As you’re probably already aware, we’ve got 2 massive new packs lining up on the start grid, in the shape of ‘Expansion: Speed’ and ‘Expansion: Adrenaline’. For most players, the biggest news with these packs is all those new tracks, of course! New tracks for the game is always on every player’s wishlist in the number one spot, and our track designers have been working non-stop since the completion of Pacific Rift last year on a whole clutch of fantastic new tracks. MotorStorm has always been critically lauded for its great track designs, and these new ones have all been designed by the same team who crafted Pacific Rift’s 16 original tracks, so they have a top-tier pedigree!
In each of the new expansions there are 3 brand new tracks, playable in all online modes, and offline in Time Attack, Free Play, and Split Screen. Let’s take in the holiday brochure descriptions of the new locations, pack by pack.
First off, the Expansion: Speed tracks;
The sea breeze in your racing leathers, the sand in your face, crystal clear seawater in your gas tank…Quicksands isn’t just sun-kissed, it’s sun-smooched-on-the-doorstep-and-put-out-on-the-first-date. When ‘beautiful azure waters’ sits so close to ‘brutal, deadly crossovers’ in the brochure description, you’ll be saying, “Wish you were here,” while wishing you were somewhere else at the same time.
Darkfire Swamp –
No sooner was this swamp-based track completed than Mother Nature decided to do some heavy handed redesign. With fissures opened up along its length, long-stagnant pools drained and dried, and deadly molten lava rolling in for some hot pool party action, the MotorStorm organizers decided it was the best redesign EVER.
Through an impossibly narrow chasm where sunlight rarely shines, natures torrents carve new, untamed-able routes for her disciples to follow. Big boulders, fast waters and epic vistas; this track satisfies every appetite. One to really gorge on, you’ll need a hunger for survival – get ready to jump to the main course.
Moving onto Expansion: Adrenaline;
Reef Runner – The world’s downright-prettiest boat graveyard, Reefrunner combines hard, fast sand flats, wide coastal shallows and a lightning-fast, foliage-packed jungle sprint. Lightweights should look to hop over the sand banks, heavyweights can tear through the shallows, and everyone else can stick to the middle routes while trying to apply the sunblock and get their swimming trunks on for the post-race beach party.
Brimstone – Spurred on by a love of all things stupid and deadly, the hardcore lunatics united and set up this battlefield of a racetrack. Located inside an unstable volcanic wasteland, Brimstone offers smoking craters, sulphurous lakes, and deadly underground lava tubes. Hell above and Hell below makes this a hell of a good place to stage a race.
Hollowed Earth – At the top of the Island lies the racetrack at the bottom of the world. Built in and around a cavernous and complex natural cave system, Hollowed Earth demands fast reactions, racing discipline, and the ability not to think about the millions of tons of unstable volcanic rock directly above your head. A torch and a mining helmet probably wouldn’t go amiss, either.
As you may well know by now, each expansion pack also re-introduces familiar tracks in entirely new ways. Dubbed as ‘Track Variants’, there are 8 in total, selected from the most popular online tracks, and all given the ‘Volcanic’ subtitle. Rather than just tweaking the tracks by adding a few routes here and closing a few others off there with barriers or fencing, we’ve chosen to theme these redesigns around the idea of the Island going fully volcanic! Imagine lava Bombs spattering the track, erupting volcanoes, ash falling in the air, lava spewing across racing lines, the whole works! Each of these tracks features different degrees of ‘natural interference’ ; at one end of the scale we have The Edge Volcanic, which as an Air track isn’t going to see too much direct Lava interference, but is going to have its racing lines significantly affected by huge chunks of molten rocks smashing all over the track. At the other extreme, Earth and Fire tracks like Rift Volcanic and Scorched Volcanic show just what can happen at ground zero when the fires of hell spill out over the raceways! Lava levels rise, mud fields bake and crack, standing water evaporates, and tracks you think you know all too well suddenly provide an altogether different racing experience! We’re hoping you’re going to love the variety and surprises these new tracks provide, and that you’ll all enjoy getting your head around the new strategic racing approaches they require!
Next time, we’re going to take an in-depth look at the massive new single/multiplayer experience that is Speed Weekend, debuting in the Expansion: Speed pack! Keep those motors running!