Recently, Steam Sounds Supreme released, in conjunction with Caledonian Works, their GWR 2800 Pack for Train Simulator 2021, and they have very kindly sent RailAdvent a copy to review.
The 2800 Pack includes locomotives from all variants and liveries, including BR, GWR and GWR Preserved liveries on 2807 and 2857.
What’s included for the price?
Included in the £14.50 asking price is the complete 2800 Class from the 1905 batch, 3500-gallon tenders with suitable liveries, performance mode, 3D firebox, quick drive ready and also numerous lamps and other scripts.
First impressions of this locomotive are great. We booted up a scenario on the Keighley and Worth Valley Railway (supplied in the pack), and wow! The detail on the liveries is splendid, as is the cab detail. Whilst there is no specific tutorial, the manual is detailed enough to cover all aspects and is easy to understand. It is a PDF so can be loaded up on a second screen or phone/tablet for using whilst in-game. The long and short of driving this locomotive is that if you understand the usual driving for steam locomotives in Train Simulator 2021, then you will find this a doddle.
Although nice to see, I did find the scenarios and their respective routes needed a fair few add ons to make them run, but the scenario we managed to run seemed to run fine, regardless of whether we had everything or not.
Optimisation and Detail
The locomotive and its respective scenarios all ran well, with a constant 50-60fps, even on a mid-tier laptop, with no lagging or issues when in general gameplay.
The detail on these locomotives is once again up to the standard of Steam Sounds Supreme. The whistle sounds, the “chuffing along” sounds along with the headboards and general graphics. I found no issues with regards to either the sounds or the graphics, all very high quality and shows the amount of time put into this locomotive pack, especially as the sounds were recorded from real 2800 locomotives.
Having the entire 2800 class from batch 1905 means there is no end to the amount of gameplay you can enjoy, fire up a free roam scenario on your favourite route, put down some carriages, and which 28XX you want to drive, and away you go.
Driving the 2800 class is an enjoyable experience, be it in the cab carefully controlling the water, fire and regulator, or be it on the outside seeing the sun shining off the paintwork. The driving is intuitive, and I’d say once your 5 minutes in, you feel at home with the locomotive.
In the cab, there are numerous controls to click, giving a great sense of reality. The scenarios are engaging to drive (especially on the KWVR route – keep an eye on that boiler pressure!). The locomotives are quick drive compatible on the Riviera in the Fifties, meaning you can drive this locomotive in all sorts of weather and at whatever time you feel.
Finally, the locomotive is also compatible in the scenario editor, place down you 2800 and drive it on any route, with whatever stock. Your imagination for this will go wild, perhaps running it on the SVR route by SSS, or running it as a double-headed express on the KWVR, or maybe you want to head to the coast as you head for Exeter with a mixed freight.
A missing feature is the steam chest simulation; however, Steam Sounds Supreme has told RailAdvent “currently the model does not have steam chest simulation, but it will be added in the near future when SimNation’s Locomotion 2.0 script is incorporated in the model”. So this isn’t a bad point per se as it is already planned to be added.
A great feature that sometimes goes unnoticed is the variety of headboards for the locomotive, by pressing Ctrl + H, the preserved locomotives (2857 and 2807) will wear different headboards, we like The Red Dragon variant, but a special SSS version and a Cheltenham Spa Express also feature.
Any Bad Points?
I can only find two issues with this locomotive pack, the first is the number of assets needed to run the scenarios included in the pack, most cost additional money, but if you have been playing Train Simulator for a while, then you perhaps will have these already (if you are missing some assets, pressing F2 and cancel when you start the scenario can fix this).
In conclusion, this locomotive pack is really enjoyable, detailed and just excellent to have a play around with.
The 2800 Class Pack add on is available for £14.50 from the Steam Sounds Supreme store by clicking here.
My only thought on the price is for the additional extras you need for the scenarios, I would have perhaps preferred an £11.99 price tag, which would have given a bit more leeway with regards to the additional extras, but I don’t see the work that goes on behind the scenes, and clearly, a lot of effort has gone into the locomotive pack.
I would definitely get this locomotive pack and add it to your Train Sim 2021 collection if it is just to play around with in free roam / Quick Drive or start making your own scenarios with.
Want to see the pack in action? Make sure to follow the RailAdvent Twitch channel to see when I live stream the loco, go to twitch.tv/railadvent and hit the purple follow button now.
A big thank you to Steam Sounds Supreme for sending us a copy to review.
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GWR 2800 Pack
This locomotive pack is really enjoyable, detailed and just excellent to have a play around with.
- Detailed cab and graphics
- Sounds are excellent
- Enjoyable scenarios
- QD compatible
- 2857 and 2807 feature
- Potentially a bit pricey
- Scenarios need a lot of requirements
- No Steam Chest Simulation (coming soon)
Graphics and Sound Quality
Value for Money