Chalk up another win for video games, as Atari announced today that the RollerCoaster Tycoon franchise is moving in a direction fans likely begged never to happen. Introducing RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile, a sequel whose new features revolve entirely around thing like Facebook integration, social advertising and almost certainly microtransactions. The good news? There's still that wonky octopus ride available to build.
If while watching the trailer one was to turn the volume completely off, it would not be a wholly terrible experience. There are hamburger stands, rides, customizable roller coasters and it looks like plenty of theme park attendees that don't look identical! Then we get to around 16 seconds in and see that terrifying Facebook page. Invite friends and earn the likely otherwise premium currency! It's all part of the game's "Social Inbox!" Urgh. Then the sound gets turned on and I dare any RollerCoaster Tycoon fan to get past "Hype your park!" without feeling sick to their stomach.
RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 Mobile is coming soon to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. Yes, Android users are free to avoid the temptation of seeing a once popular franchise be stripped of its soul and monetized in a bevy of callous and disturbing ways. Let's just hope they retain at least a little bit of backbone and never restrict the size and scope of the roller coaster building. Yet even that I highly doubt. Those "Free Tickets" ain't paying for themselves, ya know.
R.I.P. RollerCoaster Tycoon, you were beautiful in your time.