Kran-Simulator 2009

When I want to move extremely heavy objects from hither to thither I tend to use Egyptian slaves. On days when my slaves are on holiday or undertaking The Trial Of A Thousand Crocodiles, I turn to cranes. Tall, steely, and often teeming with snipers, these monumental machines have just been immortalised in sim form. Naturally, it’s a German studio that’s done the immortalising. Unnaturally (considering dross like Müllabfuhr-Simulator 2008 and Bagger-Simulator 2008) the result is really rather pleasing.

Well, going by the demo it is. The free 130Mb taster lets you try your hand at building the ground floor of something called a ‘haus’. Grab a wall or roof section from one of the waiting lorries, then lower it into the required position as quickly as possible. Bumps and dithering cost points.

The physics are surprisingly plausible. Loads twist and sway, snag and pivot. It’s mesmerising in an end-of-the-pier-claw-machine sort of way. If I was certain the full version featured an Ironman Mode with wind simulation, time limits, and in-cab wasps I’d have purchased by now.


The demo is in Deutsch, but that’s no reason to hang back. Memorise these and you’ll be fine:

  • Move crane arm – Cursors
  • Lower hook – Page Down
  • Raise hook – Page Up
  • Rotate load – Z & C
  • Tilt load – S & X
  • Attach/detach load – SPACE
  • Cameras – 1-7

To pick up the next piece of the building (indicated with red and yellow highlights) position your hook roughly ten metres above its centre, and PageDown until the ‘attach’ icon appears.


  1. Nimic says:

    This should go down well with the 9 year old male demographic of RPS.

  2. Pags says:

    Can’t say I ever remember playing a decent crane sim until now; gotta say this feels pleasingly hefty if a little simplistic.

    I’d still love to give this bad boy a go though.

  3. Pags says:

    Tits, did I just unwittingly align myself with the 9 year old demographic?

  4. Down Rodeo says:

    There’s a nine-year-old male in all of us, I think.

  5. Martin says:

    Well, all us males at least (unless you’re a very confused girl or a very creepy lady).

  6. wcaypahwat says:

    This is actually the german edition of the sims. You know how they are with their censorship.*

    Looks like it could be fun for a bit… although I’ve never been any good at those claw machines.

    *this is entirely untrue, and not based on any fact whatsoever.

  7. Pags says:

    wcaypahwat: That’s because those claw machines are rigged. Whereas these are just rigs.

    Ho ho.

  8. Dave says:

    This just makes me want to play HL2.

  9. rupert says:

    bah cant get the crane to pick up the walls ;(

  10. Pod says:

    Man that’s some good kran.

  11. Heliocentric says:

    Eff yeah. Gonna build something and knock it over. German? Why isn’t hasslehoff advertising this? Hello berlin wall bonus level.

  12. Tim Stone says:


    Your lack of success probably owes something to my lousy instructions (now revised).

    To pick up the next piece of the building (indicated with red and yellow highlights) position your hook roughly ten metres above it (you’ll need to use a combination of cameras) and then PageDown or PageUp until the ‘attach’ icon appears. It’s really simple once you get your eye in.

  13. pepper says:

    hmmpf, its a pain in the ass getting it to grab a piece, for some reason is just doesnt want to..

  14. qrter says:

    This reminds me of Kieron’s excellent adventures with Bagger Simulator 2008, a game also very much auf Deutsch.

  15. Alex says:

    Cranes are actually the natural habitat of the Lesser DPMed Sniper. I’d like to see this represented in Kran-Sim 2010.

  16. pepper says:

    Alex, you just want to scream ” Get off my crane!” to them dont you?

  17. El Stevo says:

    Why are all these things German?

  18. pepper says:

    Because germans like to make simulators that are out of the ordinary?

  19. Tim Stone says:

    The reason why civilian transport sims go down so well in Germany and Japan is a question that’s long fascinated me.

    I think there’s probably an element of national character in it. Train, bus, dustcart sims…. they all appeal to the industrious, and order-loving parts of us.

    Maybe it also owes something to a post-war education/parenting climate that deliberately sidelined militarism. Generations of boys brought up with toy buses and lorries rather than toy tanks and soldiers.

    Any German or Japanese readers care to theorize?

  20. Toastmonster says:

    I totally fail, I have not yet managed to pick up a single piece.

  21. Tim Stone says:


    A few pointers. Once you’ve located the first piece of wall on the back of the lorry (corners highlighted with yellow and red lines) manouvere your hook over it so that the four chains dangle a few metres above the load. If you’re in roughly the right spot the chains will automatically spread towards the corners of the load. PageDown till the chains touch the corners of the load and the ‘attach’ icon will appear. Now press SPACE to hook-up.

  22. pepper says:

    Yes, but it looks like there are 2 pieces on the trailer that ae highlighted, but its actually one piece, this confused me for a while, since i was aiming at the presumed 2 pieces.

  23. Jochen Scheisse says:

    As a German, I really don’t know…I have played my fair share of sims, like the excellent Pizza Conncetion that included the possibility to run into your competitor’s Pizzeria with a flame thrower, or Tropico where my island contained missile batteries of the Eastern and the Western bloc, probably due to my post-war education. Simulations of vehicles never attracted me though, I found them boring, with the only exception being sub sims because of the excellent multiplayerability. And I actually never knew a lot of people who play this kind of games. I think these companies have just found a niche in the market, a sector that is obscure, but with a devoted following. Assuming these games are not too complex, they could also be a very nice, exceedingly boring gift to children. Because some aunts and uncles still have to grapple with the concept that children like to maim mutants with a chainsaw machinegun, or a machinegun that shoots chainsaws, or something equally twisted. I still remember how my father gave me Sim City for C64 on my birthday. I was really mad and told him that everything not including killing people in gruesome ways, or at least animal cruelty, was considered boring and mundane, and two weeks later refusing to go to bed because the challenges of managing a multi million metropolis under attack from Godzilla and UFOs would just not stop.

  24. pepper says:

    Actually, lots of kids play with toy cranes and all that sort off stuff, so i can imagine kids really liking the ability to hoist stuff virtually.

    I really enjoy simulators, i dont know why, but i find it a challenge to know certain systems and procedures inside out, the thrill you get when perfectly setting up a torpedo, and then sinking that pesky warship in silent hunter is fantastic. Although i can also see a lot of people not wanting that kind of depth in a game.

  25. gangstas says:

    I like this from my 7ste but can’t find it and now have you there software for.

    I like it !!!!!!!

  26. sonic says:

    Nice game. Would like to try more types of cranes!

  27. TURBONY says:

    Anyone got an save file that unlocks all cranes ?

  28. Yves says:

    You have to put the crane boome over the truck.
    User the camera 2 for best view.
    Put the boom betwenn the orage and yellow markes .
    Then lower the cable when the signal is on (ltp right of screen ) then hook with space bar.
    Then lift up

    Hope its clear

  29. jacob says:

    pleas let me play it i love machines thanks

  30. john doe says:

    ghjffrh hmfhgfhg hnfgh

  31. Annet says:

    Nice game. Is it now in English?