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This page is about the first entry in the series. For the RCT series in general, see RollerCoaster Tycoon (series).

RollerCoaster Tycoon (abbreviated as RCT or RCT1) is a theme park management simulation game. The player must build successful theme parks to fulfill a set of objectives in various scenarios. The player can build custom roller coasters and tracked rides and add pre-designed rides, shops and stalls, path systems, and scenery to their park.

RollerCoaster Tycoon is the first game of the RollerCoaster Tycoon series; it has two expansion packs – Added Attractions and Loopy Landscapes and two successful sequels: RollerCoaster Tycoon 2, and RollerCoaster Tycoon 3. The series spawned an unsuccessful Nintendo 3DS-exclusive spin-off, RollerCoaster Tycoon 3D.

History

RollerCoaster Tycoon started out in 1996 as a planned sequel to Chris Sawyer's Transport Tycoon. This proposed sequel was soon abandoned and the code of the game was modified to handle roller coasters. By this time, the name was changed to "White Knuckle". Even when Hasbro Interactive became involved, the name was still "White Knuckle". After Hasbro bought Microprose, however, the "Tycoon" name was too good an opportunity to pass up, even for a name like "White Knuckle". Microprose's Railroad Tycoon had done so well that Hasbro hoped the same would happen for White Knuckle. The name was then changed to RollerCoaster Tycoon.

See also The Evolution of RollerCoaster Tycoon for further information.

Release Dates

PC

  • North America: March 31, 1999
  • Europe: April 12, 1999
  • Australia: in 2000 (date unknown)

Xbox

  • North America: March 25, 2002
  • Europe: March 20, 2003
  • Australia: April 11, 2003

Attractions Attractions 2D Icon

Transport Rides Transport Rides 2D Icon

RCT1 Icon
Steam Trains RCT1 Icon

Steam Trains
(Miniature Railway)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Small Monorail Cars RCT1 Icon

Small Monorail Cars
(Monorail)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Streamlined Monorail Trains RCT2 Icon

Large Monorail Train
Streamlined Monorail Trains
(Monorail)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Chairlift Cars RCT1 Icon

Chairlift Cars
(Chairlift)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Gentle Rides Gentle Rides 2D Icon

RCT1 Icon
Haunted House RCT1 Icon

Haunted House
(Haunted House)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Ferris Wheel RCT1 Icon

Ferris Wheel
(Ferris Wheel)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Maze RCT1 Icon

Hedge Maze
Maze
(Maze)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Merry-Go-Round RCT1 Icon

Merry-Go-Round
(Merry-Go-Round)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Observation Tower RCT1 Icon

Observation Tower
(Observation Tower)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Sportscars RCT1 Icon

Sportscars
(Car Ride)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Racing Cars RCT2 Icon

Racing Cars
(Car Ride)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Pickup Trucks RCT2 Icon

Trucks
Pickup Trucks
(Car Ride)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Cheshire Cats RCT2 Icon

'Cat' Cars
Cheshire Cats
(Car Ride)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Spiral Slide RCT1 Icon

Spiral Slide
(Spiral Slide)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Dodgems RCT1 Icon

Bumper Cars
Dodgems
(Dodgems)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Space Rings RCT1 Icon

Space Rings
(Space Rings)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Roller Coasters Roller Coasters 2D Icon

RCT1 Icon
Wooden Roller Coaster RCT1 Icon

Wooden Roller Coaster
(Wooden Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Custom Icon
Wooden Roller Coaster (reversed) Custom Icon

Wooden Roller Coaster (reversed)
(Wooden Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Wooden Wild Mouse RCT1 Icon

Wooden Wild Mouse
(Wooden Wild Mouse)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Wooden Wild Mine Ride RCT2 Icon

Wooden Wild Mine Ride
(Wooden Wild Mouse)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Ladybird Trains RCT1 Icon

Ladybird Trains
(Steel Mini Roller Coaster) (RCT1)
(Junior Roller Coaster) (RCT2)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Log Trains RCT2 Icon

