December Delivery Deadline
With just one week to go until the exclusive Kickstarter Beta release, and two months out from our planned release date, we’ve got some big news for you all - and it’s one of those good news/bad news stories.
Way back in 2001 when Trainz was first released, we announced a “Community Edition” that was only available for online order. This version provided our core fans with months of Trainz enjoyment before anyone could get their hands on Trainz at retail stores.
Today, we are announcing the T:ANE Community Edition that will be made available to all our Kickstarter backers (and pre-order customers) in December 2014 in line with our original schedule for T:ANE .
T:ANE CE (oh how we love acronyms!) is not quite the full release we had planned but it will contain the majority of the new features including train motion, procedural junctions, physics tools and weather collision. The superelevation feature may sneak in as well, but as announced previously, the Interlocking Towers feature will be included as soon as possible after release via a free update.
After the CE release in December, we will then spend an additional 2-3 months polishing, optimizing and improving on the CE version prior to a global retail release in Q1 2015. This will ensure that we release a higher quality, more stable and more polished version into retail, while still providing our core audience with early access to an “almost final” version of T:ANE.
Of course, everyone who qualifies for the CE version will get a free update to the V1.0 retail version either as a patch, new digital download or box edition.
The CE version will be made available by digital download only to all backers. This version will include all the Deluxe Edition content if your reward level was for the "full" version.
All Kickstarter and pre-order "Box" editions (including Collector’s Edition) will be shipped out once the retail Gold Master is replicated in early 2015. You will be emailed prior to this date to confirm your delivery address.
Box edition people will have access to the digital version (via your Planet Auran login) until your box edition arrives. For those people with download limits, it will also be possible for someone to provide you a physical copy of the digital download on DVD or memory stick for installation onto your PC. Once installed, you will need a one-time online authentication to gain access.
This is the hardest piece of this update to write. The team have worked extremely hard to deliver everything we promised in the time that we promised. When we set out our plans back in October 2013, we felt we set ourselves a realistic but tight schedule. We had a number of unknowns at the time, and as it has turned out, we’ve spent more time getting the underlying engine technology and existing “Trainz” systems working together (and we still have more work to go).
We realize that this news will be disappointing to some fans, but we know those extra few months of polish will help ensure we deliver an all-round top quality product. We also hope that the Community Edition version will help soften the blow and give you plenty of enjoyment while waiting for the final version to arrive.
As the beta testers will see beginning next week, and then all our fans in December, T:ANE will begin setting new standards in the world of train and railroad simulators. We’re not there yet, but we’re making improvements every day. Most of the hard yards are complete and now we can focus our efforts on making every system shine.
We would like to thank you all again for your support as without you we wouldn’t have even come close to where we are at today. We are confident that in the end, the wait will be well worth it!