It's been a busy month with progress made on a number of our Train Simulator expansions.

Most exciting is being able to tell you about the extra addition to the VEA Vans expansion pack.

VEA Vans

Fastline Simulation - VEA Vans: Also included in the VEA vans expansion pack are a selection of ODA wagons. The picture shows a recently converted wagon posing outside the works in Railfreight flame red and grey livery.

We've been sat on this one for a couple of weeks. After a lengthy 'should we?' conversation we've decided to augment the VEA vans expansion with some bonus ODA wagons.

Just like the VEA vans, the ODAs were a conversion from previously vacuum braked stock for use carrying primarily MoD traffic which necessitated the ability to negotiate tight curves within the military bases. Some 50 were converted in 1983 and all were painted in Railfreight flame red and grey livery, one example even managed to gain Railfreight sector livery. As the MoD traffic they were converted for diminished a number were taken into engineers use.

The shapes for the pack are now completed and the liveries applied, all that remains for the models is to complete the weathering of the textures and any final tweaks.

With the scenarios already taking shape this pack is progressing nicely.

Bullion Carriers

The shapes, textures and materials for these are now complete with the models just completing their round of testing with positive results so far!

The model test is going to be rapidly followed by the testing of the scenarios which now have their player service and all the AI services in place. If those behave as they should, all that will remain will be to pop in the static consists throughout.

Given the current progress this pack is entering the home straight and we should be compiling the manual and building the installer before we know it.

Carflats

With the Bullion Carriers models locked down for test attention has turned to unwrapping, baking and texturing the carflats.

As ever the unwrapping progress is tedious and mind numbing but it's good to see the models making some progress towards completion.

HEA Hopper Conversions

We've been seeing some stunning screenshots of weathered MEA wagons over the past month but they're still not quite at the stage where they can be shared with the wider world. Suffice to say we will be sharing as soon as we can, internally there have been quite a few 'wow' comments so it's pretty certain you're going to be impressed.

Future

With a number of longer standing projects coming towards completion (with a great sign of 'at last' in some cases) we're starting to turn our thinking to the next expansion packs we will be focussing on.

We'll be guiding some of our decisions using the responses to the Spring Survey which so many of you kindly completed for us and you're likely to see something a little different from our previous Train Simulator expansion packs.

There are some other things bubbling along in the background too, but we're not quite at the stage where we're ready to tell you about them just yet ...

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