Log Trains
(Steel Mini Roller Coaster) (RCT1)
(Junior Roller Coaster) (RCT2)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Custom Icon
Rocket Cars Custom Icon

Rocket Cars
(Steel Mini Roller Coaster) (RCT1)
(Mini Roller Coaster) (RCT2)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Custom Icon
Spinning Cars Custom Icon

Spinning Cars
(Steel Mini Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Mine Train Coaster RCT1 Icon

Mine Train Coaster
(Mine Train Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Compact Inverted Coaster RCT1 Icon

Inverted Coaster Train
(Compact Inverted Coaster)
Loopy Landscapes

RCT1 Icon
Looping Roller Coaster RCT1 Icon

Looping Roller Coaster
(Looping Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Custom Icon
Looping Roller Coaster (reversed) Custom Icon

Roller Coaster Train (backwards)
(Looping Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Stand-up Roller Coaster RCT1 Icon

Stand-up Roller Coaster
(Stand-up Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Corkscrew Roller Coaster RCT1 Icon

Corkscrew Roller Coaster
(Corkscrew Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Suspended Swinging Cars RCT1 Icon

Suspended Swinging Cars
(Suspended Swinging Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Suspended Swinging Airplane Cars RCT2 Icon

Suspended Swinging Airplane Cars
(Suspended Swinging Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Mini Suspended Coaster RCT1 Icon

Mini Suspended Coaster
(Mini Suspended Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Mini Suspended Flying Coaster RCT2 Icon

Mini Suspended Flying Coaster
(Mini Suspended Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Steeplechase RCT1 Icon

Steeplechase
(Steeplechase)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Motorbike Races RCT2 Icon

Motorbike Races
(Steeplechase)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Bobsleigh Coaster RCT1 Icon

Bobsleigh Coaster
(Bobsleigh Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Reverse Freefall Coaster RCT1 Icon

Reverse Freefall Coaster
(Reverse Freefall Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Vertical Drop Roller Coaster RCT1 Icon

Vertical Drop Roller Coaster
(Vertical Drop Roller Coaster)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Thrill Rides Thrill Rides 2D Icon

RCT1 Icon
Twist RCT1 Icon

Twist
(Twist)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Launched Freefall RCT1 Icon

Launched Freefall
(Launched Freefall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Pirate Ship RCT1 Icon

Pirate Ship
(Pirate Ship)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Go Karts RCT1 Icon

Go Karts
(Go Karts)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Swinging Inverter Ship RCT1 Icon

Swinging Inverter Ship
(Swinging Inverter Ship)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Motion Simulator RCT1 Icon

Motion Simulator
(Motion Simulator)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
3D Cinema RCT1 Icon

3D Cinema
(3D Cinema)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Top Spin RCT1 Icon

Top Spin
(Top Spin)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Water Rides Water Rides 2D Icon

RCT1 Icon
Dinghy Slide RCT1 Icon

Dinghy Slide
(Dinghy Slide)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Log Flume RCT1 Icon

Log Flume
(Log Flume)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
River Rapids RCT1 Icon

River Rapids
(River Rapids)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Rowing Boats RCT1 Icon

Rowing Boats
(Boat Hire)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Swans RCT2 Icon

Swans
(Boat Hire)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Canoes RCT2 Icon

Canoes
(Boat Hire)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Bumper Boats RCT2 Icon

Bumper Boats
(Boat Hire)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT2 Icon
Water Tricycles RCT2 Icon

Water Tricycles
(Boat Hire)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Shops & Stalls Shops & Stalls 2D Icon

RCT1 Icon
Fruity Ices Stall RCT1 Icon

Fruity Ices Stall
(Food Stall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Chip Shop RCT1 Icon

Chip Shop
(Food Stall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Pizza Stall RCT1 Icon

Pizza Stall
(Food Stall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Burger Bar RCT1 Icon

Burger Bar
(Food Stall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Drinks Stall RCT1 Icon

Drinks Stall
(Drink Stall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Candyfloss Stall RCT1 Icon

Candyfloss Stall
(Food Stall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Popcorn Stall RCT1 Icon

Popcorn Stall
(Food Stall)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Balloon Stall RCT1 Icon

