DRIVECLUB at Gamescom: The “Social Network” of Racers

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DRIVECLUB at Gamescom: The “Social Network” of Racers
Update: We know many of you were looking forward to playing the promised PS Plus Edition and we are truly sorry for the delay. Our first priority is to provide you with the best possible experience while playing DRIVECLUB. With the high volume of new players and additional server load the PS Plus Edition is anticipated to bring, we are currently not confident that we can guarantee the best online experience. Until we can ensure that everyone can enjoy the full social connected online experience, we will be postponing the release of the PS Plus Edition until further notice.

Guten tag from Gamescom! I hope you got a chance to see yesterday’s press conference, where we saw a glut of new games announced (and finally found out when we can get our own PS4s!).

Sid and I are in Germany, tracking down new info for the latest games. Yesterday, I sat in on a presentation by Col Rodgers, the game director on PS4’s upcoming launch exclusive, Driveclub. He went into detail about Driveclub’s social features, the PS Plus Edition of the game, and showed us how Remote Play on PS Vita works.

Rodgers described Driveclub as the “social network for racing games,” and this is exemplified by the game’s Challenge system. If you feel especially confident about a run on a certain track, with a certain car, even at a certain time of day, you can issue a challenge to your club, sending a notification to their PS4s or to their mobile phones (courtesy of the Driveclub Mobile app). As they play and try to beat your challenge, they’ll rack up points for the club.

Things get interesting when you elect to challenge your other friends, who might not be part of your club. If they like a challenge that you’ve sent them, they can redistribute it to their club or friends, who can then redistribute to their club or friends, and so on. A friendly challenge can turn into a worldwide phenomenon, literally overnight.

More details about the PlayStation Plus Edition were divulged, as well. Gamers can play Driveclub on PS4 three ways when it launches: the full retail version on Blu-ray, the full version digitally, or gamers will have access to a free version of the game with their PlayStation Plus subscription as part of the Instant Game Collection. The PS Plus edition of the game is the full, complete experience, differing only in the amount of content included with a selection of cars, tracks and locations from the full version. PS Plus members can pick up the game for free initially, then buy more cars and tracks, or upgrade to the full version of the game if they choose.

Driveclub keeps looking and sounding better and better as we get closer to launch. Between the intimately detailed car models, the real-time shadow rendering, the Hybrid-created soundtrack — “Remixed by the best in the biz,” says Rodgers — and the directly recorded roars of each car’s engine, every inch of this game is permeated by passion and the desire to create the best racing game possible. Oh, and yes: it runs at 1080p.

Remote Play on PS Vita looked easy, beautiful and responsive — three very welcome qualities for this new technology. When a challenge arrives on the Driveclub Mobile app or on your PS4, you can start up the game and hit the track, or switch over to your Vita to take it off the big screen.

Driveclub at Gamescom, 1

Afterwards, Jamie Brayshaw caught up with us to pass along some info about a challenge taking place at Gamescom this week.

Two clubs from developer Evolution Studios, LIKE A BOSS and LUCKY 7 LEGENDS, face-off in the #GC2013 Challenge, and the rivalry is captured in the new Driveclub trailer — which debuted at the show.

Everything you do in Driveclub earns fame points for you and your Clubmates, and there’s plenty of ways you can earn fame with Overdrives and Face-offs. These allow you to compete against friends and rivals across the world in every section of every track; whether it’s maintaining incredible speed through a section of track, drifting with skill around a bend, or taking specific corners with the perfect racing line, there’s always something to play for, no matter how far ahead or behind the pack you may be. At Gamescom, Evolution is inviting the fans to be a part of these clubs. Who wins the #GC2013 Challenge will be determined over the course of the show!

Driveclub at Gamescom, 2

After watching the trailer, vote on Facebook, or if you’re at the show, stop by the show floor and play the demo to help contribute to the overall success of both clubs. The ending of the trailer will play out the final result of your votes next week!

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