In May of 2022, 4:33 Creative Lab transitioned to a blockchain company and announced three new Web3 games through its subsidiary, Delabs. These games, currently in development, span the genres of racing, survival, and RPG, promising a diverse gaming experience.
Last Jul. 1, Delabs conducted a Summer Camp Closed Beta Test (CBT) for “Rumble Racing Star (RRS)” as a step towards its full-fledged entry into the Web3 gaming market. This CBT invited global users who applied through the official testing webpage, with the aim of conducting final checks for the upcoming official release.
During this latest test phase, players were able to explore most of the game's content. RRS introduces a distinctive concept that sets it apart from conventional racing games, and its integration within the Web3 structure is noteworthy.
Casual Racing with Lawnmowers
A Concept that Blends with User-Friendly Gameplay
Summing up RRS in a phrase would characterize it as a "cheerful racing game infused with a B-movie vibe." Right from the game's concept, illustrations, and graphics, players will sense a deviation from the norm of standard racing games.
Traditional racing games often prioritize speed, making the mastery of controlling high velocity a key factor for winning. While these games deliver an exhilarating racing experience, they also come with the downside of higher entry barriers due to complex controls.
Conversely, RRS showcases a departure from this trend, starting with its concept of using lawnmowers as racing carts. Racing with lawnmowers that are typically used for grass-cutting seems unconventional for a racing game, yet it contributes to the unique charm of RRS, setting it apart from the conventional racing experience.
One of the most significant advantages lies in the game's ease of control. With only arrow keys, Alt, and Ctrl keys required, players can navigate effortlessly. Since the karts aren't excessively fast, managing them isn’t very difficult. Drifting, a hallmark of racing games, is also designed with a simple mechanic, allowing anyone to perform it easily.
When it comes to drifting, all you need to do is press the directional key twice in a moderately curved section, and the kart naturally veers without requiring precise angle adjustments. This approach seems to have been employed deliberately to mitigate the difficulty often faced by newcomers in mastering racing skills.
In RRS, different varieties of lawnmowers, categorized as Normal, Rare, and Legendary, come with attributes like top speed, acceleration, handling, power, weight, and durability. Players can choose their lawnmowers based on their preferred racing style and also customize their appearance, not only changing their look but also equipping additional components to enhance their performance. However, these components are consumables, requiring regular replenishment.
The game doesn't offer intricate maneuvers based on player expertise, which might disappoint those who seek pure speed sensations. Yet, the diverse array of items and character skills mitigate this simplicity, ensuring that the racing remains engaging and dynamic.
Diverse and Skill-Rich Drivers
Enhanced by Skills, Items, and Event Maps
In RRS, the drivers, along with lawnmowers, become a vital element in determining victory or defeat. The game features numerous drivers, each possessing distinct appearances, unique traits, and skills. The drivers are divided into five grades: Rookie, Junior, Senior, Pro, and Master, each progressively unlocked as players level up or obtain them through gacha mechanics.
During races, drivers have the ability to use their unique skills when specific conditions are met. These skills have the potential to significantly influence the dynamics of the race, underscoring the importance of skillful timing to counteract opponents' skills while strategically utilizing one's own.
For instance, the driver known as Aero Tomas can charge their skill gauge while driving, and upon activation, create a portal ahead that allows them to instantly teleport a certain distance. Surprisingly, the teleportation distance is greater than expected, allowing the kart to traverse obstacles and terrain seamlessly, especially in obstacle-laden areas.
However, it's important to note that the portals created through skills are accessible to other players as well. This dynamic introduces a strategic layer — when used in the proximity of other players, everyone might end up moving together, rendering the skill less impactful. Furthermore, in moments of close-quarters racing, if you fail to enter the portal due to collision, the opponent can exploit the portal to their advantage.
Because of these skill-based mechanics, every moment of racing in RRS introduces an element of unpredictability, and it sets the mind off of the fact that it’s slower compared to traditional racing titles. Enhanced by the diverse array of items available in the game and the unique situations presented by the event tracks, the overall experience mimics the sensation of enjoying an arcade racing game with friends at an amusement center.
For players who have primarily enjoyed racing games focused solely on the thrill of speed, RRS's emphasis on items and skills might not be as satisfactory. This is due to the potential for unexpected shifts in race outcomes — where even a leading position can swiftly devolve into last place due to the influence of opponents' strategies. Nevertheless, given its status as a casual racing game, RRS captures a variety of enjoyable elements. Its distinct concept and features position it well for players who appreciate lighthearted racing experiences, making it a suitable choice.
NFTs as Means of Expressing Individuality
Circulating resources used in all content
RRS explores the integration of Web3 elements, although not all aspects could be explored during the CBT phase. According to previous developer interviews, RRS is planning to utilize the profile picture PFP NFT integration to enhance user personalization.
As a matter of fact, RRS has partnered with Goblin Town, Yoots, and Killabears, incorporating drivers to use them in profiles and other related content. The game is set to introduce characters from other Web3 ecosystems through such partnerships. Additionally, RRS will issue lawnmower NFTs on the Polygon blockchain. These special NFT lawnmowers will grant players access to specific in-game content and can also provide benefits in regular racing due to their enhanced performance.
Certain event modes require qualifying conditions. For example, players need an NFT lawnmower called LadyBuggy. Players can earn much more rewards by participating in leagues, so it can be said that this is a model that increases the value of NFT lawnmowers.
The game employs a model where in-game currency is constantly consumed. Participating in races requires an in-game currency called Silver, and the amount increases with higher tiers. The game returns a portion of Silver to players based on their race rankings. In essence, the entry fee paid by eight players is distributed to those who rank 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.
If a player doesn't make it to the top three, they may lose the entry fee without any rewards. Drivers are consumables, meaning that they are not permanently usable, and every race where a player doesn't achieve a top three position leads to a deduction of a driver's usage count.
Furthermore, players need to refuel their lawnmowers with gasoline. About 20% of gasoline is consumed per race, and players need to spend Silver to refuel within five rounds. Once gasoline runs out, the lawnmower becomes unusable.
If you go through a losing streak in the game, you will continue to incur losses rather than accumulating silver coins, regardless of the length of your gameplay. Within the game, there is a daily roulette that can be spun for free, offering a chance to acquire Silver. However, due to the random nature of the rewards, the amount of Silver you can receive is determined arbitrarily, with a minimum of 100 Silver — the equivalent of the entry fee for a single race. To break free from the cycle of defeats, players are compelled to seek out better drivers and faster lawnmowers, which might lead to the purchase of NFT lawnmowers, or engagement with features like season passes or Silver purchases. The game's systems are designed accordingly to accommodate these options.
Throughout this CBT period, a variety of events were introduced, along with ample Silver rewards, creating a gameplay experience that does not leave players feeling lacking. Given that the fundamental mechanics encourage Silver expenditure, it's worth considering how the value of the in-game currency might evolve based on the operational strategies pursued in the official release.
Overall, RRS is a casual racing game that leverages light-hearted enjoyment. Designed for accessibility, it boasts a low entry barrier characteristic of casual racing games. It also incorporates elements like driver skills and item battles to deepen the gameplay experience and competitive thrill of racing. With the global release planned for the second half of the year after this CBT, those who wish to experience the game are recommended to give it a try before the official launch.