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Looking for the best driving game? Forget Gran Turismo, Forza and Mario Kart, we reckon Bus Simulator 16 could be the surprise hit of 2016. We’ve read the press release, watched the video (three times) and now we’re more excited than we probably should be.

The only disappointment is that the game – which will be available on both PC and Mac – won’t roll out of the depot before Christmas – but at least the January 20th release date gives us something to look forward to in 2016. Ding-ding… all fares please.

According to the publishers of Bus Simulator 16, “players must take on a variety of tasks in order to be successful, not only from a driving perspective but also a logistical one”, which means you’re more than just a bus driver. In fact, while driving the bus is central to the game, you’ll also have to manage your very own public transport company. Easy, right?

Maybe not, because to be successful you have to remain punctual and ready to react to everyday circumstances. If you’re prepared to wait for that lady frantically running to the bus stop, your reputation will increase. But if you get stuck in traffic, meaning commuters are late for work, you’ll soon lose passengers. You’ll also be asked to print virtual tickets and fix jammed doors. We doubt you’ll ever get a chance to sleep in your virtual world.

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It puts us in mind of Crazy Taxi, albeit in a more structured and formal environment, along with the potential to carry a lot more passengers. And we doubt the vicar – who always wanted to be taken to the church – will make an appearance in Bus Simulator 16. But like Grand Theft Auto, the game presents an open and freely drivable city, without the darker and more sinister elements of the popular franchise. We suspect you could drive around your virtual city all day, simply obeying the rules of the road and not picking up any fares, although you may not have a viable company at the end of week one.

According to the game’s Facebook page, the buses are modelled on their real-life counterparts, including MAN’s Lion’s City A37 and A23. It goes on to say you’ll get the chance to control the navigation device and the cash register, along with creating a music playlist for your passengers. No doubt Cliff Richard’s Summer Holiday and Bus Stop by The Hollies will prove to be quite popular. Did anyone mention Wheels on the Bus?

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Is it wrong to be excited about Bus Simulator 16? Let us know. We’re already counting the days until its release, although we suspect the wait will feel like an eternity and two games will arrive at once.