A lifetime ago

Have we ever polled the RPS omni-opinion about Carmageddon? It appears not. The discovery that the ‘Carmageddon’ tag did not exist on this humble website before now is startling. It’s not a game I’d ever hold up as essential, classic, important, with lessons unlearned by those that followed… but it’s formative. It’s a game that occurred at the right time, when technology was crude and gaming awareness cruder: a quiet little thrill of transgression, noisy at the time but not ultimately beaten down enough by tabloid terror or by popularism enough to stop feeling, well, a little bit special. Our secret. The game about driving over people, – far more unashamedly than GTA ever has been. Points for pedestrians, in the guise of competitive racing. Ours.

I can’t imagine playing it now, and I’m fairly sure I don’t retain any real respect for it. But I remember what it once meant, or at least seemed to. Protest. Naughtiness. Contained, cartoon viciousness. Late-night laughter with friends. It was ours. It perhaps can’t happen again – the pressure to be either commercial or outlandishly peer-impressive is now far too high to allow something so boorishly ordinary to become a sensation anew. I admire this modder-man for trying to bring it back, but I suspect he doesn’t know how lucky he was to be slapped down by Square-Enix.

I lost track of the paper trail, but with the Eidos acquisition came rights to Carmageddon too. Apparently, that must be protected, despite the license slumbering for over a decade. Whether it’s because some executive still earnestly believes this is a salable property or it’s just the mad legal stipulation that any possible unlicensed use of an IP must be protected in order to help ensure ongoing ownership doesn’t matter. Thanks to the sinister flexing of lawyer robo-muscle, a planned open-source remake is only able to happen under a different came: C1.

Says the wannabe re-animator, “Obviously this is all a bit silly given we’re talking about a game thats 13 years old and you can’t buy anymore, but still, its a cease-and-desist letter.”

He’s right, on both counts. His plan is to release it under a different name entirely, Square Enix having improbably even laid claim to code they perceive as infringing their calcified trademark.

I hope he doesn’t attempt to do only that. Carmageddon is done: it was a milestone in its strange way, a light that burns brighter because some nations tried to replace its pedestrians’ red blood with green vagueness, not because of what the game itself actually had. It happened. We fought the censorious fools and we won. We did it. We don’t need it anymore. This guy doesn’t have to spend his time making a remake for an audience with a fixed expectancy. If he has the wherewithal, the time, the energy to make a game off his own back, he can do anything. I hope he seizes this obstacle to an antique to go somewhere different, somewhere new and amazing.

This was Carmageddon:

This was Carmageddon 2:


  1. BobJustBob says:

    Carmageddon 2 is one of the finest driving games ever made. The deformable cars, the dismembering pedestrians, the ridiculous array of weapons and power-ups and power-downs, the races that could be won by racing or elimination (always the best choice) or wholesale slaughter of the innocent, the vehicle selection, the replays, the mods… it was glorious.

    • Fede says:

      I completely agree, Carmageddon 2 it was a grat arcade driving game. Lots of variety kept it interesting and fresh.

    • The Pink Ninja says:

      Me too, it was lots of silly fun.

      Perhaps the first “Sandbox” game I ever played.

    • Bhazor says:

      Finally got around to buying it a few months back but of course it doesn’t work on modern systems. So watching those videos and remembering the time I spent on the original is making me a sad bunny.

      Lazy programmers not taking 13 years of OS advancement into account. Makes me sick.

    • Thiefsie says:

      the repair sound is still burnt into my head from C2 – absolutely one of the best and most fun, early emergent games I have played – perhaps because I was still at school when this beast of a game hit… Definitely part of my formative years of gaming.

    • outoffeelinsobad says:

      Somebody needs to email GoG about this game stat.

    • Tom OBedlam says:

      You and me are on the level, matey. I spent hundreds of hours with carmageddon 2.

    • sfury says:

      Indeed, that post actually reminded me that apart of its outrageousness, this was a very GOOD and SOLID game. Sure noone will be able to get away with that pedestrian mowing today, but hey there’s always the zombies option…

    • MaxDamage says:

      Completely agree with OP.

      It is no wonder that Alec Tits-And-Fun-Hater Meer would be the first to decry no moar when it comes to this power pack of pedestrian exploding, penguin smashing, moose mashing awesomeness.

