News Article

Bandai Namco Picks up Project CARS for Worldwide Distribution

Posted by Tim Latshaw

Still lining up in November

The almost unbelievably stunning racer Project CARS has a new teammate in its garage: Bandai Namco Games Europe, who has announced a worldwide distribution agreement with developer Slightly Mad Studios.

According to Bandai Namco's press release, the publisher will be involved with distribution of the crowd-funded title on Wii U, PS4, Xbox One, and PC. Release is still planned for November 2014, as previously announced, with no exact dates pinned down at this time.

Bandai Namco Games Europe has posted trailers for Project Cars to its YouTube page, including the E3 trailer shown below:

Are you revved up for the arrival of Project CARS?

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User Comments (73)

Spoony_Tech

#2

Spoony_Tech said:

Can not wait for this. At last a real racing SIM for a Nintendo system. How long has it been?!

Spoony_Tech

#3

Spoony_Tech said:

I do wish we had a trailer for the U though. Would really like to see how it's running on the system.

Gerbwmu

#6

Gerbwmu said:

What does this mean really other then I can buy a disk now instead of eShop? I am excited for this game. Hoping it is a great SIM racer

NauticalCrimes

#10

NauticalCrimes said:

Looks very pretty, have they released any trailers containing wii u footage yet? I imagine it won't look /quite/ that nice but I'm still interested.

IceClimbers

#11

IceClimbers said:

Thank you Namco. November seems to be a good month for the Wii U with Sonic Boom, Project CARS, Smash Bros, and Captain Toad. Though now I feel like Captain Toad will be announced for December, and then end up slipping to February like DKC did.

Would love to see some Wii U footage.

ModestFan93

#13

ModestFan93 said:

Racing Sims are fun and all but they're all repetitive and boring. Hoping they have something fun to show.

Alucard83

#14

Alucard83 said:

@ModestFan93 Not if it has the same gameplay as Rage Racer. @ Rage Racer you were able to get points when finishing a race with that you could buy faster cars. You had a reason to come back and to grow your collection. No other race game i've liked as Rage Racer. Rage Racer FTW!

Emblem

#15

Emblem said:

Bamco publish alot of games they don't make, i was alot more surprised when they decided to publish Witcher 3 to be honest.

Still need to see some solid gameplay from this before i can get excited.

arnoldlayne83

#16

arnoldlayne83 said:

Can t wait for this... Is the game i am waiting the most since sm3dw.... Love racing sim, glad it will come on my belove wiiU

gsmaciel

#18

gsmaciel said:

I REALLY want to see some footage from the Wii U version. Seeing trailers from PC with ultra settings makes me cautiously optimistic.

Peach64

#19

Peach64 said:

2014 is shaping up to be a great year for racers. Great year for UK racing game studios too. Project Cars from Slightly Mad Studios, Drive Club from Evolution studios, Forza Horizon 2 on Xbone from Playground Games, and Forza Horizon 2 on 360 from Sumo Digital. It's such a turnaround from a couple of years ago when we lost Studio Liverpool (Wipeout) and Bizarre Creations (Project Gotham Racing).

SakuraHaruka

#20

SakuraHaruka said:

Ok, Namco will be the publisher for this game, very good, they also were publishers with another great racing game: Test Drive Unlimited, but only in Japan and another countries.

sinalefa

#21

sinalefa said:

Thanks, Namco. I did not want to give my money to Activision, EA or any of those greedy publishers. I hope they advertise all 4 versions.

ricklongo

#26

ricklongo said:

Not that I am a big car fan or anything, but this will be in my collection. I'm still kinda amazed Slighly Mad chose to support Wii U with this game. Amazed and happy. :)

JaxonH

#28

JaxonH said:

So... physical release then? Right on! I know this will please a lot of members here, including myself :)

Even though I'm not big on racing SIMs, I'ma give this one a go (think my problem is I insist on holding the gas full throttle the entire race- I refuse to let off the gas for corners lol- probably why I crash so much)

JaxonH

#31

JaxonH said:

@Spoony_Tech

:) I know, I know... and yet, I have this strange addiction to mashing the gas. I can't help myself! I'm like "Nope! Not slowin' down!" ......... CRASH!!!

JaxonH

#33

JaxonH said:

@JtotheY

Very nice! I tried using them too, but perhaps I need to approach at an angle less than perpendicular next time

kyuubikid213

#34

kyuubikid213 said:

Never really got into racing simulation games, but I do like racing games.

Perhaps, once funds look nicer, I'll get this game after I grab Mario Kart 8. Either way, it looks like it'll be enjoyable.

