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Posted by GG Goblin On September - 10 - 2019

And now, to the serious sport of crashing cars.

Driving games are a good way to spend an evening. Getting behind the wheel of a car that I could never hope to drive in the real world, and pushing it to the very limit while trying my hardest to stay ahead of the opposition or shave a millisecond off my time, is exhilarating and exciting. But it is not exactly fun, is it. For vehicular fun, I would be looking for something that takes itself a little less seriously, maybe something that would involve crashing into other cars for the fun of it rather than as a result of a mis timed turn. This is where Bugbear’s Wreckfest comes in and excels.


Bugbear Entertainment were the developers behind the early FlatOut games, which were fantastic, and so even before starting Wreckfest is looking promising. As a spiritual successor to those early FlatOut games, Wreckfest does indeed have a lot to live up to.

So Wreckfest is an arcade racing game with a strong focus on the joys of deliberately crashing into others. Although, calling it an arcade game is perhaps a bit misleading, as there is more than a dash of simulation to be found in the likes of realistic damage and the differing effect of a slight nudge compared to a full on collision. Be under no illusion that there is a lot of silliness in this game, but the mechanics themselves are all about serious.

That being said, Wreckfest doesn’t really live in the realms of reality either. Sure, the vehicle handling is great and the various different vehicles that the player will experience seem to handle as you would expect. However, being able to continue to race with a car that is barely still a car does stretch reality, and no one would be walking away from a head on collision with a wall. Wreckfest makes sure that reality doesn’t get in the way of fun, but still offers driving assists that can be tweaked and a choice of damage model for the really adventurous.

So, getting down to it, the single player campaign is where the majority of the content can be found. Here the player is presented with five championships to win. Each of these championships contain a good number of different events that will provide the points required to progress. Not every event needs to be completed, giving the player a little choice in what events they choose to try their hardest at.


Of the events themselves, Wreckfest certainly keeps things varied. One minute the player may be racing around a simple circuit, pushing ahead of the other racers and then keeping out in front to score the win. The next, they may be on another circuit that happens to cross in a figure of eight, leading to all manner of crashing and cursing at the point the two lanes cross. Then, they may be in an arena, facing down a whole bunch of other cars with a view to being the last vehicle actually still able to move. And these are just the standard style of events. More exotic events, such as a destruction derby with ride-on lawnmowers, or racing sofas, will turn up every now and again to further vex the player and keep them entertained.

I have never raced a sofa before, but the handling in Wreckfest is exactly as I would imagine it. The same can be said for the rest of the vehicles. Players will unlock most of the vehicles that they will need to compete, but there are plenty of ways to earn some cash to buy new vehicles if the player wishes, and there are plenty to choose from. Players are also able to tune their vehicle before the race. Pre-warned with what type of race it is, along with the terrain type, players can adjust various settings of their vehicle, such as the brakes for example, to make it more suitable. It is not in-depth tuning like some of the serious driving sims, but enough to give players an edge depending on their driving style. Players can also add or remove armour if they wish and upgrade them in various ways. When winning and losing can come down to a simple nudge, every edge is welcome.

Of course, the campaign is not the be all and end all of Wreckfest. Players can hop into single events as they wish, and the online multiplayer options are plentiful. The online competition is separated into the various different types of event, making it easy for players to settle on the events that they enjoy the most and test their mettle against other real world players.

Visually, Wreckfest really is very nice to look at. When the race calls for it, the sense of speed is admirable, and the damage modelling really is a highlight. The vehicles all look great, as do the various settings for the tracks, although these settings are somewhat limited in their scope. It should also be noted that the UI is not exactly easy on the eye, but there you go. There were also some strange graphical glitches within the UI, but they will likely be fixed before long. overlooking the somewhat lengthy loading times, all else is good in the world of Wreckfest.


Look, there is a time for serious racing, and a time for fun driving. When it comes to fun, Wreckfest does not shy away from being utterly enjoyable. Demolition derby style games are few and far between, which means Wreckfest doesn’t have much by way of competition. But any form of competitor in the future would really have to go above and beyond to out-fun Wreckfest. For the serious racing, go elsewhere. But for chaotic driving fun, Wreckfest is all that you need.




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