      Carma 1+2 were epic endeavours, and they have made every non-killing / crushing racing game rather boring ever since.

      Also: Boo on IP naziship, and boo on hating tits.

    • JohnH says:

      I have to admit I spent hundreds of hours with Carmageddon 1-3 back in the days. Like it’s been said before me; the combination of great (fun/arcade) physics, deformable/destructible cars, general destruction and mayhem, running over pedestrians by the hundreds and getting points for all of this is just awesome!

    • spacesubmarine says:

      Agree – it was the best game that featured cars and… zoo with all sorts of animals.

      Loved that game.

    • Lucky Main Street says:

      I never really appreciated or cared for the gore and supposed naughtiness. The best part of Carmageddon was the open sandbox and the physics. I can’t even tell you how much time I spent just trying to see if there was a way to launch myself on that rooftop over there or if I could get on top of the train tracks. So much fun!

  2. Dominic White says:

    Something for fans of Carmageddon to keep an eye out for might be Motorstorm: Apocalypse on the PS3. Car combat-racing in the middle of an enormous natural disaster-turned-warzone. Civillian and military pedestrians on the track to be splattered.

    link to

    The previous two Motorstorm games were pretty good. This one looks to be something else.

    • Lambchops says:

      Actually the second Motorstorm was a bit pish. Yes it added the split screen the first so sorely lacked but in my mind it ruined the racing experience with its (for the most part) sprawling, ill defined tracks. Yes the whole alternate routes thing from the first game was pretty cool but they jjust went too far with it in the second, trading fun racing tracks for gimmicks and confusion. At least that;’s the way I found it. I didn’t think it was awful but it was much less enjoyable than the first game.

    • Dys says:

      Many, many games have claimed to be like Carmageddon, but none of them have been, or ever likely will.

      Modern games take themselves way too seriously, those that aren’t going out of their way to be self consciously ‘wacky’. The real glory of Carma was the humour, the bonus points for ‘artistic impression’ when mowing down innocents, the gloriously spooneriffic cunning stunt bonus, the little old ladies who scream ‘I was in the war!’ as you plough through them.

      Jelly suspension! Lunar Gravity! Wall Climbing!

      All in the context of a very solid driving game, still a decent system even now. Carmageddon was one of those rare things which spawned at a confluence of forces and will never be repeated.
      Though if it were, it would be utterly gleeful, especially if you added dozens of lunatic weapons, decent object deformation, solid pedestrians with proper ragdolls! /sigh

  3. Tei says:

    I played the demo a million times, trying lots of crazy things, I even cracked the encryption of the data files (a lot of people did that), to create tank-like cars. It was a amazing game, the sound effects give me some nostalgia goosebumps.

    Cease and desist letters are unsavoury. More wen a dude is trying to revitalize a old game, then is idiotic. Probably we have now new versions of Monkey Island, because all these ScummVM emulators…
    link to

    These Square-Enix dudes are a bunch of control freak jerks.

    • Collic says:

      Same. I think I might I have owned Carmageddon 2, but I just played the demo of the first again, and again, and again. Cackling wildly as I ran over old ladies. Good times. GTA was much the same story.

      You could really get a lot of life out of a demo back then, or maybe just I could back then.

    • Rrrrraaaaasssssmmmmmuuuuusssss says:

      Carmageddon may be my favourite game of all time! I also played the life-shit out of the demo. There was a time limit of 10 minutes per session, and my pentium 100mhz spent 7 minutes loading the level, but that didn’t stop me.

  4. Easydog says:

    I loved Carmageddon. It was the first PC game that I would invite friends round to play. I don’t have very specific memories but I can remember lazy and incredibly fun school afternoons. It was ridiculously fun at the time.

  5. The Walker says:

    I think every racing game should have a little FMV man in the corner.

    • blainemono says:

      If I remember correctly, the little FMV man was a full-time stainless employee, apparently not good for anything else but getting hit by heavy blunt objects

      Also this same guy was used to get a more realistic, life-like pedestrian splatter animations. Yes, they were literally driving over the guy with real slow(ish)-moving cars.

  6. mlaskus says:

    Carmageddon not special? Mister Meer, you must be delusional! I enjoyed every minute spent with the game, it was ridiculously fun.

