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Trackmania Turbo Review

Trackmania has been primarily a PC series for the past 13 years. The game series has created quite the following over the past few years, with server customization to serve up nearly endless replayability. Developer Nadeo and publisher Ubisoft are now delivering the fast, insane gravity and physics-defying racer not only to PC, but to Xbox One and PlayStation 4 for the first time, the aptly named Trackmania Turbo. And it’s a series that couldn’t benefit more from a wider release, and consoles now have the capability for this game’s scale. Trackmania Turbo is a game that I can’t stop playing.

…continue reading » Trackmania Turbo Review


ShootMania Storm, storms onto Steam for fast competitive multiplayer


Ubisoft and Nadeo have released ShootMania Storm, an online multiplayer first person action game built from the ground-up for fast-paced competition and endless variation via intuitive content creation tools for users.  ShootMania Storm is now available for personal computer via the game’s official web site and the Steam digital distribution service for $19.99.

ShootMania Storm delivers on two fronts: incredible, fast-paced competition for newcomers and pros alike as well as easy-to-use creator tools that empower users with the ability to imagine, design and build their own worlds,” said Joshua Milligan, Senior Director, Online Strategy, Ubisoft.  “ShootMania Storm revives the pure, skill-based competitive gameplay that help give birth to professional gaming as it is known today.  And with its familiar controls and balanced playing field, anyone at any level can jump in, have fun and instantly compete against the best in the world.”

The release of the game follows a wildly successful open beta period in which hundreds of thousands of players from around the world competed for global domination on the game’s ladder ranking system.  In addition, players took advantage of the intuitive game editing tools, creating more than 35,000 custom maps and dozens of unique modes.

To celebrate the global launch, Ubisoft’s Nadeo studio and the ShootMania community are hosting “ShootMania 4 All,” a worldwide launch party bringing together ShootMania Storm’s first players.  North American fans will be able to join “ShootMania 4 All” servers to connect with Launch Party online.  For more information players should visit http://www.maniaplanet.com/shootmania4all.

ShootMania Storm is now available for personal computer via the game’s official web site and Valve’s Steam distribution service.  For more information, players should visit www.ShootMania.com or the Steam Store page athttp://store.steampowered.com/app/229870/.

[box_light]ShootMania Storm is part of the ManiaPlanet system and follows in the footsteps of TrackMania, Nadeo’s successful arcade racing game.  ManiaPlanet is a flexible and robust development, gaming and community platform that pushes cutting-edge graphics, enables limitless game types, and encourages incredible community participation and user-made content.  [/box_light]



ManiaPlanet comes to Steam, brings TrackMania² and ShootMania Storm


Today, Ubisoft and Nadeo announced that ManiaPlanet games and services, including the upcoming multiplayer first-person action game ShootMania Storm, will be accessible via Valve’s Steam service. TrackMania² Stadium, the racing game phenomenon with more than 11 million registered users, will also its debut on Steam. Both ShootMania Storm and TrackMania2 Stadium open betas can now be accessed via Steam. Steam users can also download the full TrackMania2 Canyon game via Valve’s platform.

ShootMania Storm is currently in open beta, inviting gamers of all levels from around the world to have a try at the fast-paced competitive slugfest. The open beta will allow Nadeo to fine-tune and refine the experience based feedback of the open beta players, as well as to test servers and introduce additional features. Several updates are already planned during the open beta period before ShootMania Storm releases on April 10.

This partnership with Steam’s worldwide publishing platform allows us to introduce ShootMania Storm and all of the ManiaPlanet games and services to an even wider audience of PC gamers around the world. As a matter of fact, it is key to us that as many players as possible join the growing community so that everybody gets maximum fun with the game.”

Through Steam, we’ll make “competition for everyone” a dream come true for even more gamers as well as amateur map-and-mod makers who create the user-generated content and activity that make ShootMania Storm so unique amongst shooters.” “I want to take the opportunity to thank whole-heartedly the players who have already joined ShootMania Storm and to welcome warmly the new comers — we’re looking forward to seeing all of them on the servers,” said Anne Blondel-Jouin, Nadeo Publishing Managing Director.