Balloon Stall
(Shop)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Souvenir Stall RCT1 Icon

Souvenir Stall
(Shop)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Information Kiosk RCT1 Icon

Information Kiosk
(Information Kiosk)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

RCT1 Icon
Toilets RCT1 Icon

Toilets
(Toilets)
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Scenery Scenery 2D Icon

Trees RCT2 Icon
Trees
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Shrubs and Ornaments RCT2 Icon
Shrubs and Ornaments
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Gardens RCT2 Icon
Gardens
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Tropical and Desert Trees RCT1 Icon
Tropical and Desert Trees
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Signs and Items for Footpaths RCT2 Icon
Signs and Items for Footpaths
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Fences and Walls RCT2 Icon
Fences and Walls
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Statues and Fountains RCT1 Icon
Statues and Fountains
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Classical & Roman Themeing RCT2 Icon
Classical/Roman Themeing
(12 objects)
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Egyptian Themeing RCT2 Icon
Egyptian Themeing
(12 objects)
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Mine Themeing RCT2 Icon
Mine Themeing
(21 objects)
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Martian Themeing RCT2 Icon
Martian Themeing
(9 objects)
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Wonderland Themeing RCT2 Icon
Wonderland Themeing
(27 objects)
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Park Entrance Park Entrance 2D Icon

Traditional Park Entrance RCT2 Icon
Traditional Park Entrance
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Water Water RCT2 Icon

Natural Water RCT2 Icon
Natural Water
RollerCoaster Tycoon 1

Scenarios Park Entrance 2D Icon

Upon installing, the player can only choose between 5 scenarios, from Forest Frontiers to Evergreen Gardens. With each completed scenario, a new one is unlocked. When all RCT1 parks have been completed, the hidden Mega Park scenario is unlocked.

Forest Frontiers RCT1
Forest Frontiers
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Dynamite Dunes RCT1
Dynamite Dunes
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Leafy Lake RCT1
Leafy Lake
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Diamond Heights RCT1
Diamond Heights
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Evergreen Gardens RCT1
Evergreen Gardens
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Bumbly Beach RCT1
Bumbly Beach
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Trinity Islands RCT1
Trinity Islands
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Katie's Dreamland RCT1
Katie's Dreamland
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Pokey Park RCT1
Pokey Park
RollerCoaster Tycoon
White Water Park RCT1
White Water Park
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Millennium Mines RCT1
Millennium Mines
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Karts & Coasters RCT1
Karts & Coasters
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Mel's World RCT1
Mel's World
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Mystic Mountain RCT1
Mystic Mountain
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Pacific Pyramids RCT1
Pacific Pyramids
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Crumbly Woods RCT1
Crumbly Woods
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Paradise Pier RCT1
Paradise Pier
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Lightning Peaks RCT1
Lightning Peaks
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Ivory Towers RCT1
Ivory Towers
RollerCoaster Tycoon
Rainbow Valley RCT1
Rainbow Valley
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Thunder Rock RCT1
Thunder Rock
RollerCoaster Tycoon


Extras

Mega Park RCT1
Mega Park
RollerCoaster Tycoon

Expansion packs

Additional content

In addition to the rides and scenarios included in the two expansion packs, some official bonus material was provided through other means. Six collections of tracks designed by Chris Sawyer, early versions of the Alton Towers and Fort Anachronism scenarios, and eleven competition scenarios as well as the winning ride designs from each were made available on the official website. Three promotional scenarios were offered to magazine subscribers for PC Player, PC Gaming World, and Gameplay.

System requirements

  • Pentium 90 MHz (Pentium 200 MHz recommended)
  • Windows 95/98/Me/2000/XP/Vista/7/8/10
  • 16 MB RAM (32 MB recommended)
  • 50 MB hard drive space (180 MB recommended)
  • 4x CD-ROM (8x recommended)
  • 1 MB SVGA video card (4 MB recommended)
  • Windows 95/98 compatible soundcard
  • DirectX 5.0 (included)
  • Mouse

Widescreen resolutions

Out of the box, Rollercoaster Tycoon limits itself to 1024x768, however the game can be edited to run in much higher resolutions, at different aspect ratios. The game will be not stretched either, it will simply look expanded (see screenshot).