SanderEvers

#35

SanderEvers said:

I so want this game. Which is weird, since I usually don't like racing sims other than Mario Kart.

If it's actually fun to play, I'll get both the Wii U and PS4 versions.

Kifa

#36

Kifa said:

Well unless we get an ability to play with GameCube pad or a dedicated steering wheel this version might as well never come out. Without analogue throttle and brakes control we can not talk about "simulation". And no, remapping to right analogue stick is not an option.

Dpullam

#37

Dpullam said:

This game looks super gorgeous to be sure. I'm just not a fan of simulation racing games, but on the plus side I'm sure there will be a good amount of Wii U owners who will have a blast with this. I'm honestly surprised it was announced to come to Wii U in the first place, but the more games the better.

TheRealThanos

#38

TheRealThanos said:

@epicdude12302 Nice try, but that's NOT footage from the Wii U version. That is an old PC beta from 2012. So far there hasn't been any footage released for the Wii U version and you wouldn't be able to get your hands on any unless you're part of Slightly Mad Studios themselves. Don't believe everything that some random anonymous idiot on YouTube tells you...
@Spoony_Tech @Jazzer94 @NauticalCrimes @IceClimbers @gsmaciel For graphic reference on how the Wii U version of this game will hold up/end up looking, just check this footage of the Xbox 360 version of Need for Speed Shift 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0mvB5Avylyk (one of the series they previously made) and place the Wii U version of Project CARS in between that (graphics-wise) and the footage shown in the trailer that was posted with the article here. Of course it is not going to look that nice, but it will look considerably better than the Shift 2 game. Slightly Mad is reportedly pulling out all the stops, so expect it to be the best looking racer on Wii U, bar none, so I expect this to become THE game to show off the Wii U to your friends or people on the fence. Besides graphics, and perhaps (no, probably) more important: the handling is spot on. I've got a colleague that was lucky enough to be an early adopter so he was able to join the ranks of the beta testers on PC. That in turn offered me the opportunity to try the game out and I can honestly say that this game kicks the sh** out of anything on the market so far, and I've played pretty much all of them AND I'm a big Forza fan, but this is not only the best looking racing sim, it is also truly the most precise racing sim I've encountered so far. And the nice thing is that the handling will be completely transferred to the Wii U version, so only the graphics will suffer a slight downgrade, but other than that it will be the same game across all platforms. But don't just take my word for it: mail or tweet the Slightly Mad guys. They're pretty relaxed and quite nice so they'll probably answer your questions if you have any. And besides that there's more than enough info already to be found on the forum on their website so you could also check that out.
@Gerbwmu it IS a great sim racer. See my monologue right here... ;)
@Spoony_Tech nothing is gimped besides a downgrade in graphics and obviously the Wii U version has to offer another solution for the lack of analog triggers. But it is the only version to have the cool "F1 racing wheel with all the buttons" displayed on your Game Pad... ;)

Spoony_Tech

#39

Spoony_Tech said:

@TheRealThanos Thanks for that update. I figured it might be too good to be true on that video. I posted in the forum section about the analog though. Go check it out.

TheRealThanos

#40

TheRealThanos said:

@Spoony_Tech You're welcome. As I have understood from my colleague (who I sort of used like an interviewer since he's already a member of the Project CARS community) there WILL be support for analog in the Wii U version AND the controls will be customizable, so it is only a matter of either Nintendo or a third party releasing a pro controller with analogue triggers, otherwise you would have a standard setup of right stick for gas and/or brake.
Come to think of it: maybe it will be possible to use the GameCube controller adapter for Wii U...

TheRealThanos

#42

TheRealThanos said:

@Gen0neD So you would let one missing car brand ruin a game for you?
Besides, it may still come since Slightly Mad is still in the process of collecting licenses and is also still getting licenses offered so more cars will be added either way, and even after the game is released there will still be a possibility for some Lamborghini DLC somewhere along the line. Lambo or not, it is a game that is going to be seriously worth it to consider buying if you're into racing sims...

unrandomsam

#43

unrandomsam said:

@Peach64 Studio Liverpool (Psygnosis) were lost as soon as Sony bought them. It is a similar story to that of Rare. (What they did before was world class across loads of genres).

vamkar

#44

vamkar said:

during this time, since the first news about this game, the developers have not had more than lip service to the wii u version ... but now I'm worried about bandai ... they made ​​us bad moves in the past ...

Grimlock_King

#45

Grimlock_King said:

I for some reason thought this was a Wii U exclusive. Either why I'm hoping it's the better console version. So I can buy it.

midnafanboy

#48

midnafanboy said:

I can't wait for this and i actually thought this was going to be release as a download not a physical release. Meh who cares im still buying it.

