I started playing Twisted Metal during it's second game. Even looking back on it today it's one of the best games of it's time and one of the more interesting series to ever exist. The car combat genre is about as niche as it gets and aside from a few other noteworthy titles, Twisted Metal stands atop the wreckage as by and far the best.
The gameplay was as tight as it gets, the maps were interesting and packed with secrets, the characters were chock full of personality, and the endings were equal parts funny and disturbing. Calypso, the creator of the Twisted Metal tournament had a way with words.
At some point after Twisted Metal Black I had given up hope of ever seeing a new Twisted Metal title, TM Head-On notwithstanding. Then came E3 2010. The teaser video started towards the end of Sony's press conference with no hint as to what was being shown. As two cab drivers talked casually about car combat, I got a little sparkle in my eye. Than a leather glove bent down to pick up a thrown cigar and I lost it. Sweet Tooth and his promise of car carnage was back and I was not prepared.
While the whole package has me foaming at the mouth, I'm most excited about the inclusion of multiplayer. For the first time multiplayer was thought of day one and it's looking to be one of the most hectic things gamers will ever experience. I can tell the care that went into the multiplayer just by looking at one of the game modes, Nuke. Nuke is the necessary inclusion of capture the flag. The difference here is that instead of just throwing a flag down, Eat Sleep Play has morphed it into something all it's own. You don't just grab a flag and bring it to you're base, you grab the other team's leader, drag him behind you're car, toss him into a fiery meat grinder, and then fire a missile into a giant statue.
This has to happen three times. Awesome
The multiplayer looks phenomenal, but it wouldn't be Twisted Metal without a single player campaign. I was a bit put off initially by the decision to use real people as the actors in the single player cutscenes. My fears vanished after a few trailers show the highly stylized vision they have, which really does bring back memories of Twisted Metal 2. Keeping the past behind them, the guys at Eat Sleep Play also made the decision to refine the storytelling by reducing the amount of characters we will see. There's more of a story this time around rather than a series of levels and a cutscene for the ending. I'm very excited and a little bit scared to see the origins of Sweet Tooth and the other unbalanced contestants.
It's a visual style all it's own
The cherry on top of the motor oil drenched cake is the fact that Jaffe is back in the driver's seat. I have to be honest and say that no other person has the right vision for Twisted Metal but Jaffe. He's very vocal about what he wants to do and how he's going to do it, while at the same time keeping the fans at priority number 1. There aren't many developers I respect quite like I do Jaffe. He's also a little unhinged which is perfect for Twisted Metal.
My excitement for Twisted Metal would be hard to describe with any amount of words. Instead you should know that this blog took an incredibly long time to write simply because while researching things and looking up pictures and videos I was sucked into watching endless trailers and clips from new and old games. I'm actually a little shocked how short this blog is compared to how long I spent "writing" it, but I've also watched every ending for Twisted Metal(again) and enjoyed every second of it.
There is no doubt in my mind that 2012 is going to be riddled with amazing games. But for me Twisted Metals cars pack more firepower than any other shooter. Its sense of speed leaves racing games in the dust. Its story mode has a more interesting cast than all the girly men and grizzled spare marines in RPG history. Valentines Day can't come soon enough and for once me lighting my hair on fire in the middle of the mall won't seem all that strange.