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WATCH: Trackmania free to play first impressions

With Trackmania Turbo building such a large and loyal fanbase across all devices, it was perhaps a surprise to learn that the series has rebooted itself into a free-to-play PC-only (for now) game set in the near future.

Quite the departure. Which intrigued me. I wanted to get some hands-on time to see if the old charm was still there – addictive and frustrating in equal measure.

In the previous Trackmania games, you would concentrate so much and grip the controller so hard in an effort to achieve the Trackmaster ratings you would end up with carpal tunnel syndrome.

While on the surface it may seem like a massive change of direction, the latest Trackmania reboot is still developed by Ubisoft Nadeo. It’s time to check it out and see if the new business model – free to play, but with optional subscriptions – gets in the way of some good old-fashioned high-speed challenges that are like Super Monkey Ball levels in cars.

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