Another great Sim strategy game.
Going to theme parks are thrilling. But what if you were the owner? What if you could make the rides that people want to go on? If you wanna do that, then this game is for you.
The gameplay is similar to the Roller Coaster Tycoon series published by Atari, but this game was published by EA. The idea of this game is to run a theme park and keep it in check by building rides and other attractions to keep visitors happy. You have this advisor which will help you keep things in check.
There are 4 parks in this game, with different themes. There is a jungle theme, a halloween theme, a candy land theme, and a space theme. You need to win golden tickets to unlock extra parks though, and you get them by doing objectives. Your advisor will give you clues on how to do these objectives, but he will be very vague. He'll also point out problems in the park like broken rides and such. However the advisor can get annoying at times, saying that you need to put janitors and mechanics in areas that don't really need them or say you don't have enough food stands even if there are everywhere and if customer satisfaction is the highest it can be.
The goal in this game is different from Roller Coaster Tycoon. Rather than building rides, the goal is to make money. How do you make money, you ask? From building shops and encouraging customer satisfaction. Sure you can build rides to your heart's content but it won't get you far.
You have quite a number of options to manage your shops. You can adjust the quality slider, or salt on fries and such. However, everytime you build a store, you can't make a standard for each shop you build. For example, if you want fries to cost a certain price for each store you build, you'll have to do it manually, which is a pain.
Rides are still important to your park. People didn't come to a theme park just for shops. You need to keep the masses entertained by building rides. You start off with a small selection, but if you do research, then you can unlock rides, shops, and more. Some rides, like coasters and go karts will let you build your own tracks. However, I wish you had a choice of premade tracks, like Roller Coaster Tycoon, but oh well. The problem with designs is that no matter how many twists and turns you make it doesn't affect the attraction unless you use upgrades on those rides, which will make a ride more exciting.
Building coasters is much easier than Roller Coaster Tycoon as you don't have to worry about physics that much. If it's complete, it goes. A poorly designed coaster can still go over humps.
Like Roller Coaster Tycoon 3 you can ride your rides which is lots of fun. You can ride pretty much any ride. It's a lot of fun to ride the coasters if you can tolerate the screaming kids.
You will need to hire staff members like janitors to keep the park clean, mechanics to repair rides, guards to keep everything in order, researchers to make upgrades for rides, and entertainers to make people happy. You can set patrol areas for every staff member you hire, and each staff member has different stats which adds depth to them.
Rides can break down in this game, like Roller Coaster Tycoon. However in this game the rides won't last forever. If a ride breaks down you should get it repaired quickly since if you leave it broken for a long time the life span of the ride fades away and the ride will be condemmed and it can never be used again. This can get hectic especially if you have a big park.
The graphics look pretty good for a PC title. The 3D graphics look good, and because of them, they let you ride the rides and walk around your park.
An aggravating part in this game is later in the game. When your park gets huge you have to deal with a lot of stuff and it becomes less laid-back. When that part happens you wish you could start over again and relive the time you were having fun starting off your park.
Sim Theme Park is a great title. If you like business sims like me you'll like this title. I definently recommend it.