Help Shape The Future Of Racing Apex And Get Ready For The Demo

Indie dev Lucky Mountain Games gives mad respect to the arcade racers of our youth by dressing a modern racer in 90s polygonal art, a bit of combat racing, arcade handling and colourful music. Here's how you can get in on the action...

Remind me later
 Help Shape The Future Of Racing Apex And Get Ready For The Demo - Gaming

I’ve got to admit that I’ve seen a lot of so-called 90s arcade racers launch in the past couple of years, but when Racing Apex first introduced itself on its IndieDB page, I was hooked. I usually wouldn’t get too excited about something like this, but Racing Apex had an intriguing quality right away. Not only does it recreate those old arcade moments, but it offers so many more options for the vehicles and tracks than we had 20 years ago.

 Help Shape The Future Of Racing Apex And Get Ready For The Demo - Gaming

At the base of the game are eight core modes. Lucky Mountain Games describes them:

Arcade- Classic Arcade mode. Jump in and have a blast.
Grand Prix- Race to the top of the championship unlocking new vehicles and upgrades.
Time Trial- Beat other players’ ghosts and see your name on the global leaderboards.
Multiplayer Race- Race friends via local split screen or online. Team up in Driver/Gunner mode.
Capture the flag- Get the flag from the other teams’ flatbed trucks and get it back to your team’s rig.
Cat and mouse- Make sure your team’s mouse gets over the line first! Smash theirs, defend yours.
Eliminator- Get over the line first, as the last place gets eliminated!
Bomb tag- Someone’s going to blow! Don’t get tagged or it could be you!

I recently asked a few questions of Lucky Mountain Games’ founder Trevor Ley about his latest project. This is what Trevor had to say about how he turned a concept into a working game:

“Racing Apex was initially conceived as a ‘driving shoot em up’. Like a mix of Starfox and Chase HQ. This idea developed into a more traditional track based racer with a solid polygon art style. John and I worked together at EA and since setting up our own companies we have continued to work together on various projects. Getting Racing Apex to the current stage involved us hiring a number of friends from the gaming industry to help out on different sections of the game.”

What game making expertise comes into play with building this title?

“We were part of the EA team developing Burnout Dominator, so we had to learn how Criterion designed their race tracks and then design and build our own tracks to the Burnout standard. This was invaluable experience and it is how the Racing Apex tracks are built. Later on John would build on this experience while working on Burnout Paradise while I worked with former Criterion and Getaway designers on the Eight Days driving sections. I’ve also worked on destructible vehicles while at Sony and Rockstar, so that knowledge is fed into the Racing Apex vehicle pipeline.”

 Help Shape The Future Of Racing Apex And Get Ready For The Demo - Gaming

There’s an obvious late 80s to early 90s feel in this game. What specific titles were inspiring?

“The main inspiration was Sega’s Virtua Racing and Daytona USA. However Sega’s Wing War and the PC game Interstate 76 also provided inspiration for the characters and combat. These were all games that I played in the early 90s, so revisiting them while developing Racing Apex brought back a lot of memories of skipping school and heading to the arcades! The vehicle handling is similar to Burnout and the damage setup is based on GTA vehicles”

Do you have any automotive passions that make a racing game perfect for you?

“Cars and racing have been my passion since I first played with Hot Wheels as a kid. I originally trained as a car illustrator and my car history includes small turbocharged cars, twin-turbo V6s, V12s and mid-engined cars. I also have a UK national motorsports licence and I hope to do some more real-world racing once Racing Apex is launched. Making Racing Apex allows me to remake some of the world’s iconic racing cars in the style of the 90s arcade games that I loved when growing up.”

 Help Shape The Future Of Racing Apex And Get Ready For The Demo - Gaming

Do you have any favourite current racing titles to play?

“Currently we’ve been playing Gran Turismo, Forza, Need for Speed and of course Virtua Racing on PS2.”

If you want to get involved early, Trevor says, there are a few ways to get your hands on the game before its launch. A playable demo will be coming very soon to the Racing Apex site. Keep your eyes peeled in the Steam community for your chance to join closed Alpha and closed Beta testing. Lastly, gamers can comment below with car, track and driver suggestions. Who knows? You might see your favourite old school arcade car reincarnated on your desktop!