    • Frankie The Patrician[PF] says:

      THIS! The graphics, the sound, the music, the gameplay…the cows, the wicked opponents. LOVE IT, it’s Doom with Wacky Wheels, what can we ask for more? I’ve never finished it, tho…this game had the STUPID idea of removing the savegames after uninstall (and even when you backed them up, they didn’t work) – just like Broken Sword 1&2: what were they thinking?

  7. Taverius says:

    Ah, memories!

    The dude’s face in the first one!
    The yellow monster truck with the drill!
    The Electro-bastard ray! :D
    That goddamn purple car with the wingy bit in the rear that you couldn’t front end cause it was built like a worn bar of soap :|
    The purple “wide boy” car with the British flag on top and thumping bass system …

    • Dys says:

      Yes! The Electro Bastard ray!
      How could I forget…

      How many games have you seen lately which include an Electro Bastard ray?

    • Fumarole says:

      Don’t forget Otis P. Jivefunk and Bad Mothertrucker!

      The original was the best, simply for the newness of it; though the second gets points for making me smile every time I recall the first time I ran over a dog and winced at the sad sound it made as it went splat on my bumper.

      No other game has made me consciously tell myself I’m not in a game while doing another activity; had I not done so I am sure I would have crashed my real car many a time while driving after long sessions of this game.

  8. edosan says:

    …so who’s going to sue Eidos for a owning couple of games that rip off Death Race 2000?

    I kid, I kid.

    Actually, I don’t kid. Who are they to think they own the concept of hitting people with a car?

  9. Dexemplu says:

    Hmpf. I really miss this game. When I was a kid I used to play this in internet cafes. Fox and Hounds mode was absolutely priceless and the most fun I ever remember having in a multiplayer driving game.

  10. BrettW says:

    One of the things I always marvelled at and many people forget is that Carmageddon II had an awesome vehicle damage simulation. You could tear cars in half (in many ways), bend axles, bend the chassis and otherwise crush, crumple and shred the rest of the car… I remember many a race where I got nudged off the road and wrapped around a pole. I could still limp to the finish line even though my L-shaped car had a wicked time going straight.

    • MarkN says:


      The damage system was graphically crude by today’s standards, but far better than anything that has come since that I’ve seen. You could fold a car vertically across the middle in a v-shape so that neither set of wheels would touch the ground. You could fold it the other way and limp along with a hump-backed car with a broken axle but both sets of wheels down. You could slice your car apart to varying degrees lengthwise like in the old Herbie film. And you could bend it so it drove in circles. There were also shedloads of states inbetween.

      At work we used to play over LAN with a no-repair house rule. It was far less fun if people repaired. Mangled car action (in a very small arena) was stupidly fun. A modern day remake with lessons learned could be absolutely sublime IMO.

  11. day says:

    The Christmas special demo was on a cover disk back in tha’ day. I remember my dad chuckling as I ran a red tyre track through a Santa hat wearing reindeer.
    I’m perfectly well adjusted now though..
    ..Ta for the retrospective,

    from the Mordesley Mental Hospital.

  12. vors345 says:

    Carmageddon never clicked with me; I preferred the darker, more structured gameplay of Quarantine. Loved that game even if I was rubbish at it.

    • Jambo says:

      I was going to say the same thing. I miss quarantine!

    • Alez says:

      wow, someone else knows about Quarantine. Loved that game but carma was better. Still, it was interesting playing a cab driver in a post apocalyptic kinda setting. A taxi with guns, fun fun. Took me AGES to realise i was driving a taxi and that i shouldn’t run over those people signaling me.

    • Harlander says:

      I can’t tell you how sad I was to find that the film Quarantine wasn’t based on the game of the same name.

  13. Jimbo says:

    All I remember about the first game is the face cam, but Carmageddon 2 was ace. Being able to control the car doors so you could open them in a pedestrian’s face as you drove by was genius, and made for surprisingly fun impromptu co-op.

  14. Flint says:

    Both the first and second are fun in their core but the gameplay’s simple nature eventually becomes monotonously repetetive. Best enjoyed in small doses.

    • Urael says:

      Agreed. Keep it down to small does and the games shined. Anything longer and it rapidly became monotonous.

