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Trackmania Nations Forever Print E-mail
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Written by Daniel Westerstal   
Thursday, 12 June 2008

Trackmania Nations Forever is one of the most popular free online racing games out-there. Read our review to find out if it lives up to all the hype.

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There are a number of Trackmania games out there with Trackmania Nations Forever being the latest free version when this is written. Trackmania Nations Forever is the sequel to Trackmania ESWC (2006), which is based on Trackmania Sunrise (2005). Trackmania Sunrise is the sequel to the original Trackmania game released in 2003, do you follow?

Trackmania Nations Forever has 65 tracks, which is unlocked as you play.  The track design differs from track to track and is always very well executed. There are faster tracks for players who enjoy high speeds, and technical ones for players who enjoy loop and car acrobatics.  It is also possible to create your own tracks with the game-editor that comes with the game. In Trackmania Nations Forever it is also possible to customize your own car by painting it in different colors.

The graphics looks like a fine-tuned version of the old PC-game classic Stunts by Distinctive Software. They are definitely not as beautiful as the later Need for Speed Games, however they do have charm. A nice graphical feature is that your nation’s flag is rendered on the car you drive, very neat. It is possible to increase the graphics level at the cost of performance, when doing so the game does look better.

Trackmania Nations Forever is not just an online game, it also have extensive offline racing. The offline racing is linked to an online ranking system, so you will actually earn points in the ladder system as you race offline. This means that the game caters to both online junkies and people who like to practice offline first.

The online play works well, all players race on the same track at the same time. But the opponent cars are more like ghosts, it is possible to drive right through them if you want to. This is probably due to the performance issues with having about 30 players on the same track. A problem with Trackmania when racing online is that fellow players on slow connections make the game stop for a while. If someone lags you usually run off the track or crash into something.

Trackmania Nations Forever has a generic soundtrack, which is a bit dull and sounds like some euro disco beats from the 80s. On some servers the hosts setup their own music, which makes it more interesting depending on the music taste of the host.

The realism level in Trackmania Nations Forever is about zero. It is not possible to crash into other cars; instead you just race through them. The controls consist of the arrow keys, press up to accelerate and down to brake. Trackmania Nations Forever is very simple, yet very entertaining.

Nadeo choose a complicated name for this game, and to make it even more complicated they have also released a commercial version with more features and cars called Trackmania United Forever. I don’t get what the brand names are meant to symbolize though.

For a free racing game this is as good as it gets. Trackmania Nations Forever is not something for players who like realistic racing games, but for all you people loving arcade racing this is a great free alternative.

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Related: Road Rush, Chromadrome 2, Need for Speed: Underground, Stunts
Developer: Nadeo
Website for Game: Trackmania.com
Publisher: N/A
O/S: Windows 98/ME/2000/XP/Vista
Cost of Full Game: Free
Where to get:
Download here!
Year of Release: 2008

Requirements:
Pentium 800 MHz or higher
Tested on:
Intel Core2Duo 1,86 GHz, 2 GB RAM, Geforce 8600GT, Windows Vista

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