An unfortunately often overlooked game that has an extreme amount of respect from it's players but not a shred of acknowledgement from the rest of the world.
I don't think this game got any hype at all, really. Which is a damn shame, seeing as how much hours people have put into this and the fact that the community of veterans has somehow managed to stay alive and well after all of these years.
I got the original Trackmania (The original) game out of a cereal box. And if I didn't, I bet I would have never touched the series. Out of sheer awe from the quality of the game, I bought Trackmania: Sunrise Xtreme off of Ebay years later. And now, I found that there was a steam version of the game, Trackmania: United Forever, which luckily enough, is a full-functioning combination of everything in the Original TM and Sunrise Xtreme TM into one super-game with content updated for both games and new content for both to officially mash the two together on an updated playfield.
For people new to the series, Trackmania is mostly a racing game. HOWEVER.
- You build your own tracks with the exact same advanced freedom the developers had when they made the standard tracks
- The races are non-contact and are purely for who can get the best time
- A lot of the game is directed towards break-neck stunts and mile-long jumps that require extreme precision to complete flawlessly
- The game has multiplayer that is cleverly designed to have the players race together but remove the effects of lag, competition and griefing by simply using non-contact 'ghost' style races and stunt events
- As a map builder you can concentrate just as much on making the map beautiful and realistic as well as concentrate on somehow making a single ramp send the player from one end of the map to the other
While being a game with a lot of features for multiplayer, the game definitely accomodates for the offline community as well. And being that the races are a 'ghost' style event, you don't have to worry about poor AI opponents or finding other people to play with as the people's races on the same course are recorded to be your 'ghost' opponent. In fact, you can turn off the 'ghost' opponent entirely and just race against your own time if that's how you want to go.
The only time I ever have a problem with the game's community is when I find myself forced to play somebody's extreme track that takes half an hour to complete because some people are certain their creations are the s**t.
Please, give this game a chance. Please.