Nitronic Rush

New Distance video looks harder, better, faster

Emanuel Maiberg at

Distance manages to look better every time we see it. The racing game that looks like TrackMania was sucked into Tron is a spirtual successor to Nitronic Rush, a student project from DigiPen, and went into development after it raised $161,981 on Kickstarter. It's still "coming when it's ready," but this latest trailer shows off some interesting alpha gameplay experiments and more polish overall.

Distance GDC trailer flies into rear-view

Phil Savage at

I don't drive, so as far as I'm concerned the amazing automotive acrobatics on show in this GDC trailer of the latest build of Distance could well be a highly accurate simulation of real life. Why aren't people wall-flipping, barrel-rolling and hover flying all over the M6? Is it a highway code thing? Or is it because real life is boring, requiring us to take solace from fast-paced neon seared racers full of deadly traps across futuristic cityscapes?

Indie racing game Distance reaches Kickstarter funding

Tom Hatfield at

Good news for lovers of neon: Distance, the new effort from the creators of the excellent free racing game Nitronic Rush, has just been Kickstarted. Nitronic Rush was one of our surprise favourites of 2011. Made by some students from DigiPen, it was about tumbling through a tron style futuristic glowing future city in a transforming rocket car. Distance promises even more of the same, only with multiplayer, mod support and all the other bonuses that come with having an actual budget.

Nitronic Rush developers discuss Distance, Kickstarter, and who or what is in that flying car

Chris Thursten at

Nitronic Rush was one of last year’s hidden gems - a slick arcade racer set in a glittering digital city and starring a flipping, flying, rocket-boosting car. It was the final year project for a group of students at DigiPen, the Washington-based game development university, and picked up awards from multiple indie competitions - including the IGF, Indie Game Challenge, and indiePub. We liked it alot, and featured it in last year’s New Years free games round-up.

Three members of the original Nitronic Rush team - Kyle Holdwick, Jordan Hemenway, and Jason Nollan - are now going indie full-time as Refract Studios. Their first game is Distance, a spiritual successor to Nitronic Rush that is currently entering the final week of its Kickstarter campaign.

I spoke to the guys about their plans for the new game, the benefits of getting a second shot at a good idea, and their experience of graduating from university into a maturing indie scene.

Free games for the New Year: Nitronic Rush

Chris Thursten at

Christmas is behind us, but the holidays continue. For the next couple of days, we’re going to be showcasing a number of great free games that you might have missed amid the smoke and spectacle of the last couple of months. Whether you want something to play while you queue for The Old Republic or are simply looking to save a couple of pennies as we head into the new year, we’ve got you sorted.

Nitronic Rush is an arcade racing game set in a Tron-style virtual reality. You control a sportscar-shaped streak of neon as it boosts, jumps and tumbles through a twisting obstacle course. Billed as a ‘survival driving game’, the aim is to reach the finish line while racking up points and trying not to hit any of the number of obstacles in your path. Built from scratch by students at DigiPen, it's an impressive debut.

This week's best free PC games

Lewis Denby at

Have you completed Skyrim yet? Ha! Still, if you fancy a bit of a break, there are a couple of older Elder Scrolls games to revisit for absolutely no coins at all. If that doesn't float your boat, then how about high-speed racing, collapsing environments, and small blob-creatures that enjoy dismembering themselves? You can have them all in this week's best free PC games...