  15. somnolentsurfer says:

    Maybe I was just deluding myself ’cause my mother would never have had this in the house but, playing this at a friend’s house, I was never able to see the attraction. I think it’s a combination of how utterly unlike a real city it looked, and how utterly unlike real physics it felt. Especially when compared against GTA, which I somehow got away with and loved. Look at that stupid bouncing thing in the first video. What’s that all about?

    • mlaskus says:

      You could collect a lot of cool power ups that made your life easier, and sometimes you collected that thing and you bounced around almost uncontrollably for a while. It was hilarious, especially that usually, other drivers were trying to kill you at the same time. :)
      Fun times.

    • Spacewalk says:

      Carmageddon has physics that are geared for hilarity. Or annoyance depending on the amount of times you want to use the ‘restart’ key.

    • Fumarole says:

      The physics were especially great when you collected the pinball power-up.

    • Moses2k says:

      I used to have a gig of movies made in-game of pinball mode mixed with the train, elephants, and penguins, mainly. All sorts of excellence was possible. If you hit an elephant and gently knocked it on it’s ass, it would sometimes sit for a second, then spin around wildly on the vertical axis, then sit for another second and its skin would hemorrhage like it’d been hit.

      The train plus pinball was the old classic, though. I was very disappointed to no movies of the stuff I’ve seen on Youtube. Maybe I’ll have to go back and create some. :).

  16. itsallcrap says:

    The installer for C2 has been lovingly moved on from PC to PC right up to my current laptop, even though it hasn’t worked on Win2K onwards.

    I seem to remember the demo being better than the full game. Ten minutes of play to smash up as many opponents as you could on a brilliant map that didn’t seem to make it into the final release.

    Happy days.

  17. Diziet says:

    Carmageddon 2 was one of those games I upgraded my PC for, like Unreal when it came out. I had a lot of fun just trying silly stunts and trashing cars. Fond memories, especially the first time I hit the sort of sharply angled barrier on an exit road and split the car in half.

  18. chokoladenudlen says:

    I had the tons of fun with Carmageddon. I still remember the first time I split my car in half longitudinally in Carma2, as I missed the entry to a pipe/ramp. That blew my f*cking mind!

    The worst part was the countdown timer which was a major bummer when driving around to explore, but the lightning powerup (electro-bastard thingy?) made gathering time by killing pedestrians a lot easier. And once you got the car that had this powerup all the time (a bluish car that looked like a Vector, if I recall correctly), everything was easy runnings :)

  19. Inglourious Badger says:

    Carmaggedon was ace! I too have fond memories, and none are to do with the gore or running over pedestrians. It was the multiple ways you could ‘win’ a race, my favourite being to track down and destroy each and every other racer (occasionally allowing you to keep their cars for future races! Sweet!). It was one of the first racing game I remember that didn’t have the track on rails with barriers either side, but a full area with checkpoints that you could attempt to find shortcuts between or just get lost in. And the physics was immense for the time.

    Midtown Madness is stored in the same place in my memory, which felt like a clean version of Carmageddon. The closest thing now would be Burnout:Paradise but the Burnout games have stripped the openness, instead telling you: in this race you must drive fastest, in this race you must smash the other cars off the road, etc

    No racing game has really felt as free or as mental as Carmageddon did, so a remake makes sense. Hope it can happen one way or another.

  20. golden_worm says:

    This game was always a poor relative of Quarantine for me. Completely different style of game but the violent driving theme really works better in a taxi game in my opinion.
    link to

    • JuJuCam says:

      Having never actually played Carmageddon, Quarantine is what springs to my mind too in terms of 3d vehicular mayhem (the 2d prize will always belong to Death Rally, despite GTA being technically better in every way).

      I demand a remake of Quarantine!

    • Tom OBedlam says:

      Thank god at least one other person remembers Death Rally, I found a copy of it again recently and sat down and played for 5 hours straight. Give me a Deliverator and a spiked bumper!

  21. RedFred says:

    The hours I spent playing both of these games. So many memories.

  22. Alabaster Crippens says:

    The Carmageddon demo taught me, at the age of eleven (or thereabouts), everything I know now about emergent gameplay.
    Okay, not quite everything, but when I started reading about emergent gameplay (when Bioshock was just a little twinkle in Ken Levine’s eye) all I could think about was hours around Paul Cassidy’s house playing the 2 minute time restricted demo.
    We spent hours upon hours trying to find new and exciting ways to extract fun out of those painfully constrained 2 minutes. We found new ways to catapult cars into the air. We explored a limited radius of the track. We even occasionally tried to win.
    But there was no winning in two minutes. You could never kill the bulldozer AND everyone else in such a time. So we found straights to build speed on and tiny ledges to bounce around in.

