|Publisher(s)||Oovee Game Studios|
|Release||June 13, 2014|
Spintires is an off-roading simulation video game by Russian indie developer Pavel Zagrebelnyj and published by the UK publisher Oovee. In Spintires, players take control of off-road vehicles and drive them through muddy off-road terrain to complete objectives. The game was released on June 13, 2014, and has since sold over one million copies. A spin-off game called MudRunner was released on October 30, 2017.
Spintires is an all-terrain simulation video game which tasks driving through muddy unpaved Russian roads in aging Soviet vehicles with nothing but a map and a compass. The aim of the game is to transport cargo to its destination without depleting resources (such as fuel) or damaging the vehicle. There is both a single-player and multiplayer mode.
The game takes into account several properties such as physics, mud, terrain deformation, as well as driving controls and a day/night cycle. Due to the challenging terrain, players must take all conditions into consideration and drive accordingly; for example, they cannot simply just press "forward" on their keyboard to drive straight.
Players can choose between casual and hardcore mode. In hardcore mode, fuel consumption is increased and routes the player charts on the map won't be displayed as a guide on the road as they drive. The game's camera is positioned outside the vehicle and can be moved around using the mouse; there is no in-car view.
The game initially raised $82,684 on Kickstarter in 2013. A few days following its release, Spintires briefly became the top-selling video game on the Steam platform, and a month after it still retained a position in the Steam Top 10, selling over 100,000 copies. In 2014, the developer Pavel Zagrebelnyj alleged that Oovee took the money and froze him out of his own game, which left him unable to update it. Oovee, however, has denied the allegations, saying Zagrebelnyj has been paid in full and that there is no breach of contract on either side. Later, both Oovee and Zagrebelnyj attributed the dispute to "communications issues", and said that an eventual sequel to Spintires was a possibility.
In December 2015, Oovee opened up the game to its player base with Steam Workshop support, seeing the release of its truck and map editor. A news post on the Spintires Steam page by the studio manager of Oovee, Reece Bolton, suggested that Spintires was not over as many had suggested, and showed signs of further graphical improvements and additions to gameplay.
Release and reception
Spintires was released on June 13, 2014, and had sold more than 100,000 copies by July. Spintires has received mixed reviews. Christian Donlan of Eurogamer placed Spintires onto the site's "Games of 2014", writing, "Spintires can make a set-piece out of a puddle. Spintires can make precisely zero mph feel like knuckle-splintering stuff. Spintires is a roguelike in which you load the game up, roll a wheeled character, and see how far you can get on a single tank of gas", and that it was "ugly but beautiful, and fixated with the beauty of ugliness."
Andy Kelly, for PC Gamer, scored Spintires 60/100, commending the game's gameplay and variety of vehicles. However, he also found fault with the game's limited scope and camera system, writing, "[...] as endearingly bizarre as I find Spintires, and as much as I admire the technology, I can't say I really ever enjoyed it. There are moments of what I could loosely call excitement—like almost rolling over and spilling my load just metres from the delivery point, or thinking I was crossing a shallow pond only to become totally submersed in a river—but they're few and far between. Mostly I just find myself swearing at mud." James Cunningham in Hardcore Gamer praised the game, stating, "[...] Spintires is a game that wants people to play rather than work. The great outdoors is big and beautiful, and the maps have plenty of personality and memorable locations, but they’re also the enemy. The inviting gameplay and lovely scenery make it easy to underestimate what an unforgiving bastard the great outdoors can be, but it only takes getting irretrievably stuck a couple of times before that illusion gets shattered. After that it’s time to stomp the scenery flat with the biggest earth-gouging, fume belching trucks Spintires has to offer."
Phil Hartup of New Statesman rated Spintires as the video game with the Best Visuals of 2014, claiming, "What I saw in Spintires was mud. The best mud I have ever seen in a game. I saw mud that splattered and squelched and I saw water that flowed around in the treads of the tyres of my truck and pooled in the mud furrows. I would stare at it, and not just because I was often hopelessly stuck. It might be a low key game about trucks and trees, but there are a lot that other games should learn from Spintires."
- Andy Chalk (December 18, 2014). "Spintires creator claims publisher has frozen him out of his own game". PC Gamer. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- Patricia Hernandez (June 16, 2014). "What Spintires Is And Why It's One Of The Top-Selling Games On Steam". Kotaku. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- Cunningham, James (November 4, 2017). "Review: Spintires: MudRunner". Hardcore Gamer. Archived from the original on December 27, 2017. Retrieved December 27, 2017.
- Andy Kelly (June 20, 2014). "Spintires review". PCGamer. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- Shaun Prescott (July 3, 2014). "Soviet off-road vehicle sim Spintires sells 100,000 copies". PC Gamer. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- Andy Chalk (February 18, 2015). "Spintires is back on track". PC Gamer. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- "Steam post: Preview Teaser". Oovee. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- Cunningham, James (July 2, 2014). "Spintires Gains Sales Traction, Clears 100k Units". Hardcore Gamer. Retrieved September 19, 2016.
- Christian Donlan (December 27, 2014). "Games of 2014: Spintires". Eurogamer. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- James Cunningham (June 4, 2014). "Spintires: The Environment Has It Coming". Hardcore Gamer. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
- Phil Hartup (December 17, 2014). "The Games of the Year 2014". New Statesman. Retrieved August 11, 2016.