Throwing us into the brink of a revolution, Railway Empire 2 starts in 1830 at the dawn of the age of railways. It’s an exciting time for the rail industry, with many competing companies wanting a piece of the pie and many discoveries changing the face of rail travel.

There are various game modes, including a campaign mode, scenario mode, free play mode, construction mode, and a co-op multiplayer mode. Each of these options offers a different experience entirely, which is appreciated and allows for a different pace of game depending on what mood you’re in or how you want to play.

The campaign mode, across five chapters, sets a series of tasks and a deadline date to complete them by; this may be to increase the population of a specific town by the end of a certain year, or to connect two different cities to each other via express rail.

Scenario mode is kind of like a race between yourself and another railway mogul where you battle to expand your railway the quickest, and features 14 different scenarios. Where campaign mode has optional tasks along with its compulsory ones, all the tasks in scenario mode are compulsory. Completing the objectives opens a new region for expansion. Where campaign mode can feel quite leisurely, with only time as an opponent, scenario mode with it’s constant soundbites from your competitor reminding you of their presence can feel quite stressful.

Creating the rail lines is fun enough, like getting to pick where to place the stations and various routes. Some elements of the construction phase and the actual business concepts are quite hard to get a grip on, however, even after completing the extensive tutorials on offer. We found some elements were really trial and error; for example, the export and import of goods was really something that we can’t even say now we fully understand, but dealt with during gameplay with crossed fingers and bated breath to tick boxes and get tasks done. The overcomplication of these elements feels as if you have been set up to fail from the start, as time is not on your side to figure things out with the clock ticking and your competitors constantly reminding you how well they're doing.

Other game modes feel slightly less frenetic than the campaign and scenario modes, and are definitely the modes to try if you really want to take your time and not feel rushed. There's definitely a lot of opportunity to play the game exactly how you want to, and find the mode that works for you if you feel the competitive options are a bit too stressful.