Railway Empire – Nintendo Switch Edition | Review

Railway Empire

There are quite a few simulation games out there now for the Nintendo Switch and while these types of games aren’t for everyone, there’s still plenty of people out there who love to play them, otherwise why would developers keep making them? One such simulation game that just got released is Railway Empire – Nintendo Switch Edition by Kalypso Media. This is a hardcore building and management sim where you’ll be tasked with creating an elaborate and wide ranging rail system network starting in the 1830’s and progress through five eras of technological innovations. It’s a race to establish the most dominant and powerful rail empire in all of North America.

This version of Railway Empire includes access to the DLC Mexico, The Great Lakes and Crossing the Andes, unlocking new scenarios on regional maps, additional soundtracks, locomotives as well as introducing the night & snow mode.


  • Exploit the economic opportunities of the United States in an extensive campaign, working your way step by step from coast to coast across this great continent.
  • Establish a comprehensive rail network and optimizing transportation of passengers and goods.
  • Master challenges and objectives through a range of scenarios, or create your perfect railway network in construction mode without any financial pressure.
  • Over 40 historically accurate locomotives and more than 30 different wagons can be acquired over the course of the game, and must be put to use in the best way in order to take advantage of their strengths and weaknesses.
  • Invest in over 300 new technologies across five different eras to progress and maximize the potential of your rail network.
  • Compete with up to three rival companies, and even sabotage their efforts with the use of bandits and spies.
  • Includes the additional content: Mexico, The Great Lakes and Crossing the Andes

Railway Empire

Now that that’s out of the way, Railway Empire is time consuming and demanding game. This isn’t a game that you can just casually shoot through or expect to know how to play in a matter of minutes. There is an extensive tutorial along with a detailed story. While I’m not sure if the history involved here is 100% accurate or to what extent and deep it gets, I’m sure fans of early era railroad history would be pleased.

I highly suggest taking the time to learn the controls, how to navigate each of the menus, and exactly what each item does. Not only that, you’ll need to actually plan out everything you build, otherwise you may find that what you once thought was a good layout, in actuality isn’t. This is a game you really need to take your time with learning the little intricacies, but most of these really good simulation building games demand that.

Railway Empire

What you might find comforting is that there are some things in the game that are automatic. You don’t really need to worry about upgrading towns or cities in this game and for the most part, just need to worry about the infrastructure of your railway lines and locomotives. There’s already enough to worry about with trying to keep everything running like a well oiled machine. Your main task is the health of the railway and building out the network. That’s pretty much it. That’s good because there is already so much involved with building out stations, tracks, upgrades, locomotive management, etc. that having to also manage cities and towns would have been too much.

Graphically, the game is pretty good, in that it’s as good as these types of games can get. There’s a good amount of detail in the game, even when you zoom all the way in to view the trains and towns. The text on the screen is a little small however, especially if you are playing this in handheld mode. Luckily, a lot of it is narrated to your if you’re playing through the campaign. It’s still really small though and could use a bit of enlarging.

Railway Empire

Aside from that, there isn’t much not to like about Railway Empire. This is a solid building and management sim that fans of this genre will surely enjoy. This is no casual game however and definitely will not be for everyone. Just know what you’ll be getting into before purchasing this as there is a lot or time you’ll need to invest to play Railway Empire. However if you stick with it, you’ll find this to be quite an enjoyable simulation.

Railway Empire – Nintendo Switch Edition is available now on the Nintendo eShop.

Received game from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes.

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