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New to BVE? We were all new at one point, too.

BVE is a free 3D cab view train simulator developed by Takashi "Mackoy" Kojima. The train simulator has thousands of routes and trains which can be downloaded, and played on this train simulator, all which are free for users to download and install! Here on BVEStation, you can download all the routes and trains available for NYCT.

OpenBVE is a free Open Source train simulator developed by "michelle". OpenBVE can play about 90% of the routes and trains that BVE can because of the similar file formats. OpenBVE also has external views, fly-by cameras, and interior views, on selected trains.

We've created a 3 step system for you to install, download, and play a route in BVE. Lets get started!

Step 1: Selecting a version, and installing it.
Step 2: Select a route to download.
Step 3: Get the train moving.
Final Notes.

Step 1: Selecting a version, and installing it.

Before you start, you should select which version of BVE is right for you. See the following table to decide what features you want, then click a link on the bottom to get started. If this is too much for you to read, click here to go down to the bottom where the links are for quick summaries.

  BVE 2
General Information
Latest Versions and Release Year 2.6.3 (March 27, 2004) 4.2.1947.25355 (May 1, 2005) (December 19, 2010) As of 12/31/10 Please check site for latest version as it is frequently updated
Maximum Supported Resolution 640 x 480(Fullscreen, or Windowed) 1024 x 768(Fullscreen, or Windowed) Maximum set by user's system(Fullscreen, or Windowed)
Graphics Model DirectX 8
Draw Distancing
DirectX 9 and .NET
Draw Distancing, Supports glow of signal.
OpenGL, .NET, Mono
Optional Rendering Qualities, glow, blur, and draw distances.
Windows 98, 2000, ME, XP, (Vista & 7 on select systems with dll tricks, no guarantees)
Windows XP, Vista, 7, Linux, Mac OS X
Freeware (Under copyright)
Open Source/Public Domain
Interface Right Status Screen displays safety, station, and other information Embedded into the simulation, displays of information is on top and bottom left corners of screens, on change only. Embedded into the simulation, displays of information is on top and bottom left corners of screens (option to remove, display at all times, display all info)
Difficulty of simulation Easy, simple. More advanced than BVE 2 Depends
Cab View Yes Yes Yes (Support for 3d cabs)
Train Ahead Simulation Yes (reflected on signals) Yes (reflected on signals) Yes (reflected on signals and external view)
External View No No Yes
Physics Excellent Excellent Good (Getting better)
Train Loads Yes Yes Yes
Psuedo-Stop Marking Yes No Yes
Cab Brightness No Yes Yes
Arcade Like Happy Face Meter None Points System
Cab View Only
360 degrees full view (External, or 3d cab only)
Other Features
Custom Controls Fixed sets only Some Yes
Supported Languages
Japanese, English
Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Portugese, Spanish, Dutch, Italian, French, and More
Developer Features
Extensibility None DLL plugins for train cab extensions Open Source
Coding Less Strict Less Strict Very Strict, errors not found in BVE will be found in OpenBVE
Colors Depends on video card, less strict Depends on video card, less strict Strict Color System
Object File Formats B3D B3D, CSV, X B3D, CSV, X (uncompressed only)
Supported Image Formats
Texture Size Limitations
Must be powers of 2
Powers of 2 recommended but not required
Route Formats RW, CSV CSV RW, CSV
Train Version Support BVE 2 trains only BVE 4 trains, some BVE 2 trains Some BVE 2, and 4 trains
Sounds Forces all sounds at 22050Hz Must be at 22050Hz, or distortion occurs Must be at 22050Hz, or distortion occurs
Development Programs
Track Viewer
Motor Editor
Structure Viewer
Route Viewer
Train Editor
Object Viewer
Summary BVE 2, easy to use, geared toward beginners, simple and more friendly interface. Works on Windows XP, requires some work for Vista and 7. BVE 4, more advanced than BVE 2, has advanced features interface isn't as simple. Works on Windows XP, requires some work for Vista and 7. OpenBVE, simple and cleaner, but more detailed than BVE 2/4. Allows for exterior views, works with 90% of BVE 2/4 content. Works natively on several operating systems.
  I want to use BVE 2
I want to use BVE 4
I want to use OpenBVE
  If you want to download BVE 2 or 4 without instructions, or want more official information about BVE 2,4 and the upcoming BVE 5, you can visit the official BVE Website. If you want to download OpenBVE's development versions or want more official information about OpenBVE, you can visit the official OpenBVE Website.

