I'm pretty late with this review, but this game doesn't get the attention it deserves. It really doesn't.If you're looking for a realistic driving experience with features such as performance penalties from collisions, car systems accessibility, and performance customization, this isn't the game you're looking for.
Not at all.
But don't let that turn you off so quickly.
If you're looking for a game to satisfy your undying desire for high speeds, tight corners, crazy jumps, and pixel-perfect driving, look no further.
TrackMania² Canyon is one of the fastest, most hand-sweat-inducing racing games out there. With races ranging from simple flatground left & right turns, to 500km/h boosts launching you hundreds of feet into the air across colossal vertical wall transfers followed by 100-meter-tall disconnected loops, to high-speed uneven 2-lane cliffside roads and back-to-back hairpins, TrackMania² involves some of the most dynamic, intense, and exciting tracks in the racing genre.
Offline play consists of a long series of tracks (65 total), ranging in difficulty from White (easiest) to Black (hardest), wherein the player can select to race against the Bronze, Silver, Gold, Author (if Gold time has already been met), or other players' ghosts, including the top times in the world. The player can set both "Training" times, which are unofficial times that are not placed on leaderboards and can be attempted with no time restriction, as well as "Official" times, which are the times displayed on leaderboards, which the player can set with a minimum of 5 minutes in between each attempt.
Online play consists of a somewhat narrow selection of game modes (which I admittedly don't know of besides Time Trial, since it's really the only active game mode). Time Trial servers have pre-determined selections of player-created maps, where at the end of each round (5 minutes), the map switches, and the timer resets. In these 5 minutes, it's up to the player to set the best time possible, where his/her time will be stacked against everybody else in said server. At the end of each round, the player will earn a certain number of Ladder Points (this game's XP), based collectively on their relative rank, how well they did, as well as how many other players were participating.
With all of that being said, there is a highly competitive online community as well as a strong sense of player-skill progression present in TrackMania² Canyon.
Though this was not the major focus of the developers, TrackMania² Canyon is capable of looking downright gorgeous while running at 60fps+ on even mid-range systems. With my EVGA GTX-970 and AMD FX-8320, I run the game at 2560x1440 at a steady and constant 144fps @ maximum settings. It features one of the best motion-blur systems I've ever witnessed, it has a beautiful bloom effect, it has great anti-aliasing, its dynamic lighting is beautiful, its colors are well-calibrated, and it's fairly resource-inexpensive. The only graphical "problem" with this game is its somewhat short draw-detail distance, which never gets in the way of the game still loooking gorgeous (in my opinion, of course). Most importantly, though: despite this game's graphical beauty, its mechanics and physics are still fluent and responsive, which many graphically beautiful games seem to lack. TrackMania² Canyon's beautiful appearance combined with its fluent gameplay makes for an easily enjoyable gaming experience.
The Trackmania series is renowned for its extensive customizability and accessibility. Players can edit paint jobs, create maps, change their car horn, change their color trail, and more. If players are proficient with 3D modeling software, they can make their own car models and map/track blocks. Players with basic knowledge of coding can create plugins which increase map-editor depth considerably. With the almighty Steam Workshop enabled, players can download new car models, paint jobs, and maps, which are easily accessible in-game. There are also external sources of mods, such as www.maniapark.com,
which contain extremely well-designed mods that go way beyond what Steam Workshop has to offer. This game has a huge modding community, which increases its depth by at least ten fold.
This game's community is... it's great. Plain and simple. It's highly competitive, yet supportive and welcoming. The game has a lot of amazing racers with thousands of hours of experience, as well as its fair share of rookies (like me). The veterans will likely crush everybody's times and fill up the leaderboards, but everyone seems to never deviate away from purely having fun and focusing on becoming the best driver they can become. I came to TrackMania from Dark Souls, which I can only describe as having one of the worst communities out there, so experiencing the professional, laid-back community of TrackMania was refreshing, and I'm sure it will be for you too.
- High replay value
- Strong player-skill progression
- Highly customizable/accessible
- Beautiful appearance
- Low resource cost
- Active, competitive, & supportive online community
- Easy to get into, especially for fans of precision-based racing games
Get this game pls