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I reinstalled on a whim, and, for my money, it's still the best railroad tycoon/business sim out there, taking the best parts of RRT and 1830, and throwing in a system for playing dirty tricks on competitors to boot.
It's still available from Amazon for about $5, I believe, and runs just fine on my modern Vista system.
Since you asked ...
I do own it and only played it for a couple of weeks. I thought it was really poor. The concept was decent, but it was trivially easy to win. It was sad to see that this was from the same programmer who worked on 1830 (that's why I bought it). Wasn't even worth it at iPad prices of $0.99. Not sure where it is now; it may have gone out in the trash with the other unclaimed games of the move packing.
1830 the best RR related game both in conceptual design and AI programming ever.
RT1/RTD - The best of the tycoon series (challenging game play and AI)
RT2 & RT3 - Decent graphics and mechanics, but very weak AI
SMR - It could have been great, but it was a watered down lite game to capitalize on the Sid Meier brand name
TTD + TTD Patch & Open TTD look to both be really impressive tycoon games especially when it comes to track layouts and signaling. Sadly, I never had the time to really learn these.
I just bought Trainz for the iPad last night ... I don't play games anymore, but it was $0.99 on sale ... it's hard to go wrong at that price if only to check it out some day.
I found Rails Across America quite fun myself. If you setup some house rules it can be quite challenging. I found playing the early game and setting the end game at around 1900 the most challenging and fun. I really enjoyed the backstabbing and sort of side game of thief or crook. The ai plays a decent enough game building rails all over the map unlike RRT II & III and will beat you to many of the goal rewards like first transport from east coast to west coast etc.
Transport Tycoon Deluxe really improved upon itself and definitely became more challenging. You don't just work to have the mostest anymore like the origional now you must work to have the most "efficient" transport industry in loads per mile etc. I find myself behind the ai many times even though I have a bunch more than it does, but, it knows how to build efficient transport lines and to a tee the exact amount of tiles to build to get the most from each haul. Most players won't mess with this kind of detail but that's how you win in Transport Tycoon Deluxe now.
Want is the foundation of impatience, a step without thought can be a drop without end
Dbeves: And LMFAO - didnt you just have to work battlefront into your response somewhere - you are priceless.