Step 2: Select a route to download

BVEStation has tons of routes and trains for you to download. All you have to do is pick one, and download it. As an example we will select the V.

The V Line is a real local route that starts in Lower Manhattan and runs local North under 6th Ave till 53rd Street than turns east. It runs under the East River into Long Island City Queens. The V then continues running local along Broadway and Queens Blvd terminating at Forest Hills. As of June, 28th 2010 the V no longer runs due to the MTA Budget cuts, but that doesn't mean you cant download and still play it in BVE.

VClick here to download the V

  1. Once you downloaded the V, unzip the file.
  2. Once you unzipped the file, open the folder to where you extracted its contents
  3. The contents should be several WinRar executables, run all of them, and they should install into their respective directories
    By default, they install into the BVE 2 folder. If you are using OpenBVE, you can let it install into this folder, we'll talk about that later
  4. Next download error's R46 Trainset. Click here to download
  5. Once you downloaded error's R46 trainset, run the file to install.
    Again by default, it will install into the BVE 2 folder.
  6. Now open up BVE 2,4, or OpenBVE and navigate to the directory where you installed the V, by default it should be in the C:/Program Files/BVE/Railway/Routes
  7. Select the V, then start! Enjoy the run!

Step 3: Ok it loaded, how do I get this thing running?

Congratulations, if you followed the directions correctly, you should have the V up and running, well that is if you know the controls...

Here is the set of default controls for BVE and OpenBVE that are needed just to get the basics up.

Key BVE 2 BVE 4 OpenBVE
Z Increase Power
A Decrease Power (and brakes for 1 handle trains)
Q Emergency Brakes
< Decrease Brakes (for SMEE trains with 2 handles)
> Increase Brakes (for SMEE trains with 2 handles)
? Emergency Brakes (for SMEE trains with 2 handles)
Enter Horn
UP Arrow Forward (if on R pushing UP once will put the train to Neutral)
DOWN Arrow Reverse (if on F pushing DOWN once will put the train to Neutral)
F1 Unused Interior Cab View
F2 Unused Toggle Time, Speed, Frame Rate External Train View
F3 Happy Face Meter Toggle Display Timetable (on select trains only) External Fly-by Camera View
F5 Unused Reloads the route Open/Close doors on the left
F6 Unused Open/Close doors Open/Close doors on the right
F10 Unused Pause Toggle main displays (Safety, Messages, etc)

Awesome, Now what?

You should have gotten your train running by now, with the default controls. There are some other issues that will arise when you download and play. When you download routes and trains from other websites, the way their installers work may be different, so please follow the directions on their sites on how to install their routes and trains. Some trains require advanced safety system controls, read the readme's of those trains for more information on how to operate them. Unfortunately most of the NYCT trains dont have these systems implemented yet, but we are working on them.

BVEStation hosts alot of routes that have dependencies on them. In order to save bandwidth and save space on your computer, most of our routes will require other routes to be installed for them to work. Our downloads section clearly displays the main files that you download, then the required, and/or optional dependencies. BVEStation will be working to make the dependency issue easier in the future for your convience, but for now please read the directions on the downloads page, and download the dependencies first if you have any problems.

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Some of the routes on BVEStation have one click wizard installers, these are the easiest ways to install a route, as many sites do, but some do not, just like the V. Other routes may come packaged with a bunch of folders. BVE follows a certain file structure, in which you will be required to manually place the files. The diagram on the right shows the file structure, and you should drag the files into their respective directories.

That should be it for now, if you have more questions please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page on the BVEStation Wiki. We hope you enjoy playing our routes on BVE/OpenBVE!
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