If steam trains had ever looked like this, you can be assured that a) bandits would never mess with them without seriously upgrading their own armaments, and b) people would probably still be using trains for their preferred mass transit vehicle of choice.

This is Michael Sormann's Barracuda steam-powered train, created for his Theme Planet world, and it just looks, well... badass. In fact, if the country had rails instead of freeways, this is what a tricked-out custome personal locomotive would look like. It'd set you back a ton of credits, but you'd own the railways.


Theme Planet is Sormann's project about a theme park that covers an entire planet, sort of like Coruscant in the Star Wars-verse, except a hell of a lot more fun. You can see the Barracuda in action in his short film (below) from the project, which he produced for SIGgraph, and check out some of the other pieces of concept art on his website. If one guy can produce something that looks this good, Pixar might have a whole crop of competitors in the next few years. In the meantime, we want to get our hands on one of these trains and take it for a spin.