Sid Meier's Railroad Tycoon is a business simulation game. There are five versions; the original Railroad Tycoon (1990), Railroad Tycoon Deluxe (1993), Railroad Tycoon II (1998), Railroad Tycoon 3 (2003), and Sid Meier's Railroads! (2006).
Railroad Tycoon was written by game designer Sid Meier and published by MicroProse and though it shares the "Tycoon" suffix, it is not related to other Microprose games such as RollerCoaster Tycoon and Transport Tycoon, which were developed by Scottish programmer Chris Sawyer.
The objective of the game is to build and manage a railroad company by laying track, building stations, and buying and scheduling trains. You also must build the railroad in a certain amount of time to win the game.
The original version allowed the player to start companies in several settings: the U.S. West and Midwest or the Northeast, England, and (on a smaller scale including southern England) Europe.
The player manages the business as described above and may also handle individual train movement and build additional industries. The game also has other railroad companies attempting to put the player out of business with stock dealings and "Rate Wars".
The player starts with one million dollars, half as equity, half as loan. The player can get more cash by selling $500,000 bonds at various interest rates (which depend on the current economic condition in the game).
As part of the release of the new Sid Meier's Railroads, 2k Games released the full version of the original Railroad Tycoon game for free, which is available on their website.