All our praying and crying for the new Test Drive Unlimited 3 game has finally paid off! Kind of… Recently, Benoit Clerc was interviewed after the Bigben Group announced a plan to put all of their gaming-related activities under Nacon’s wing, a company that specialises in gaming devices. Clerc is their head of publishing who’s been in the Bigben group for almost two decades.
What has Test Drive Unlimited 3 got to do with this?
Well, they did talk about some of the subsidiary companies that they own within their interview. One of the questions asked was if the companies they made were part of helping Bigben/Nancon move forward with their plans. Clerc adds that they had bought 5 companies which adds to 8 games studios altogether.
Quite literally the first company he talks about is KT Racing, the one I speculated that was working on TDU3 in our last article. He then goes on to say how they specialise in racing, offroad racing with the WRC franchise and motorbikes with the Isle of Man TT franchise. His next line is by far the most interesting of the whole interview (sorry non-racing game fans).
“They’re currently working on our biggest project by far, which is the next Test Drive Unlimited game.”
They did it, they finally did it! Not only did they just quietly announce that they’re working on a Test Drive game. They’re working on a Test Drive Unlimited, which then goes on to prove that TDU3 is a go! So hold on to your hats as the king of racing games returns!
A Little Bit of Debunking
In my last article where I disproved a fake leak on Reddit, and other people are catching on to TDU3 coming in the future, I still strongly believe that the leak is fake. The information that the imposter used to buy people into thinking that it’s real is simple information that anyone could have gotten. Similar on how I just had to go onto KT Racing’s website to see they’re hiring people to make TDU3. As cool as it would be to have a car game based in Brazil, it’s just not TDU’s logic.
After hunting around for a while, I came across this video by Yuwan Thayakaran.
This is a great video and I don’t think it’s impossible to see any of these things (maybe that customisation thing is, but perhaps licensed body kits…). However, you knew it was coming. I don’t agree with Jamacia being the next map for the game.
Where I think Test Drive Unlimited 3 will be located
Let’s start will maps. Test Drive Unlimited is an island game, period. So rattle any ideas of whole countries that aren’t islands, not happening. So now we’re stuck with a bunch of islands. I said last time that we’ve already got something from the West (O’hau) and Central (Ibiza) and that it’s time we look East. After whittling down lots of locations I finally found an island. The perfect Island.
Welcome to Okinawa, a Japanese island. Yes, you heard me, Japan. If any franchise were to do Japan correctly, it’s Test Drive. So why Okinawa, and not Honshu which is the main island of Japan? Simply down to size. TDU has always made scales of their maps practically 1:1. O’hau is 1,545 km² and Ibiza is 572 km². If you think about that, that’s massive for a game, even the new Flight Simulator from Microsoft will have map data streamed because it’s too large to store. If we tried Honshu, that’s a colossal 227,960 km².
So I think that’s just a little tinsy bit much? Okinawa is also bigger than the two maps combined but not by much at 2,281 km², so it’s looking pretty reasonable. Okinawa is also pretty tropical too, which suits TDU’s atmosphere of tropical islands. It has beautiful views, nice winding roads, and plenty of asphalt to stretch your car’s legs.
My Gameplay Ideas
As for the cars, I expect there to be around 125 cars, similar to Need For Speed Heat’s or TDU2’s car list size. Unlike NFSH’s car list I expect to see plenty of low-end and mid-end cars, as they do get neglected a lot with modern racing games, and TDU1/2 never did that. Despite this, I’m sure there will be plenty of high-end super and hypercars. After all the franchise is about dream islands, dream cars, and one big dream life…
Gameplay-wise, I dream it works like TDU2 with an immersive, interesting but somewhat wacky story. A seamless multiplayer is a must for a Test Drive Unlimited game. The only aspect I don’t think will work like TDU2 is to restrict cars to the “classic”, “offroad”, “asphalt” cars. Otherwise timed missions, championships, and the second season of the Solar Crown have no reason to be left out. Of course, we can’t forget about the features that we’ve been dying for in car games – toggleable lights, indicators, windows, seat positions and roofs.
KT Racing works on both WRC and Isle of Man TT, and I don’t think that they will be throwing away that knowledge in this game. I will expect to see rally based (actual rally, not that fake rally Forza Horizon 4 gives us) and motorbike only championships. I’m not too sure about the casino. I unfortunately never got to play it at the time however I do believe a large number of people did enjoy it. It didn’t destroy gameplay not having it, however, it may be a nice thing to see in an update to extend gameplay for example.
Over to you
Test Drive is a legendary franchise and with this new exciting announcement, I’m looking forward to seeing Nacon pour fuel on this little ember of people still playing TDU1 with the Platinum Mod or just playing TDU2 for nostalgia by giving us an absolute banger of a game and smash the competition. What do you think of Nacon and KT Racing taking over Test Drive? Do you have any ideas of features that should be added to TDU3? Let us know on our discord server!