Start your engines, Carmageddon rides again

Continuing the theme of tenuous survival game stories, there’s a new version of Carmageddon out. Max Damage it’s called and it’s essentially a recalled, rebuilt and reissued version of the 2015 reincarnated model that prematurely rolled off the Early Access production line and ended up upsetting a lot of fans.

Not me I hasten to add. I actually quite liked the game, but then I didn’t experience any of the performance issues many others were aggrieved by, nor did I expect the game to offer much in the way of an evolution on the original 1997 release. It was more or less what it set out to be: Carmageddon reincarnated rather than re-imagined. My main problem with Carma 2015 was that driving and open world games especially had moved beyond running over pedestrians just because they could. Or maybe it had something to do with me being 20 years older and not finding that stuff quite as amusing as I once did.

In any case Carmageddon: Max Damage doesn’t advance the cause all that much, offering the same blend of vehicular anarchy as its predecessors, by inviting drivers to smash and crash their way to victory; either by eliminating all the other cars, killing all the spectators, or by simply crossing the finishing line first.

Early reports suggest Max Damage is a significant improvement on Reincarnation (the new game is free for those who bought the previous release), with Stainless Games saying Max Damage contains about 40% more content in the form of five new cars, caravans, a bunch of new pedestrians and more detailed maps. Oh, and three new US Election-themed game modes, where you repeatedly murder doppelgangers of the two presidential candidates. Altogether there’s enough new content, one would hope, to qualify as both an apology and to provide a solid chassis from which to build a more ambitious sequel.

Richie Shoemaker

Richie has been writing about games since 1997, spending five years on the staff of PC Zone and more recently writing for Eurogamer. His greatest claim to fame is that Sid Meier once gave him a lift to the pub.

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