Both ShootMania Storm and TrackMania² Stadium are now available to pre-order on Steam with a 10 percent discount until release, as well as on the official website of the ManiaPlanet platform: ManiaPlanet.com.  The games can also be downloaded and played right away in their Open Beta versions on http://www.ManiaPlanet.com/download.

Developed by Ubisoft’s Nadeo studio, ShootMania Storm is a fast-paced multiplayer first-person action game designed from the ground up for online and eSports competition. With multiple game modes and diverse play styles,ShootMania Storm is an innovative twist on familiar multiplayer gameplay that focuses on skill, speed and strategy. The game also offers stout community support and interaction, with an easy-to-use mapmaker and sharing elements that, to date, have produced more than 15 player-made game modes, as well as more than 20,000 player-made maps.

[box_light]ShootMania StormTrackMania² Stadium and TrackMania² Canyon are part of the ManiaPlanet system and follow in the footsteps of TrackMania™, Nadeo’s successful arcade racing game. ManiaPlanet is a flexible and robust gaming and community platform that pushes cutting-edge graphics, enables limitless game types and encourages incredible community participation and user-made content.[/box_light]


ShootMania Storm to release on April 10th, Open Beta on February 12th


Today, Ubisoft® and Nadeo announced that ShootMania Storm, the online multiplayer first-person shooter, will be released on April 10.  Starting February 12, the game will enter an Open Beta phase allowing the developers to receive more feedback from the community ensuring a higher level of polish before the release in April.

Developed by Ubisoft’s Nadeo studio, ShootMania Storm follows the footsteps of TrackMania, Nadeo’s successful arcade racing game, to present a new dimension in first-person shooter.  As part of the ManiaPlanet system, ShootMania Storm puts players at the center of their gaming experience.  To date, players have created more than 15 game modes and, already, more than 20,000 maps have been created by players using ManiaPlanet’s proprietary map editor.

Nadeo’s model of development has always been to be ve ry close to the community,” said Anne Bondel-Jouin, Managing Director of Nadeo Live. “Following the release of the Beta 2 in December, we received a tremendous amount of information from the very active ShootMania community. For a living, online multiplayer title like this the work is never done, but these extra few weeks will allow us to polish the game further and release it to the level of quality we think our players deserve.

ShootMania Storm is already very active on the e-sports scene, recently participating in the IPL 5 tournament in Las Vegas, Nevada and MLG in Dallas Texas. In March, ShootMania Storm will be included at PAX East and will return to Las Vegas with IPL 6. More details on future ShootMania Storm events will be available in the coming months.

ShootMania Storm’s pre-order offer is still available until April 10 at http://www.ShootMania.com.



Mania News: TrackMania² Valley Announced

Some of you have waited for it for a while, and we’re now happy to announce the coming of TrackMania² Valley in ManiaPlanet in 2013!

…continue reading » Mania News: TrackMania² Valley Announced


Mania News: TrackMania² Stadium Announced

Today we are happy to announce that a new TrackMania environment will soon be integrated into ManiaPlanet: Stadium. This all-time favorite played by millions around the world through TrackMania Nations Forever will be available in ManiaPlanet in early 2013.

…continue reading » Mania News: TrackMania² Stadium Announced


Mania News: ShootMania Storm – Beta 2 and Release Date

Beta 2 of ShootMania Storm will come in December, adding lots of improvements to the game, including new gameplay mechanics and new blocks.

And to better illustrate this, here’s a small teaser of what’s to come:

…continue reading » Mania News: ShootMania Storm – Beta 2 and Release Date


ShootMania Storm Alpha & Beta Impressions

ShootMania is the next installment from Nadeo, being published by Ubisoft. ManiaPlanet is the platform to which all Mania games can be updated and launched from. So you can play ShootMania and/or TrackMania from it. Eventually QuestMania will be part of the complete package.

