John Allen's Timesaver

in TrainPlayer form

TimeSaver layout - TrainPlayer

John Allen and The Timesaver ...

The Timesaver is a switching puzzle/game designed by John Allen. This simple to operate puzzle is over 30 years old and has become a classic. This version faithfully reproduces the standard dimensions of John’s original plan and is simple to use.

What You'll Need to Play ...

There is a demo copy of TrainPlayer on their web site that you can use to try the Timesaver.

The TimeSaver AND the original G&D from 101 Track Plans are BOTH included in the free demo. Once you install the demo, open the TimeSaver layout. Be sure to save a clean copy as you can always call up the saved copy to start the game fresh with the correct placements.

Notice that TrainPlayer and TrackLayer have a built-in clock, so no external timer is required.

This is the only version with THREE track plans included. The starting position, finishing position and a "tape-recorded" SOLUTION are all included in the download.

Timesaver Rules

There are two ways to play the game. You can play Best Time or Least Moves. This version of the game starts with five different cars of unique color and a locomotive. The locomotive must move at a preset constant speed, with only forward and reverse controls. No adjustment of speed is permitted. Each game starts with cars in the same position. The goal is to move the cars and the locomotive to the finish positions. You can either require uncoupling over an uncoupling ramp (like a KadeeTM system) or you can have your 'brakeman' uncouple anywhere you like as on the prototype. NOTE: John's Rules required that all uncoupling be done over the magnets ONLY.

Game 1 – Best Time
Starting with all cars in the starting position, start the timer. Move cars in any way you choose in as many moves as you like. When all cars and the locomotive are in the finish position, stop the clock. Best time wins, or just try to better your time. The number of moves does not count.

Game 2 – Least Moves
A move is counted each time you start the locomotive. If you move forward and stop, that is a move. If you are a little short of the uncoupler ramp and have to move up a bit, that is a move, too. Start with the cars in the start position, and count the moves until you are in the finish position. Least number of moves wins. Time does not count. In a competition, however, I suggest that you establish a maximum time, even if the player does not finish.

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The track plan used in the TrainPlayer program was created by Charlie Comstock, an incredibly talented model railroader and photographer. His Bear Creek and South Jackson website is a must-see!

Need help with TrainPlayer or Tracklayer? No problem, just join the TRAINPLAYER GROUP at Yahoo and let the pros help. Jim Dill, the creator of the program, is there daily to answer questions, offer new goodies and address issues.