Nitronic Rush: 2012 IGF DigiPen Game

I would be very surprised if, unlike other DigiPen releases, the group behind Nitronic Rush gets picked up by Valve anytime soon. Still, Valve surprises- so we'll see.

Nitronic Rush is a driving game. It is in the style of Tron or, more recently, Saints Row 3 Cyber Blazing. The music is appropriate (techno) and works well with the aesthetic. What makes the game most interesting is not the genre, but what the game actually is. The game is described ( as an "experimental survival driving game" and this seems like a solid description. Also, sometimes your car flies.

I'm bad at driving games and not properly boned-up on the genre, so I'm sure that I'm not the best one to really describe the experience. However, if this interests you at all you should try it for free as part of the OnLive IGF promotion (

I suck at driving games so I died a lot (read: A LOT). Still, I really enjoyed the experience.

I'd be curious in hearing any experiential feedback from people who suck any degree less (or more) than me at driving games.

Also, if anyone is interested in checking the game out it looks like it's a free download at their site:

Unquestioningly worth the cost of free.

Also, a trailer:

So apparently even in real life I can't beg people to care about this game. Not going to stop me from trying.

I've played this demo 4 or 5 times at this point- so I've spent around somewhere around 2 hours in this trial. Most of that time has been spent in the first two "race" areas. What I find really fascinating is how deep the environmental surroundings are. There's a lot of verticality and simply a lot of buildings. I know this and care only because I've been spending a lot of my time exploring the area that's not the road.

There's no visible narrative reason to explore this deeply into the buildingscape, but mechanically exploring the surround areas is incredibly rewarding. I've been adapting a Far Cry 2 level of exploration and simply experiencing the game, while really turning in some fantastic trick-like moves simply in trying to navigate the world.

Each time I think I'm going to explore the surrounding world just to see if the game is hiding content-- the buildingscape feels more involved than is need to simply serve a s backdrop. But instead, each time I start I simply get lost in experiencing the world.

Surprisingly fun game.

This looks interesting. I will have to investigate further this weekend, when I have more time.

Huh, this didn't have a thread? I'm quite shocked.

I believe Strangeblades actually put this on his best of 2011 list.

I spent 20 minutes or so looking at some youtube videos (it's weird for a driving game to take hold of me like this, Burnout being the only other driving game I've ever enjoyed) and clearly my penchant for discovery in this world is outside of the norm. Just the mechanics of the game itself (the hardcore tracks get very interesting) seems to be a large part of the enjoyment. I did at least get some basic feedback from the game that it acknowledged the openness of the systems when I earned an "achievement" (in quotes because it doesn't tie to anything) for destroying the television billboards scattered throughout the map.

garion333 wrote:

Huh, this didn't have a thread? I'm quite shocked.

I believe Strangeblades actually put this on his best of 2011 list.

I posted about it multiple times, both before and after it came out. Guess I didn't thread it up since it's such a small game.

Surprised other people actually played it. I forgot I saw it on Strangeblades' list and am generally confused about what thread Hypatian might have posted on -

"Games That Include the Word 'Rush'"

Sadly it was more likely this: Looks like MeatMan was also a fan.

I can't remember what brought me across this gem last weekend. All I know is that my idea of what a flying car ought to be capable of has been forcefully revised. I was worried that the seven story levels was going to be the whole experience, but as it turns out they're really more of a tutorial. I finished all the hardcore levels before I had to take a break. Next up: death mode. (or whatever the next set was called)

Related: A subset of the team has since graduated, and they're kickstarting a spiritual successor, Distance, which will include multiplayer.

So glad that someone else happened to stumble onto this game. It's a bit frustrating to me because the game is really so good, and it's free- but I don't know how you actively bring people to it. Clearly my posts on the forum have done little to convince peeps to give it a try.

Again, that aside- super glad someone else gave it a go. I had a problem with the game in that I would often ignore the race and just end up flying around and doing tricks. My one disappointment with the game is related to this- though this could just be a me problem. I enjoyed exploring all the corners of the world so much, and it just felt so right while doing so, that it was disappointing that the game didn't support this sort of play. I'm not sure what I would want the game to do, but it always felt that the thing I enjoyed most was ancillary to the format in which the game is being presented. Still, the game feels good is a small complaint. The game feels good.

I too really enjoyed it. I can't wait to see what they do with Distance.

Played through most of the community levels last night (a couple of them are real f-ckrs). As one might expect, the community came up with styles of track design that the game wasn't really built to handle. As such, corkscrews and convex slopes often send me flying off an otherwise simple piece of road. With a bit of practice I was able to use my boosters to keep me stuck on the pavement, but even that wasn't the most reliable.

In case you haven't gone back to revisit it since you first posted in March, they've updated the game with a handful more hardcore and community levels than originally were released. A couple of the community ones aren't designed to be challenging and are simply a themed drive (i.e. a christmas level) that has unlimited boosters but still no wings. But as I figured out, if you give me unlimited boosters I can fly wherever I want, wings or not.

I'll have to try some of the community levels- I didn't even think about this. In addition to the Kickstarter they're also up for voting on Steam Greenlight right now- so highly suggest giving that a vote when you have a chance.

The link for anyone interested:

Is there anyway to tell on Greenlight whether it's doing well (getting many votes)?

There was a progress bar on Greenlight when it first launched, but it was quickly removed as Valve began adjusting things based on the initial feedback. It seems the threshold a game needed to reach was not necessarily a consistent mark, and the progress bar didn't accurately reflect the game's proximity to being accepted.

Gotcha. So no way to know how a game is going on popularity. That doesn't quite seem to be the right in-between mark.

The Kickstarter for Distance has got two hours to go. They hit their funding goal, but there's (as usual) some stretch goals.

They're currently live streaming (as you do) here:

The spiritual successor to this, Distance, just got greenlit on Steam. I would find the actual thread for that game and post there but it has a stupid name.