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Track Stars is a video game developed by Heavy Iron Studios and published by THQ for the PlayStation 2 in 2006 in America. It's a one or two player game featuring four engines to play with: Thomas, Gordon, James, Percy, Toby and Emily. The Players can also color in their engines and give their engine drivers names. The color of the engine drivers in the coloring in effects the color of their sprites in-game. It has three different skill levels for three modes; The Game, The Race and Explore the Island. The game's narration was provided by a female announcer.

Description

Join Thomas and his friends in exciting adventures in this amazing video game! The Island of Sodor is always bustling with trainloads of work to be done, and keeping it all on track are the engine heroes!

This is a one or two player game, so meet our track stars and take the part of Thomas, Percy, James, Emily, Toby, or Gordon!

Finish different tasks in the train yard! Race against other engines down the tracks! Explore the tracks on the Island of Sodor! And let's not forget the coloring-book screens!

Sodor's track stars ride the rails to adventure in this all-new, fun, and exciting video game!

Characters

Playable Characters

  • Thomas
  • Gordon
  • James
  • Percy
  • Toby
  • Emily

Non-Playable Characters

  • Edward
  • Henry
  • Sir Topham Hatt
  • Annie and Clarabel (cameo)

Music

A different version of Engine Roll Call is played in the credits, as if it sounds exactly the same as in A Day at the Races (only available in Europe and Oceania);

(chorus)

They're two, they're four, they're six, they're eight,
Shunting trucks and hauling freight,
Red and green and brown and blue,
They're the Really Useful crew.
All with different roles to play
'round Tidmouth Sheds or far away,
Down the hills and round the bends,
Thomas and his friends.
James is vain but never bad,
Thomas, he's the cheeky lad.
Percy pulls the mail on time,
Gordon thunders down the line.
Emily really knows her stuff,
Henry toots and huffs and puffs.
Edward wants to help and share,
Toby, well, let's say, he's square.

(chorus x2)

This game features music from season 8. Various sound effects include a whistle, puffing, braking, different tones of a selection (e.g. starting a game) 'ding' and a 'fill' effect while colouring the engines.

The music however is unable to be looped in the title screen and in the Explore the Island mode.

Starting the Game

The players must choose between one or two players, then they must choose an engine from Thomas, Gordon, James, Percy, Toby or Emily. The players can choose and color-in their engines, or they can start straight away with Thomas and Emily. In the coloring-in, they can choose what color their engine driver's clothes are by coloring them in on the picture.

There is an opportunity to name the engine drivers after the Player's own names, or pick from some of the names provided. Some of these include: Amy, Bob, Chris, Dave, Eric, Justin, Laura, Mark, Paul, Shane, etc.

The Players must also select a skill level of Beginner, Intermediate or Expert.

Pressing the triangle button will uncouple Coaches or Freight Cars from the engine. The circle button activates an engine's whistle; though it serves no purpose in-game, it creates a noise and shows a graphic of an engine's whistle blowing. Players who have forgot the request or need help can press the square button to see the current objective. The X button just lets the Players select their options.

Modes

The Game

The Players will need to find the correct rolling stock and take them to the designated station (any station in beginner mode). Once complete, Sir Topham Hatt will make comments on speeds and memories, and a score will be tallied. There are various candies and chocolates on the track which may be picked up for points, although points do not affect gameplay.

Rolling stock include flat cars, log cars, timber cars, empty cars (Troublesome Trucks), coal cars (also Troublesome Trucks), gravel cars (also Troublesome Trucks), passenger coaches (Express Coaches), vans, and flat cars having a shape of varying quantity or color.

Stations include Knapford, Maron, Wellsworth, Maithwaite, Dryaw, Cronk, Brendam, Crewe and Barrow.

If the job is finished around 0 or 1 minute, Thomas, Edward, Henry, Gordon, James or Percy will congratulate the players and tell Sir Topham Hatt how well they did.

The Race

The Players will have to race to the finish line before the other engine reaches it, the player must keep up with his or her skills and speed.

The Player's markers are the colors of the engines, while the computers are always shown as the white engines.

The up arrow balloons will make the engines go faster making them give the Players a happy face, while the mud and down arrow balloons will slow the engines down making them give the Players a sad face. There might also be other engines on the tracks and running into them will cause the Player's engines to give the Players a surprised face and the Players have to wait until another engine clears the track. Solid-colored balloons are also on the track, but seem to serve no purpose aside from making popping noises. However, they do cause the engines to give the players a happy face. There are candies and chocolates on the track that may be picked up for extra points, but these additional points do not effect gameplay.

In a one player game, the game pits the player's engine against several others in a race to get to the end of the track. If the player loses the race against the computer, they will have to compete against the same engine on the same racetrack. The first race is against Toby, the second race is against James, the third race is against Emily, the fourth race is against Gordon, the fifth race is against Percy, and the sixth and final race is against Thomas (The characters often switch around depending on the engine the player chooses at the start). Winning against three engines gives the player a silver medal and winning against all five gives the player a gold medal and end the game.

In a two player game, there are two rounds each race; the preliminary rounds and the final rounds. There is also a bonus round for the players who lost the preliminaries. Finishing in third place will give the player a bronze medal, finishing in second place will give the player a silver medal and finishing in first place will give the player a gold medal.

Explore the Island

The Players have a chance to explore the maps from 'The Game' and 'The Race' without a timer and points. They can pick up coaches or freight cars and take them anywhere. Annie and Clarabel both also make cameo appearances in this mode.

Trivia

  • An American Software female programmer is the narrator of this game, but she also provides the voice of Emily. However, Robin Smith does the voices of all the other characters, which are male.
  • The game is released to promote Track Stars, and it features Thomas, Percy, Emily and James as playable characters. However, Gordon and Toby are also made to be playable in order to have enough playable characters.
  • The game is based off of the Sega Genesis game.
  • The picture for The Game mode is a scene of Thomas at Maron Station from the eighth season episode, Thomas Gets it Right, the picture for The Race is a deleted scene of James passing by Emily while she is rolling her eyes from the movie, Calling All Engines, and the picture for Explore the Island is a deleted scene of Percy passing by the windmill from the episode, Percy and the Magic Carpet.
  • Instrumentals of Engine Roll Call, Surprises, Ode to Gordon and Emily are used.

Goofs

  • Crewe and Barrow are depicted as stations on the North Western Railway, yet none of them are part of the Island.
  • James' wheels are grey when they should be black.
  • Emily has Henry's whistle sound.
  • On the "Coloring your Engine" screens, All of the engines lack their coupling hooks and Emily's buffers are black rather than silver.