[GDC 2011] The Apocalypse is Nigh
We have driven through the impending doom of MotorStorm Apocalypse and survived.
Published: March 12, 2011
Given the number of perks and their constantly-unlocking status, we were actually rather enamored with the idea of constantly chasing something new, which is effectively what Evolution has applied to all parts of the game's unlock system, including stuff that's as simple as just earning Medals and Challenges, which are different from the normal XP-based progression that gets you new parts, vinyl and stickers to throw onto your car.
Wreckreation itself is no longer divided into online or offline modes, instead, you can play, online, in split-screen with friends sitting next to you, across the country or any combination thereof, which is something of an accomplishment in and of itself. As you race, things like drifting, big jumps, long boost periods and overtaking notch up those little XP bonuses (MotorStorm Apocalypse doles them out in the form of poker chips with the telltale series logo), so just winning isn't the only way to go up in levels and unlock new stuff, nor does it have to be the focus of races -- one could just as easily chase Challenge goals for distance drifted, for instance. On top of all that, online races allow you to bet against another player, allowing you to gain better spoils if you beat them rather than the guy at the head of the pack.
Though collectibles are front and center as part of the game's sense of progression (there are even well over a hundred hidden cards scattered all over each of the levels in out-of-the-way locales for those that are absolute completionists), Evolution was keen to point out that they'd be pushing quite a bit of free content out the door after the game's release, so what's available on-disc is hardly the end of what the studio wants to give players to tool around with.
Front and center in these updates will be specific types of weekly challenges, and the devs are happy to mention that the very same tools used to make said challenges will be released to the public once they've shored up the interface and made it as user-accessible as possible. They're fully anticipating entirely new game types to be created, but how the tools will be presented is still something the studio is keeping under wraps. This mirrors the other announcement this week that inFAMOUS 2 would be going down the user-created path as well.
Obviously we're rather excited at what the MotorStorm series has slowly evolved (har har, punny) into, but we'll have to save our final verdict for when a retail copy drops into our laps. Time (and no doubt a fair bit of aggression) will tell if the game ends up becoming pure frustration about three quarters of the way through like the last two ones, but we're hoping even if it does, all the other unlockable distractions will keep us coming back. Look for our full review soon!