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The Dark Souls of Off-Roading Returns With Mudrunner

Originally released in the summer of 2014, Spintires arrived on Steam with little fanfare as a log transporting simulator featuring a lineup of Russian trucks. Using its game-changing mud physics, Spintires became a legitimate hit with PC gamers and has sold more than a million copies. Despite the success, the game was plagued by controversy between its lone developer and publisher and fans wondered what would become of any future updates or installments. Thankfully, publisher Focus Home Entertainment has announced the follow up to the cult PC hit, called Mudrunner, will be arriving for the PC and consoles.

Spintires started many years ago as a tech demo developed by teenage Russian Pavel Zagrebelnyj for Intel’s 2009 Level Up game development competition. Zagrebelnyj’s entry ended up taking home the award for Best Threaded Game and finished 2nd for Best Optimized for Intel HD Graphics. The 15MB demo looked amazing, featured unmatched mud and vehicle physics, and ran well on modest hardware. While the demo only had one map and one truck, the underlying tech allowed for seemingly endless possibilities for terrain traversal.

Zagrebelnyj partnered with UK-based publisher Oovee and launched a Kickstarter in 2013. The game finally released on Steam June 13, 2014. The full game featured multiple terrains and an assortment of big Russian trucks and equipment. Before the end of that year, Zagrebelnyj claimed that Oovee had failed to pay him for development and locked him out of providing updates. This conflict continued between the two for more than a year, including the removal of the game from sale on Steam, before an agreement was announced. Zagrebelnyj ended up working for Saber Interactive, the studio behind the upcoming Quake Champions.

Saber Interactive has been announced as the team working on Mudrunner and Pavel Zagrebelnyj has been confirmed as the project lead. Mudrunner promises to build on the foundation of Spintires, with improved graphics, new terrain, and new vehicles. Focus Home Entertainment announced that owners of Spintires on Steam would be receiving a 50 percent discount on the price of Mudrunner when it releases in October. They expect to open up preorders for the game later today. No date for the console version has been announced.

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