Ubisoft revealed that a new Trackmania experience will be crashing the PC party on July 1st and we recently got our hands on the racing experience to see how it handled. As with previous entries within the Trackmania-verse, the latest experience is all about community and the desire to go fast. But how did the latest journey feel in the driver's seat? Pretty heckin' good!
There are many driving games out there and while some franchises have gone a little far into the territory of making the racing experience more than just that, Trackmania stays true to its roots, and players will get exactly what they want out of tracks that they take to. Trackmania has always, and continues to, focus on the vehicles and the tracks they tear up. It's simple, it's to the point, and it's great for those that enjoy the thrill of racing.
While the game in its messaging is simple, don't confuse that for "easy." Taking to an abrupt corner, mastering the track itself - it all takes practice and drives that competitive edge without the need to fluff up the experience with a thousand different bells and whistles. Trackmania is a game for racing fans, pure and simple, and the way the mechanics are set up; it's designed for the player to succeed if they are willing to work for it.
One thing I really enjoy about the game is that it's really player-friendly beyond the obvious. For example: if you don't perform the absolute best in-game, it doesn't call you a failure or your attempt at being the fastest a flop. Instead, this game encourages players to try again to "improve," providing a more positive racing experience and encouragement when it comes to being the very best out there on the race track.
For anyone that's familiar with this racing staple, you know it's not a branding fest like some other games in this genre. You're not going to be building the most epic car with a manufacturer branding. This isn't' about status or logos, it's about enjoyment, so all vehicles in the title are on equal grounds in terms of what they bring to the track. Not to say those features are bad, they're not, but they don't quite fit in with Trackmania's ethos, and that's another aspect that makes this game truly special. The game is what it is, and what it is is refreshing.
Trackmania gets pretty nuts sometimes. Where games like Forza focus on hyper-realism - which is great - Trackmania instead focuses solely on being fun. With crazy tracks and environmental obstacles, its simplicity is a ruse hiding a much bigger experience that harnesses what fans love most about racing games in a much more straight-forward approach.
The one thing I will mention is that Trackmania did a phenomenal job at reminding me how absolutely crap I am at racing games. Speedbumps were not my friends - at all - and that showed. More often than not I'd careen off course because I would hit a speed bump too hard, or a corner too sharply. That's both a brilliant design on the game's part, but also not the game's fault at all because I really do just suck. It's my cross to bear.
Previously we mentioned about the vehicles and how it's not a custom-creation fest; while that's true, you can edit your own tracks in the game. Once you've cleared the vanilla tracks, it's time to start tweaking to your own personal style and this is a big reason why the Trackmania brand has weight. The track editor is ridiculously addictive. From tweaking the mechanics for additional challenge or just making one that is crazy enough that it just might work, the editor is a fun way to put your own style into Trackmania without convoluting what the title's purpose is.
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Ubisoft Nadeo returns with their latest reiteration for PC only on July 1st exclusively through the Epic Games Store. You can learn more about the upcoming adventure through the official website right here.