Wreckfest Isn’t Finished, Will Release On Consoles Anyway

WreckfestRemember Bugbear’s Wreckfest? The game that was intended to be a spiritual successor to 2005’s cult classic FlatOut, but given a modern makeover to really wow people with impressive damage modeling and a semi-competent driving model? There’s a reason you probably don’t. Releasing on Steam’s Early Access Platform around the same time as Assetto Corsa in late 2013, the game both physically and metaphorically died after only a handful of updates. While the popularity of the game momentarily exploded and actually made the team at Bugbear a hell of a lot of money thanks to the promise of what could be a really fucking good re-boot of the FlatOut concept, Wreckfest was never actually finished.

telemetryYes, as we’re only a few short months away from the 2017 calendar year, Wreckfest is still this awkward Early Access title. There are a few more cars and a handful of extra tracks compared to the initial release many of you have most likely played (and forgotten about), and mod support has been hastily implemented to cater to the small but loyal flock of fanboys, yet Wreckfest is possibly the absolute pristine example of why Steam’s Early Access program doesn’t work in execution. Developers aren’t under any sort of incentive or legal obligation to finish the game, and the end result of this situation surrounding Wreckfest and Bugbear has left customers with a product stuck somewhere between a physics sandbox and a private beta.

In a move that surprised absolutely everybody, Bugbear have announced Wreckfest will be coming to both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One – but there’s a catch. No, the game won’t magically be finished in the next six months or so, nor will it turn into this fleshed-out, enjoyable diversion of sorts from Assetto Corsa or Project CARS; a simcade demolition derby product with acceptable driving physics and phenomenal crash damage effects. Bugbear will simply release Wreckfest in an unfinished state yet again, taking advantage of the new Early Access-like programs that both Microsoft and Sony will implement within their respective consoles in 2017. The team have also announced a spinoff title named Stuntfest, a game many believe to be focused around a customized physics sandbox that was once available to Wreckfest Early Access customers at no extra charge.

Untitled-2This is sheer insanity. Wreckfest, while quite enjoyable with a wheel, isn’t done. In fact, it’s nowhere close to being done, currently resembling what WMD members were treated to during the weekly beta build releases of Project CARS. The game is little more than an advanced tech demo with functional menus, and you can see everything Wreckfest has to offer – every track, car, and race type – in about thirty minutes of light play. Bugbear doesn’t believe this is an issue despite their title sitting in Early Access for three years, and have already began work on another game. The advanced tech demo of Wreckfest can be bought for as low as $20, or as high as $70 depending on the contribution level you prefer, but given how Bugbear has let this game literally sit unattended for 36 months, there are no guarantees the product will be worth even a fraction of the asking price.

With something this bizarre unfolding, I struggle to understand how some can say this is a Golden Age of Sim Racing. We’re at a point where a developer is about to release a console version of an Early Access game they’ve neglected for three years. This is about as anti-consumer as you can get, and the fact that nobody has stepped in to say “you can’t do this, it’s crossing into anti-consumer territory” is absurd. Are we going to get to a point where racing games in 2021 are merely blank word documents, and fanboys sit around defending the practice by saying they love the new minimalist ideology fueling sim racing development?



57 thoughts on “Wreckfest Isn’t Finished, Will Release On Consoles Anyway

  1. Well the beta on console trend already started prior to 2017

    Project cars and now assetto corsa …………… I wont be buying into this one as I don’t buy digital anyway.

    Thanks for the heads up ūüôā dammit I loved flat out and flat out 2 ūüė¶


    1. Agree with this. Too many dodgy developers releasing half-finished products on these digital platforms. I can’t understand why it’s taking so long for the consumer to wake up it.


  2. It is pretty obvious that developers of driving games will be copying Project Cars and releasing on PS4 and Xbox as well as PC.The reason is their is little money to be generated for PC only based sims because not everyone has the space or wants their living room taken over by a racing setup.

    Sim racers just have to hope the extra revenue is used to develop the games.


  3. Ei. Bugbear ei ole konkurssissa. Mutta.

    Päivän huhumylläkkä räjähtikin sitten hienosti helsinkiläisen Bugbear-studion ympärille, kun nettikansa innostui väittämään firman olevan konkurssissa. Vaan kun ei ole.

    Kyllä, Bugbear löytyy Asiakastiedon konkurssiin haettujen yritysten listalta, mutta se ei suinkaan tarkoita että firma olisi konkurssissa. Bugbear ei ole hakeutunut konkurssiin, vaan velkoja on hakenut yritystä konkurssiin.

