Switchcars is a vehicular roguelike arcade set in a broken spacetime. Escape alien beasts over procedural environments, using more than 1,000 vehicles. You'll crash or run out of fuel, but that's okay - you'll switch to another vehicle. All you need to do is reach the year 2055. In theory!
User reviews:
Overall:
Very Positive (81 reviews) - 93% of the 81 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 4, 2016

Sign in to add this item to your wishlist, follow it, or mark it as not interested

Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Releasing Switchcars on Early Access has been in the plans for nearly two years. In contrast to releasing the game too early, that time was spent getting it as feature complete as possible. The game's got a ton of content, it's running quite smoothly, and it's very replayable. However, it is still work in progress. As I've been the sole developer for the most part, doing all the graphics, audio, business, promotion and nearly all the code, things take time. So I'm doing Early Access for a couple of reasons: 

  • Switchcars is in late alpha phase and at this point community feedback is very welcome for testing, balancing, suggestions, helping prioritization of upcoming features and fixes, and so on. 
  • Scope of the game was designed from the start with regular updates in mind, so it's got a lot of room for growth.
  • Some of you have been patiently waiting for Switchcars for a long time and this is a great way to make the game available to you while it's still in development.
  • After all these years, earning some revenue would sure help get better sleep at night! It would also potentially allow hiring additional developers and further expansion of the game.

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“Depending on community involvement and feedback, completing Switchcars might take anywhere from several months up to two years. Switchcars has a lot of potential for expansion and I would like to push it to its limits, as long as development is financially reasonable and redoing the whole game from scratch isn't necessary to keep adding new features.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“Currently considered future updates include more powerups, more music, more types of lanes, more backgrounds, more animals, Steam features such as leaderboard and achievements, perhaps new game modes (some have been in the plans for a long time), and of course, hundreds of new vehicles (it's already got a thousand)!

Depending on the revenue and feedback, the scope of the game might change as well.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“Most of the planned core features and content are currently present in Switchcars. It is highly replayable, quite stable and has been thoroughly balanced over the years.

It isn't complete yet however. Switchcars is in late alpha and certain technical issues are possible, such as image being stretched or cut on screens not supporting 16:10 aspect ratio. More balancing may also be needed, and some relatively obvious additions to the game still might require a lot of time to implement.

Steam features, such as achievements and trading cards, haven't been implemented yet. Please also keep in mind that save files might need to be reset at some points during the Early Access, as the game keeps changing with every update.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“The price will not change when the game leaves Early Access, apart from occasional special offers like the release week or Steam sales.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“Feedback from players on occasional game festivals in the past has played a big role in development decisions up to this point, so I'm counting on community for feature suggestions, balancing suggestions, vehicle and other content suggestions, bug reports, and to just generally help decide what to prioritize for the next update.

Please note that due to Switchcars being made by a single person, only so many suggestions can make their way into the updates. That said, all the suggestions will be taken into consideration, and if the revenue allows hiring more developers to share the load, so will increase the development speed.”
Read more

Buy Switchcars

 

Recent updates View all (18)

April 8

Update 15 - Drafting, 2 new car sounds, EBS, win-based unlocks and much more!

Hey guys!

A new update is here - this time primarily focused on your suggestions from the forum, mainly the Random ideas thread! Thank you everyone for the awesome suggestions - keep them coming! The update includes some not yet visible work too, but more on that in a later update.



Drafting effect:

Switchcars now features a relatively advanced simulation of drafting! It's an aerodynamics thing: if you tail a vehicle that is clearing air in front of you, you will reach a higher top speed due to reduced resistance. However, when you steer to the side to overtake a vehicle, hitting the air wave will slow you down again.

This feature is very analog and varies from situation to situation, as it is calculated using both player's and traffic vehicle's speed, mass and height, as well as their mutual distance at every moment, so understanding it is mainly based on a feeling. Bicycles can take great advantage of drafting, but you'll see it most useful on racetracks due to high traffic speeds. Living beings are not affected by it.

Drafting system deliberately doesn't include any accented special effects (apart from the strength of whoosh sound when you steer into the air wall), but the effect will be clearer once the speedometer is implemented in the next build.

New car sounds:

Two new engine sounds were added to the game:
  • Sports Car - fast, aggressive
  • SUV - powerful, expensive
In addition to that, vehicles equipped with ABS (2004+) got characteristic new tire-screeching sounds.

