FreeRails (2000-2005)

The original FreeRails project was registered on Sourceforge on 2000-08-09 with the aim to create a fun game based off the RailRoad Tycoon and RailRoad Tycoon II games. It was described as a real time multi player strategy game where players compete to build the most powerful railroad empire.

The introductory news message by Luke Ehresman reads:

My friends and I have long loved the game Railroad Tycoon, and would love to see a open source version, very similar to FreeCiv. However, none of us have time to work on this due to dedication to other open source projects. We would love to see people run with the idea, and in a hopeful attempt at pushing the idea off to the open source community, I have created a SourceForge project. To find out more about the FreeRails project (sister project to FreeCiv), visit the web page: http://freerails.sourceforge.net and be sure to join our mailing list as we discuss the future and feasibility of this project.

It was programmed in Java and used a CVS repository for source control. Regular releases from 2001-07-25 (version 0.0.2) to 2005-09-23 (version 0.2.7) brought it to a quite extensive, playable tech demo including play over network. The source code is under the GPL-2.0 license. Main Java programmer seems to have been Luke Lindsay.

  • Last binary release: FreeRails 0.2.7
  • Authors: Luke Ehresman (Original project proposal), Luke Lindsay ((Administrator)), Alexander Opitz, Chris Phillips, Samuel Benzaquen, Dennis M. Sosnoski, Rob, MystiqueAgent, Scott Bennett, Robert Tuck, Sonny Zubia, Steven Mackay, Jan Tozicka, Moises Duarte, adam@jgf, Patrice Espie, Jon Lund Steffensen, Karl-Heinz Pennemann, David Magnuson (Testing), Dave Brosius

C++/C# client for FreeRails

A client for Freerails using C++ was announced in 2001-08, but no official releases remain. Code can be found in the CVS repository. They shared the same graphics resources.

Railz (2004-2005)

On 2004-02-23, Railz was registered on now defunct BerliOS as a railway strategy/management game based upon the freerails source code base. It was created by Robert Tuck. Until the beginning of 2005 it saw several releases and the code was considerably changed from the FreeRails project on Sourceforge. An archived version of the project page is available as well as a automated exported project page. The source code of Railz was also released under GPL-2.0.

  • Last binary release: Railz 0.3.3
  • Authors: Those of FreeRails (2000-2005), especially Robert Tuck

FreeRails2 (2007-2008)

On 2007-11-05, FreeRails2 was registered on Sourceforge with the aim to create an optimized version of the FreeRails project. A web start version was included on the web site. It used a SVN repository to extend the code base of the FreeRails (2000-2005) project. The development mainly focused on improving the infrastructure. The main contributor was Roland Spatzenegger.

  • Last binary release: FreeRails2 0.4.0
  • Authors: Those of FreeRails (2000-2005) and Roland Spatzenegger (cymric_npg)

Railz2 (2012-2014)

On 2012-04-08, LukeYJ (Luke Jordan?) created the Railz2 project on Sourceforge as a follow-on to the freerails and Railz projects. The code was stored in a SVN repository and the starting point was the Railz 0.3.3 release. Again the Java code base was extended.

  • Last binary release: Railz2 0.4.0
  • Authors: Those of Railz and LukeYJ

FreeRails3 (2016)

On 2016-12-24, LukeYJ created the FreeRails3 project on Sourceforge as a fork from the inactive Freerails2 project. The code was stored in a GIT repository and the history FreeRails2 was imported. Within a few weeks some issues were fixed and a new release was made with the version number 0.0.4 (smaller than the version of FreeRails before). Finally the code was also placed on Github.

FreeRails continuation (2017-)

On 2017-12-12, Trilarion created the FreeRails project on Github as a continuation of FreeRails 1, 2 and 3 in Java. The history of FreeRails 1, 2 and 3 as well as Railz 1 and 2 was investigated, stored in git branches (FreeRails on Sourceforge and Railz on Sourceforge) including the last releases of each of the previous projects.

No release has yet been made.