Cars Wot Go Pretty: Nitronic Rush


Oh FFS. Despite the game’s own site saying it was announced yesterday, Jim somehow knew about this in August.

I don’t know about you, but I like shiny colours. The way they’re all shiny. And all colourful. And when they move! My goodness me, it’s all I can do to stare vacantly as the saliva wettens my bottom lip. So it is that I instantly decided I liked Nitronic Rush, a new game emerging from the electronic folds of DigiPen. It’s described as “an experimental survival driving game”, citing the 1990s (in which there is no apostrophe, planet Earth) as its inspiration. But my oh my, the 1990s never offered shining colours like these.

The game, announced last night, is to be released completely fuh-ree. And it looks like it might be top arcade fun. DigiPen of course has something of a reputation for impressive students generating impressive games. Both Narbacular Drop and Tag: The Power Of Paint famously became Portal and Portal 2, for instance. Although I think I’d like to play a collection of the games that DigiPen doesn’t proudly release to the worlds. The games made by the students who perhaps didn’t quite make it to the third year. Someone leak those to me.

Nitronic Rush looks like it’s not going to help with that, since it appears properly entertaining. Take a look at those moving shining colours:

It’s out in only four days, on the 11th.

Oh, and I always feel a bit sorry for DigiPen students, who get lumped in as one amorphous group. So the people making this are:

Kyle Holdwick: Executive Producer, Gameplay Programming, Obstacle Logic
Andy Kibler: Game Designer, Level Design
Chris Barrett: Technical Director, Architecture, Trick System, Menu Logic/Design, Website/Server Admin
Andrew Nollan: Graphics Programmer, Art Director, Obstacle Logic, Gameplay Programming, Level Editor Logic
Jason Nollan: Physics Programming, Vehicle Design/Modeling, Gameplay Logic
Laura Borgen: Concept Art, Texturing
Eddie Peters: Concept Art, Modeling, SFX
Ariel Gitomer: Concept Art, Modeling
Nathan Aldrich: Concept Art, Modeling
Jordan Hemenway: Audio Director, Music Composition, Sound Design, Website Development
M.J. Quigley “The Quiggles”: Music Composer, Interactive Music Layers

And because I don’t seem to know how to stop writing this post, here’s another trailer. It contains the achievement: Double Rainbow:

Big thanks to Alec for the tip.


  1. carn1x says:

    Whilst it seems more like a ghost racer, this is really reminding me of Pod.

  2. AndrewC says:

    Honestly, at 45 secs, when the car is just flying through pschedelic space, with basically all the standard signifiers of ‘racing game’ gone – that’s just marvellous.

  3. Grubblik says:

    Looks like Geoff Crammond and Jeff Minter had a digital baby :)

  4. says:

    Can I insert my quarters into Steam? Or do I have to go to the arcade?

  5. tims says:

    I wonder if you can turn off the voice

  6. Faceless says:

    Visuals are far too schizophrenic to make for a good game, as much as I approve of the concept and lack of baseless manshooting.

    At times, contrasting colours are used to tell you of impending danger, yet in about half of the video, danger, traversable terrain and the car are either of the same colour or the same colour tone. The rest is just a chaotic clusterfuck of colours that only serves to confuse.

    Flashing lights for the sake of flashing lights is just bad design.

    • Cooper says:

      I really couldn’t disagree more.


  7. space_eagle_sequel says:

    Finally, a game akin to the one in the arcade scene of Hackers.

  8. Vexing Vision says:

    Okay, I now want the next Trackmania to be Trackmania: Cyberpunk.

  9. MaXimillion says:

    How can this be?

    A videogame, that looks…like a videogame?

  10. Urthman says:

    I’ve been wanting a new Rollcage game for a long time. This looks even better.

    Rollcage 2 mastered the “start-over-NOW-no-waiting” mechanic years before Trackmania. I hope Nitronic Rush uses it.

  11. Duago says:

    link to I’ll just leave this here.

  12. Shadrach says:

    Ooh-er it looks great but I imagine this is the kind of game that I would get pretty frustrated in.

  13. Premium User Badge

    Hodge says:

    This is what video games were supposed to look like in the future.

