Bizarre Creations' Project Gotham Racing 3 has been ripping up Xbox 360 tarmac for several months now and, during that time, the developer has been anything but idle. Happily for fans, you see, Bizarre continues to work on improving the PGR3 experience, with new downloadable content for the sequel planned and tournament play that'll tie in with Gotham TV. Of course, the game has recently been souped-up by the PGR100 event too - a competition that aims to find 100 elite PGR3 players and reward each one with a limited edition black Xbox 360.
It was at one of the PGR100 events that our colleagues-in-arms, OXM.co.uk, caught up with Gareth Wilson, design manager on the Gotham Team, and Ben Ward, web developer at Bizarre, to discuss Project Gotham Racing 3 - with the pair also dropping tantalising hints about what we could see in the practically inevitable Project Gotham Racing 4.
You're getting onto Xbox Live to play PGR3 fans as part of the PGR100 event. How did this event come about?
Gareth Wilson: Microsoft came to us with the idea, and since we've always wanted Gotham to be a really competitive community experience it was a great fit for us. With Gotham 3 especially we've tried to get a lot more competitive elements in there, so events like the PGR100 are fantastic for us and the players. Although we're a little worried that we're going to get battered.
Ben Ward: It really goes hand-in-hand with game because it's all about beating your opponent in the most stylish and most extravagant way possible. We're really excited about it and we're really looking forward to getting beaten a lot!
Are you finding that the PGR3 community is brilliant at the game?
BW: Absolutely. They've had the benefit of playing Gotham 1 and 2 to death and, since we made Gotham 3 as an extension of 2 in terms of handling and difficulty, they've really stepped up to Gotham 3 with a headstart. The new players have really proved themselves too, but the experienced guys have really gone to the next level. The community is also pulling together well and doing things like lap competitions, and that's great for us to see.
GW: We're seeing people do things with cars that I didn't know could be done. One guy has managed to hit 257mph in the Ultima GTR, and I know that car can't go that fast. They must have gone around the track in a particular way or something. That shows the dedication and the skill of Gotham players. It's just frightening how good some of the players are.
How do you rate your chances today then?
GW: Really badly!
BW: I told Gareth before we came down here that I hadn't been practising, but I have! It's a bit of a setup...
GW: I'm too busy to practise!
How often do you guys get to play in the office?
GW: We still play a lot in the office, but there's lots of things happening at Bizarre right now and our time for playing is getting shorter and shorter!
BW: Yeah, it's a really exciting and fast moving time at Bizarre right now and everyone's really focused on the future as much as the past. Unfortunately, there's not much time to look back and say, "Hey, that was great", so we can't play it as much as we'd like to.
So you're working on new projects right now?
Xbox 360 projects?
GW: Can't say! We'll get killed!
BW: I can repeat the press release if you want. It's multi-platform, it's an all new game and it's published by Sega.