The Viking Union has a very dominant role in your society, as they control the vast railway networks. Could they be to blame for the disappearance of the sun and the resultant ice age? As a train captain, you must find out and overthrow them.
Transarctica is a strategic trading and combat game, rather like Elite in many ways. You must keep your train running, and make sure there is enough fuel. When you reach towns you can trade with local people, with each city having a primary function. These towns often contain useful information to put you on the right track in your mission. You are in possession of slaves, who are traded just like other commodities.
Contact with other trains results in combat. Buy upgrades to boost your performance in combat, to increase your chance of fending off the Viking Union.
This is Transarctica. It was developed and published by Silmarils on three platforms; the Amiga, Atari ST and Dos, although it sold best on the ST. Many of you may not have heard of the game, but if you like strategy games that need thought and patience you will love this.
Background Story: December 24th 2022, "Operation Blind", a scientific experiment of remarkable daring takes place.
The "Blind" team, led by the renowned Professor John Merrick, aim to save a world ravaged by the Greenhouse effect, by exploding thermo-nuclear devices simultaneously at each pole. This will cool the savage rays of the sun by throwing large quantities of dust and steam high into the atmosphere.
The scientists miscalculate. The experiment works all too well, and the world is pitched into an intense Nuclear Winter. Civilisation perishes under a blanket of snow and ice.
Centuries later the survivors act out a miserable existence living most of their lives on huge trains, the only source of transport, travelling constantly between those towns that still exist: pathetic shadows of their former selves, used now only as meeting and trading points for the giant trains.
Controlling the trains and the rail network is the sinister and powerful Viking Union. They will tolerate no threats to their profitable monopoly. An ice-locked world suits them just fine.
You play an idealist, The Captain of the Transarctica. You steal the biggest and most advanced train built by the Viking Union, and try to restore the world to its former self.
The Game: Transarctica begins with you just outside a town, ready to move into the city. To do this, you must go to the engine and click the control panel at the front of the carriage. Then you must use the regulator to pick up speed, disengage the breaks, and then set your Anthracite man to shovel coal into the boiler. Never use Lignite, unless you really need to, because Lignite is your currency and there are only three ways to get this; selling commodities, mining, or defeating enemy trains and claim war booty.
Transarctica is very hard to finish, and it will take you a long time, but it is great fun. Your task is to gather information about the project "Operation Sun" in the hopes of restoring the world, however while doing this you will have the Viking Union trains on your tail. They will do anything to kill you.
You will also need to earn more Lignite by trading between various towns, so that you can buy upgrades for your train. These upgrades includes extra cargo capacity, Cannons, Machine Guns and Barracks for your soldiers to live in. All in all I think this is a great game that deserves time and attention.
Transarctica is a very unique game which is a mix of an adventure and strategy game. When you first start the game it looks like any other graphic adventure game but after a short look on your options you will see that you can do much more than just regular puzzle solving as adventure games usually offers.
You are in charge of a huge steam engine where you have to build several different units in a world that is the Earth in the future covered in snow without any sun at all. Doesn't sound like very friendly place and that is correct as well since the Earth is back to more primitive wars and trading in order to survive. As mention trading is involved as well like trading slaves with other towns. All of this is taking place in real-time which just helps to making the game harder.
The graphics are good and detailed and I especially like some of the screens displayed when you are inside towns. The game interface is quite confusing and at first it's very hard to get a good overview of what things you can do and where you should go in order to do them. An interesting and different strategy games with several adventure aspects included. Worth a try.
A unique strategy / adventure game set in a hypothesized future where Earth has lost is Sun and all is plunged in snow, Transarctica puts you in command of a 1,000-ton leviathan steam engine that houses thousands of nomads. You must build different types of train compartments, outwit the war-trains of the evil Viking Union, trade with towns for slaves, mammoths, etc... all in real-time. Overall, one of the best Silmarils games ever made, despite cumbersome interface and extreme scarcity of resources.
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