There are two games that are permanently etched into my childhood memories that I won’t ever forget. Theme Park is one and the other is the classic Rollercoaster Tycoon. Building and managing your own park filled with rides, shops, piles of puke and crowds of laughter and fun never got boring. I remember playing the original Rollercoaster Tycoon and my PC at the time only just about running it. The franchise then blossomed into a fantastic trio of titles in the early 2000’s along with a plethora of spin offs.

With Planet Coaster now ruling the roost when it comes to this type of experience, I was keen to see if I could revisit memories. We don’t often see Rollercoaster Tycoon titles on consoles. My intrigue and excitement soared when I saw that Rollercoaster Tycoon Adventures was coming to Xbox but weirdly had next to no marketing. Strangely I spotted it on the Argos UK website months ahead of time with not many people speaking about it. Now I can understand why, this wasn’t anything near what I expected.

I’ll get it out of the way early on and say that Rollercoaster Tycoon Adventures Deluxe is nothing like the originals. Since playing the game I have found out that the game is actually an updated version of Rollercoaster Tycoon Adventures on the Nintendo Switch. Had I known this game existed on the portable platform, then I may have known what I was going to be painfully putting myself through. Those who have played the Nintendo version, here you’ll find additional rides and UI alterations to this apparently souped up version.

You’ll have a small selection of themes of where to build you park when you start off. Western, Classic, Space and Beach make up these settings choices. You’d think choosing a select theme would change the aesthetics hugely but in theory that isn’t really the case. The ride selections are fairly generous but there isn’t much flexibility when it comes to placing them. Ride placement seems like it is on rails and building pathways towards them can be a real pain. If often results in frustration as some of the building work you’ve invested in doesn’t look natural.

Park guests go about their day as normal but without the in-depth analysis and stats you may remember. You may see the odd quote here and there about whether they enjoyed a ride or if something was pricey. So unfortunately there is no clicking on the anymore and changing their name and seeing how much they spent and more. Sadly it just appears to be another portion of the game that appears to be watered down and simplified to cater to a basic edition of the classic.

You can unlock more attractions as you go along through research and levelling up. This is where a little longevity kicks in so that you can diversify your park from the bog standard starting rides. Strangely though, you won’t ever really see the huge queues building from your rides. People walk straight down the line then straight into the attraction. Part and parcel of the older games was making a giant rollercoaster, making it cheap and cheerful with a lengthy queue line and watching it build. Again, something that is lacking from what you may be used to seeing in games of this nature.

Revenue management is too easy here and it is really difficult to go bust which doesn’t really make for much of a challenge. I am guilty of diving back into history with the original games, but being in charge of the financial logistics was an interesting part of the game. The same applies to park staffing, you don’t have any control of them and they just tend to do their own thing automatically. As your park expands you just construct more staff buildings to manage and thats it.

I was gobsmacked at how visually poor the game looks and you can tell it has been constructed for the Nintendo Switch initially. This could have been an opportunity to enhance the presentation to cater for the current generation machines. Whilst the UI is quite neat and simple to navigate, the rest is an eyesore. The character models are woefully done with almost every single park guest walking with arms fully extended in the same motion. 

You can with some fine tuning get a decent enough looking park put even then it still feels like playing a game from a few generations ago aesthetically. As for audio, it is nice to hear some of the audio reused from the classic games. If anything though, it makes you feel like you’d rather be playing the original release instead of this.

Rollercoaster Tycoon Adventures Deluxe left me massively disappointed and deflated despite me being hyped for it. It is a million miles away from the game that made it world famous and it is sad to see it has lost its soul. There is no fluidity, no challenge and I’m sad to say I’ve seen games that look better on my mobile phone. If you’re after an experience where you want to be restricted and spoon fed every portion of the game with next to no depth, then there may be a little fun for you here.

It makes me sad to say but I’d personally avoid this at its full price point, you are setting up for disappointment. If you’re a long standing fan of the series, don’t do it to yourself. My recommendation is to go back to the originals on a mobile device/PC or better still grab Planet Coaster once it’s on sale and never look back.



  • 35%
    CX Score - 35%



  • UI is quite good and easy to navigate
  • A generous ride selection



  • No challenge to the game whatsoever
  • A visual mess
  • Clunky and frustrating to play
  • More restrictive than the older titles

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