With no sign of WRC 5 this year and whispers that Milestone have handed the keys to the license over to BigBen Interactive, many feared that Milestone were pulling away from rally games altogether. That's not the case, however, as today the Italian developer announced the development of Sébastien Loeb Rally Evo, another new racing IP joining Ride next year in the Autumn on PS4 and Xbox One.
Details are very scarce for now (no videos or screenshots were released to accompany the announcement), but, as the name would suggest, Rally Evo is being developed in collaboration with the nine-time rally world champion Sébastien Loeb, taking players on a journey through the world of rally. Here are the game modes that have been announced so far:
Career mode: live the life of a rally driver and compete for a place on Sébastien Loeb's team, where he will be your mentor and guide you through all the secrets of the sport.
Offline mode: work on your skills and perfect your driving style for a truly rewarding experience.
Online modes: challenge friends and rivals from all over the world for endless entertainment.
Of course, the main difference compared to WRC is that you'll presumably be tied to Sébastien Loeb's team throughout the career. Hopefully Milestone will seize the opportunity to reinstate the classic rally cars that were missing in WRC 4 in the single player modes.
“We're excited to be able to publically announce our first proprietary IP dedicated to the world of autosports, and our second new IP for 2015," Luisa Bixio – VP Milestone, stated. He went on, "Building on the expertise accumulated over recent years, with the development of four titles dedicated to the world of rally, we have decided to push the envelope with a title that goes beyond the canon of licensed games. We are thrilled to be working on this title alongside one of the most iconic figures in rally history. Sébastien Loeb Evo will join RIDE in 2015 to offer a complete driving and riding experience, informed by the requests of our dynamic community of fans, and driven by our desire to satisfy their demands.”
Just as Ride is being received as a spiritual successor to Tourist Trophy, could Rally Evo be the spirtual successor to the fabled Richard Burns Rally we've been waiting for? Like Milestone's recent titles, Rally Evo is being billed as an "uncompromising simulation", so it certainly has potential.
2015 signals a new era for Milestone as they steer away from licensed motorsport franchises with the launch of two new racing IPs, allowing for greater creative freedom. With the belated launch of DiRT 4 surely on the horizon plus a possible reboot of the WRC license the same year, 2015 should also be a pivotal year for rally gamers. Expect more screens, info and videos on Rally Evo as we get them.