Hydro Thunder Comes Back With XBLA

By Drew Mills

March 26, 2010

The crazy arcade speedboat racer, Hydro Thunder, is coming back with a full fledged sequel only on Xbox Live Arcade. Scheduled to hit this summer, Hydro Thunder Hurricane promises all-new, over-the-top rocket powered speedboat action.

Being brought to XBLA by Microsoft Game Studios and developer Vector Unit, Hydro Thunder Hurricane will have eight new levels and exciting new game modes. One new mode is called “Ring Master” which will be a series of slalom-style challenges and another is “The Gauntlet” which is a time trial-esque event.

While many facets of this game are going to be brand new, Vector Unit is bringing back some of the fan favorite speedboats from Hydro Thunder, including, Razorback, Cutthroat and Rad Hazard. You can take this game online for some sick 8-player racing, or if you want to want to stay offline, Hurricane will allow up to four player split-screen.

But why a sequel more than 10 years after it had shown up on various consoles?

“We decided to take the ideas that worked from the original, and then start over from scratch,” says Vector Unit technical director Ralf Knoesel. “The water physics engine is completely new. Everything affects the racing surface — the boats leave wakes behind them that other boats can jump off or draft in, falling rocks and explosions create huge waves, we’ve got wave machines, whirlpools, the works.”

Good enough reason for me! The original was a really fun variation on the typical arcade racer, and is still one reason I have my Dreamcast still hooked up to my TV. Now, only if I had a time machine to make this game release sooner…


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Drew Mills

Currently going to school in Indiana so when Drew isn't studying, you can find him playing games. Though he is typically playing games from this current generation, he'll still bust out classic consoles for a night of nostalgic gaming. If he is not studying or gaming, he is usually out working on his photography. Thinks sleep is for the weak. Favorite Games: Metal Gear Solid, Mega Man 2, Goldeneye

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