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Skirmish Games: Developer’s Diary for Martian Racing Federation


Hopefully the subject of this blog should be on free release by now, if it isn’t it soon will be. Some time ago a fairly casual comment was tossed off on a Facebook group in relation to Gaslands that there should be a team of Martian aristos slumming it on earth. If you’re not familiar with the system that will need a little explaining. Gaslands is a post-apocalyptic Mad Max/Death Race 2000 style game played with Hot Wheels scale cars. The background is that it is a dystopian TV show since Earth lost an inter-planetary nuclear war with its Mars colony and has since become its TV studio, of which Gaslands is its highest rated show. Gaslands the tabletop game has ‘sponsors’ as factions. So, the idea was suggested that the rich kids of Martian gajillionaires would come to earth with such high tech as to be essentially untouchable and form a sponsor. We decided pretty quickly that having them as an actual sponsor wouldn’t work, in background terms the Earth is a lawless, radioactive and deadly place with its own resistance forces, its pretty unlikely that even the most debauched Martian youth would actually choose to set foot on it. Also, Gaslands is pretty heavily built on your cars getting trashed and your drivers getting blown up, a team that came across as largely untouchable seemed like it would just suck the fun out of it. However, the idea of a super high tech, and super speed team was one that didn’t sound like it would be sucking the fun out, not at all. Which started something that became a bit of an ongoing thing that frankly, I’m glad to have finished off with this release.

So, the big idea was that it would be something like the computer games Zero G and Wipe-out or the pod-racing sequence from The Phantom Menace. It was decided that this was probably what people on Mars did when they wanted to race like civilised people rather than watch the blood sport carnage of Gaslands. There was one central principle, and that was that it should feel super-fast.