How many racing games are there out there? certainly enough to count on a pair of fingers alone. But if asked how many “unique” racing games are there? of course the answer is less than imagined. Many developers and publishers are comfortable with the simple racing formula they present. But apparently, this does not apply to Bugbear Entertainment through its ambitious racing game – Wreckfest. After going through a long period of early access, finally Wreckfest officially arrived for PCs last year and consoles in August this year.
Instead of presenting racing as the main focus, Wreckfest actually made “destruction” as its main attraction. Present as a spiritual successor to FlatOut, which presents a similar attraction in the past, Wreckfest has further perfected this and seems to provide a much more massive attraction for destruction. However, despite everything we mentioned earlier, what does Wreckfest actually offer? And why do we call it an “addicting destruction racing game”? This review will discuss it thoroughly.
Racing Full of Destruction!
For those of you who grew up with the FlatOut franchise, Wreckfest feels like it has a formula for the game, it’s no surprise, considering that both games were born through the same developer. It’s just that, Wreckfest comes with a “slimmer” and more “dense” formula. Wreckfest is not a racing game that has many modes and features in abundance, but does that feel negative? We don’t think so, why? Instead of presenting abundant but empty features, through Bugbear, try to present a variety of content that feels less than FlatOut, but feels much denser and maximum.
Full of destruction, as a racing game, uniquely, only the word is the most suitable to describe Wreckfest. Unlike Need For Speed or other racing games where “fast racing” is the main attraction, Wreckfest subordinates that to this. The priority that Bugbear wants to offer here is “destruction, destruction and speed”, and that is certainly very unusual.
This is also supported by the physical quality of the visuals that are presented, where every destruction that is presented always looks terrible at the same time stunning on one side. Collision-by-collision that occurs is wrapped nicely through a physical presentation that must be admitted, looks quite realistic for a racing game. You can see the obvious damage to the car through the impact of a hard hit from another car, or by accidentally hitting an immovable object.
It must be admitted that Bugbear is able to present various small aspects of the destruction in sufficient detail. Crumbled car wreckage such as bumpers, doors, and other metal scraps scattered on the asphalt can even have an impact. yes, you can accidentally slip and even bounce when you accidentally hit the debris.
In addition, the damage that occurs can affect the performance of the car itself. A hard impact that damages the suspension, for example, causes the suspension to malfunction and the car will be very vulnerable to collisions. Another impact on the front corner of the car that damages the front wheel, for example, makes the car even more difficult to control. These various aspects of destruction make Wreckfest have its own identity that no other racing game has.
Wreckfest actually has quite simple controls, but still, it’s not a racing game that is friendly to casual gamers. With only normal difficulty levels, Wreckfest is able to present a variety of challenges, which often make us scratch our heads. One thing is for sure, “nothing is certain” in Wreckfest, in front of the last lab, even in front of the finish line with a victory in sight, all possibilities can still happen.
The fast race that is presented feels very balanced, with a high car stat that will not guarantee victory, as well as a low stat car, it also does not rule out that it will actually be able to win. He worked hard to maintain the number 1 position in 11 laps, but due to a slight neglect he was immediately pushed to the last position.
The reality? it is indeed very possible to happen, every momentum that exists must be considered and utilized appropriately. One mess? it could just be that the victory that is in sight will just disappear. It can even immediately push you from the front position directly to the backward, everything is very possible in this game.
Still less challenging? Wreckfest includes a system of difficulty levels that can be set at will. In addition to allowing access to the Extra Hard difficulty level, the difficulty level system can also turn off existing assists so that the existing racing scheme feels much more difficult and realistic.
Brutal and fast, it seems that this is what you must have in Wreckfest, acting responsively and aggressively is the main key to winning. Through the racing mode, you not only have to compete quickly, but also aggressively in completing various challenges. This challenge usually tells you to destroy your opponent’s car, crash your opponent’s car against the object, do a best lap, and hit your opponent’s car until it rotates 180 degrees.
Each race always provides a challenge that stores rewards in the form of stars, XP, and extra currency, of course. With various tantalizing rewards that are quite a pity to miss, you will always be motivated to complete challenges while remaining at the forefront.
