There’s nothing, quite as unusual and unexplainable, as mankind’s desire to see things break spectacularly. It’s hard to even describe this desire as animalistic – it’s something much more ancient, left from the times when planets were still forming, and the creation of stellar proportions was followed by destruction of interstellar proportions, when the elements were born and universes created, and the change was all-encompassing. It might also be because we’re jerks, who like to spoil shit for others. In any case, it’s unfortunate that only few developers really listen to these primal urges, and only a couple of those develop anything worth playing. One of the prime examples of a great destruction game is Burnout series, a unique combination of a racing game and destruction porn of highest calibre. The reason why I remembered about it is because one of the games contained a special mode that gave you a busy street, and let you lose in it, asking you to destroy as much as you can, in return. The massive collisions and explosions ensued, and unfortunately, not a single game tried to recreate that cathartic experience. Until now, that is.
Highway Crash Derby is a simple game. It’s, in fact, so simple that you can be forgiven for getting bored in the first couple of minutes, because there’s simply nothing to chase for, nothing that lets you keep going, other than the high-score. You get a car – well, a number of cars, actually, but since they only differ by their paint jobs, it doesn’t count – and a six-lane highway, full of traffic. You can drive for however long you want, swiping in different directions to change lanes and thus – evade other vehicles, but the fun isn’t in the road – it’s in the destination. And the destination can be whatever car or truck you jam your metal coffin into, sending both of you, spiralling into the traffic, building up piles of metal junk, just seconds ago being peaceful commuters, going on with their lives. The camera starts frantically switching between the most exciting views of the accident, looking a bit like a disaster movie, and you get nifty little signs above each car, handily telling you how much damage, in repair cash, each vehicle has sustained. Highway Crash Derby features quite realistic 3D graphics and physics, for such a small project, even though, unfortunately, it lacks any variety, as well as explosions that could easily make it a whole damn lot more enjoyable. Still, if you’re eager to see some first-class road disaster unfolding before your very eyes, check Highway Crash Derby. It’s an exciting thing, although I really wish the developer would make a sequel, with more variety and options, available.