    Toisin sanoen, Bugbearilla on velkaa jollekulle ja tämä on ryhtynyt perintätoimiin laittamalla hansikkaaseen kiven ja lyömällä päin kasvoja.

    Toimenpide on sinänsä rankka veto, mutta ei mitenkään poikkeuksellinen, eikä se vaikuta tällä erää sen enempää Bugbeariin kuin pelin tekemiseenkään. Velkojan tekemä konkurssihakemus peruuntuu velan maksamisella, taikka sitten asiaa käsitellään aikanaan virallisemmassa asteessa.


    Mutta samalla velkojan tekemä konkurssihakemus on hyvä hetki katsella Bugbearin ja sen tekemän Wreckfest-pelin tilanteeseen. Wreckfestin julkistuksen aikoihin Bugbear oli taloudellisesti pahassa jamassa, etenkin kun Kickstarter-keräys epäonnistui. Firma sai kuitenkin pelin Steamin early access -palveluun, jossa se nousi pikkuhitiksi ja sai kasaan niin paljon valuuttaa, että pelinkehitys saatiin kunnolla alkuun. Ja tuolloinen verottajan tekemä konkurssihakemus peruuntui, kun Bugbear pystyi maksamaan verovelkansa.

    Mutta tästä on jo kaksi vuotta. Early access -versio ilmestyi Steamissä 15.1.2014. Vaikka päivityksiä putoilee edelleen kuukausittain, ovat ne sisällöllisesti aika pieniä eikä peli yksinkertaisesti tunnu etenevän riittävän ripeää vauhtia. Voi toki olla, että puoli vuotta sitten tehty massiivinen sisältö- ja fysiikkapäivitys toivat omia haasteitaan jatkokehitykseen, mutta silti: Wreckfestistä puuttuu yhä iso kasa kaivattuja ominaisuuksia ja etenkin ripeyttä.

    Nykyisellään Wreckfest on erinomainen nettipeli. Se näyttää upealta ja tuntuu hyvältä. Autoilla on kiva kaahata kunnon romurallia erilaisissa ympäristöissä, ja pelaajayhteisökin on pääosin oikein mukavaa. Tekniikka on näin satunnaisen pelaajan kannalta kunnossa, mutta pelistä puuttuu pihvi ja kastike. Ei uratilaa, ei yksinpeliä, ei sisäänrakennettua nettiliigaa…

    Wreckfest vaatii yksinkertaisesti vielä paljon duunia ollakseen julkaisukelpoinen, ja kahden vuoden odotus on ollut jo liikaa joillekin tukijoille. Tämä on sitäkin kirpaisevampaa nyt, kun early access myynnit tuskin tuovat kahden vuoden jälkeen kovinkaan isoa kassavirtaa. Toivon hartaasti, että tämänhetkinen velkojan kivinyrkki on vain yksittäistapaus, mutta samalla olen vähän huolissani siitä, että millä muskeleilla Bugbear aikoo saada Wreckfestin julkaisusuoralle.

    Bugbear on helsinkiläinen vuonna 2000 perustettu pelikehittäjä, joka on luonut muun muassa pelit Rally Trophy, Tough Trucks, FlatOut, FlatOut 2, Sega Rally Revo ja Ridge Racer Unbounded.


      1. 3rd world? If you’d use google translate it would tell you is Finnish.

        And no, this isn’t an English only speaking site. This is a free for all, with slight moderation for pictures and videos. If you remove non-english, then you better remove spammers and off topic comments as well.


        1. Finnish? Who talks fucking Finnish apart from Fins?

          Now who talks English apart from the English?

          See what I’m getting at Kevin?


    1. Se “itkeminen” on kuitenkin jo sill√§ viimeisell√§ pyk√§l√§ll√§ jos haetaan konkurssiin. Siin√§ kohtaa velallisen on v√§h√§n pakko keksi√§ ne rahat jostain jollei halua ett√§ firma menee nurin (poikkeuksia toki on).


  4. Although only in a pre-alpha state, playing Wreckfest online is the most fun I’ve ever had in all my years of gaming. Honestly, the game is pretty solid for this state. I’ve seen released games that are less stable. No issues here.


  5. This is smart move by Bugbear and Kunos should have done the same thing and release AC as early access title on consoles so no one would complain about missing features and bugs because it’s early access.