Widescreenrct

Example: 1280 x 720

Creating a custom resolution

This first method works with the original game, not the GOG/Steam/etc version (the original retail release). If you will need to edit the RCT.exe with a Hex Editor (here is a link to a free one.)

  • Before modifying RCT.exe file, make a backup copy first!

You need to search for these two hex values: "58 02 00 00 68 20 03 00 00" and "20 03 00 00 c7 45 f4 58 02 00 00". In both of them you have to change 20 03 to the new width and 58 02 to the new height. In the game, you need to switch to Fullscreen 800x600 in the options menu, as that is the resolution you customized with this method.

  • "580200006820030000" <-- (first hex value above, without whitespace)
  • "20030000c745f458020000" <-- (second hex value above, without whitespace)

Working resolutions

  • 1280 x 720 (16:9): Change "20 03" to "00 05", "58 02" to "d0 02".
  • 1280 x 768 (15:9): Change "20 03" to "00 05", "58 02" to "00 03".
  • 1280 x 1024 (5:4): Change "20 03" to "00 05", "58 02" to "00 04".

Higher resolutions will not work, though lower resolutions should be possible. Ensure that the wanted resolution is compatible with your video card settings, otherwise it will be set to 640x480.

The hexadecimal values are calculated by converting the width or height number from decimal to hex, then inverting the order of the bytes. For example, 720 in decimal is 2D0 in hex (this can be converted with the Windows calculator in scientific mode). Adding a zero to the left we get two bytes, 02 D0. Inverting the order we get D0 02. 

Another example: 800 (decimal) -> 320 (hex) -> 03 20 (two bytes) -> 20 03 (reverse order of bytes), which is the width value to be changed from the 800x600 resolution.

Even Higher Resolutions with Window Mode

While the above method increases the resolution a bit, it's still nowhere near modern standards. To complicate the matter, when Rollercoaster Tycoon is downloaded from GOG, Steam, or similar game stores, the updated game will not have the hex values may not be present to edit at all! Forunately, a youtube user has dug deep into the EXE and discovered that it's possible to use higher resolutions than 1280x1024 if you play the game in Windowed mode (theoretically 32775 x 14340 limit). They have edited the exe and uploaded versions compatible with the original retail release the GOG release, and the Steam release: download link. Place the EXE in the Rollercoaster Tycoon directory and run it.

Compatibility

RollerCoaster Tycoon, being made in 1999, is still somewhat compatible with Windows Vista/7. However, crashes, freezes and strange color changes are common. To fix this, players should check 'Disable visual themes', 'Disable desktop composition', and 'Run this program as Administrator'. Running RollerCoaster Tycoon in 98/Me compatiblity mode on a Windows 7 PC results in the game crashing when trying to load files, however this compatibility problem got fix with the GOG version.

Criticisms

A common complaint was the lack of a scenario editor or a free build mode. Several trainers were released, but the expansions included anti-cheat code that disabled them. Sawyer's belief that RCT was a game, and that as such, should include rules, goals and conditions to keep it from becoming just a design tool[1]; this is likely why there are no money codes included. RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 later added the scenario editor.

Xbox release

RollerCoaster Tycoon was released for the Xbox console in 2003, which included all the options, scenarios and rides from the original PC release and its expansion packs. The Xbox release received mixed reviews, mostly because it didn't differ much from the PC original, despite being released 4 years after its PC counterpart. Other criticism came from the controls, which were difficult because of the joysticks usage  (left stick to control the mouse cursor, right one for the camera) and unable to be modified, and the absence of compatibility to a mouse-like accessory which, were it developped, could have rendered the game much easier to handle and even perhaps open the way for other PC game ports.

RollerCoaster Tycoon for Xbox does not appear on Wikipedia's list of Xbox games that are compatible with Xbox 360.

