Just in case you forgot, the latest trailer for racing simulator Project CARS is a good reminder that it still looks absolutely incredible. The "Community Assisted Racing Simulator," which was funded with Developer Slightly Mad Studio's WMD (World of Mass Development) crowdfunding platform is still in development and available only to backers, so for now all we can do is gawk.
Real-time soft-body physics might sound like the technology powering an erotic Oculus Rift game, but in reality it's the magic maths that helps make BeamNG's crashes look as crunchy as they do. What started as a physics tech demo has slowly been transforming into an open-world driving game, named BeamNG.drive. That game has now taken a turn onto the Greenlight highway, and is hoping to gain enough momentum to pass through the Steam barrier.
Things we're bad at: driving cars in Next Car Game, staying on the track for more than five seconds. Things we're great at: Flipping, barrel rolling, and straight-up wrecking cars in Next Car Game. Is it a skill, or an astonishing lack of skill? Either way, it turns out annihilating automobiles in Next Car Game, which is currently on Steam Early Access, is more fun than racing them. The cars crunch and shred and break into so many wonderful pieces, we had to record their destruction in animated GIF form.
Thanks to the physics processing prowess of the Large Pixel Collider, we could record at 1080p and 60fps while barrels and tires and bumpers bounced across the screen. We've compiled our 11 favorite crashes below, but don't worry about them taking forever to load. They're embedded in HTML5 video form, which can compress a chunky 14MB GIF into a digestible two megs. Give 'em a click for a larger version and a link to the original GIF.
Since Next Car Game was first announced, Bugbear have created a Kickstarter, released a trailer, cancelled the Kickstarter, released a demo, and crowdfunded through their own website. You'd think that at some point during that process, somebody on the team would have raised their hand and said "hey guys, how about we call it 'Smashy Smashy Bang Vroom'?"
The destruction derby racer is now available on Steam Early Access, where yes, it's still called Next Car Game. If you buy it, it will be available through your Steam Library, where it will still be called Next Car Game. Is it really so hard to come up with a video game name? How about Metal Mayhem: Origins, or Super Scrapes: Awakening, or, if they'd rather go for a celebrity licence, Tony Hawk's Reckless Roadside Endangerment? I know he's more closely associated with skating, but he's not done a game in a while, so he'd probably be up for it.
The holidays were good to Next Car Game and its particular vision of motorized mayhem. After Bugbear Entertainment's Kickstarter to fund its latest racing game fell short of its goal in November, the developer asked for support through the project's website. Backers there have contributed more than $490,000, well clear of its original crowdfunding goal.
Your choices for free gaming this weekend are numerous, incorporating everything from massive free-to-play timesinks, to cool and compelling browser games. Your choices for free gaming with purchasable games on Steam are slightly narrower. Of them, War of the Vikings is the obvious choice, what with it featuring burly man smacking each other about the head with sharp implements. But also check out Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed, because - against all odds - it's pretty flipping good.
It's Friday afternoon. Here, at the PC Gamer office, you can hear the unhealthy whirr of the coffee machine; and the stern bark of "Xbox" drifts over the partition, as the Edge team grapple with their new console. Around these desks, staff writers fire plastic guns at each other, and generally, there's the feeling that the weekend is almost here. At such times, it's good to have some enjoyable video game destruction in the news chamber. True to this ideal, here's the first footage of Bugbear's Next Car Game.
I have a horrifying feeling that they're actually going to call it Next Car Game. Sure, they might not be actively planning to do so, but at some point someone at Bugbear will say, "well, it's what everyone already calls it, so why not?" But no, Bugbear, don't do it. Call it something that more accurately reflects your destruction derby intentions. Something like CAR METAL HYPER FORCE SMASH TIME. Whatever it might eventually be called, it's appeared on Kickstarter, as Bugbear look for a turbo injection to their development fund.
It's Friday afternoon and, while that's no guarantee of where (or when) you'll be reading this from, as far as I'm concerned, it's a time for relaxing. And what better way to enjoy the end of the work week than with a bunch of cars smashing all up into each other?
Alternatively, what better way to take out your still-working frustration, than with a bunch of cars smashing all up into each other? That's what you'll get with Grid 2's Demolition Derby update, which has now been trailerated.
