A long time ago, in the halcyon past of the late 90’s, there was vehicle combat.
Twisted Metal. Interstate ’76. One of the things I really liked about Interstate ’76 was the extensive customisation you could do to your car’s loadout. Oh yeah, and remember LEGO Racers? You could build your whole car from the chassis up.
Problem was, it didn’t really have any effect. A tiny bit maybe, depending on the amount of blocks you used. But you never placed an engine in that thing. Your cuboid mess drove as fast as your streamlined concept car. What if your part choices, and your part placement, did have an effect?
Scraps is a vehicle combat game where you build your vehicle from parts, where the parts have actual functions, and how you place them realistically affects the weight and centre of mass of your vehicle. Then you take your terrible creations out and scavenge scrap from the destroyed parts of your enemies to make them even more ridiculous. Price limits on matches keep things fair, but it’s up to you where you find a balance between weapons, armour, and speed – and how you literally balance the weight on your car.
Scraps is a game I’ve wanted to play since the above games came out, and no-one’s ever quite made it, so now I’m making it myself. I’ve been working on the game for a year so far, and the building system plus a basic set of parts are up and working. You can download an early builder demo here, but keep in mind that there’s still a lot to come.
When basic multiplayer deathmatch is done and working solidly, there’ll be an alpha release where you can buy in early at a cheaper-than-final price, but you’ll also get access to the final release when it’s done. The final release will include more chassis types, more parts, and more everything else. A race mode would be nice.
The alpha release is still a little while away, so Scraps is running a Kickstarter right now to get some funds coming in. You can check out the Scraps Kickstarter here. There’s a lot more information on the game there as well. Here’s an early gameplay trailer.
The thing is, I want to be able to build a car that sucks. One where the weapons don’t fire because there isn’t enough power. One that falls over when it turns. We’re coddled by games where every strategy is viable, or worse, there’s only one strategy. Yeah, this game is going to need a lot of balancing to make sure there isn’t one “best” build for each price range, and these will be ongoing balance work. But if you’re always trying to make the perfect car, you’re kind of doing it wrong. Make a creative design. Make a clever one. Make a crazy one. Now you’ve got it.
Thanks to ForeverGeek for the opportunity to make this guest post. You can help support them through their Kickstarter Store.