It's been a very long time in coming, but everyone's favourite pedestrian splattering simulator is about to make a long overdue comeback, with the final release of Carmageddon Reincarnation. It's spent nearly a year in Steam Early Access, followed by a public beta launch just in time for Valentines Day this year, but now it's finally all coming together for the final launch, which has been earmarked for April 23rd.
Its release has certainly been hotly-anticipated by nostolgic Carma fans – the reboot was successfully Kickstarted back in 2012, where it manged to completely obliterate its target $400,000 fund by raising $625,143. You would think the Carmageddon series would no longer be relevant, but there certainly seems to be demand for its comeback.
From what I've played, Carmageddon Reincarnation is, for better or worse, very much the same game you played way back in 1997 in all its gory glory. The same gruesome gameplay that sent the media into a mass moral panic remains intact, with the same visceral violence and crude sense of humour the series was once known for: ploughing into pedestrians in flamboyant ways remains the order of the day whilst racking up points for causing general carnage in the free roaming races. It's difficult to imagine it provoking quite the same controversy it did in 1997 in 2015, but its tongue in cheek tone is refreshing in a genre that's currently dominated by the po-faced likes of DriveClub and Project CARS.
You can get a taste of what to expect in the new launch trailer.
The full version of Carmageddon Reincarnation will come with a 16-chapter career mode, 8-way multiplayer (LAN or online), 24 vehicles (25 for Kickstarter Backers who get their very own "Special Edition" Red Eagle), powerups, 9 open world maps and multiplayer arenas and 36 race routes.
Let's just hope the final build of Carmageddon Reincarnation arrives in a more playable state. Versions I've previously attempted to play have been hideously unoptimised, resulting in gameplay sessions with cripplingly-low frame rates that render it virtually unplayable. It's the same story for users with high-end PCs that should be very capable of running the game smoothly.
Carmageddon Reincarnation is also set to cause carnage on the consoles when it shunts into the PS4 and Xbox One at a later unspecified date.
Those of you that are eager to be reuinted with Max Damage might be wise to snap up the current Early Access release – if you buy it between now and the final release, you'll also receive the Carmageddon Classic Collection for free, which bundles Steam version of the Carmageddon Max Pack (the original game plus The Splat Pack add-on/sequel), Carmageddon 2: Carpocalypse Now, and Carmageddon TDR2K.