About four days ago, I was sitting in a waiting room about to board a train. Bored, and a little restless, I pulled out my iPhone 3G to take a look at the App Store and see if there was anything new that I could download to kill some time. Recently, I'd almost given up on visiting the App Store. With the frustrating performance of my 3G, downloading apps and using them had become more of an endured task than a pleasure. But, on this particular day, I went straight to the UK free download charts hoping for a gem. My eyes immediately scouted the star ratings, and I was quickly drawn to an app that I'd never seen before called Trainyard Express.
I think, at the time, the app had a four star rating, well above some of its contemporaries that were similarly placed on the chart. Skipping over the blurb and taking a quick look at the pictures, I thought, this could be a game I actually might enjoy. I like puzzles, and I like trains. So, since I was about to get on one, I downloaded the app.
To say the least, I was truly surprised at what a fantastic game I had found. I was totally engrossed for the duration of my journey, not to mention repeatedly returning to the game in the coming days. I enjoyed it so much that I got my wife to download it, too.
Why was I so pleased with the game? Two major things struck me. The first being that I was bowled over by how good the game actually is. To me, it's engrossing, looks great, and is a pleasure to play. And secondly, I was delighted to have downloaded a game for free that has so much to offer. That is such a rarity these days that it only reinforced my positive perception of the game.
On Tuesday, Matt from Struct.ca, the developer of the game, posted the story (so far) of Trainyard. Matt explains the journey he went through in developing the game as well as the highs and lows of getting Trainyard discovered on the App Store. Since I enjoyed discovering the game for myself so much, it's particularly interesting to read Matt's story of Trainyard being discovered.
So, grab a cup of coffee and take five to read the blog post here. Then, go and try the free version of Trainyard Express for yourself. If you like that, go and download the paid version at just £0.59 - I just did.
You can catch a demo video after the break.