EBS (Emergency Braking System):

All road and rail vehicles introduced in 2018 and later come equipped with EBS. EBS will automatically apply brakes after having detected an imminent crash. It will not prevent high speed crashes, but at least their force will be reduced. When activated, EBS is accompanied by a beep sound and a speed limit icon. There are rare situations when this safety system can be irritating, deliberately giving older vehicles an advantage.

Fuel leaking:

Crashing a fuel-powered vehicle will now pose another potential threat - fuel leaking. The leak will, of course, quickly deplete fuel reserves, but can also set the car on fire if the exhaust backfires!

Wind force:

Each segment now comes with a wind parameter of varying intensity and direction. Like Drafting, the wind force is calculated with vehicle's mass and height taken into account.

The wind has no effect in most situations, however if you are flying in the sky lanes or operating a sail-propelled vehicle (such as a Sailboat, or a Hot Air Balloon), it will affect your speed (and speed of traffic).

The wind can be so strong, especially in storms, that it will keep an unpowered plane flying indefinitely. However, the wind is unpredictable - in the very next segment it might be blowing in the opposite direction.

Currently there is no wind indicator, but it will come with the speedometer in flying vehicles, in the next update.

Win-based vehicle unlock:

Many of you had trouble finding the last few remaining vehicles to unlock. There is now an additional way to unlock them - beating The Run or Hardcore!

Winning those game modes will always unlock one vehicle as long as there are any remaining, listing it the last on the end screen, indicated by a special medal icon.

More highlights:
  • Added "City Dusk" background and lighting (shown above)
  • Improved heavy rain (now with thunder!)
  • Added EMP mine (damages all batteries, spawns 2029+)
  • No more background noise spam while browsing database
Of course, there are many more small improvements and bug fixes, so be sure to check out the full changelog for more details:

Full changelog:

As always, all changes are listed below, but also can be read from within Switchcars and its changelog viewer!

Gameplay:

- Added Draft Effect

- Subtly increases top speed when tailing a vehicle
- Calculated using player's and other vehicle's speeds, mass, heights and mutual distance
- Changing lane while tailing will induce a slowdown as vehicle strikes air again
- Doesn't apply to living beings

- Added EBS (Emergency Braking System)

- Available on road and rail vehicles introduced from 2018
- Slows down vehicle when a crash with another object is imminent
- Shows a speed limit icon above vehicle and beeps when activated
- Can be disabled with Manual Control powerup
- Animals too will try to stop before crashing

- Added fuel leaking

- Induced by crashing a fuel powered vehicle
- Causes fuel loss
- Exhaust backfire can set the leaking vehicle on fire

- Added wind force

- Affects player speed in sky lanes
- Calculated using vehicle's mass and height
- Propels vehicles with sail propulsion (sailboats, aerostats...)
- Varying direction and intensity per segment

- Win-based vehicle unlock:

- Beating The Run or Hardcore will unlock one remaining locked vehicle
- The vehicle is indicated at the end screen with a special sound and medal icon

- Added EMP mine

- If activated by player, degrades batteries on all electric vehicles in inventory
- If activated by aliens, degrades battery of player's current electric vehicle
- Inflicts minor damage
- Appears on Minefield starting in 2029

- Shield now lifts vehicle above ground while active
- Drill and Ballast now work on flying vehicles
- Internal combustion engines no longer work in vacuum
- Rockets and Thruster powerup now have Disposable fuel
- Rail Wheels increases top speed by 20%
- Armor decreases mine damage (though no vehicle is immune to it anymore)
- Doubled magnet vehicles' hit points for better upgrading usability
- Junkyards can now spawn any vehicle
- Slightly increased spawn rate of Gas and Repair station when needed
- Slightly increased powerup spawn rate in Free Roam
- Removed Grappling Hook from sail-powered vehicles
- There can no longer be only Ice Forest or only Lava lanes
- Slightly increased Manual Control spawn rate in later stages
- Moved Graveyard from default to level 2 unlock lanes

Content:

- Added Sports Car engine sound
- Added SUV engine sound
- Added "City Dusk" background and lighting
- Added new tire screech sounds for vehicles with ABS (introduced 2004+)
- Reduced volume of diesel engine sound
- Redesigned some powerup icons
- Updated all lane images with current vehicle designs
- Updated tutorial vehicles with current vehicle designs

