TSW2: Haupstrecke, Munchen – Augsberg Route.
Publisher: Dovetail Games
Developer: Dovetail Games
Release date: 26th October 2020
Approximate size: 3.6 GB
Age Rating: PEGI 3
Reviewed on: Xbox Series X
Screenshots: Xbox Series X
Haupstrecke offers Train Sim World 2 fans another option for a modern-day route and like the more recent Southeastern High Speed, mixes a popular High-speed service with an iconic EMU commuter service.
From the start you’ll find 3 tutorials, starting with an introduction to the route, and a quick introduction to each of the two locomotives included with this route. Each of these tutorials will take about 10 minutes to get through, which is a nice timeframe to get to grips with the add-on without overdoing things.
The selection of five Scenarios is one of the most impressive and varied I’ve seen so far, one is only 20 minutes in length, but the other 4 stretch between 40 and 60 minutes each, best of all the difficulty range is as varied as you can get with the full spectrum covered from 1/5 up to a tough 5/5 scenario.
The locomotives included in Haupstrecke are the popular DB 423 (EMU) and the High-Speed DB 403, these are both high-quality trains that handle well and offer a good view from the cab.
Both services cover the route from Munchen to Mammendorf, with the high-speed trains continuing the full 62km stretch to Augsberg.
There are 30 locations in total, with over 20 stations which means the collectables scattered throughout the route are well spaced out, and unlike many route add-ons, it’s not a list you’re going to find quickly.
There’s 100 in total, with 20 of each station bound collectables which are Route maps and Cycle points, there’s then 30 of each Emergency telephones and cabinets to find, and as many of these are off the main station, it means you’ll have some walking to do to find them all.
There’s still plenty to work through, with 300 timetabled routes which are boosted up to 427 if you own Main-Spessart Bahn, Rhein-Ruhr Osten or Hauptstrecke Rhein-Ruhr.
Though some will feel the DB423 is a little similar to the DB422 seen in both Rhein-Ruhr routes which might prevent many from picking up the full selection of German routes.
It’s a shame there are no freight services because that would have made Haupstrecke a pretty complete add-on, but for those looking for a modern route, it’s safe to say the high-speed service helps push Haupstrecke: Munchen-Augsberg beside some of the more popular German routes.
Graphically things look good, but, it’s not all smooth sailing, there’s plenty to see and the variety of scenery is impressive, however at times it’s all a little too much and you’ll struggle to find a journey where there isn’t noticeable pop-in, with telegraph poles the most likely culprit, but especially on the high-speed services, you’re likely to see more than a few buildings appearing out of nowhere as they reach mid-distance.
This also brings a few frame-rate drops, which thankfully aren’t as frequent, and pass within seconds, but they’re still noticeable.
Otherwise, the overall presentation is very good, the audio is fine with the trains sounding unique, powerful and well balanced.
Overall Haupstrecke: Munchen-Augsberg is a good pack, fans of German rail will definitely want to consider it for the mixture of high speed and commuter services, while neutral fans may prefer the Southeastern High Speed route, there’s certainly more than enough to keep you going for months, but the graphical issues may push people towards alternate routes.
The slight downside of the 423’s younger brother (422) already being in 2 popular route packs, and the graphical issues only put a slight dent in an otherwise sleek and impressive package which is certain to please fans of the German railway.