5 Awesome Vehicular Combat Games
Remember the days when vehicular combat games were king and there was always a release to look forward to every year. This year this gem of a genre has returned in the form and shape of Twisted Metal, which despite a few online issues, has been a great revival of the carnage, destruction and arcade roots of the previous generation of such games. There is a vestige of older and even some recent games that hold a place in many fans hearts as an epitome of what this genre of games is all about.
The truth about why we enjoy these games so much is because we have fond memories of the total destruction we brought upon friends in warring vehicular combat. You may disagree with some of these games, and argue that they don’t fit into the genre specifics of vehicular combat. However, everything comes down to a matter of opinion. In this case, the list will include some racing games with vehicular combat elements.
1 — Crash Team Racing
Many summer holidays were spent playing this game like your favourite pair of worn out shoes with destructive missiles, awesome power-ups and of course Crash, from the Crash Bandicoot series. This game was released in the PlayStation 1 (PS1) era and took the established Mario Kart formula, improved it, added Crash Bandicoot characters into the mix and offered 3D racing arena the likes of which hadn’t been seen on the PS1. Naughty Dog displayed a retrospective nod to the three prior Crash Bandicoot games and gave us a game which was funny, memorable and showed exactly how to make a quality game.
2 — Twisted Metal
Twisted Metal is a franchise which has been with us from the PS1 era right through to the PS3 with the release of the self-titled Twisted Metal game, with the return of David Jaffe at the helm. This game embraces a lineage stretching from the PS1 iterations of the game, sharing a past with games like Carmageddon. It has a zany cast of characters. In the latest update to the franchise Sweet Tooth once again returns as one of the main characters of the game and the tournament is again taking place. The game efficiently and memorably combines a dark and macabre story, black humour and over-the-top gameplay.
3 — Wipeout
Wipeout was original during its PS1 era birth and is still going strong and is a unique franchise among its peers. Wipeout games are fast paced futuristic races where racing with anti-gravity vehicles is common place. With a host of power-ups like shields, turbo boots, mines, shockwaves, rockets and missiles found on pads throughout the deadly descents of the Wipeout, the game never became boring. The series has also become renowned for using great electronica and electronic dance music in their soundtracks for each of their games. There’s nothing else like Wipeout. With the newest game out on the Playstation Vita the series is still going strong.
4 — Burnout Revenge
Whilst some of the previous entries may have encompassed a certain video game franchise Burnouut Revenge sticks out for many gamers as being a truly entertaining and well received experience, even for critics. The game was released on the PlayStation 2, Xbox and Xbox 360. The great thing about Burnout Revenge was the modes that the game offered which all took place in rush hour traffic. This meant that the destruction of vehicles was inevitable and so the game was essentially a destruction derby of epic proportions. You could accumulate points by crashing into cars and propelling cars as far as possible in one mode. Burnout Revenge is a great game that will be truly remembered.
5 — Mario Kart
Mario Kart first arrived on to the scene in 1992 with Super Mario Kart on the SNES (Super Nintendo Entertainment System). It featured a roster of memorable Nintendo characters including, and of course, Mario, Princess Peach, Luigi and Bowser to name a few. It popularised a movement towards go-kart racing games where you could powerslide and hop, use power-ups and use various attacks against other players on the track. If it wasn’t for Mario Kart, there wouldn’t be Crash Team Racing. The original game and those that have followed are a testament to the endurance of this game, and Nintendo’s lack of creativity.
There are other games I could have included in the list, but then we’d be sitting here for hours discussing the semantics of what constitutes a valid entry. It’s interesting to note how some of these series are still going, and how other game series have fallen into obscurity as remnants of the past. I have such nostalgic memories of these games and going back to play them, such as Crash Team Racing, the games still hold up to today’s standards. Good game design never fades away.