Tuesday, 3 June 2014

A New Type of Pack

Great Central Railway Gala Scenario Pack

With a number of our projects in limbo, I made the decision to work on a new type of project - a steam gala scenario pack. 
Visiting LMS 8F 8274 passes the 'Cambrian' on the GCR's double track
  This is an idea I had quite some time ago, long before SSS came into being. In the past however, there weren't the appropriate loco's, with great sounds, that I would enjoy driving. You see, first and foremost, I wanted to make this for my own enjoyment. But what fun is there to be had if the loco's didn't sound like they should! So, this project has started and stalled many times since the first version of the GCR was released.

Inspiration to Try Again

  It occurred to me just how many loco's we have enhanced with new sounds and more, over the past year. So, with a small lull in sound production, I decided to go for it again and this time make it a special gala showcasing as many Steam Sounds Supreme enhanced locomotives as possible. I didn't want to just haphazardly write scenario's with the usual passenger trains and the token TPO run like before. No! I decided to really push the boat out for this one. I put the word out that I was looking for a GCR gala timetable, featuring all movements throughout a gala day. I am very grateful to Will Stevenson who obliged with a copy of the timetable from last years Autumn steam gala. I decided to limit the number of loco's to 10. So now came the task of choosing which ones to use......................................

The Locomotives

Instead of getting too bogged down with what would be authentic, I went for what a felt would best showcase our sound work. So, here's a list of loco's running at the gala, and I'm sure you'll agree, it's a pretty good lineup:
  • LMS 8F 8274(Coutesy of the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire Railway)
  • LMS 7F 13809(Courtesy of the Midland Railway)
  • GWR Pannier as LT.99(Courtesy of Buckinghamshire Railway Centre)
  • LMS 4F 44422(Courtesy of the Nene Valley Railway)
  • GWR Manor 7821 Ditcheat Manor(Courtesy of the West Somerset Railway)
  • GWR Hall 4953 Pitchford Hall(Courtesy of the Epping & Ongar Railway)
  • BR Standard 4 4-6-0 75014(Courtesy of the Paignton and Dartmouth Rly)
  • SR Bulleid Light Pacific 34081 92 Squadron(Courtesy of the NVR)
  • LMS 8F 48624(Resident)
  • LMS Black 5 45407(Courtesy of Ian Riley)
Each loco has been assigned a duty number and letter. They are listed above in order from 1(A) - 10(J). In the scenario pack, you'll get to drive each loco listed. Each loco duty will have a set of chained scenario's to take you through the day. As you work through each duty, you notice lots of crossovers from other duties you have undertaken, now being performed by the AI. All making the most immersive set of scenario's ever created for the Great Central Railway.

The Timetable

The final release of the complete scenario pack may well contain as many as 60 scenario's. Some will be very short to provide a link between different events of the day. As previously mentioned, the timetable will be a completely authentic gala timetable, beefed up slightly to accommodate the 10 loco's. Take a look at page 1 of 4. Here you'll see the process of re-writing the timetable for our use:
 Believe me, it gets more complicated as the day goes on!!

Duty 1

So, to whet your appetite for what is in store, duty 1 is complete and here are a few screenshots of loco A in action, and the other loco movements that loco A interacts with:
8274 and 13809 run light to swithland
The pair cross Swithland reservoir
  Having run light to Swithland sidings, the 8F heads off light engine, down to Rothley. The 7F collects the hoppers from the siding and takes these down to Rothley(handled in duty 2), where the 8F is waiting to take over.
The 8F now takes over the Hoppers in Rothley Brooke and begins the journey to Loughborough
The journey to Loughborough, passing trains en route and enjoying the views, whilst keeping to the busy timetable.

Passing the 'Cambrian'
The Guards View
Passing Through Quorn & Woodhouse
The Standard and Bulleid are moving off ready to back onto the 0945 departure for Leicester North
Arrival at Loughborough Down Loop
Around 20 minutes later, our loco has taken water and run round. Meanwhile, the Pannier is handling station pilot duties.
LT liveried Pannier LT99(7715) shunts the dining set
Reversing the dining set into the siding
The shunting work is complete and our 8F now has the signal to depart with the Hoppers once again. 

Departure from Loughborough
Passing through Quorn & Woodhouse
The guards view at Kinchley Lane
Passing through swithland as the 4F is moving forwards onto the minerals
We now jump forwards to the mid-late afternoon. We now have a passenger duty. 
Ready to depart Rothley with the 1645 Loughborough to Leicester North service
The final part of duty 1 involves the night diner returning from Leicester. A good old blast through the night!! All these scenario's are chained. They blend from one into the other. Next you can do it all again, with the 7F!!

More soon.......................................

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