  14. Sigma Draconis says:

    Well really, that just looks like San Francisco Rush 2049 (dem wings) + Wipeout HD’s Zone mode.

    Which is a brilliant combination, and I’m completely fine with that.

    • Dare_Wreck says:

      I was just about to say the same exact thing! Quite a bit of the game’s design seems to be ripped off from (maybe considering the game is free, I should say “lovingly influenced by”?) the Rush series, though. The logo, car physics, and crazy in-air tricks are all reminiscent of the Rush games.

  15. Mr_Initials says:

    best shiny car and beat simulator in a while.

  16. Refpeuk says:

    Aspirin not included . . .

    Joking aside, however, this looks like it could be diverting for a bit if it weren’t for Skyrim.

  17. Sinnorfin says:

    reminds me of the best parts of SW: Pod Racer.. what a game that was!

  18. LionsPhil says:


    • Wulf says:

      No no.

      TRON: Van

      I do believe I approve. Perhaps want. I love Tron aesthetics.

  19. theloz says:

    KA-BAM, SON!

  20. Krixodus says:

    Download it here:

    link to

    • Wulf says:

      That’s helpful! Thank you!

    • jordan.hemenway says:

      Speaking on behalf of the developers, that link is actually for a REALLY old build of the game so I wouldn’t recommend downloading it. If you wait for the one on Friday you’ll be guaranteed to get all of the levels and features we’ve been working hard to get in for everyone =)

    • Sagan says:

      This is the old version that they submitted when the spring semester was over. They have since put a ton more work into the game.

      That being said you can download that as a preview if you want.

  21. Polysynchronicity says:

    I want every game to have an announcer which announces when I am WINNING

    this game is a step in the right direction

  22. Navagon says:

    So…. Tron meets Proun meets Jeff Minter? Looks pretty trippy, that’s for sure.

  23. DrGonzo says:

    This looks a lot like San Francisco Rush 20somethingsomething. Absolutely loved that game on Dreamcast, can’t wait for this!

  24. Joe W-A says:

    Played it at PAX. Was fun, and the guy showing it to me seemed nice, so I will be buyin’ it.
    edit: Oh it’s free? Awesome.

  25. Jake says:

    It’s strange, at first my inclination was to be annoyed that this game is so flagrantly inspired by Rush 2049 to the extent that it looks like the same game but with different tracks, a van and a different texture pack (that has been made by Daft Punk). It even has the same announcer. But then, thinking about it for a bit longer, that’s… a really good idea. It’s even got the right name so it’s basically an unofficial sequel right?

    • LionsPhil says:

      Given I don’t think the Rush games were released for PC…

  26. c-Row says:

    Great music as well. I demand more of that!

    • MadMatty says:

      Well, you should go listen to Deadmau5, which is what the guy is cloning. Nice cloning, sure, but hey…

  27. MadTinkerer says:

    “The games made by the students who perhaps didn’t quite make it to the third year. Someone leak those to me.”

    If those games are anything like the non-final-year student games I’ve seen, they’ll all be buggy as hell and some will literally not run at all no matter how you tweak your settings.

    As Valve say, making games is hard, and 90% of the difficulty is wrestling with a machine which will always do exactly what you say and never what you mean until you’ve restated your instructions in a ridiculously precise form. And then it turns out that your program only works with, say, Java 4.7, Firefox 5.9, Windows XP SP1, and DirectX 7.2 (not later or earlier versions of any of those) because that’s what the machine you tested it on had. You’re a student, not a big budget QA department.

    So what you really want is to look at student design docs. They range from “WTF!?” (not in a good way), to fantastic in theory but impossible to implement, to reasonably practical and somewhat inventive. Design docs don’t require you to do any programming, and are therefore infinitely less picky about your hardware and drivers.

  28. FuzzieBoy says:

    So… it’s basically Trackmania minus the customisation but combined with Tron? SHUT UP AND TAKE MY BANDWIDTH!!

    • FuzzieBoy says:

      Also, won’t they get sued for using the same release date as Skyrim? What if that confuses people into thinking this is Skyrim?! Oh noes! :P