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 Post subject: Farm Fiddlin' by BLS_ONaN
PostPosted: Sat Apr 16, 2005 2:51 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 03, 2001 2:01 pm
Posts: 1015
Location: Nebraska
• Replay: Track does not record full-length replays
• Garage Settings: 2000 med tires/soft suspension
• Fast Lap to date: 5:02.77 by SLO_COPE

ONaN tops the list at MTMG with respect to the most tracks made. Now, if he was churning ‘em out factory line style that statistic wouldn’t mean very much. Fortunately for us that hasn’t been the case with this guy. I’m not saying all of his stuff has been top shelf, but at the same time if you’re compiling a list of the all-time greats where track making is concerned, there’s no doubt in my mind ONaN will be hovering up near the top

His new track is called Farm Fiddlin’, and if you were around a few years ago you may remember the excellent track he submitted for the 2003 Expo – Blue Ridge Run. Farm Fiddlin’ uses quite a bit (if not all) of the same textures, and in some respect, the feel of the track is reminiscent of Blue Ridge Run. The primary differences between the two lie in the overall speed (FF is significantly faster) and the types of turns that are sure to get your attention (particularly at checkpoints 2, 13, and 15). Overall it’s fairly flat with some moderate sized woops mixed in as a change of pace to break up the monotony of the long straights. What makes it such a fun ride is the speed, however . . . that and the relative simplicity of the layout. But that’s pretty common with ONaN tracks. The layouts are fairly basic for the most part, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t a few things that can’t trip you up if your head isn’t into the race.

Let’s talk about the train; it’s his new toy, and he likes it. You can tell he likes it because you’ll see it a lot . . . a whole lot lol. I kind of flopped back and forth on whether the train and the frequency at which it makes an appearance was good or bad. I’ve decided that it’s both lol. For instance, let’s say you’ve managed to work up a respectable lead over the opposing racers. Because this is such a fast track, one pass by that train could change the dynamics of the race in a hurry, allowing those struggling to close the gap to do just that. Result: bad for the guy in the lead and good for those chasin' him. On the other hand, if you’re in the process of closing on the frontrunner, that blasted train is the last thing you want to see lol. I'm sure that you see how that train cuts both ways now, don'tcha? It’s going to happen – there’s no doubt about that, and when it does, I’m sure those affected by it will have thoughts of derailing that thing . . . blowing it to smithereens even lol. Oh, and be wary of the semi's, too. They don't move very fast, but they can show up at inopportune times.

The other “X” factor has to do with the gates, which you’ll encounter during the latter stages of the race. The gates give way upon impact, however if you’re not striking it squarely, you could be in for a little surprise. And mind you, when I say “strike it squarely”, that doesn’t mean you have to hit it straight on; you just can’t be into a slide or changing directions at the point of impact. If so, there’s a good possibility your truck will get slowed to nearly a halt or turned, possibly even flipped over. I’m not sure what weight ONaN assigned to the gates, but I do know that if it’s too light they’ll fly away and virtually disappear from sight - very unrealistic. I can’t recall what the increments are for assigning weight to models (i.e. 50lbs, 100lbs 150lbs) or whether you can assign weights like 56lbs, 74lbs, etc. In a perfect world I’d say the gates could stand to be slightly lighter than what they are, but then again the gates, much like the train, are two variables that are sure to make Farm Fiddlin’ a very exciting track to race on.

This may seem overly picky to some, but I did find several spots where the texture work was slightly less than ideal, such as here, here, here, and here. Correcting flaws of that type are well within ONaN’s means – easy stuff for him. I’m guessing he may have simply overlooked them or even rushed his work just a tad. The other thing I noticed was that collision properties of the house models he used aren’t quite accurate. Where the roof hangs over the frame of the house is where you’ll make impact, so exercise caution in that area. Finally, it’s pretty easy to get turned around after cp 13. As you see here, the map overlaps itself, and there’s a right turn thru the gates into the enclosed section of the track. Well, that’s not where you want to go, not after passing thru cp 13 anyway lol. A sign just before that right turn indicating that to get to cp 14 you need to keep straight would have been helpful. You ultimately figure it out, and once you’re familiar with the track it’s not a problem.

All in all there’s really nothing to complain about where Farm Fiddlin’ is concerned . . . except maybe the music if it’s just not your cup of tea lol. Personally I liked it – pretty talented guys whoever they are. But I love the speed, I love the wicked turns he threw in here and there, and yes, I love how the frequent presence of the train and possibly the gates will force lead changes, making for a drama-filled and very unpredictable outcome.

As for the Copey Rating, this baby kicked out an impressive 9 out of 10 possible points, which of course, is no surprise given the author’s name. Nicely done, Nick! We’re in the process of generating a new track list, and this one’s made my list of picks. 8)

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