Fast Lap: 4:18.57 by SLO_HotShoe
Garage Settings: 1500 med tires/soft suspension
If variety is the spice of life then MTM 2 fits in quite nicely given its diversity. Giving credit where credit is most certainly due (and in my opinion it’s not mentioned enough), creativity, artistry, innovation, and even perseverance are all words you can associate with the men/women, guys/girls, dudes/dudettes that wear the title “track maker”. They’ve given so much to this game, and in my humble opinion are the very reason it’s still kickin’ today. Thanks to each and every one of you, and regardless of how many tracks you’ve made, your contribution to this game has not gone unnoticed or unappreciated.
Ok let’s talk about some OLD stuff for a few, starting with the name. If you’re not a cartoon junkie his name will be meaningless to you, however, to the average 6- to 10-yr-old the name “Mumhra” is probably quite familiar. I’m slightly outside of that age range, hence I was clueless, so I asked. He informed me that the name comes from the cartoon “The Thundercats” lol. He also informed me that the mumhra character gets beat up a lot. I’m not quite sure what all that means…but uh, ok lol. Supposedly you have to be 30+ in order to become a member of team OLD. Maybe it’s just me but I think they should be concerned about a scandal lol. About now some of you may be thinking to yourselves, “Gee Copey, that’s great info and all, but when do we get to the track?” Hey, let’s not get pushy here; I’m getting around to it, trust me. I like pacing myself by throwing in some background info…and possibly a cheap shot or two. I mean, how else are people going to learn about the idiosyncrasies and personal info associated with these guys/girls??
Ok now I’m ready lol. “Citadel Namur” is Mum’s track making debut…sort of. Actually his first track was a little number called “Just For Fun”, which was released shortly after this one. According to Mum, he was just “messing around” (you know, just for fun) and had no intentions of releasing it. Shortly after completing Citadel Namur he showed it to his bud, OLD_Flatwheels, who apparently liked what he saw, so Mum decided to make a few improvements to the track and put it out on the market for all to see and enjoy. But again, he considers Citadel his first serious effort, and since he released it before “Just for Fun”, we’ll consider it the springboard to his track-making career.
Citadel Namur is his version of a motocross circuit course in Belgium that holds annual race tournaments. According to Mum it’s not an exact replica. He added a few “fun oriented” things like ramps for jumping trains and buses, which, I’m told not every mx course in Belgium has (incredibly hard to believe, but true lol). Actually, at nearly 4.5 minutes in length, it’s more of a mx-rally, which you don’t see everyday—kinda unique. Something I’ve learned about Mum, and it pretty much holds true for all those OLD guys, and that is they like tough tracks. If you’ve never run Citadel, be sure to grab a mouthpiece, helmet…and some of that foam padding. Shove some in your shirt and inside your pants…and anyplace else it’ll fit lol). Overall this track is brutal with a capital “B”. After two laps you’re actually tired lol. The first 1:35 minutes consist of a rugged mx style course with mini-jumps, and hairpin turns, so you really have to finesse this baby in quite a few areas. After a long stretch and a few high-speed jumps over the buses I mentioned earlier, the course switches gears, giving you some flat terrain with 90-degree rights and lefts. The train he has going thru that section of the track presents a potential danger, but Mum opted to install ramps (positioned on one side of the road) that allow racers to jump over the train. The key is if you don’t react fast enough or somehow anticipate it coming, you’ll be waving at the livestock on the train as you watch it go by lol. He wraps it up by going back to the mx style course before starting the torture…I mean, before it starts all over again lol.
Mum took texture sets and other bits and pieces from various tracks to construct Citadel. It’s not a visual wonder by any stretch of the imagination, but at the same time, it’s not the kind of track where you have time to take in all of the sights either. Technically speaking, probably the most obvious flaws lie in the texture work where you can see visible lines due to misaligned textures (like here
) and lack of proper blending (such as here
) between different textures types. Also there are several places where smoothing and rounding off the hilly/mountainous
terrain would have given outlying areas a more natural look. This rock
pops up "after" you drive by it - a characteristic of moveable models unless steps are taken to negate it. The only problem is it pops up a tad too high. Here's
a shot of a piece of roadway he abandoned out in the middle of nowhere. I guess he couldn't figure out what to do with it lol.
There are four shortcuts with one of the four being man-made. The first short
leads to checkpoint one and is the result of a piece of fence work that breaks away upon impact. The key to that short is ensuring you hit the right part of the fence lol. The man-made cut here
crosses the railroad tracks, and definitely shaves off a few seconds from the traditional route…as long as that train doesn’t hang you up, that is. The third cut
just after checkpoint 14 is a bit more complex, and in my opinion has the characteristics of the ideal shortcut; difficult to master, rewarding if you nail it, but costly if you don’t. The final cut
allows you to go thru the grandstands here en route back to the start/finish line.
I’m not for or against shortcuts as a general rule. In this case, except for the first and last shortcut, the “alternate routes” make Citadel even more exciting in my opinion because they promote excitement and a sense of urgency. You hope and pray the train doesn’t get you on the second cut, and when your opponent is breathing up your tailpipe, hitting that precarious third short just so
really comes in handy lol.
If there’s one part of Citadel that somewhat dampens its excitement, it’s that long stretch toward the end of the course leading up to checkpoint 19. The mini-jumps prolong the extended, slightly uphill climb that somewhat smother the overall fast-paced feel of the track. Now, if I were on my toes when I beta tested this track I would have recommended to Mum that he change that section or take it out altogether. I also missed the shortcuts. Track makers need to know where they are in order to decide whether to negate them or leave them open. I suppose the lesson learned for me is to employ the use of shortcut specialist on complex layouts such as this. Guys like SLO_RAZ, SLO_Jumper, and SLO_ALL2much are great at finding little nuances in a track that shave off seconds.
Still, despite the beta tester’s (lol yours truly) shortsightedness/inattention to detail and the author’s inexperience, this is one heck of a fun track. It’s unpredictable at times, there’s quite a bit of variety, to include its pace, and all of those things result in some very exciting racing. It’s on SLO’s Always Podded List and we’ve had several tremendous races on it, which in the end is all that really matters. Wrapping it all up, the Copey Rating for Citadel Namur comes out to a respectable “7
” out of 10 possible points. Overall this is a pretty darn good first (or second – depending on how you look at it) effort, but it’s just that, and despite the high number of technical flaws, it’s my favorite track by him thus far. Mum has made 5 other tracks (including Just for Fun, which we already mentioned) with a 6th currently under construction. Keep your eyes peeled for the name OLD_mumhra because it’s looking like his newest track will turn a few heads.
Good stuff, mum! Man, I love this track, and I’ve had some incredibly exciting races on it. It’s taken me a while to get around to this one, I know, but I was determined to finish it (finally lol). I’ll be doing a few more of your tracks (among lots of others) in the near future, so stay tuned!