Are you a car? If so, firstly, thanks for reading. I'm not sure how you're doing it, but it's appreciated. Secondly, you might want to steer clear of the site today, because there's an unusually heavy amount of news featuring twisted frames and crunching bodywork. Not only is a Destruction Derby type game being crowdfunded, but also Codemasters are today releasing the free Demolition Derby mode for Grid 2.
Bugbear Entertainment have briefly popped their head out of the development garage to offer an update on their next car game, Next Car Game. That update, to paraphrase, is: "can we have some money, please?" As you'll see from their pitch, the former FlatOut devs have broken out the standard template, comprised of: 1) the announcement of a crowdfunding scheme, 2) the comparison to older games, and 3) the declaration that publishers are rubbish and smelly. Again, I'm paraphrasing. Check out their video to see those concepts more tactfully put, as well as some pleasing footage of crumpling cars.
I love the gap that exists between the aspiration of Ubisoft's The Crew and the reality of their demos. Even just the name: "The Crew" would suggest a game that wants to be trendy, and cool, and down with some quite possibly fictional demographic. So what are the names of the people this walkthrough trailer focuses on? Fergus, Paul, and Sly. I'm just saying, you wouldn't pay to see that boy-band.
The trippy, swirling, laser light show that was Audiosurf might have eaten several hundred hours of your time in the five years since its release; I know I've conducted a fair few experiments to try and determine which of my favorite bands produced the noodliest driving tracks. Still, we mastered all the Elite vehicles long ago and have slammed, teeth-first, into enough grey blocks that we're beginning to tire of the original PC rhythm-racer. Cue Audiosurf 2, which releases—sorta—next month.
This is a surprise. Codemasters' more recent racers have been perfectly fine PC ports (aside from some dark times with GfW Live), but they've never seemed interested in the more flexible aspects of the platform. Naturally, the community has been happy to break open their engines and go tinkering inside, but the mods they created were never officially supported. That's set to change with Grid 2: the developer announcing that mod tools will be introduced in the upcoming Community Patch.
Upcoming free-to-play Ridge Racer Driftopia—which already has kind of a cheeseball name—has coined a new term, "Free 2 Drift," which I'm sure is a name that nobody will regret within the fortnight. And it's out now. Kind of. It's technically in closed beta, but worming your way into the racing crowd is a cinch.
The original Grid came with a Demolition Derby mode, but that mode was curiously absent in its sequel, which we otherwise quite liked when it came out at the end of May. Thankfully, Codies are making up for that, and are preparing to release two big updates to keep us racing around and rewinding time and then racing around again in perfect harmony. The first adds the aforementioned Demo Derby, while the second is a 'Community Patch' adding requested features and changes to the game, which you can read about below.
While I work on my pronunciation of 'Hungaroring', the motor-racing circuit in Hungary, wrap your eyes around this new trailer for Codies' F1 2013 - then put them back in your head where they belong. Their latest F1 tie-in will release on October 4th, just in time for the Korean Grand Prix.
Codemasters have announced the next entry in their ever-increasing garage full of racers. Which of their roster is getting a new model? I'll give you a clue: the year is 2013, and the last released Formula 1 game from the company was F1 2012. You don't have to be as fast as Nigel Mansell to work this out. This time, as well as featuring an updated line-up of cars, tracks and drivers, F1 2013 will also look back to the championship's history with its '80s and '90s-set Classic Edition.
There’s a long corner arching through a part of Grid 2’s sun- drenched Californian track where a squirrel dashes across the road. It’s always at precisely the same point, and always just as your car lurches into the basin of a gentle drop and rise. And, despite racing that stretch of road 30 or even 40 times, I still haven’t been able to hit it.
And nor should I, really – it would be an unjustifiable act of violence, and more importantly some bloodied shreds might get stuck in a delicate part of the engine. But the squirrel is symbolically significant, even if it refuses to be run over. It speaks to Grid 2’s wonderful presentation, which is glistening and iridescent and other things your car would be if it was really clean.
Thanks to this dazzlingly pretty trailer, I've just this moment realised that Project CARS is an acronym. Previously, I'd assume that developer Slightly Mad Studios loved cars so much that they couldn't write their game's name without implying an enthusiastic shout of excitement. Instead, it turns out that it stands for Community Assisted Racing Simulator. And yet, it is about cars. How serendipitous.