Developed by Slightly Mad Studios, the same team behind Project Cars, World of Speed is a fully free racing title set to make a splash on the PC this year. With a complete and true team element, as well as unique vehicles selected around global tuner cultures, World of Speed is quickly shaping up to be made for gamers and car enthusiasts alike.

Changing the tone of racing games might be the most prominent way that World of Speed is built for the community, rather than being built to pump in dollars. In titles like Gran Turismo, Forza, or even Need for Speed, the goal is set in each individual race. You’ll be drifting, drag racing, or running the circuit with only one goal – be the very best individual on the track. This can make every competition feel like it’s first or last. Being the best in your class is great, and getting the world’s high score is fantastic, but World of Speed will focus more on teamwork and what a real racing team is looking to accomplish.

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Slightly Mad Studios is placing more focus on the team, which is a fantastic change to the racing game landscape, by allowing each member of a racing team in any race have a different objective to compete toward a greater overall goal. By enabling a new game-wide feature in the coming racer, World of Speed’s “side quests” will make not just the pole position, but how your team reaches that position just as important in four-on-four competitions. Side quests allow for teams to specialize their roles in a race, meaning that their favorite car in real life can be their favorite car in World of Speed for the exact same reason. If your preference is a vehicle with top-speed, buy your Camaro and hit the lines. If you’re going to draft your way to the front, Get into the BMW of your choice and lighten the load in customization so you can take advantage of the right moment to pass. Love drifting? Pick up a rear-wheel drive vehicle and max out the torque for end-whipping turns that tear up the pavement. Your work during the race will matter as much as winning, because if your team ignores all of the side quests, which are each worth points toward the end-of-race total, your whole team will lose. Focus on the team is essential in the real world, and it’s essential in the World of Speed.

Speaking of BMW and Camaro, while the roster is far from complete, World of Speed’s vehicle line-up is shaping up to be a tuner’s dream. The announcements from Slightly Mad Studios have been missing something that every racing game touts as the best feature – new cars. Contrary to the standard moves of Forza or Gran Turismo, World of Speed isn’t touting the Bugatti Veyron in its press releases, but rather more niche vehicles from older lines as the meat of your options. Here’s the roster so far, showcasing the variety that we can look forward to, with many more options to come.

Fiat 500 Abarth
Mini Cooper S
Alfa Romeo Giulietta QV
Mazda RX-7 (FC3S)
Mercedes-Benz 190E 2.5-16 Evolution
Renault Sport Mégane R.S.
BMW 135i Coupé
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X FQ400
McLaren MP4-12C
Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG
Pagani Huayra
Chevrolet Camaro SS
Ruf RK Coupe

While all of these vehicles are sport, super sport and touring cars, World of Speed is covering more generations than we’re used to seeing in racing titles – even at this early stage in development. Taking any one of these vehicles and modifying it will greatly effect the performance, giving you noticeable control over your style, allowing you to perform your best in your team and execute your role to pick up more wins than ever before. World of Speed is about more than just the flashing lights, rain drops and reflections, it’s about the way you play together on the track.

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After spending some time in the open airfield that World of Speed will use as your lobby between races, getting on the track might be a pleasant surprise to racing fans and enthusiasts as well. Tracks not only will come from the real world, but from fan-favorite locations across the globe. Confirmed to this point, racers will be cruising and drifting through the city streets of London, Moscow’s inner-city, San Francisco in the city and on the California highway, Bathurst and more. While each track must be ready to allow for varied competition due to the inclusion of side quests, this can only mean that we won’t be racing in any ovals for 100 laps, but rather working in intense lane-dominating battles. World of Speed is built for tuners, built for gamers, and it’s going to be available for free. There is no down-side.

World of Speed is published by MY.com, developed by Slightly Mad Studios. If you’re interested in testing for World of Speed, sign up for the Beta on their official site. I can’t wait to see you on the track – add me, TheVisionEx.