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The Playstation 4 hasn't had a single good new Arcade Racer in 5 years - why? **Criterion founder Alex Ward responds on page 2!**


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1 minute ago, Mrs Horribleman said:

Burnout 2 is probably my favourite arcade racer of all time. Me and a friend completed it in one evening of pure in the zone gaming. Magnificent. 

I find 2 and 3 compliment each other really well. 2 feels almost like a more reserved arcade racer in comparison. 3 is a complete frenzy!

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I have very little to add to the discussion, other than to say that I own, and love, all the Burnout games. They have given me hours and hours of arcade racing joy, so thanks @CrashedAlex

 

In fact, I was working as a designer on a driving game when Burnout 2 came out. We put it on the team's PS2 to give it a "quick go" to see if there was anything we could nick from it. A couple of days later, a rather irate producer told us to stop playing it and do some actual work.

 

I will say, though, I can see the point about licenced cars. Having actual recognisable cars, rather than "that car looks just like a ..." really adds something to a game. It's completely illogical in an arcade racer, but it definitely makes a difference.

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well if anyone reading this likes "Burnout 2" then give "Dangerous Driving" a look.

For the tracks I created I was thinking about a couple of "B2" tracks a lot. That's why there are Jumps and Bumps in the game. We did need to add a little aftertouch in there so you land a cock-eyed take off and keep going.

 

@ScouserInExile what was the game then? and what was this 'playing games tomfoolery' in a working day...at a games company. They gave me many hours of joy, and still continue to do so to this day. Along with "Outrun" and many others.

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Burnout 2 was the pinnacle for me. Definitely my favourite Burnout and my favourite arcade racer alongside Outrun 2. 

 

Still play it even now and there are few other gaming experiences as satisfying as learning the tracks and chaining drifts together.

Burnout 2 is a pure racing game and to me it feels like a fundamentally different experience to successive Burnout games. For a start crashing is to be avoided in 2. From 3 onwards they turned it largely into a game where crashing was highly encouraged/necessary which sort of diluted the racing aspect and did away with that aforementioned feeling of flow that one got from chaining Burnouts and doing crazy drifts in 2 while avoiding crashing. 

The gameplay in 3 onwards was still good but none of them came close to 2 for me.

The original soundtrack in 2 fit the game perfectly and is one of my favourite racing soundtracks ("A Photograph" is pure nostalgia for me). The same can't be said for the licensed flavour of the month stuff from 3 onwards. I remember being disappointed by the whole "down with the cool kidz" branding and music etc of 3, but I just put it down to EA's marketing people.

 

Really liking the look of the new game. The graphics look like a cleaned up version of Burnout 2.

Will the game have an original soundtrack? I'm hoping the small budget/team size will work in my favour here, as I'm not really a fan of licensed soundtracks in racing/arcade games (there's the odd exception like Crazy Taxi).

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I love how you guys threw out the rulebook and took the camera away from the player to linger on and watch the crash (I see you are doing it again in your new game!) Such a ballsy move, totally seems like it shouldn't work, but who wouldn't want to watch a massive pile up you managed to cause? Somehow it never got old! (And also was kind of even a game mechanic in itself as you could trigger it before a tough bend and let the CPU take you round it!)

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@esar Thanks - I think it's the only IGN First ever showing footage of what is currently a four month old development. We show every Track and every Mode. As a tiny independent team, we simply don't have the money to hire professional trailer makers which is the norm, so all we could provide was a bit of capture trying to show off exciting modes.

It's not done, and tbh I was spectacularly annoyed that they edited out the beauty shots we did which introduced each of the seven locations. To me, as a fan of the genre, that sort of stuff really matters. We didn't have any audio on it so they didn't include it. But we'll put it out ourselves on YouTube I think. I'd only spent HOURS and HOURS the previous week authoring them.

Most teams have sweet FA to show after four months work. Trust me on that.

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Just now, SozzlyJoe said:

I love how you guys threw out the rulebook and took the camera away from the player to linger on and watch the crash (I see you are doing it again in your new game!) Such a ballsy move, totally seems like it shouldn't work, but who wouldn't want to watch a massive pile up you managed to cause? Somehow it never got old! (And also was kind of even a game mechanic in itself as you could trigger it before a tough bend and let the CPU take you round it!)

It never got old because despite the slow motion aspect, it never took too long so you remained connected to the action. 

 

Also, the audio was fantastic. Especially the incredible surround sound in Revenge. 

