as a newspaper headline at the bottom of the screen.


Transport Tycoon DOS Bus route across town
Transport Tycoon DOS The computer loves to duplicate routes
Transport Tycoon DOS Checking up on a station
Transport Tycoon DOS The informative newspaper

Promo Images

Transport Tycoon Other
Transport Tycoon Other

Alternate Titles

  • "Transportation Tycoon" -- Working title
  • "I.T.S." -- Working title
  • "Chris Sawyer's Transport Game" -- Working title (used in Frontier: Elite 2)

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Wonderful game that can make whole days just disappear DOS Steve Hall (352)
Transport Tycoon is a game of exactly the same style but which, without a doubt, establishes a benchmark for this style of game. DOS MajorDad (536)
A. V. O. I. D. PlayStation Famine3h (405)
Buy, sell, build, raise, YOU are the transport tycoon! DOS Ajan (276)

Critic Reviews

High Score DOS Dec, 1994 5 out of 5 100
MikroBitti DOS Dec, 1994 90 out of 100 90
PC Joker DOS Nov, 1994 89 out of 100 89
Power Play DOS Nov, 1994 85 out of 100 85
ASM (Aktueller Software Markt) DOS Nov, 1994 10 out of 12 83
The Retro Spirit DOS Nov 06, 2005 5 out of 6 83
GameStar (Germany) DOS Feb, 1998 78 out of 100 78
NowGamer PlayStation Sep 01, 1997 7.8 out of 10 78
Video Games PlayStation Jul, 1997 77 out of 100 77
Mega Fun PlayStation Sep, 1997 73 out of 100 73


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References to the game

The PC version of Frontier: Elite II contained a reference to the upcoming Transport Tycoon back in 1993. Some of the advertising hoardings in space ports announced "Coming soon... Chris Sawyer's Transport Game" ! Chris Sawyer did the PC conversion of Frontier: Elite II back in 1992/3.


The fan remake OpenTTD from 2004 updates the game for later computer and mobile platforms.

Title change

Transport Tycoon was originally named I.T.S., which is short for "Interactive Transport Simulation". It was only because the game went to Microprose that it became a Tycoon game, to tie in with their own Railroad Tycoon.

Information also contributed by JimmyA.

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Contributed to by DaHero (974) and Brolin Empey (858)