• Publisher: Atari
  • Release Date: Oct 26, 2004

Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 39
  2. Negative: 0 out of 39
  1. This game is all about customization. You get everything you need to create a park right out of the box, but you can design your own scenarios, park guests, fireworks shows, and buildings. Incredibly, none of this is particularly challenging to figure out as long as you put five to ten minutes into tinkering, with the only exception being the fireworks creator.
  2. Not only is it the best game in the series, it is quite possibly the best game in its genre. Beautiful to look at, enormously entertaining, and never boring, players should prepare to lose hundreds of hours to the best theme park title ever created.
  3. Every bit as addictive, creative and as easy to play as its predecessor but with new looks and additions bringing it bang up to date. And if the Coaster Cam alone doesn't convince you that this is a worthy purchase, then quite frankly nothing ever will!
  4. 90
    I think my wife and children have sent out a search party for me. This game had me sitting up for hours creating and feeling like a theme park god. I have been discussing this game at work too.
  5. There hasn't been high-level management game with this level of wit, style and vision since the dear departed Mucky Foot's "Startopia." This is as good as its genre gets, and deserves recognition.
  6. A wonderful game, and an equally tremendous addition to the series. Fans of the series will find more than enough new here to warrant continued devotion, while it has been streamlined so as to be highly accessible to novices as well.
  7. The only complaint that I have about the music feature is that the only way to hear the music is to zoom in very closely on the ride or to ride it yourself.
  8. 90
    An awesome addition to a deservedly-lauded series. Now excuse me while I finish my powered-launch, 3000-foot air-powered supercoaster. The peeps are gonna love it!
  9. One of the best new features is a thrilling coaster cam whose name is a bit misleading since you can get a first-person view for nearly any ride or attraction. [Feb 2005, p.65]
  10. Without doubt the better of the trilogy, even with its problems (which hopefully will be rectified with patches) and overall should be enjoyed by the majority of the Tycoon fans out there.
  11. You will find yourself delving deeper into the seedy underbelly of amusement than you ever thought possible. [Dec 2004, p.188]
  12. When you turn to the on-ride camera mode, and the car starts down the big slides...well, I genuinely feel a tug of induced artificial vertigo. A construction game that gets you in the guts. That's rare. This is a golden ticket. Get in line. [PC Gamer UK, Dec 2004, p.111]
  13. Whilst it delves into reasonably technical gameplay as far as profit and loss management goes, it still offers very addictive and fun gameplay at the same time, and this should appeal to PC gamers abroad.
  14. 85
    This is an addictive game with a great playful and positive premise, something you don't usually find in games these days. I just wish the developers had been allowed a little more time to iron out the last few wrinkles.
  15. The game's visuals are pretty impressive given the scope.
  16. 85
    As far as theme park sims go, RCT 3 is the bees knees. It's detailed, beautiful, complex, and with a few extras thrown in. Any fan of this genre will love this game.
  17. This is what a sequel should be ' they aren't trying to reinvent the genre or completely change how the game is played, they are taking what worked before and adding logical next-steps to it, making it better and fuller.
  18. 84
    It's a fun and feature-rich simulation game which will have you hooked for hours on end.
  19. Like any good ride, it delights at every twist and turn and leaves you wanting more. [Jan 2005, p.74]
  20. Don’t be fooled by the bright, cartoony exterior – RCT3 offers a detailed and sometimes complex package.
  21. The new engine looks great, the interface (once you get to grips with it) works reasonably well, and the economic model is compelling enough to keep you playing.
  22. Those who do not want to embark on complex challenges will still find hours of enjoyment in sandbox mode.
  23. Incredible and impressive, perhaps closer to the ideal sequel fans wanted.
  24. Yes, it's stupendously attractive. Yes it helps draw you into the theme parks that you create. No, the development of this 3D engine seems to have brought its own problems in the shape of quite a few bugs still easy to spot in the final full retail game.
