Gilded Rails — Speed dating for the railroad robber baron!

We’re proud to announce that Gilded Rails, the latest in our popular “Choice of Games” line of multiple-choice interactive-fiction games, is now available for Steam, Android, and on iOS in the Choice of Games Omnibus app. It’s 33% off until November 8th!

It’s speed dating for the railway-tycoon monopolist robber baron! To obliterate your competition, you must marry a suitable partner before time runs out.

Gilded Rails is a 340,000-word interactive dating-management novel by Anaea Lay, where your choices control the story. It’s entirely text-based—without graphics or sound effects—and fueled by the vast, unstoppable power of your imagination.

Some kids get a model train set from their parents—your daddy gave you his railroad line. Find a spouse and you’ll win control of the family business, but fail to marry and you could lose it all! Can you lead the company to greatness and get hitched before time runs out?

Blaze through an epic tale of business expansion, family life, and love in a time when everyone wants more and many wind up with less. How will you choose to run your business? Will you honor contracts and commitments, or betray your enemies and your principles? Are you a natural-born leader, or will your workers laugh at you behind your back? Blow the whistle on corruption in your industry, or unleash your hidden tycoon and rule the railroads!

Just make sure you find a marriage partner along the way, or Daddy might push you out of the company!

• Play as male, female, or non-binary, pursuing men, women, or both.
• Triumph over strikes, sabotage, and social scandal.
• Sharpen your business acumen and connections.
• Choose from eleven romance options! Court everyone from your childhood best friend to the villainous head of a rival company.
• Become the poster child for modern reform, or the bootheel that needs reforming.
• Discover your father’s checkered past.
• Embrace your inner robber baron—or Robin Hood.
• Choose between romance and business partnership.
• Pet your kitty.

We hope you enjoy playing Gilded Rails. We encourage you to tell your friends about it, and recommend the game on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and other sites. Don’t forget: our initial download rate determines our ranking on the App Store. The more times you download in the first week, the better our games will rank.


I assume you mean November 8th here?


Unfortunately, my best friend didn’t accept my proposal!

The childhood friend? I think your father will invite her for dinner after the first soiree, stay with her and you can propose to her after the dinner…

Else in the first soiree, talk to her and in the last chapter, propose to her first… she is the only one i manage to propose

I managed to propose Victoria.

It says on the Google Play store the game was updated.

What changes were made, exactly?


Might have been what Mary mentioned on the interview thread, that there had been a bug with the romantic options and gender.

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It was both that and a few other small errors that Abby caught in a QA playthrough.


Congratulations Anaea Lay!


Thanks for saying that. Even the shortest of these things is really hard to write, and sometimes that gets lost in the shuffle as people offer their responses. Even constructive criticism can be really hard to look at after the emotional exhale of a release without being leavened by recognition of the achievement. That’s what makes us a community, not just a band of reviewers, and that’s what I like best about us.

Congratulations as well, Anaea Lay, and I hope you write lots, lots more.


I know what you mean by “Even the shortest of these things can be hard to write.” I started a project (that I never finished btw) and I had a lot of trouble writing like 3k words hahaha :smile:

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Is it possible to marry Evans? I can’t find a way to trigger evans_eligible.

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Oh, that seems like fun! Since my exams are over, I think I’ll try this game out and then try to be more active in the forum.

Looking at the reviews so far, I think a mini-patch to add a

([i]Note: This sets the game's difficulty[/i])

behind the question there might be in need.
Lots of people seem unhappy at how difficult the game is, and the flavortext at the first question might not be enough. :confused:


I like that idea. I’ve only read the demo so far, but picking that you’re up for the challenge gave me no definite indication that was setting the difficulty high although I guessed it was probably having an effect on the stats. (If you pick one of the other options it tells you there’ll be help, but if you pick that you’re up to the challenge, to some it’ll probably look more like an introductory question to get you started in the game rather than a difficulty setter.)


That was actually changed in a patch yesterday.


I just checked the new version and, it’s a bit better, but YMMV it’s still not all that clear that that sets a difficulty and is not just some bantering with the narrator.

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The game actually feels a little short - it ends when I feel like I’ve barely been able to make any significant changes to expanding my railroad by the time the game ends. And, like, no one except my childhood friend is at all interested in a romance no matter what i do.

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The game is ridiculously difficult :confused: and its a bit short, I’ve hardly been able to do much for my railroad (and the things I do accomplish are criticized anyway) and I get it’s “speed dating” but holy hell not only are most ROs assholes, but impossible to please in time. Don’t know if I’m just shit at picking correct choices but I really wish it was less challenging.

@Divine Not a lot of people know that the first choice in the game (“are you ready to play - yes, no, maybe”) actually sets the game’s difficulty! That may be why it seems inordinately challenging for you? (I haven’t played yet but that’s what I’ve heard.)

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