Gear.Club Unlimited Developer on Switch Port, Multiplayer, and What’s Next

Eden Games explains how they ported Gear.Club Unlimited to the Nintendo Switch, the hurdles they overcame, and why they had asynchronous multiplayer.

on January 27, 2018 7:01 PM

Gear.Club Unlimited came to the Nintendo Switch back in November, making it the Switch’s go-to content for car enthusiasts. The move to the Nintendo console wasn’t a decision made lightly, and developer Eden Games has finally spoken up about the process and reasoning behind the move.

Talking with publication Nintendo Everything, Eden Games explained:

We are huge Nintendo fans since our childhood and we believe this is a classic Nintendo system right out of the gate: thoughtout by game developers with gameplay at heart. It’s a very ingenious and versatile system and we enjoy it as gamers quite a bit. So, when we saw the first presentation from Nintendo we immediately thought that Gear.Club would perfectly fit.

Gear.Club first appeared on mobile devices in 2016, but that doesn’t make the Nintendo Switch version a simple console port of a touchscreen game. The changes made were pretty much exactly what gamers wish every mobile developer would do to their games, which is remove microtransactions. No more timers, annoying progression systems, or anything inherently annoying that comes from a mobile game. Then a fresh coat of paint was added to the graphics in order to take advantage of the extra horsepower that came from moving to the Switch.

But as much as we’d hope it was, removing microtransactions isn’t the only step involved in making a good game. Eden Games had to completely rework the progression system from microtransaction-based to a more achievement-based system. Also, replacing touchscreen controls with proper thumbsticks and buttons was another issue for the mobile game, although the team had more history in console development.

“As you may know we are used to consoles as we have been making racing games for the last 2 decades. The physics of Gear.Club Unlimited benefits for our past games so adapting it to standard button was easy. The only problem we faced was that Nintendo Switch doesn’t have analogue triggers. We decided to simulate analogue on the digital triggers by converting pressure through a progressive software gauge. This was ok for standard smooth situations but as soon as you needed reactivity, an urgent brake or sharp acceleration, it was not enough. That’s why we developed an ‘AI’ on top of it that judge the situation and adapt the pressure if you need smooth acceleration, like when you are going out of a corner or a full brutal braking because the corner is approaching fast.”

Despite these hurdles that Gear.Club Unlimited was able to get over, the game still left some gamers wanting more. One element it lacked, which was noted in DualShocker’s review of the game, was online multiplayer. Eden Games was asked about this in the interview.

As I explained, we have included online asynchronous multiplayer. It gives you the same challenge of concurrent multiplayers but focusing more on your own result and trajectory than bumping into others. On that sense it’s more hardcore. We would have loved to add also concurrent multiplayer but time is not extensive!

That being said, Eden Games has teased about adding more content to local multiplayer, which is the only way to play concurrent races presently, but they did not go into detail. What they did divulge was the commitment of three free DLC coming to Gear.Club Unlimited, which were described as “a mix between new cars and game modes and more subtle enhancements from the feedback of the players like a third view.”

In regards to what’s next from the developer, it implied that something is in the works. “I can’t say much but expect more ambitious and exciting development in the future,” Eden Games said.

Gear.Club Unlimited is available now on Nintendo Switch.

 / 
Steve is a journalist with an undying love for video games. He loves to play them, write news about them, review them, and talk about them on a regular basis! RPGs, builders, and indie games are some of his favorite genres.