I believe it was sometime early last year when two friends of mine, OGX_Playa & OGX_TwoStroke invented a style of play known as Race-Rumbles, commonly referred to as RnR. A few got word of this new format and looked at it with skepticism (like me). Others simply tried it, loved it, and raved to others how much fun they had playing it, which was all it took to solidify RnRs as a “legit” mode of game-play amongst the MTM 2 community. Unfortunately RnRs seemed to go the route of your everyday, run-of-the-mill, fad and people lost interest. I was one of them, but then I found myself in the middle of a close, hard-fought RnR battle with 5 other players on “Breakneck Ridge”, and wondered why SLO (and everyone else for that matter) stopped doing RnRs.
If you’ve never tried it, you owe it to yourself to give it a go. I’ve only met a few that flat out didn’t enjoy RnRs, which led me to conclude that those people are just…well, not normal - different. Hehehe I’m sure that statement alone will draw a few replies to this thread that have nothing to do with this track, but hey, the more the merrier! At any rate, there’s a move afoot to re-popularize RnRs, which is great because it’s an awesome way to play this game! The beauty in an RnR game is it encompasses both facets of MTM 2 (hence the name). Not to get too technical here, but in truth it’s kind of a misnomer as far as the rumbling part is concerned. The rumble half of this style of play has nothing to do with trying to knock someone off a platform or cube. The rumbler’s job is simply to bash the racer’s truck (over and over again) in an effort to impede their progression around the track, making their life utterly, totally miserable.
But that’s only part of the game. Phineus suggested I do a “how to” info letter of sorts to explain how the game is played, highlighting different strategies and pointers. It’s the 2nd good idea he’s had all year (lol), so I think I’ll do just that, and when it’s complete, you’ll be able to find a link for it here at MTMG, SMP Creations, SLO, OGX, as well as other sites throughout our little trucker community.
Onward. SMP Creations stood up and offered to assist in the effort to get RnRs back in the limelight. What did they offer in the form of a contribution to the cause, you ask? Four tracks specifically designed for RnR. Yep, count em – four (that’s 4) tailor-made tracks. I’ll tell you what; these guys personify the words “class-act” in my book. Their generous offer not only means a lot to me personally, but to the MTM community as a whole. Ok, I’ll move on before I get all misty and have everyone here at MTMG sniffling...asking for tissues. Hehehe
Before I get into the particulars of Maple Grove, here’s Copey’s interpretation of what constitutes a “good” RnR track: It has two main ingredients: (1) A relatively open terrain within the perimeter of the track to allow blockers (rumblers) to transition from point to point, and (2) an uncomplicated layout with a very low model count, minus severe elevation changes throughout.
To those who’ve yet to be indoctrinated into the world of RnR, that may sound like a pretty boring track. I assure you such is not the case. A well-designed race-rumble track will yield a good to excellent racetrack as well. Maple Grove comes up short with respect to offering a challenge for pure racers…which is by design, I might add. What it does provide is a short, intense ride for 2 die-hard racers looking for some one-on-one action.
What Maple also gives you is a visual display that’s pleasing to the eye…all without the use of high-priced models, whistles and bells. The billboards you see (90% of them, anyway) are compliments of Malibu350, and what a heck of a job that guy did! I’m not a fan of tons of billboards on racetracks as a rule, but for RnR tracks I say load em up! The reason for that is simple; to highlight a few of the popular race “and” rumble teams. Pretty ingenious, huh? Hehe ok maybe not, but hey, you can’t dispute the logic behind it.
Maple Grove is a fast-paced, intense ride…. loaded with pretty Maples trees of all things! You could make a pretty convincing argument that it probably leans a bit more in favor of the blocker during game-play. The trees are set so that you’ll only collide with the trunk, which sounds like a big advantage for the racer, but it works for the blocker as well, allowing him/her to slice in between trees with ease to thwart a racer’s quest to get to the finish line. The roadways are narrow for the most part, consequently racers only have one or two strips where they can employ reasonable maneuvering strategies. If I had to classify this track with respect to a level of play, I’d say it falls in the intermediate category. Not quite as simple as “Breakneck Ridge”, but not complex by any means.
SMP Creations claims this isn’t their best work...and it’s not from a technical standpoint, but that’s not the intent here. The purpose of this track is for a specific style of play, which limits an author’s options as far as what he/she can do, and that’s understood. In my mind SMP achieved their goal, which was to make a fun track for RnR lovers to enjoy. The bonus comes by way of a track that also lends itself to 2-3 roadsters looking to engage in a few rounds of straight-up racing!
This one chalked up a very respectable 8
on the Copey Rating scale. If you’ve done a few RnRs but don’t consider yourself a “master of the game”…or even if you’re an old veteran, <u>DO</u> try this track! It’s fun and it’s exciting…and the soundtrack is hilariously funny.
As for SMP – hats of to you guys for cranking out another great track, but mostly for your part in helping to promote what I feel may be the best thing to happen to MTM 2 since…since…well, the add-on track!Coming soon…the review for the second track in this 4-part series: – Bolton Hill
[This message has been edited by SLO_COPE (edited 06-08-2002).]