Transport Tycoon for iOS and Android isn't just a port of the PC original; it's a reboot of the series comparable to Tomb Raider, following the original's formula to the letter but making a "buttload of tweaks" for a mobile audience, according to port publisher AppyNation's Andrew Smith.
The code for Transport Tycoon has been completely rewritten for iOS and can be considered the "latest and greatest" version of the game, Smith told Polygon. At launch, the game will feature more than 150 different vehicles spanning the tech tree from 1920 to 2020, with a little more imagination for the more futuristic models. Players will be able to build routes in towns at various points in history, with more than 50 scenarios available to play out.
The game has been optimized for mobile devices and will have Apple Game Center integration at launch. Smith says developer Origin8 is hoping to add iCloud saving shortly after launch as well.
"We haven't redrawn the graphics or anything like that, but we've adapted it to touchscreen," Smith said. "It's all very much how people remember it. We didn't want to update it just for the sake of updating it.
"As soon as we announced it, there was a mix of 'You better not change anything' and 'we hope you do something different with it,'" he added. "So there aren't any big headlining new features, just a buttload of tweaks."
Smith said people often associate the Tycoon games with more modern titles like Farmville, but the comparison isn't a true one. Transport Tycoon is a real simulation; if players leave it alone, the game's AI will set up companies and transport goods and people while players are away. The game runs "full-time scenarios," Smith said.
"The original game is this kind of living thing: you tinker with it and half the fun is just watching it chug away, then you interfere or tweak things," Smith said. "Back then the only way to do that was through the PC. Now that you've got these amazing little devices that just sit in your lap, that just serves the player — with your feet up on the sofa, just enjoying it. It's so deep, but it still suits the casual mindset in the way that you play it."