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User reviews: Mixed (10 reviews)
Release Date: Jul 10, 2014
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This content requires the base game Train Simulator 2015 on Steam in order to play.

Buy Pietermaritzburg - Ladysmith

HOLIDAY SALE! Offer ends January 2

-50%
$39.99
$19.99
 

About This Content

The latest route for Train Simulator captures the rugged beauty of South Africa. This route will take you on a 3’6” Cape gauge line through twenty six stations or halts on the way. Experience a range of terrain, from lush green plantations, winding rivers, traversing gorges, numerous tunnels, mountain sides, deep valleys and open plains. Travel through the rolling green hills of Pietermaritzburg at a height of 672 m and end approximately 191 km further north at Ladysmith, 1037m above sea level.

The route starts at Masons Mill’s huge railway yard and depot just outside Pietermaritzburg in the KwaZulu Natal province of South Africa. From there it winds with double, electrified track to the first major station on the route, Pietermaritzburg. Travelling north from Pietermaritzburg, it forms two complete balloons (loops) at Boughton station, in order to negotiate the narrow valley at the foot of the first mountain range, then climbing to the first tunnels at Cedara, two single bores each 6km long.

After Cedara, the line continues to progress through more tunnels, river crossings and a few major stations, surrounded by plantations, factories and the occasional traditional village next to the line.

Between Merrivale and Tweedie is the huge wall of the Midmar dam, a spectacle to tourists, which can be seen from the line.

The product features Class 6E1 Series 4 3Kv DC electric locomotives, designed and built for the South African Railways (SAR) by Union Carriage and Wagon (UCW) in Nigel, Transvaal. One hundred locomotives were delivered in 1973 and 1974, numbered E1446 to E1545. The South African Class 6E1 was produced in eleven series over a period of nearly sixteen years, with 960 units produced altogether, all built by UCW. This makes the 6E1 the most numerous single locomotive class ever to have seen service in South Africa and serves as proof of a highly successful design.

The locomotive is presented in four livery variations, Blue, Red, Red with yellow stripes and Orange.

In addition, a selection of wagons is included along with a passenger car.

Career Scenarios

  • My Shift
  • In to the Past
  • Evening Run
  • Pickup at Dawn
  • Double Take
  • School Rugby Dilemma
  • Long Haul Up
  • Delivery Masons Mill
  • Jack of all Trades
  • Uphill
Run long, heavy freight trains over difficult and rugged terrain for the long haul or passenger services along the line. There is something here for everyone.

More scenarios are available on Steam Workshop online and in-game. Train Simulator’s Steam Workshop scenarios are free and easy to download, adding many more hours of exciting gameplay. With scenarios being added daily, why don’t you check it out now!

Key Features

  • 191km Route from Pietermaritzburg to Ladysmith
  • 26 Stations and Halts
  • Large freight rail yards and loco depots
  • Class 6E1 locomotive in four livery variations
  • Wagons and a Passenger Coach
  • Career Scenarios
  • Free Roam Scenarios
  • Quick Drive Compatible

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows® XP / Vista / 7 / 8
    • Processor: 2.8 GHz Core 2 Duo (3.2 GHz Core 2 Duo recommended), AMD Athlon MP (multiprocessor variant or comparable processors)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 512 MB with Pixel Shader 3.0 (AGP PCIe only)
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 6 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Direct X 9.0c compatible
    • Additional Notes: Quicktime Player is required for playing the videos
Helpful customer reviews
13 of 15 people (87%) found this review helpful
Posted: October 3
Definetely not the best choice. Looks like that developers made this route in a hurry.
This DLC is lacking content soooo bad.
There are quite a few scenarios for the route, Workshop is also almost empty . There is only one loco and just 5 coaches (2 cisterns, 2 hoppers and one passanger) for it. Thats all, nothing more.

Second complaint - lack of details. DLC locomotive 6E1 looks like it was carved with axe - lame model, lame textures. And yeah, sounds...sounds, which will make you deaf after 5 minutes. Same for coaches. Cmon, coaches in MSTS looked way better than these carved abominations.
Same for track details. Most of the time it's empty land with few trees and houses all around. And besides that all objects are lamely placed: river banks carved in grass texture, buildings floating in the air, horribly placed car roads, etc. Not to mention track overhead line - it just hangs ideally straight (in real life it will cut your pantograph in two just in a couple of minutes).
Yeah I know, that route is very long, but c'mon, look at Marias Pass DLC - route is longer than KwaZulu, but level of details is way higher, not to mention way better made ES44DC and SW1500.

To summarize:

+ Good length of route
+ The only one African route so far in a game
+ electrified route
+ "Free" locomotive and coaches

- Too few scenarios + almost empty workshop for this route
- Low quality of locomotive
- Route is poorly detailed
- Low quality of route details

Well, it's not the worst route, but it definitely don't cost 30 Eur, even 15 Eur is too much for it.
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10 of 10 people (100%) found this review helpful
Posted: December 4
Most people buying this DLC don't live in South Africa or wasn't in South Africa. I've seen this DLC has receive a lot of bad recommendations, because of shoddy craftmanship. I agree, but the reviews pointing it in the wrong places. I, for who lived in South Africa and travelled on these trains, going to give a proper review for which I think is wrong and right in this DLC.

