Traditionally, January is a quiet month for game releases and announcements. Last week, however, Turn10 broke the tradition by announcing Forza Motorsport 6, in what will surely be one of, if not the most major racing game release of the year – even if it was merely a partnership announcement with Ford that shed more details on the new Ford GT than Forza Motorsport 6. Now it looks as if we could also be seeing the announcement of the next WRC game this week.
An image posted on the official WRC game FaceBook page points to January 22nd with the tagline "#UnleashTheDriver, indicating that an announcement is imminent. Having said that, January 22nd also marks the start of the Rally Monte Carlo, so it could be a red herring. Then again, what could be a better time to announce a new rally game and generate some buzz?
Rumours have been rife for some time now that the next iteration of the WRC game series is in development by Kylotonn Games, a French company known for such hits as, er, Truck Racer and MotorCycle Club. Italian developers Milestone previously released four consecutive WRC games which were progressing well up to WRC 4, which was easily their most accomplished rally game in the series. BigBen since acquired the WRC license last year and handed the keys .
With Milestone also currently working on Sebastian Loeb Rally, a new IP dedicated to the renowned world champion which should hopefully give them more creative license alongside Ride, 2015 certainly promises to be an interesting year for rally gamers. That's without mentioning the much-anticipated Dirt 4, which is still in development by Codemasters but recent redundancies could see the project delayed.
WRC 5 won't be the first WRC game seen in the hands of new developers, though. Last month, BigBen Interactive published a separate mobile WRC game developed by Firebrand . I recently tested the 3DS version. Let's just say it wasn't pretty.
We'll keep you posted if anything develops this week.