We would pretend to be surprised about the re-reveal of FlatOut 4: Total Insanity, which you may recall was first announced back in 2015. Recently, a French website claimed that the demolition derby racer was slated for March 2017, and sure enough we now have official confirmation that FlatOut will indeed be returning to PS4 and Xbox One next month. No word of a PC release, though, sadly.
FlatOut 4: Total Insanity is being developed by Paris studio Kylotonn Racing Games – the same team that which brought you WRC 5 and WRC 6. Fan-favourite modes and features will return, including the Stunt mode in which you sadistically catapult your driver through the windscreen. Six new stunt scenarios will join another six "re-imagined" classic stunts.
27 cars will feature in FlatOut 4, with a mix of "tributes to fan favourites" and new additions including muscle cars, race cars, trucks, and a rocket-boosted ice cream van. In case you hadn't gathered, the FlatOut series doesn't take itself too seriously.
Elsewhere, 20 tracks will host traditional derby racing, time trials, arenas, assault levels, Carnage levels and more. Environments will also be fully destructible. Of course, you can't have a demolition derby game without arenas, and FlatOut 4 doesn't disappoint. Arena game types will come in three different flavours: Death Match, Capture the Flag and Survivor.
Curiously, FlatOut 4 will also have a new Assault mode where you "use deadly weapons to slow or destroy your opponents." Sounds like FlatOut is heading into Gas Guzzlers: Extreme territory.
Two years after its initial announcement, we finally get to see the first footage of the game in action, courtesy of the FlatOut 4: Total Insanity reveal trailer.
Truth be told, releasing the first trailer a mere month or so before release isn't usually a good sign. Suffice to say, FlatOut 4 looks visually underwhelming, and the cars seem very weightless judging by the ease in which you can push other racers around. The racing does at least look suitably chaotic, but we don't get to see much of the damage modeling. Still, I have an itch when it comes to destructive combat racers that FlatOut 4 will hopefully still be able to scratch.
The original FlatOut developer BugBear, which was responsible for FlatOut, FlatOut 2, and FlatOut Ultimate Carnage before going on to make Ridge Racer: Unbounded, is currently working on Wreckfest, which should set new standards for demolition derby-style games with its revolutionary soft-body damage modeling. Wreckfest has been in Early Access since 2013, but should finally be crashing onto consoles and PC at some point this year.
At any rate, it won't take much for FlatOut 4 to improve on the last game in the series. Developed by Team6, FlatOut 3: Chaos & Destruction was so woeful that it nearly wrote off the series for good. If you don't believe me, just watch the trailer below.
Love how they had the audacity to call this "one of the best driving games of the year" in the trailer. Seriously.