- Main Article: List of New Features
While the game is modelled after the original, OpenTTD has many additional features that enhance gameplay dramatically. OpenTTD has customizable game graphics, and work is underway to replace TTD's graphics completely. Many features were inspired by TTDPatch, a popular enhancement for TTD, while other features are original. OpenTTD is far more customisable than Transport Tycoon Deluxe through the use of Advanced Settings, NewGRFs and by outright editing the source code yourself.
Significant enhancements include the introduction of Multiplayer, railways tracks built with the Autorail tool and on slopes, Waypoints, trains that are longer with more engines and larger and more realistic maps. More advanced players can take advantage of presignals for more control over stations and junctions, an increase in the number of allowed vehicles, and more flexibility when it comes to stations.
To make the game more enjoyable, new train pathfinders have been added to let trains find their way better, a convert rail tool to make upgrading easier and a bigger dynamite tool to make blowing things up a lot faster.
There are many more features that are present in OpenTTD, and more are added all the time. For a complete list of new features, go to the List of New Features.
History of Transport Tycoon
The first Transport Tycoon (TT) game was released in 1994. It was developed by Chris Sawyer and released by MicroProse. It was very popular at the time. Compared to many other games of the time, it was spectacular. The intuitive gameplay and the colourful, crisp graphics, combined with endless opportunities to build and shape the transport network of your dreams made it a winner. With the release of Transport Tycoon Deluxe (TTD) in 1995, the game was greatly improved. Many new features, including 4 different environments, maglev trains, one-way signals, etc, were implemented. TTD continued to be played for many years after by a small, but fanatic bunch of gamers. Even though the game had been fairly successful, no direct sequel was announced. Chris Sawyer's Locomotion can be considered as successor, but could not connect to the previous success.
The rise of TTDPatch
Somewhere around 1996-1997, Josef Drexler started a project called TTDPatch, which was (as the name implies) a patch for TTD. Originally it only did small things, but later on it was able to support NewGRF files, two company colours, and even trams. It fixes some problems with the game and also adds a lot of new features to it. The TTDPatch project has endured for many years and has changed the game quite radically.
A Windows version
A great problem during 1996 was that TTD had been written in assembly language and was not especially portable. Nevertheless, a Windows 95 conversion was made by FISH Technology Group in 1996, but it was only released by Microprose (later Hasbro Interactive) in 1999, in a Tycoon compilation known as "The Tycoon Collection", including Railroad Tycoon 2, Rollercoaster Tycoon, and Transport Tycoon Deluxe. This Windows version introduced a few bugs, including broken tutorials, and had a FISH UK logo added to the startup screens (removed from OpenTTD).
The Patch's method of modifying the game made a lot of potential features near-impossible. Ludde contacted Owen Rudge, owner of TT-Forums, in 2003, and explained he was going to reverse engineer the game and convert TTD to C. A year later Ludde surprisingly presented Owen Rudge with the first release. Forums were created where people discussed the new incarnation of the game. Response was positive, and other developers joined Ludde in the project. Work continues on OpenTTD to this day.
At the end of 2009 an important milestone was reached. Up till this time graphics and sound files from Transport Tycoon Deluxe were required to play OpenTTD but now free and open alternatives, OpenGFX, OpenSFX and OpenMSX, are also available and supported. These large community contributions made OpenTTD a fully stand-alone game for the first time and to mark this occasion this release was given the version number 1.0.0.