I said it myself on one our previous podcasts, it’s great to see a series such as Ridge Racer finally make it on to our beloved PC platform — and for that we have Bugbear Entertainment to thank, perhaps known most widely for the FlatOut series and for working on the PSP version of Sega Rally, they’re now responsible for the upcoming Ridge Racer Unbounded and they’re bringing it to computers.
I was keen to know more and had the chance to ask a few questions of Producer Joonas Laakso about the decision to create a PC version. To which he replied, “fans would not forgive us for not releasing the new game on the PC! We’re honoured to be bringing the series to the PC for the first time.” While it’s early in development and Joonas couldn’t reveal too much right now, it was certainly good to hear of a development team that doesn’t want us feeling left out.
Here’s the full interview, for those interested in hearing what was divulged.
Firstly, could you tell us a little about Ridge Racer Unbounded and where it fits in with previous titles in the series?
Ridge Racer Unbounded is a new take on the series. It is what happens when a new developer is asked to re-interpret Ridge Racer for our technology and modern audiences. Looking at Ridge Racer as a whole, Unbounded is a new branch, separate from the traditional Ridge Racer titles we all know and love.
Will we be seeing more of the chaos and destruction that we did in Bugbear’s previous FlatOut titles? Or is this seen a chance to step away from that style of racer?
Ridge Racer Unbounded is still a Bugbear game, so there is some of that DNA in there. Chaos and destruction, absolutely! But we have used the opportunity of working on Ridge Racer to make a more accessible experience, something absolutely anyone with a passion for speed and playing rough can play. We are really focused on taking down the barrier to entry, without sacrificing depth.
What was behind the idea to finally bring the Ridge Racer franchise to the PC platform?
You know Bugbear fans would not forgive us for not releasing the new game on the PC! We’re honoured to be bringing the series to the PC for the first time. I can’t divulge any numbers, but of course Namco Bandai wouldn’t do this if it didn’t make business sense. I think digital distribution has made the PC much more viable again.
Is it likely we’ll see the game packing a little extra punch in the graphical department in the PC version?
The game has been created with console HDTV resolutions in mind as we can’t do extra work that won’t be used on all the platforms, but of course we’d love to put the extra processing power on a PC to use. We can’t confirm or deny any details yet, though.
Many racing fans on the PC use a wide variety of peripherals, such as steering wheels, pedals, stick-shifts and even head tracking devices, how much of this gear will we see supported in Ridge Racer Unbounded? And, how will you ensure the widest support possible?
We have not announced anything yet. Ridge Racer Unbounded was designed to be played with a pad, but that does not rule out supporting other input methods.
Many thanks for your time, do you have anything else you’d like to add to address the PC community?
Personally, I’m excited about making a PC game, as there’s a lot of exciting things happening on the PC right now and it’s cool to be a part of that. There are a lot of PC gamers out there, especially in Europe. The PC is where most of the development team’s roots lie, too.