Credits

Development

  • Development: Chris Sawyer
  • Graphics: Simon Foster
  • Sound & Music: Allister Brimble
  • Additional Programming: FISH (UK) Ltd.
  • Representation: Jacqui Lyons at Marjacq Ltd.
  • Layout: Louis Saekow Design
  • Thanks to: Robb Alvey, Katie Brayshaw, Karen Cumming, Justin Garavanovis, European Coaster Club, Neil Jackson, Victoria Maclean, Martin Sawyer, Elizabeth Slater, Paul Slater, Graham Turner, Ruth Turner, John Wardley, Melanie Warn, Jim Wills, Rich Winger (for help with research and game testing)

Hasbro Interactive

  • President: Tom Dusenberry
  • Producer: Thomas J. Zahorik
  • Executive Producer: Michael S. Glosecki
  • Operations and Special Projects Manager: Tracy Kureta
  • V.P. Research and Development Worldwide: Tony Parks
  • V.P. Product Development Worldwide: Kevin Gillespie
  • Senior V.P. Global Business Development: Barry Jafrato
  • Director of New Business: John Sutyak
  • European Project Coordinator: Richard Alexander
  • Quality Assurance Director: Michael Craighead
  • Manager of Technical Services: Tony Moreira
  • European Technical Services Manager: Roger Carpenter
  • IS Tech: Bill Colby
  • IS Support: Mike Constantis, Yaw Diabah
  • Test Supervisor: Kurt Boutin
  • Lead Tester, Europe: Stuart Thody
  • Testing: Andy Mazurek, Dan McJilton, Mark Higgins, Jennifer Kaczor, David Sauvageau, Kathy Steel, Neall Campbell, Darryl Shaw, Wayne Gardener, Christine Fisher, Tom Jannssen, Labyrinth Productions Ltd.
  • Testing at A.Q.: Fran Katsimpiris, Jon Grimes, Jason Clary, Adam Coleman, Jake Grimshaw, Dennis Ivitchev, Frank Kirchner
  • Vice President of Marketing: John Hurlbut
  • Product Manager: Steve Arthur
  • Directors of Marketing: Gail L. Steiner, Richard Cleveland, Tom Nichols
  • Public Relations Director: Dana Henry
  • Worldwide Marketing and Sales: Kate Webster, Mary Miller, Tracey Bunce, Zoe Tremlett, Liz Morgan, Olivier Salomon, Jean-Michel Coletti, Torsten Opperman, Thomas Jaepel, Jochen Quast, Matt Carroll
  • Director of Creative Services: Steve Webster
  • Art Director: Steve Martin
  • European Art Director: Steve Cross
  • Creative Services Manager: Kathryn Lynch
  • Graphic Designer: Jennifer Brackett
  • Editorial Specialist: Elizabeth Mackney
  • Website Support: James Sheahan
  • Localisation: Sam Baker, Anton Lorton, Ulrich Mühl, Jinglebell, SDL Polylang International
  • Operations and Manufacturing: Richard Lever, Judy Hawley
  • Administrative Support: Sarah Perry, Kellie Rice
  • V.P. of Finance: Ron Parkinson
  • Legal and Finance: Donna Mahan, Bruce Kelly, Linda Ferros, Donna Fuchs, Janet Oakes, Lisa Hung, Alka Patel, Melanie McDonnell
  • Special Thanks: Chris Down, Louise McTighe
RollerCoaster Tycoon Games
Main games

RollerCoaster Tycoon: Added Attractions/Corkscrew FolliesLoopy Landscapes
RollerCoaster Tycoon 2: Wacky WorldsTime Twister
RollerCoaster Tycoon 3: Soaked!Wild!
RollerCoaster Tycoon World

Console games

RollerCoaster Tycoon 3D
RollerCoaster Tycoon Joyride
RollerCoaster Tycoon Adventures

Mobile games

RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile
RollerCoaster Tycoon Touch
RollerCoaster Tycoon Story

Compilations RCT DeluxeRCT2 Triple Thrill PackRCT3 Gold!RCT3 Gold EditionRCT3 Platinum!World of RCTRCT 6 PackRCT Mega Pack
Ports/remakes OpenRCT2RCT Classic
Spin-offs The Board GamePinball Machine
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