    A year later, having fallen out with Paul, I was excited to acquire a full copy of the game. It was dreadful, boring and tedious. All the fun was gone. Never to be recaptured.
    It was our inventiveness that made it fun. It was the cat calls and jeers that made it fun. It was the ridiculous self appointed tasks and random coincidences.

    That was emergent. And it was wonderful.

  23. Spacewalk says:

    I was absolutely obsessed with Carmageddon for two whole years. There would be times when I would sit for hours at a time just using the replay function, going over the same minute of footage from different angles and I just couldn’t get tired of it. I haven’t the foggiest why I stopped playing it but when I dug out the disc last year I was back into it for another six months. That doesn’t happen to me with a lot of games.

    • Bhazor says:

      It boggles my tiny mind that there aren’t more games, outside football sims, that use an action cam replay system.

    • sinister agent says:

      @Bhazor Consider me a fellow bogglee. It is an absurd omission, and yet it is omnipresent. Which is probably a nonsensical statement, but what the hell, I’m committed to it now.

  24. kwyjibo says:

    I bought Carmageddon 2 on pirate after reading Brooker’s review. Got to the second (I think) challenge stage before I spotted a quiet FPS game sitting on the warez disk – Half-Life.

    Never looked back, who gives a crap about shitting mines when you have fucking men to crowbar.

  25. Navagon says:

    Carmageddon, the Splat Pack and Carmageddon 2 were all insanely fun. But yes, I’m sure he can come up with something else. Even if it’s another vehicular rampage.

  26. Dominic White says:

    Here’s something to put the madness of the C&D letter into perspective:

    link to – Mario fan-games. There are hundreds of them. They even have a shared core community site. They have never, ever had any legal threats from Nintendo.

    Last time I checked, Nintendo still own the Mario license/trademark/copyright/etc/whatever. It is not diminished or legally weakened at all because fans have produced derivative works.

    The same applies to Sonic, Megaman, and countless other huge franchises, which have spawned a multitude of derivative works.

    Square-Enix just have a company policy of intimidating fans, which serves no logical purpose whatsoever.

  27. EthZee says:

    Good on this man. Don’t be such a spoilsport, Alec; if you’re looking to lecture indie developers, try to change the minds of all the people constantly making bloody platformers and match-three games.

    I’d be interested to know how this game will go down with today’s generation of gamers. Will it still be… naughty? I wonder how demographics have changed.

    • Bhazor says:

      …. very nawwwty.

    • Tei says:

      “try to change the minds of all the people constantly making bloody platformers and match-three games.”

      Nah, thats ok. Coders and graphics artist must learn, and a good way is creating well know simple games. A lot of simple games. Is like weightlifting for game devs.

  28. Snargelfargen says:

    I played Carmageddon 2 endlessly as a kid. There will be other “hit stuff with cars” games, but none of them will have the same charm. The needlessly large and complex levels took forever to explore, so I would discover new areas several months later. The power-ups were also cheerfully insane. The “electro-bastard ray”, the suicidal/giant/mini pedestrians, the pinball power-up… (it applied pinball physics to your car, usually making you ricochet faster and faster until you blew up or your twisted wreck of a car landed in a completely new part of the level).
    There was also a pretty big modding community, which for whatever reason devoted much of it’s efforts to making painstakingly detailed car replicas which would kill the framerate of that time’s computers. Nothing like ramming a ’78 camaro with your ford pinto, watching it’s muffler, bumpers and other bits slough off until you impaled it on a lamp post!

  29. Bassism says:

    I played many, many, many many hours of Carmageddon. As other said, it was the first time I’d seen an open world in a racing game. A game where you could race, hunt down your opponents singlemindedly, wantonly murder every pedestrian you see, or just fuck about taking jumps and looking for secrets. It’s one of the games from my earlier years of game playing that embodies the openness that I cherish so much nowadays.

