Trackmania is a glorious thing. A joyful, sunkissed, loop-the-loop arcade racing game about incrementally learning the impossible geometry of user-made tracks until you’re able to hit their boosts, ramps, and dodge their pitfalls in a single continuous run. Trackmania Turbo [official site] was due to be released before Christmas with some new features – the most important of which is that it’s very blue and yellow now – but Ubisoft have just announced that it’s being pushed back into early 2016.
Writing on Ubisoft’s blog:
“During the additional months, we plan to enhance the campaign and the game’s interface. Since multiplayer is such a strong component of the Trackmania experience, we also plan to continue improving Trackmania Turbo’s multiplayer modes. With updated multiplayer modes comes more multiplayer testing. The extra time will give us an opportunity to make sure that the online infrastructure is stable and that the online experience is a smooth one.
“We are also working on adding an extra feature that offers a new way to challenge your friends on your favorite user-made tracks. This is a special mode that we think will extend Trackmania Turbo’s longevity because of how it spurs competition between players.”
Turbo was announced at this year’s E3 and the features that I’d seen so far had seemed mainly like novelties, including a multiplayer mode in which two people control a single car round a track and support for VR headsets. Expanding the offering doesn’t sound like a bad thing, especially since the post also explains that they’ll be able to “fine-tune the random generator feature,” which will auto-generate tracks.
Trackmania’s best courses have always been those built by the community, as talented makers slot together corners and loops and straights like jigsaw pieces to create long, intertwining challenges. There’s no better example of these than the Press Forward tracks, which can be completed without the need to steer. I quite like the idea of seeing what an algorithm can spit out using the same pieces.
But as I said in the first paragraph, I love what Trackmania is already, for its perfect handling and instant restarts and easy multiplayer, and I’m excited for Turbo because it seems more colourful than the recent iterations of Trackmania 2. Fingers crossed for 2016.