As we said before, racing isn’t really the main focus of Wreckfest, apart from competing fast, it has various modes that look much more interesting. Not only requiring you to always be at the forefront, these various modes often force you to be the most brutal and aggressive.
Like this battle royale-style derby bus, for example, which will force you to survive while destroying as many other buses as possible. Or this van mode, for example, which requires you to survive the chase and impact of high-speed trucks. There are still very many modes that require you to play brutal and aggressive, some of which you can see through a series of images below.
All of these unique modes are summarized in the career mode, a total of 5 career mode sessions that you can access, ranging from low tier to high tier. Each class in the career mode stores various interesting modes in it, but to access higher modes, points are required to be unlocked. Yes, you have to get enough points through the mode that is accessed first so you can access the next mode, before finally changing to a higher class or level in career mode.
For those of you who want to build your own challenges, there is a custom mode that allows you to make this happen. You can determine the mode, circuit, level of difficulty, and the number of racers competing. Surely this is a mode that is suitable for those of you who just want to have fun or just go crazy.
To undergo challenges in higher and more difficult modes, you certainly need a car that is more capable or sufficient upgrades. Thanks to the XP and the currency you already have, you can buy a new car or upgrade an existing one to improve performance. Not only upgrades, the currency also functions for customization, indeed the customization features presented are not too diverse and “wow”, but it feels enough to simply give the car a more fashionable look or vice versa.
Quickly Eradicates Bugs & Glitch
A specter most hated by developers and gamers itself is of course the problem with the game in question. Usually the problem was present in the first version of the game in question, and it also seems to be eating away at Wreckfest. As a media reviewer, we received a code review before the official console version of Wreckfest launched on August 23, and we got the PlayStation 4 version.
Bugbear says the early version will still be rudimentary, and sure enough, it is still very premature and full of problems. Starting from the texture bug, to the annoying infinity loading bug, the infinite loading problem always appears after 5-8 matches, and of course it always forces us to forcefully quit the game. Not only when starting a match, the infinity loading bug also often appears when choosing a car to use.
But fortunately, as promised, through the first patch released on its first day, Bugbear was able to get rid of almost all the problems that existed. You will not rarely encounter serious bugs & glitches anymore, there will be no more annoying infinity loading. Surely this is a step that deserves a thumbs up, where Bugbear & THQ Nordic ensure Bugbear releases without serious problems.
With sufficient development time and a mature early access period, Bugbear succeeded in presenting the maximum visual quality of the game he concocted. Together with the aspect of destruction as the main attraction, this identity is further strengthened by a visual appearance that looks good.
Supported by soft-body dynamics technology, every destruction that exists can be presented perfectly. Every debris, scattered iron, crushed car body, and other objects look very realistic. various general details such as texture, shadow, lighting, fog, reflection, all of which also look neat and are able to present the atmosphere they should be. As proof? You can see each screenshot that we present in this review.
What other “must” appeal a racing game must have? certainly is a soundtrack that can pump adrenaline to the highest level. For this, of course Wreckfest is able to present it quite well, every fast action full of destruction you do will be accompanied by the sound of excited music from several well-known musicians, one of which is Cyan Kicks.
But unfortunately, it’s not like Need For Speed, Forza Horizon, or other racing games filled with tons of soundtracks. Wreckfest has a very limited soundtrack, and can probably be counted on just a pair of fingers. There is no other genre either, Wreckfest only has a rock genre for its soundtrack list, but maybe Bugbear did this on purpose in order to be able to present the strong impression of “destruction” presented by Wreckfest. But still, the list of soundtracks that are present feels very minimal and is always played repetitively.
Wreckfest comes as a racing game that feels fresh, where instead of racing being the main focus, it actually features as its main attraction. An innovation that actually looks simple, but can be executed carefully and in the end it feels very addictive. Bugbear’s actions in overcoming various obstacles through the day 1 patch on the first day of the game’s release also deserve thumbs up.
But even so, Wreckfest is still not a completely perfect racing game, it still has content that feels incomplete. The soundtrack, which should be one of the main attractions of a racing game, was not present as much as expected. But despite all these problems, Wreckfest is still a racing game that you must try, especially for those of you who want to unwind by “destroying” something.