Following the launch of its final official World Rally Championship game early next month, WRC Generations, French game developer Kylotonn will switch its attention to Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown, releasing next year.
However, the company won’t only be working on the open-world racer.
After the creation of seven games representing the real-world WRC, KT Racing’s licencing deal with the championship closes in December 2022.
It marks the end of eight years – with the initial WRC 5 taking 24 months to create – of rally-game development for the organisation, split across Paris and Lyon.
“I will miss it, definitely,” said Alain Jarniou to Traxion.GG when speaking about the WRC franchise. As Creative Director at Kylotonn, he’s worked on every world rally game it’s ever produced.
“It’s all about ‘what is rally’, the competition, the people that loved our game, everything, we will miss it, but it’s also a new page.
“We’ve got new history to write. We’ve got the Test Drive Unlimited game to make, and it’s a big challenge also.
“We are happy with what we’ve done with WRC. It was a very, very nice experience. But we’ve got new things to do and new history to write.”
As a parting gift for the series, Generations will include 21 rallies, with many from older WRC games being reintroduced as bonus content. All historical cars, plus a few new additions, from previous games, will also be present.
The result will be over 150 unique stages, growing from just over 40 in 2016’s WRC 6. It’s as if KT Racing is giving itself, and players, a leaving gift on its final day before a new job.
That new job, of course, is to complete a return for the aforementioned Test Drive series, something that Jarniou has previous history with, working on both 2006’s Unlimited and the 2011 sequel at Eden Games.
“We [have been] working on Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown for years,” said Jarniou.
“People who are working on WRC Generations will come to help the team of Test Drive Unlimited, of course, but we are also starting work on new racing projects at the same time. We won’t stop doing racing games after WRC…”
It’s a point further brought home by a presentation at Kylotonn Parisien base to assembled journalists by the company’s publisher, Nacon.
After discussing the history of KT Racing’s WRC games and the number of releases that have used the proprietary KT Engine – the underlying technology – we were shown a slide that simply read:
“We won’t leave the sim racing experience.”
With the aim for Solar Crown to be more accessible than the serious nature of WRC Generations, it leaves the door open for the additional projects teased by Jarniou.
“The near future, you know, is Test Drive Unlimited Solar Crown, planned for 2023,” said Sébastien Waxin, Senior Marketing Project Manager for Nacon’s racing titles, to Traxion.GG.
“For the future after that, we have other projects when it comes to racing. After what we did with the KT Engine, we won’t throw everything in the bin.
“We have other projects when it comes to sim racing.
“We cannot give you details on that [today], but we have other products.”
The evolution of the WRC games has been stark, having recently gone back and played each one. From the ninth onwards, there’s no doubt that the suspension and car dynamic systems took a giant leap forward, delivering engaging feedback when using a steering wheel peripheral.
With the base game engine now so robust, while Test Drive Unlimited Solar crown is undoubtedly highly anticipated, we’re just as intrigued by the studio’s future simulation endeavours too.
You can listen to our interview with four key KT Racing members about WRC Generations and the WRC series on our latest Traxion.GG Podcast. Live now on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and Amazon Music.