Cosmetic:

- Improved heavy rain weather

- New sound (distinct from light rain)
- Features thunder

- Plasma vehicles no longer glow when parked, damaged or out of fuel
- Tailpipe backfire is now possible only on vehicles with rear exhaust
- Quitting game with alt+f4 is followed by a fadeout effect (damir)
- Renamed Ski Track to Piste

Interface:

- Gameover in Free Roam now changes year selection button to "Retry"
- No more background noise spam while browsing sub-menus (e.g. Database)
- Added animated arrow above Underground Passage when pursued by aliens
- Vehicle suggestion option is grayed out until having passed tutorial
- Main Menu button now informs that stage progress will be lost

Major Bugs:

- Fixed crash caused by picking up a contextual powerup far from start in Free Roam
- Fixed alt+f4 leaving process active since 1.014 (damir)
- Fixed white letterbox on some monitors
- Attempted fix at FPS drop on certain machines

Minor Bugs:

- Fixed water battery degradation not stopping when it reaches end
- Fixed magnet vehicles unable to lift off the ground when upgraded into aircraft
- Fixed cable vehicles not working properly when having some specific powerups installed
- Fixed wheel-equipped plasma vehicles still hovering after they run out of energy
- Fixed electric boats with drill installed taking water damage
- Fixed future hybrid LCV missing petrol engine sound
- Fixed electric City Car having red brake lights
- Fixed Shield staying stuck at ending sequence
- Fixed battery degradation GUI being one pixel offset when completely degraded

Other:

- Game can be closed from OS now (e.g. via close window button) (Damir)
- Various small tweaks and improvements

Feedback:

That's it for this update, and as always if you have any questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to post on the forum!
4 comments Read more
See all discussions

Report bugs and leave feedback for this game on the discussion boards

Reviews

“Absolutely a game that I needed to write about right now”
PC Gamer

“Switchcars is a very strange game and I think it’s a very good one”
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

“It spells a damn good game, with a high level of replayability”
Final Boss Fight

About This Game

Switchcars is a vehicular roguelike arcade set in a broken spacetime. Escape alien beasts through procedural environments, using more than 1,000 vehicles. All you need to do is reach the year 2055. In theory.

You are probably not going to make it. Not the first time, not the second, but perhaps the 100th? Every round is different, and you'll get better over time, so crack your knuckles and show those alien beasts who's the master of vehicular arts, the ultimate escaper of Earth, the unintended interdimensional time traveler scientist-man of pure vehiculative efficiency! Or, get struck by a bus and try again.

Features:


  • New kind of gameplay

    Switch instantly between vehicles in your inventory to move as fast as possible.

  • 1,000 vehicles

    Nearly all kinds you can imagine, all driveable, with different behaviors. There's a bit more than a thousand actually, and more is yet to come.

  • Procedural environments

    Forests, streets, ice plains, outer space, train yards, minefields - Around 100 unlockable types of terrain, diverse traffic to dodge, as well as more than 150 static scenery objects.

  • Time travel

    The playable years are 1950 to 2055. The point in time dictates available vehicles and environments, but also difficulty. Can you make it to the end and get an interstellar spaceship, the ultimate vehicle?

  • Vehicle upgrades

    Rocket-propelled motorcycle with caterpillar tracks and machine guns? Yes! There are 40 powerups that can be used on any vehicle, altering their performance and appearance.

  • Content browser

    Browse vehicles, lanes or powerups you've unlocked. See how many you haven't seen yet.

  • Immensely replayable

    Due to agile gameplay and procedural nature of the game, the rounds are always different, relatively short and unpredictable - in classic action roguelike manner.

  • High fidelity

    Crunchy crashes, distinctive and colorful pixel art, highly detailed sound and original adaptive music.

System Requirements

Windows
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • Processor: 2.5 GHz
    • Memory: 2048 MB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 6600 GT / Ati Radeon 9800XT
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
    Minimum:
    • Processor: 2.5 GHz
    • Memory: 2048 MB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 6600 GT / Ati Radeon 9800XT
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
Customer reviews Learn More
Overall:
Very Positive (81 reviews)
Review Type


Purchase Type


Language


Display As:


(what is this?)
56 reviews match the filters above ( Very Positive)
There are no more reviews that match the filters set above
Adjust the filters above to see other reviews
Loading reviews...