Carmageddon: Reincarnation (Stainless Games Ltd)
Believe it or not, the original Carmageddon was released more than 18 years ago already! However, it only took me a few minutes after booting up Reincarnation to realize that Stainless Games Ltd has nailed the feel of the game. Anyone who can remember gleefully plowing through throngs of pedestrians while smashing rival racers to bits will find that Carmageddon: Reincarnation offers the same level of vehicular carnage. The game has come a long way since the initial Early Access release last year and in its current public beta form is already a ton of fun.
Although all the game modes, including the complete career mode, freeplay and multiplayer are already up and running, Stainless Games are still working on bug fixes and polishing the game up before the final release. That is why we will only be doing a full review once the game leaves Early Access. However, judging by the version we played, anyone holding off on checking out the game until the full release are in for a treat.
The game has a career mode, consisting of 50 events where you get to steal your opponent’s cars by wrecking them during races. You are also able to upgrade your rides by collecting tokens as well as unlock cool extras such as paintjobs by completing challenges. Whether you want to total your opponents, race them or simply run over pedestrians, the “Classic Carma” mode has got you covered. You can also battle for the highest kill tally in the “Car Crusher” mode, race to be the first to reach random checkpoints in “Checkpoint Stampede” mode or hunt down and run over marked pedestrians in “Ped Chase” mode amongst others. Best of all, the multiplayer mode is already functioning, which means that you can take on real opponents in the Car Crusher, Checkpoint Stampede, Death Race and Fox ‘n’ Hounds modes. Up to eight players can take part in the multiplayer mode, which is played online or on LAN.
As the game is still in Early Access there are obviously a few areas where more polish is required. At the moment the game needs a hefty system if you want to experience it in its full visual splendor. Even with a system exceeding the recommended specifications I had to disable or lower a few visual settings in order to keep the frame rate at acceptable levels. I’m not the only one that had this problem, so further optimization is definitely required. The loading times are also rather lengthy at the moment and I experienced a couple of crashes, especially during the multiplayer mode. Having said that, the game is definitely shaping up nicely and it is great to see that none of the gore or offensive humor has been sacrificed. This shows that the developers are making a game for the fans first and foremost. The latest update to the game improved the AI behavior of your fellow racers and they are now not only more aggressive, but finally able to use PowerUps as well.
There is still a lot to praise about the game, but we will save that for the full release. Suffice to say that all the power-ups, car models, characters and general craziness that defines the Carmageddon brand is already present. Anyone still on the fence about buying the game should definitely make use of the current Steam Midweek Madness deal, which has slashed the price of the game in half. Considering that you also get the Carmageddon Max Pack, Carmageddon 2: Carpocalypse Now and Carmageddon TDR2000 games as part of the package it would be silly to pass up on this deal. Also bear in mind that once the game leaves Early Access the classic Carmageddon titles will no longer be thrown in as freebies either, so don’t miss out.
This preview is based on version 0.9.0.6681 of the game.