I have been playing simualtors like these for many years, so here's my review:
This game is Alright, it's very balanced in nature, quite flexible orders and rule system, while having a mid-range graphics capabilities, with very friendly, yet stupid AI system.
The forums have been very good to me over the years.
CMP is alright for keeping track of content, it is very friendly for the beginner for maanging and sorting content, but it gets less and less flexible as your experiance grows.
The thing I like most aobut CMP, would be its "Content Creator Plus", it gives you the tools to create content pretty nicely, CMP also sorts content for you into diferent catagories
I do like the concept of CMP as a whole, but what I don't like, is the trainz database, if it gets corrupt, it has to do an "Asset repair", which fixs all of the descrepencies within the database, which is why I'd prefer Windows Explorer to do it, and trainz to just load the content in.
The lack of beginner tutorials, espechially route creating / steam locomotive tutorials really doesn't help beginners get used to driving driving steam locomotives for the first time.
Creating routes is hard without advanced DEM tools (Digitally Elevated Maps), which is sold seperately, so what you're left is oversimplified terrain tools, which doesn't really give enough flexibility when creating rotues.
I'd much prefer an external tool handle DEM maps, such as L3DT.
Creating routes using the default tools makes route creating tedious and it doesn't really give a realsitic feel when it comes to the finsihed product.
The inability to create vertical structures using the default game grid restricts multiple players and forces them to build models which gives the effect.
The 10M grid is way too low resolution, the 5M resolution is too big as well.
Soo, I have to ask this, if trainz can support models which have so many polygons, why does trainz baseboards lag so badly with anything below 10 or even 5?
I can almost guarrantee that the baseboards are going to be lower poly compared to rolling stock and locomotives.
I bought this game because of the "Multiplayer" aspect of it, which everyone wanted since 2007, which, at the time, the thread had 800 replies to it, Unfortunitely, when multiplayer came out, all of the data was routed through Auran / N3V's servers, causing lag for practically everyone, which sort of continues today.
Now you rarely ever see more then 5 players playing on multiplayer at a time, compared to the thousonds of people playing Garry's mod.
It's a shame that multiplayer turned out to be less popular then anyone at the time would have anticipated.
I admit, trainz isn't going to be anyone's cup of tea, and it has its pros and cons, but I feel this game is okay. I'd recommend it for the beginners and seasoned players, because of its ease of use and the concept of the game is moderately easy to learn, but again, the lack of tutorials is a let down for the game.