The new ManiaPlanet interface as of the Beta


I got access to the Alpha a few weeks ago, and I had started writing this as just an Alpha impression. It was largely the same functionality and graphics-wise, except it was standalone launcher and featured default servers from Nadeo. There were very little customization to be found, whether in modes, or maps. The only mode I came across during that time was Battle.

Now that the Beta has begun, I will go into more detail about the current version of the game…

Being on the Attackers side in Battle Mode


The game at first is fast and furious, reminiscent of the old Unreal Tournament games. All modes are essentially competitive, but ShootMania is designed to both be a league game as well as able to be approached by casual players. There’s really only 7 controls for the game. Directional keys, jump, interaction button, and shooting. While jumping, you have different properties depending on location. If you tap spacebar or right-mouse button to jump, it’ll be a simple hop. If you hold it, once you land you will sprint. If you jump mid-air, it’ll become a glide. When in underground sections, you will just sprint – no jumping.

There are only three weapon types in the game. They are determined by the mode being played. You’ll play using a slow, plasma-ball gun, railgun, and a grenade launcher for underground areas. Ammo is unlimited but weapons are limited by use and must be given time to recharge. Health is governed by a hit system, which does not recharge. Most modes you can get hit twice and you’re dead. Other modes increase or decrease the amount of hits you can take.

There’s quite a few multiplayer modes that make things interesting and always keep you moving. Joust features 1v1 queued battles which are traditional MLG-inspired matches while you have a crowd of spectators judging each individual action until one person remains. Elite sends one man in with a railgun against 3 competitors for elimination. Should he kill them, he captures a tower and points for the team.  Royal mode is all about capturing towers and getting the highest percentage. Melee is just a free-for-all deathmatch style, first to 25 frags gets the kill. Battle is essentially Team Deathmatch. The most creative and fun modes are the ones Nadeo designed and seem to have better balance and require strategy. Coming into Royal, Melee, or Battle seems slightly unbalanced or luck-based rather than skill-based.

The game runs on the same engine that has powered TrackMania² Canyon, and performs great, maintaining a solid 60fps. For better or worse, the menu system is the same as TrackMania² and is slightly cumbersome. It’s something you can get over in time.

Press F1 to learn the rules before shooting.

Want to join in on the ShootMania Beta?

  1. Go to www.maniaplanet.com/redirect/shootmania-storm-beta
  2. Click on “Download”
  3. Enter this promotional code: 0MXJUQEVAB or 0MXLOL3J5Z
  4. Enter your email address
  5. You will receive an email with the download link of the setup and your Beta Key. Install the game on your hard disk and create an account with your beta key.

Additionally, you should have received a key if you’re a TrackMania² Canyon owner.

I win.

The ShootMania Beta is only going for a short run. I’m not sure if ShootMania will wrangle people in for the first person shooter crowd as TrackMania did for the racing game crowd. That isn’t to say over more development and marketing that it won’t get some hype, as Nadeo has always been successful in capturing a fanbase. Most of those TrackMania players will migrate over and experiement. It’s a very tense and frenetic shooter that has room to grow and captivate. The shooting feel is good and the mechanics are tight. It is easy to play, hard to master. But giving it your time will be a rewarding experience.


ShootMania Beta Details

ShootMania Storm closed beta starts early July and includes new competitive mode, “Siege,” for 5 vs. 5 player battles.

…continue reading » ShootMania Beta Details


ShootMania Storm Beta Sign-Up Begins June 1st and will be shown at E3

Today, Ubisoft and Nadeo announced the opening of the beta registration for the competitive FPS ShootMania Storm. This announcement kicks off a series of events leading up to the launch of the game, including a live tournament and E-Sports demonstrations at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3).

…continue reading » ShootMania Storm Beta Sign-Up Begins June 1st and will be shown at E3