  25. 80
    The good news is that piecing 'coasters and parks together is easier than ever; between the flexible camera controls and the effortless new terrain-building tools, RCT 3 squeezes tremendous functionality out of its elegant drag-and-drop interface.
  26. A major leap over its predecessors and is a huge success. With attractive full 3D graphics and an ability to fully experience your own rides, the level of play fulfillment has gone up significantly.
  27. Even with the completely new engine, the core RCT formula remains intact and as strong as ever. [Feb 2005, p.88]
  28. It's the most polished version of the game so far, and those who've never made a small child puke before will be in store for hours of fun. But the new interface with its streamlined minimalism hides a baffling array of build options, and is not the best for the newbie. [PC Zone]
  29. The game as a whole is average. The graphics are superb, but the lack of a tutorial mode hurts the game, but once you figure things out it can become quite addictive and even a bit challenging.
  30. If not for some of the glaring bugs, Frontier would have delivered a truly excellent sequel to a beloved franchise.
  31. At heart, this is hands down the best theme park building game to date. [Christmas 2004, p.112]
  32. The cuddly interface and ride creations are aimed at the casual gamer. The fuzzy bear feel of the game would probably make the hardcore gamers do what my little sim customers do on my rides, vomit.
  33. One of the very few management games that actually allow players to get up close to the action and you can really feel part of what is going on.
  34. There’s also something terribly wrong with the sound in RollerCoaster Tycoon 3.
  35. 72
    Like a certain other sequel David Braben was involved in RCT 3 is a good game hidden underneath a fiddly interface and stricken by numerous minor flaws and bugs.
  36. What RollerCoaster 3 lacks is some excitement that can't be artificially created with some clever scenarios. The biggest drawback of this game is the fact all scenarios tend to play the same no matter what the goals are, otherwise I'm convinced I would have enjoyed it even more.
  37. The problems that are here don't detract from the fascinatingly hardcore option to leave the Career mode behind and create your own park in the Sandbox mode without constraints of time and money... And whilst it's immensely hard to get this right, it's massively satisfying when you do. [Christmas 2004, p.120]
  38. 60
    A surprising number of serious bugs damage what is otherwise a highly addictive game.
  39. And, despite the face of an excited, yelling teenager on the front cover of the box, we weren't screaming over this one.
User Score

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 316 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 40 out of 51
  2. Negative: 9 out of 51
  1. Jul 16, 2013
    This game fails to capture the manic fun that was in the old 'Theme Park' game that kicked off this genre. Instead behind the initial wow ofThis game fails to capture the manic fun that was in the old 'Theme Park' game that kicked off this genre. Instead behind the initial wow of graphics showing roller coasters you are left with a rather soulless management game that utterly fails to excite. Full Review »
  2. Nov 29, 2013
    My 5Ghz octocore PC with a 780 LAGS LIKE A MOFO in this game... Seriously Steam should reconsider having this game up for sale what aMy 5Ghz octocore PC with a 780 LAGS LIKE A MOFO in this game... Seriously Steam should reconsider having this game up for sale what a freaking joke! This game is 7 years old, and can't run smooth on a modern highend PC gimme a freaking break! Full Review »
  3. Nov 4, 2012
    In comparison with its Chris Sawyer-developed and highly addictive predecessors, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 just isn't worth the hype its given.In comparison with its Chris Sawyer-developed and highly addictive predecessors, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 just isn't worth the hype its given. While its 3-D graphics and variety of rides, shops, designs, landscapes, etc. are instantly refreshing, RCT 3 lacks the likability and excitement in previous games due to its lack of original design and its complicated menu screens that may fend off unfamiliar players. Pros: The 3-D graphics and variety of new features make for a refreshing RCT game, finally; the ability to ride your own rides; funny dialogue; sandbox mode. Cons: Its lack of originality spoils what made the previous games so likable; too many bugs, making for a terribly flawed game. Full Review »