Here is a brief summary of what you can expect of this DLC
The route:
  • Lenghty route
  • Drive through plains, hills, mountains and a dam
  • Many tunnels and long tunnels
  • Narrow gauge
  • South Africa
This route is the best representation of what its like in KwaZulu-Natal. You see lots of plains with grass, lots of grass. Trees is abudant in the mountains, usually pine or "Bloekom" as we call it. I've seen people complain about rivers being full of grass and dirt, well, in most cases it is dried up, because this is a dry area. It usually rains in the summer, but the scorcing sun vaporises all the water in the rivers. We have a serious water problems here and have to save as much water as possible. Most building is "reused". The buildings looks similar in Natal as in the game, I cannot see any fault with it. I 've seen many HOP houses alongside the tracks, those "mud" houses. They are government houses for the poor people and they do like those in the game.

The locomotive:
  • There is only this one electric locomotive
  • Its LOUD
The reason why only one locomotive is available is this package is there is only this type on the corridor. Transnet have began to upgrade the 6E1 to the new 18E in 2009 nationally. This route setting is clearly as it was in 1999 and thus the 6E1 only existed for this line. We have over 3000 of these locomotives in our country and its our main locomotive. Diesels is extremely rare on this corridor, because it is expensive to run them. We don't have oil and have to import them, thus make them expensive. The 6E1 uses electricity which is generated by burning coal and we got reserves of coal.

People complain about the noise, but if you travelled on them, then you will complain. They ARE that LOUD! Especially the blowers when they accelerate. Those blowers can make you deaf, therefore train drivers got headphones for ear safety. The texture is well made, actually the locomotives is too clean. I've seen much dirtier ones in my life. I only got a complaint about the cab. They remember the stove, but it has low polygons. The instruments is okayish. The only real problem what I have with it is, WHERE IS THE SERIAL PARALLEL switcher!!! This locomotive work exacly the same as those Class 76 on the Woodhead DLC.

The rolling stock:
  • You only get 5 different versions, a coach, open wagons, tank wagons and a caboose.
  • They small variants
  • Not so highly detailed

The rolling stock is good and they invested time to get the bearings right, those big chunky spinning rings on the wheels. The texturing is a bit dull, to neat to be precise. I've expected some dirt on the passenger coaches! The freight wagons texturing is well made.

Conclusion:
The route is well made, but the locomotive need attention if you mostly drive inside it. The sound is perfect, they sound exactly the same as those in the game. The DLC feels it has been made 2 years ago, the developer remember to put cab lights in, but there is no superelevation.

If you live in South Africa and considering buying this, then get it! It's the best representation of how it looks in Natal. For people outside, you can buy it to get a different feel of our country, it feels different, for sure. If you are serious about the quality aspects and expect this DLC to have completely different stuff, then you might be dissapointed. The developer used what this game offered to create this route which represent the actual one very well.

The price is a bit high, I must say. Buy it on a sale or something of the like, but I recommend it to my fellow "vriende en burgerlikes"
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10 of 13 people (77%) found this review helpful
Posted: October 6
Recommended for one reason alone; The scenery is unlike ANY other routes that have ever existed in Train Simming. The narrow gauge, the sparse trees and Savannah. It's just a great break away from all the rolling English hills and huge American cities and deserts. Yes, the rolling stock is more crude that other more modern DLC, but if you want this scenery, you put up with it.

The unique rolling stock design and markings and local buildings are a nice change pace as well. It's a great way to see a different part of the world for the price of a cross country bus ticket.

Highly recommended as a change of pace, you may want to wait for a sale for more value if you like.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
Posted: December 2
Let me say straight off, I like this route it has a lot to offer.
The terrain is very challenging and the climbing of hills with a full rake of ore wagons can set the heart racing as they are very intense and you'll need to be on the ball to succeed.
The stations are realistically portrayed even though a little too clean and tidy compared to the real thing.
The output of the main light on the engines supplied is woeful compared to the real thing, at night and in tunnels it is barely perceptible.
One thing that is a tad disengaging is the lack of any wildlife and people other than a few (seen in all routes) of the usual suspects, it makes the route seem a bit sterile and doesn't really let you get a feel for the location. No birds, no motorbikes, no game, no endless bugs hitting the windscreen, all these things that are missing just take the edge off of what is otherwise a well done route.
I recommend it for it's technicality and scenarios, but it just lacks that facet that would make it great, namely more images that better represent Africa. It would also have been nice to have had it populated with new figures; perhaps some older folk, some kids, maybe people with luggage, a few dogs, clutter, garbage etc.
In summary: technically very good, but true immersiveness is sadly lacking.
As a professional model builder, I know that attention to fine detail draws our eye in to the scene and holds our interest, If DTG haven't figured that out yet, it's my pleasure to provide that insight right here. :)
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Posted: December 14
I did enjoy this route very much, Good rendering of the locomotives, sounds and rolling stock, which I know very well as I grew up on this railway. Thank you very much to the developers!
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3 of 7 people (43%) found this review helpful
Posted: November 24
Poor quality. Low res textures on locos. Waste of money.
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1 of 7 people (14%) found this review helpful
Posted: November 14
Again:
Is this a simulator or arcade game ?!
And yea, finish of this route suck.
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1 of 11 people (9%) found this review helpful
Posted: October 5
i dont know why,but this scenario dont work,nothing open. this requier ts 2015,i have,my sistem windows 8,my pc i7 4970k 4.4ghz,32gb of ram(corsair},graffics card asus gtx 770 oc. so its more than the add ask....so why i cant open.....
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