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

How straightforward a decision was it, for you guys, to go fully indie and Kickstart a sequel?

JH: It was actually kind of funny, because when we initially thought about doing any game after DigiPen... we really wanted to start a company, and we wanted to work on experimental games like we had been doing. A lot of our friends got AAA jobs in California and Washington, stuff like that... but we just loved working in these small teams at DigiPen and didn't want to stop doing it.

We were thinking about doing a much smaller experimental game, kind of a 2D thing - we talked about doing it for iPad, but we still wanted to stay with PC. Then we looked at what we could do if we were using something like Unity and if it'd even be possible for us to go and do another racing game like this again, and we set out to just try it. If we we're able to do it, it'd be amazing because there's so much stuff... mainly the atmosphere and the experimental edge of the car was the most exciting thing for us there. It was really cool what we were able to do with Nitronic Rush, but what if we were able to take that further? That'd give us a really interesting chance to mess with racing, still. So we just went out and tried it, and that's what we've been working on for the last few months. Once we got to the point where we thought we really could make this, we thought we'd go back to the community that supported us in the first place and see if they were interested in us making this game.

KH: Yeah, and a lot of the community initially wanted multiplayer in Nitronic Rush so that was one of the big decisions on that whole process - looking at Unity, seeing how their multiplayer worked, and once we were happy with it we thought “you know what, I think we can do this.” at that point we thought about and designed a lot of different modes for multiplayer, and that's something we're going to be experimenting with still. We do want the multiplayer to be more than 'race on a track against opponents'. One of them is tag, for example, where one player is 'it' and you have to go tag them. One of the more unique mechanics in Nitronic was the stunt system, so we're going to be integrating that into the multiplayer - an easy example there is just like a stunt mode where whoever gets the most points wins, but another mode that we're looking at is combining racing and stunts. It's one that I'm kind of excited about, where the end result is based on how many points you got in the race as well as the time that you finished with so it factors in both.

It sounds like you never really considered not being a studio, after DigiPen?

KH: The decision was sort of easy. After going to all of the indie conferences we were at with Nitronic we were really inspired to try to stay indie if we could. That's one of the reasons that we're doing the Kickstarter - just “hey, let's see if we can raise some funding by ourselves”. Another reason is the friendship that we gained by working on Nitronic specifically, between Jason, Jordan and myself. It was so powerful that, okay, I want to work with you guys - and I know that these guys wanted to work with me. That made the decision on its own really.

JH: Yeah.

Chris Thursten

Joining in 2011, Chris made his start with PC Gamer turning beautiful trees into magazines, first as a writer and later as deputy editor. Once PCG's reluctant MMO champion , his discovery of Dota 2 in 2012 led him to much darker, stranger places. In 2015, Chris became the editor of PC Gamer Pro, overseeing our online coverage of competitive gaming and esports. He left in 2017, and can be now found making games and recording the Crate & Crowbar podcast.