    Carmageddon 2 wouldn’t run on my computer when I came out, and though I had some fun playing with it at a buddy’s place and eventually got it myself, it never quite captured me the same way. Though the damage modelling was absolutely brilliant and made for hours of fun on its own, it just didn’t seem to shine as bright as the first one.

    Quarantine was fun, but the physics didn’t quite feel as good as Carmageddon. The latter just suited itself to hours of whimsical craziness.

  30. HexagonalBolts says:

    Anyone remember Big Red Racing?

    • Spacewalk says:

      Or 1nsane for that matter.

    • Thiefsie says:

      My mohawk was epically purple…

    • Tom OBedlam says:

      Hell yeah i do, my mohawk was astonishingly pink

    • EJ says:

      I have played 1nsane within the past week. It’s still my favorite offroad driving/racing game, and nothing has stacked up to it since. Luckily, it still plays on Windows 7 with modern hardware! The vehicles worked like vehicles in a game should, bending twisting and eventually becoming hilarious if you kept going without a repair. Physics was well balanced between realism and fun. Many a LAN party ended with hours of “how badly can you smash a vehicle off the big ramp in the motocross track and still drive it back up and smash it again”.

      Big Red was also a lan party favorite for a while.

      Does anybody here also remember “Powerslide”? It was a fairly simple game well executed. Spent lots of hours in that as well.

  31. Rei Onryou says:

    I still look lovingly at my big boxy Carmageddon, Splat Pack and C2 boxes. I was never any good at C2 and didn’t get into it like C1, but boy, did I have some fun times with them. They weren’t amazing as racers. The fun came from the messing about. Even watching the C1 video, you can see just how many different and inventive ideas they had thrown in there. Pinball mode was brilliant. It could screw you up, but it was worth it to see how much you could fool with the other cars.

    There probably isn’t a place for such a game now, but surely we can still go back and explore it for unique ideas that shouldn’t die along with the game?

  32. BobbleHat says:

    Wow, thanks for the nostalgia. Carmageddon was the only game that my mother wouldn’t allow me to have, despite me playing the Grand Theft Auto demo to death and subsequently borrowing Carmageddon off a friend.

    I can’t imagine any studio being prepared to make another Carmageddon in this day and ag, plus I reckon it’d cause just as much fuss as the original did. There’s still Blood Drive and Motorstorm 3 to satisfy any pedestrian killing cravings anyone might have, providing they own consoleboxes.

  33. Søren V. Welling says:

    I don’t get the disdain. I still believe Carmageddon 2 to have the best destructive driving engine of any game on the pc ever. When I clicked play on the videos I was prepared for disappointment, but no – it still looks as fresh and freaky as when I was a kid. I remember driving on the street in my dads car with my cousin and we were like: “Old lady – 500 points” “Take her with the door” “ooo combo if you slide onto the walk” :D
    That game was for certain one of the most entertaining games of its decade in my mind.

    • Søren V. Welling says:

      Err, to clarify, my dad was driving the car – we were in the backseat ^^

  34. Bhazor says:

    So it was a game about nothing but driving over people then, Alec? So it wasn’t a staggeringly vast collection of 3D sandboxes a full five months before the first GTA (in 2D)? It didn’t have aggressive AI that would gang up and chase you? That would bear a grudge and abandon the race to chase you down? There were no invincible police cars that would ambush you leading to frantic chases as you raced blindly through back alleys as you tried to shake them? There wasn’t a single unlockable/powerup that fundamentally changed the game such as the ability to drive up walls or turn off gravity? It didn’t take a refreshing approach of simply letting you play how you wanted wether that was racing or thrashing? There was no eclectic selection of vehicles that all demanded different styles to both drive and to destroy? No flimsy drag cars that traveled at 300mph and explode in one collision compared to a monster truck a full three times taller that would drive over smaller cars? No procedural damage on cars that would hamper performance in ways rarely seen at the time? No interesting replay functions that have yet to be bettered in the intervening 13 years? It was absolutely no fun at all?

    Nope. It was just driving a single car in a straight line with green or red splodges appearing on the windscreen every now and then.

    Thanks for clearing that up Meer.

    • ntw says:


      we demand more respect for this classic!

    • Collic says:

      I liked Carmageddon, too. Should we hug? :)

    • Nethlem says:

      Agreed, the article doesn’t really do the games any favour.
      They had far more to offer for their time then just driving people over…

      The physics and car damage alone had been something pretty “new” back then.

