Simulators are finally here! I have been waiting and waiting for simulators to pop up on the Xbox Store. For as many years as I care to remember, the simulator genre has always been home to the PC and has never strayed to far from its humble home.
If you have ever imagined what it would be like to participate in something, be that driving or a particular job with skills, embark on a change of career path, or just getting your hands dirty in the garden, the Personal computer was your choice of platform, with literally hundreds of simulators of all kinds out there. However, the ever-changing need for upgrading hardware, such as graphic cards or greater memory, often turned a lot of noses up.
Over the last few years simulators have been slowly releasing and making their mark. This new genre to the world of Xbox have been greatly received throughout the industry, from the developer right the way through to the end user. And there’s more on the way!
Now’s your chance to awaken the inner child in you. Hand’s up who imagined being a bus driver when you were very small and should think quite a few of you. Well now’s your chance to see what being a bus driver entails, or even running a whole network of buses throughout a city in Bus Simulator!
In Bus Simulator you get to experience up-close and personal, the day to day life of a bus driver and the up keep of supplying public transport, from the hiring and firing of staff, to the creation of new bus routes, as well as purchasing new bus for your newly formed bus company.
As a bus driver you will quickly find out how exciting every day life can be behind the wheel, providing the public with a vital transport service in a vast and freely drivable urban area. With Bus Simulator you quickly to grips with the interaction of passengers and looking after of your vehicles.
Get behind the wheel of any of the 8 original licensed city buses, brought to you by some well known brands such as Merceded-Benz, Setra, Man and Iveco. As in many simulator it’s all about role playing, so channel the inner bus driver in you and get to work, transporting passengers safely and punctually to their required and paid for destinations, either in single player mode, or with friends as you go head to head to be crowned king of the buses in a real-time head to head multiplayer mode.
The city is your oyster, whether you choose to drive the lines in the busy industrial or harbour zone’s providing a vital city link, or head downtown onwards to the surrounding villages and the many business parks, transporting the passengers to and from work, shops and other amenities they might like to visit.
As a bus driver in charge of routes across 12 different districts, you will face many different challenges that only a huge city with lots of eager passengers and tons of traffic can throw up. We all have experience how the country pretty much comes to a standstill at the mere sight of rain, and you will be forgiven if you just thought the weather was your main deterrent. Of course Freak weather conditions can cause problems for the best of drivers, but throw in the factor of a long passenger vehicle and aspects such as Potholes, traffic jams, fare dodgers, accidents, construction sites, night driving, specific passenger requests and that’s not to mention difficult customers, and you will soon realise that being a bus driver can prove troublesome. However it’s not all doom and glue, being a bus driver has it’s perks, taking full control of your own bus, earning money, gain a fantastic reputation owing to your safe and punctual driving style, using your new found people skills, and the sheer pleasure of driving through the authentic urban locations.
Use the road ahead of you, clock up the miles on the virtual streets and roads in order to gain access to new districts, new buses and dozens of new customisation options. As with the way of the world, there’s nothing for free out there, so drive carefully, increase your reputation as a company, and most importantly look after the buses you’ve just built.
Causing damage or accidents, speeding around the city ignoring the speed limit and getting caught on the many speed cameras located around the city will have a negative effect on your wallet and your reputation that your desperately try to increase, after all happy customers breed more customers and more money.
So, don your gear, make sure your presentable and put on that smile, your first shift awaits.
Bus Simulator features 8 different buses from 4 leading manufacturers all recreated with immense detail. The game has been derived from previous Bus Simulator games available on the PC and has an all new updated progression system and a comprehensive management element to the game, that ensures that there’s more to just hitting the road. Plan and edit routes, purchase and sell disused buses. You will be required to partake in a bit of staff planning and keep track of numerous statistics which will all provide long term game motivation.
The game is fully accessible to all players and not just enthusiasts. Bus Simulator has dozens of options to change and has the ability to not just offer a realistic experience, but one that can be tailored and simplified. Don’t like having to start from the bus station with all the switches turned off, it can be changed so that you start by the nearest bus stop, with the bus lights etc all ready switched on. If taking money is not your thing, then you don’t have to participate in handing over the change and tickets. Having these options keeps the player in full control of their own unique experience.
With simulators it’s important to capture not just the environment, and the physics. From Authentically reproduced cockpits of the 4 manufacturers used in the game, equipped with a whole abundance of individual functions available at the touch of a few buttons.
Sound also plays a huge role in simulators, and with that in mind, I’m pleased to let you know there are plenty of life-like bus sounds, passenger dialogue and problems. This simulator makes an excellent effort to create the perfect simulator in terms of passenger conversations, dropping litter, listening to load music and blocking the doors. And as for the sound effects, it really does provide a realism effect. Add that an excellent weather system throughout the game, which can be totally random, or rain is your thing, you can constantly drive in those conditions. You also have full choice over day and night cycles if you desire.
“Bus Simulator is the ultimate bus driving experience, offering realism behind the cockpit.”
The customisation on offer in this game, is a blessing in disguise, as designing your buses looks, is just the sort of break you need from hit the road. Change colours on the inside and out, add patterns, and play around with logo placing and advertising boards.
Smart traffic AI and a range of challenging traffic situations await you on your shift, bus stations, night driving, construction sites, diversions, long-distance journeys, potholes, traffic jams, accidents, and even speed bumps all play an excellent role in keeping this game fresh and current.
With a real-time multiplayer mode included in the can, you can drive around the 12 districts and over 5.8mi² of routes in a drivable urban area with up to 3 friends as you go ahead to ahead in who drives the routes the best.
Bus Simulator is the ultimate bus driving experience, offering realism behind the cockpit. The game handles really well with crisp smooth visuals and supports various camera modes, the best being first person. You really do feel like you’re in full control. Add to that a whole stack of controls available to you, either via a curser to press the buttons individually or via a handy control wheel should you forget where the windscreen wipers are located when the heavens decide to open.
The interaction with passengers is a nice touch and they really do try to keep you on your toes, but should that be time consuming for you, or maybe it’s just not your style – the game has some wonderful options to customise your Bus Simulator experience to your needs.
Overall, this Bus Simulator does exactly what it sets out to do, and the experience is not only pleasurable and satisfying, but truly addictive.
- Abundance of options and controls
- Interaction with customers
- Challenging traffic and weather conditions
- Tasks are not always 100% clear
- Not for everyone