  6. This early access bullshit needs to die, along with micro-transactions in full-price games and season pass DLC.

    It’s everywhere. Just make a fucking product and sell it when it’s done, not a second earlier. It’s never a good sign when you are neck deep in tight timeframes and budget and you have to hype the masses like hell in order to get your product sold.

    I don’t want to be “friends” with the devs, I don’t wanna market a half-assed game FOR them. Only if, and that’s a big if, they did good work on a game, only then will I recommend it to other people. Not when they have announced that they are GOING to make a good game AFTER they lined their pockets.

    every gamer ever.


    1. nope, buy what you want.
      Plenty of the early access games wouldn’t exist if companies would follow what you’d say. Yes, users get to experience along the way the game is being developed instead of playing a full release, but means many of these game ideas or concepts wouldn’t be a reality since is difficult for many smaller companies to have the necessary funds and people to work behind closed doors and only release when everything is done.
      So an example, you’d only have iracing, project cars, rfactor, race07, gtr2. That would be your sim racing genre from 2005 to 2016.


      1. Good point.

        Maybe sometimes, people decide too late on whether they want something or not, and they get outraged.

        It’s much rather hyping, lying and false promises/false advertising that pisses people off.

        Look at how scandalously the whole NMS release has fared, for example. The devs will have to own up to what they said to boost hype, and the refunds are coming in by the bucketful as it turned out to be a big disappointment for many players and the devs alike. But this outrage is partly due to badly informed customers who refunded the game for reasons that they have only found out after playing the game for an hour count well into the double digits. Reasons that were apparent to others way before release.


  7. go eat your fishy pastries finnish guy, your country is gonna be assimilated from russia anyways so no use to talk a diying language


  8. I bought into this, beamng, assetto corsa etc with good expectations. After being burned on all of them i stick to forza, older simcade games like grid and emulating ps2 racers. At least they were (mostly) finished and had stuff to actually do rather than just…not.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. As a very early supporter of Wrecfest I was disappointed by that move, not to mention their incredibly slow update times (the most known is the infamous build 7, it took almost A YEAR to come out). There were speculations of Bugbear going bankrupt, but surely they have to be short on cash, otherwise I don’t understand why they would release Stuntfest and the console version. The lack of communication from them makes the stuff even worse.
    I surely won’t be able to get my 35 euros back, so the only thing I can do is to wait because eventually something will be out.
    One thing for sure, Bugbear is in an undefendable position

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Sorry that we couldn’t afford to put the windows in your house, we ran out of money but if you buy these decorative packages, look at these curtain sets, nice eh. Then we will make enough money to finish your house. By the way make sure subscribe to our you tube channel we will show you how we put in windows.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Did you miss me, you bunch of worthless excrement bags? ūüôā
    “Major truth”, “Hash Brown”, and “Beep beep I’m a GT3000” => TRIPLE MURDER.
    I’ll go away for now cos I’m busy, I have a job, unlike you damn refugees.
    The next time I come here, if I see you again, I’ll ban your IPs forever.
    You’d better take this warning seriously.


        1. Fuck I hope someone is paying you for this, replying to yourself is just fucking sad, your gay porn pictures was funnier than the shit that spews from your keyboard.


  12. I think what the market really needs right now is a Milestone early access title, just imagine the communication and customer support value in that.

    By the way, I wonder how many people remember “The 90’s Arcade Racer”, that game that was going to recreate SEGA’s titles like Scud Race and Daytona USA 2 and move a bunch of Wii Us: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPIo6bcISsc That one’s even worse, because the people who donated don’t even have a demo to play after almost 4 YEARS. The developer drops some promotional lines on Kickstarter once or twice a year to make it look like it’s making progress and that’s all (the last one was 10 months ago).


  13. The first thing you learn in IT is that projects that are developed incrementally are prone to be stuck in the development phase. Steam early worsens this even more because the developers get most of their sales when the project isn’t even finished. Leaving the early-access program doesn’t usually generate a lot of extra sales because most people that are looking forward to a game already bought it.
    Therefore it can pay to just take the money of your customers who bought the game expecting all the awesome features you promised and just stop the development when the sales have reached its peak.


  14. The only finished racers on xbone and ps4 will end up being the Forza series. And I bet Forza 7 will come out before gt sport. I pity anyone who thought to give AS a go. Forza Horizon should be interesting. I bet it will sell shitloads and trump Forza 6.


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