    • Javier-de-Ass says:

      nice post

    • Strand says:

      Wow. Spot on. And stated much more eloquently than I could have in the mental and physical state I’m in, having quit Minecraft cold-turkey three weeks ago.

      Of course, I’m only off Minecraft ’til the Halloween update, on-time or not. I didn’t want to put any more time into my current world in the event the new content 1) borked all my work or 2) required rolling a new world in order to access the new features (e.g. biomes). I’m still suffering, though.

      Maybe I’ll fire up some version of Carmageddon in the meantime. I even have TDR2000 (not included in video form in the post, nor mentioned at all for that matter). It might even run on a modern PC.

      Nuts, now I want to play Rocket Jockey, another gem of a game that’s never received anything close to the respect it deserves. Pretty sure that won’t run on anything higher than Win ’95, though, and its acceleration was Glide-only, if memory serves.

      But I can still listen to its surf guitar soundtrack!

    • Huggster says:

      Yes I agree, very solid games.
      There was a level called “Beef Curtains”.
      I still remember that name to this day. Twas the first time I was aware the slang as well!

    • Fumarole says:

      Beef Curtains was the best. An island map with nothing but cows on it. It wasn’t until long after I stopped playing the game that I knew what it meant.

    • Quiet there in front! says:

      You’re expecting the kind of someone that protests tits in a videogame to recognize a chance for fun when it jumps up and bites him.

      I think you have yet to grasp the true nature of Alec’s utter Meerness.

  35. Collic says:

    ‘I was in the war!’ *squish*

    • gou says:

      Collic, this is the exact post I was going to make. So instead, I am going to mention that carmageddon was such a brazen experience of pure fun that I took many of the wav files and used them to replace the default windows sounds, I would always be reminded that the old lady was in a war whenever I minimised a window.

    • Collic says:

      That’s easily the best thing I’ve heard all week. Bravo :D

    • vic says:

      YAY someone posted it. :)

  36. ntw says:

    i’ve also got a lot of love for the carma games – quite simply the BEST fun at a LAN party

  37. Richie Shoemakakakaka says:

    The Carma Splat Pack was my first PC Zone assignment: I was sent down to the Isle of Wight to see the game, interview the devs, then a bunch of us climbed in a load of stock cars and drove them around a muddy field. I’d never driven a car before and probably should have died. Still, I totalled three vehicles. One of them an Allegro.

    Game wasn’t bad either.

    • DrGonzo says:

      I can remember that issue. So it was you who started the corruption of my childhood huh?

    • Huggster says:

      Yeah I remember that too.
      I think at the time I thought it sounded dangerous?

  38. Kieron Gillen says:

    “Pornography For Anarchists” – Charlie Brooker.

    People hated him for that line. People, eh?


  39. Bhazor says:

    On a happy note the original developers (Stainless) are still going and recently struck big with the Magic: The Gathering Xbox Port and the lovely Risk: Factions.

    So thats nice.
    link to

  40. Collic says:

    I think some of you are missing the point when Meer says it was a game about running people over. It did have a lot more than that going on, but to us, to kids – like I’m assuming most of you were – it was precisely a game about running people over. And that what was made it such immature, naughty, awesome fun.

    • Spacewalk says:

      My favourite method of running people over was ramming into opponents who drove the lighter cars so that they would be knocked several metres backwards into groups of fleshbags. They tended to run away less when that happened.

    • Javier-de-Ass says:

      meh bullshit. I distinctly remember admiring the ai, the physics and the polygon deformation, even at the time. like in the old 2d mario platformers I would spend a lot of time just searching for hidden stuff and see if I could get on top of all the different buildings and objects aswell, not even racing or wrecking shit but just exploring the levels. and yeah the replay thing was mentioned, spent a lot of time with that. and even just listening to the music tracks on the cd, not really the instrumental fearfactory tracks but the original ones. carmageddon was so much more than just some slightly controversial game about running over people

    • Rrrrraaaaasssssmmmmmuuuuusssss says:

      What Javier-de-Ass said. Even though we were 13 at the time, we weren’t tasteless.

