I would be remiss if I didn’t begin this post by pointing out that Truck Stop‘s opening pitch is a bit disingenuous. “From one of the creators of the Burnout series of games,” its Steam Greenlight page proudly declares. Makes it sound like someone pretty high up on the chain, right? Not so much. Adam Sawkins is listed as an audio programmer for Burnout 2 and a programmer for Burnout 3. Good experience? Absolutely. But it’s doubtful that he “created” the series. More recently, he garnered some complicated controversy over Xbox indie builder FortressCraft. Truck Stop is, however, something I’ve really wanted to see realized as a full, fleshed-out game for quite some time now: Burnout 3’s Crash Mode. It’s, um, a bit shameless about its inspiration too, but I suppose that’s better than pretending to be something it’s not. Reduce the break to smoking metal and smithereens for a trailer and details.
Here’s the basic pitch, per Truck Stop’s Greenlight page:
“From one of the creators of the Burnout series of games, comes the latest in physics-based vehicular mayhem – TruckStop! Tweak your vehicles handling and parameters before sending it hurtling down an obstacle-filled level. The more damage you inflict on the Crash Test Dummy and the scenery, the bigger your score! Charge your CrashBreaker and explode the world out of your way!”
Other holdovers from Burnout include slow-mo once you’ve launched into your crash and aftertouch that allows slight control over direction as you careen through the air.
It’s obviously still extremely early, but future plans include more exotic locales like a zombie-overrun city and, er, Mars. Hopefully those don’t come at the expense of some much-needed polish. Also, I’ve now seen enough crashing to have a very strong hunch that it’s in some way an element of the game, but Burnout’s Crash Mode was truly special because of the setups – the obstacle courses you had to dart, dodge, and donut through in order to drop a match (read: yourself) into a glorious chain of powder kegs with wheels attached. Here’s hoping that element hasn’t been jettisoned in favor of crazy physics and (at this point) less-than-pretty lights.
I would very much like for this one to evolve into something special, though. For now, you can buy an in-progress version at IndieCity and offer feedback.