Hardcore softbody physics.
In other words, it’s a game where you wreck cars in the most horrific ways possible. Actually, it’s far more expansive than that. BeamNG.drive, which is in Early Access, is a game where the environments and vehicles you explore them with behave in near-realistic fashion, leaving you with a playground to test out things that you’d never dare to attempt in real life.
In its current state, you have two modes to choose from: Freeroam and Scenarios (more coming with the full release).
Freeroam is where I’ve spent most of my time, exploring the maps and testing out anything that crosses my mind. Things like:
“What would happen if a school bus rammed into a compact car at full speed?”
Okay. That question is answered.
“What would happen if you jumped a SUV off a cliff, onto a beach?”
“What if you shot a cannon at a police car under the effects of moon gravity?”
Now we’re talking…
The point is that BeamNG.drive allows you to simulate some pretty intense stuff. Everything is at your fingertips to mess with, and boy are there some things you can mess with. There are so many toys and tools that you can adjust that you might get lost in the sea of details.
The key thing to remember however is that you’re really only limited by what you can think of. I’ve really only played around with the basics, like ramming into things and attempting to do some offroading without totaling my truck, but it’s so much fun. It’s very much a reminder of my childhood where I would crush Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars with rocks to see what sort of horrible, mangled mess I could create.
Then there are the scenarios. The core package includes a ton of different missions to try out, from demolition derby, to rally races, to car chases, and even some driving challenges. These are all extremely fun, because there’s an added layer of challenge to it all. Due to the fact that vehicles behave as if they were in the real world, you are forced to drive differently than you would in games like Gran Turismo, Forza Motorsport, and Grand Theft Auto. You have to drive safely (unless the scenario involves trying to stop a speeding delivery truck).
But that’s not all…
The developers of BeamNG.drive support modding in a way that I’ve rarely seen in video games. The community – which is still fairly small – has full reign over the details of the game, being able to create new vehicles, levels, textures, and scenarios. Users have even created working aircraft to fly around in.
What’s more is that the developers have integrating the mods into the game so well that downloading and installing them is a breeze. The only other game I have played so far that had modding that is as easy to carry out is Fallout 4 on the Xbox One. Mods are very much plug-and-play, and they expand the gameplay by a factor of ten.
Not For The Faint Of Heart
BeamNG.drive is a relatively resource intensive game. Sure, you can play it on an old Dell, like my cheap PC for college that sports a “top-of-the-line” Intel integrated graphics processor (heavy sarcasm there), but I’d highly recommend that you play on a PC with a dedicated GPU. The computer I’ve been running this on is a laptop with 16GB of RAM, an Intel i7-4710MQ processor, and an Nvidia GTX 960M graphics card, which runs the game pretty well.
It does make me sweat a little though. I’m considering playing the game in a freezer.
Complex, Yet Deeply Entertaining
BeamNG.drive is a toybox for car geeks and physics nerds, and the level of destructive detail that it can handle is surprising. The vehicles all handle in predictable ways, meaning that you can use your intuition to fumble your way through things.
Currently in Early Access, there’s still far more ground that the game has yet to cover, though development seems to be moving at a steady pace and doesn’t appear to be affected by Newton’s First Law of motion. Yes… I made a physics joke. However, even in it’s current form, I’d say it’s well worth the price of admission.
If you’re a fan of physics, driving, destruction, or all three; you definitely need to look into BeamNG.drive. It’s available now for PC on Steam and directly from the BeamNG website where a free tech demo is available if you want to check it out.
Did you like this post? You should click “Like” if you did. Feel free to follow Falcon Reviews as well. You can also find me on Twitter and even send me a direct email to FalconReviewsBlog@gmail.com!