Following on from yesterday’s teaser, Nacon and KT Racing have announced Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown. There’s no release window announced, but because of that, I’m sure we can expect the game to come to PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X whenever it is ready.
Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown – named after the Solar Crown competition featured in the last Test Drive game – is intended to revitalise the Test Drive Unlimited series. The Solar Crown competition is now as broad as can be, letting players compete and progress through the game however they want. On the whole, KT Racing say this will keep the DNA of Test Drive Unlimited, but give more modern gameplay and game modes around them.
The game physics will be based on the physics engine that KT Racing have created for their WRC rallying series, turning that to the wider world of cars and racing. Bringing this up certainly hints that you’ll have more off road opportunities in Solar Crown, but it won’t forget the glitzy road cars that are TDU’s bread and butter. With full customisation options for your avatar, you’ll be able to go racing on a new island built on a 1:1 scale. What island that is? If it’s real or fictional? We don’t know.
There’s not much more to go on at this time, but hopefully KT Racing will be able to show off more of the game soon.
It has been a long, long time since the last Test Drive game. That came in 2012 with Test Drive: Ferrari Racing Legends, developed by Slightly Mad Studios of Project Cars fame, with Test Drive Unlimited and its sequel released back in 2006 and 2011 by Eden Games. The series as a whole stretches all the way back to 1987.
The two Test Drive Unlimited games were pioneers of online racing, in many ways, with large open worlds to drive around and the ability to race and challenge other drivers. Such features even extended to the PlayStation 2 and PSP versions of TDU, launching on those platforms prior to the dawn of the modern PlayStation Network era on PlayStation 3. Needless to say, online connectivity, shared world and open world racing have become de rigueur since 2006, from Burnout Paradise and Need for Speed to the popular Forza Horizon series.
We didn’t pin a score on Test Drive Unlimited 2, but Alex did share some thoughts on the game:
“There are moments in Test Drive Unlimited 2 when everything snaps together perfectly and you get an all too rare, blissful, zen-like rush of pure joy. If it’s the right time of day with the sun setting on the horizon ahead, an open road at 150mph and Paul Van Dyke blasting through the in-car radio like Kevin and Perry going large, it’s a dreamy, unworldly sensation that could only be captured with all the variables firmly in place. TDU2, when it works, is breathtaking.”
Of course, the next line was, “But when it doesn’t, it’s a wreck.”