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@partious "Point of Impact" fans unite right? So "Boost Chain Races" and "Pursuit Mode" (which we didn't put in to B3 bc "EA Mktg guys don't understand this as it is, and Cop stuff belongs in NFS') so looking back, that was a stupid mistake.

 

As for music, at the time we were happy to have licensed music, as Acclaim were broke on the first two, and every other game seemed to have it.

 

I would personally love it if we would have had some way of getting Steve Root to write original music for DD (and have use more instruments when you Boost just like B2) but he works for Codemasters now and I haven't heard from him in years. I did leave a message for him two weeks ago but he never rang back. If I was Elon Musk or something I would be able to throw money at him to make him to do, but I'm not so I can't.

 

@SozzlyJoe Thanks!

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14 minutes ago, CrashedAlex said:

 

 

@ScouserInExile what was the game then? and what was this 'playing games tomfoolery' in a working day...at a games company. They gave me many hours of joy, and still continue to do so to this day. Along with "Outrun" and many others.

We were "doing research". We also played a lot of Gran Turismo and Tony Hawk's, for some reason. 

 

It was Starsky and Hutch - an arcade driving and shooting game that we wanted to pack loads of stunt driving in. 

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@Mr Majestyk Thank you for sharing such kind words. Things like that inspire us to push even harder in the directions we need to push! Plus we're making this Online despite being told all the time that we 'will have fuck all people playing so you may as well not bother.'

 

In fact, you'd be surprised how many indie devs get told stuff like that every day. Really inspirational eh?

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2 minutes ago, ScouserInExile said:

We were "doing research". We also played a lot of Gran Turismo and Tony Hawk's, for some reason. 

 

It was Starsky and Hutch - an arcade driving and shooting game that we wanted to pack loads of stunt driving in. 

Fwiw, it was a good fun game!

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@nakamura You're right. It's in my collection. I knew a couple of people at Empire as well.

 

I think *every* developer everywhere played Tony Hawks. In fact, I'd like that again - all the good levels, on Unreal Engine, don't fuck with the character animation for ages and ages. I'd take the original one TBH. I was always rubbish at the secret tapes. In fact, I was rubbish at all of them. But I never stopped trying, same thing with MW2 I think.

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I know there is a bit of a Burnout love-in now but don't forget that Outrun 2 is still the best ;)

 

Burnout 2 was the best game you made IMHO but Paradise clearly created a new genre and for that you and the team should be proud.

 

I think one of the main reasons that arcade racers fall foul is that people just can't see the value proposition. One of my major issues is that games like Ridge Racer 6 and Sega Rally Remake is just full of lots of unnecessary content and races and unlocks and just spread the design too thin, instead of absolutely nailing 3-4 tracks.

 

A often think a free to play model with microtransations for customisation (ala Rocket League) might be the way to sell to a wider audience (instead of a pay per play arcade model) but that might be wishful thinking.

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I've been playing loads of Daytona 2001 on the Dreamcast - with the steering wheel, it's an incredible fun experience even today and graphically it's aged fantastically due to the larger than life car/track designs and the loud colour palette. Nailing a huge drift round that last right hand bend on Dinosaur Canyon is a superb feeling.  Outrun 2 on Xbox is my second most played then it's Sega Rally 2 on DC. I only play arcade racing games and like you say the lack of them is very dissapointing. Horizon Chase Turbo is OK but the lack of proper drifting is dissapointing.

 

Dangerous Driving looks great - first i've heard of it and it looks brilliant! Bit of a weak name though?

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Oh man, I wish I could wake up every day and find a post like Alex's on the previous page. Completely humbled. 

 

Day 1 for Dangerous Driving, that looks outstanding. My kids will love that - they struggle with the racing aspect of Burnout titles, but watching massive pile-ups never gets old!

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@Down by Law well as the person who spent a decade telling people that "Burnout is all about driving dangerously in a car" that's why it's called that.

Plus I've worked on a series of games all with 'Danger' in the name so it's a bit of house style.

 

ps. I once hand carried my DC steering wheel back from Japan with the damn thing unboxed and sat on my knee for the entire JAL flight home...

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For anyone here with a pc and an interest in arcade racers, I'd recommend "Fast Beat Loop Racer" on Steam which I had a lot of fun with when it released earlier this year.

It's a Chinese game that is heavily inspired by Wangan Midnight. The gameplay is surprisingly good.

 

The port is extremely bare bones and it has an issue with fullscreen but it's well worth the low steam price.

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