  41. _Jackalope_ says:

    I’d say his project is about more than just trying to revive a game we may not “need” anymore and that it’s more about preserving a bit of gaming history. If he added to it and tried to do something different and new, that isn’t preserving the game. The consoles get their games ported, emulated and put on virtual console or xbox arcade etc, but there are many beloved PC games that are not playable any more and are in danger of being completely forgotten about unless a dedicated bunch of gamers do work like this. It doesn’t matter that they may not be relevant now, what is important is that at some point we all enjoyed them and it’s that which is worth saving.

  42. Bioptic says:

    “Pornography For Anarchists” – here’s Brooker’s original review:
    link to

    Feels a grim picking over the corpse of PC Zone, but most of their reviews are still there, especially the older ones. For my part, I was another one of the “played the demo for Carma II for hours and hours and never got around to buying the full thing”, even though those 10 minute chunks of murder were probably the best way to experience the game.

  43. Javier-de-Ass says:

    the point of what the openc1 guy is doing seem to more be to make an engine for the old carmageddon/splatpak rather than making a new game off the carmageddon name, like openttd or zdoom.

  44. drewski says:

    I thought Carmageddon was a stupid idea when I was 15, let alone now.

    Just let it die. What next, fan remake of Postal?

    • GoPostal says:

      Oooooh Postal.

      A game with an “execute” button, that was. Lovely.

      Sometimes wished I could press that button on people that went and uploaded fake torrents to TPB.

    • Casimir's Blake says:

      I would argue that Carmageddon’s violence was somewhat in the vein of “cartoon hilarity”. Cars, peds, splat, turbo-nutter-bastard NITROUS! Running people over was never meant to be the “main point” of the game, ultimately it was a sandbox racer with violent but silly overtones. I think there might have even been some sort of “bonus” for completing a race without touching a pedestrian. That and the British slants to the humour, the totally unrealistic scenario, meant you couldn’t possibly take it seriously and the devs were aware of that too.

      Postal = Sticking a shotgun up a cats arse, with sound-effects, because supposedly it’s even funnier when you’re shooting someone that way. A game for juvenile, low-IQ spods?

      Each to their own, sure, but I believe there comes a point where you can draw a line at gratuity and utter tastelessness.

  45. Nick says:

    I never played either of them back in the day, though the uproar and green zombie blood german version and all that chatter was on my radar via PC Gamer, they just never interested me much. There was a vaguely similar game, Quarantine (similar in that you could run people over and fit guns to your cab) that I recall quite enjoying the demo of, but it was that long ago it may well be a bit awful.

    • Javier-de-Ass says:

      I love quarantine, but those games are nothing like carmageddon

    • Nethlem says:

      Actually the german version had robots instead of people, the UK version had zombies with green blood instead of people.

      Yup even violence against zombies is a big no-no in germany, you can actually go to jail if you sell Dead Rising over here :D

  46. MadMatty says:

    Carma II was spot on- great game. Notice the car in 1 is the exact same as in the 1975 flic “deathrace 2000”

  47. Spacegirl says:

    Alec Meer is underselling Carmegeddon. I remember it being a pretty fun and hilarious driving game!!

    I don’t think it’s some all-time great classic, but I do think it has PLENTY of worth outside of its tabloid-baiting nature.

  48. Robin says:

    It’s fashionable to be sniffy about Carmageddon, clearly. It was an open-world racer that does some tech and gameplay things that were innovative at the time (pre-win32, pre-3D acceleration). It was fun. It is as crass and exploitative as most other action games of the time, including Doom, Mortal Kombat, Duke Nukem, et al, which aren’t haughtily dismissed in this way. What’s really sad is that developers like Epic, men in their late 30s and 40s with all the resources and creative flexibility they could ask for, are still making games creatively rooted in the Games Workshop BO-stinking basement.

  49. Theoban says:

    I adored the first Carmageddon, the amount of time I put into try to push the Police car off the top of the building so I could then buy it after the race was ridiculous.

    Carmegeddon 2 didn’t appeal to me on the same level for some reason, even though almost everything was better about it, I just didn’t enjoy it as much.

    Maybe it was because I could just buy Carmageddon 2, whereas the first one I had to lie about my age in Electronics Boutique to get it. Fun Theoban fact there.

  50. Samuel Bass says:

    I loved both Carma 1 and 2 – I think I played the demo for the second one more than I have some games. It was my first experience with three-dimensional free roaming play, and it was full of goodness.