TheRealThanos

#49

TheRealThanos said:

@Nintenjoe64 Or that. Forgot about that one. Actually couldn't even remember that it had analog; had to pull the controller out of the closet just to check. I hardly use it anymore after switching to the newer model and still using my wireless GameCube controller on the Wii. (haven't got a Wii U yet)

brandonbwii

#50

brandonbwii said:

A publisher? I thought the whole point of crowdfunding was to bypass that. So much for the promised unique Wii U features I guess. :-(

TheRealThanos

#51

TheRealThanos said:

@brandonbwii How exactly did you come to that conclusion? All versions are made separately as has been stated by the developers themselves and that statement has been reiterated over and over in numerous interviews so just because they get a publisher that doesn't mean that console specific features are all of a sudden going to disappear.

Shambo

#54

Shambo said:

Didn't see that one coming, but if it means retail version, definitely happy about it! I'm not really into racing sims, but the love I feel that has been put in this game is of such a level, I'd support that any day of the week, and means I will enjoy the product a lot.

Shambo

#55

Shambo said:

@brandonbwii Publishers ruch the development usually, but they just picked it up after it's been in development for quite some time. I guess it will change little to the product, it will just put in out on the shelves hopefully, with enough marketing to reach those who didn't follow the development process.

AshFoxX

#56

AshFoxX said:

I was actually very excited for this until I bought a Wii U and played Most Wanted U on it. The lack of analog control on the shoulder triggers may make this a miss for my Wii U collection, maybe instead waiting until I buy a PS4 in the next couple years. By then it may be replaced with something better and/or be super cheap. The only thing that might sway me is intelligent use of the gamepad.

Action51

#57

Action51 said:

I'm very excited for this, I really like racing games and I don't want to buy anymore EA games for my Nintendo or PC platforms.

Oh well, I enjoyed Need for Speed for quite a few years, I'm ready to give Project Cars a whirl.

Laxeybobby

#58

Laxeybobby said:

@epicdude12302 Don't believe all that you see on YouTube. That link I'd be 90% certain is not WiiU gameplay, due to the publish date and the fact that other more recent ie 2014 YouTube videos only show WiiU simulation gameplay. ie the game running on a PC with the settings changed to simulate the WiiU and these videos don't look anywhere near as classy as the link you posted. (They look good, but no where near the graphical level of the E3 videos)
Until I see an officially released WiiU gameplay video with details of what the game has on the WiiU I'm not going to get too excited about all the hype.

ScorpionMG

#59

ScorpionMG said:

@Laxeybobby You are one of the reasons 3rd Party devs don't make games on nintendo consoles. "It surely doesn't look like that" Oh how do you know? Yes this is from the PC version, But slightly mad studios has made it clear that the Wii U Version is amazing. So until this is released don't say such crap.

Einherjar

#60

Einherjar said:

As long as Namco only acts as a publisher and lets slightly mad do its thing, this is a fantastic deal, that probably lifted quite a bit of weight from their shoulders.
Im glad that this project is still alive and kickin. Im not super hyped, as racing sims arent really one of my go to genres, but nevertheless, im probably still going to support it by getting the game :)

ToniK

#62

ToniK said:

I almost wish I was more into cars and racing. I doubt I will get this but I'm totally happy for you driving enthusiasts :)

Laxeybobby

#63

Laxeybobby said:

@ScorpionMG Can't understand your over reaction to a factual post with a rightly held opinion.
The link was not WiiU gameplay - fact.
The other YouTube videos online that claim WiiU gameplay state they are simulated using WiiU settings on pc - fact.
I even said they looked great but not as good as the E3 official video, which is to be expected as that video was from another higher spec platform.
There are no official WiiU released footage or details of what the WiiU version of this game has - fact.
I wasn't disputing the WiiU version wouldn't be amazing the game is on my preorder list for the WiiU
I never cast dispersions on the game nor said I'm not going to buy it nor did my last post attempt to discourage others to buy it.
I expressed a personal opinion that I will not get too excited about the hype until I've seen official WiiU details and gameplay footage running on a WiiU.
So your childish outburst about 'I'm one of the reasons 3rd part devs don't make games on WiiU' has no founding and I'd question which if our posts was full of crap!

TheRealThanos

#64

TheRealThanos said:

@brandonbwii Then there would be no reason to worry, it seems. And it still does not explain how getting a publisher equates to features disappearing. Care to elaborate?

Blue-Thunder

#65

Blue-Thunder said:

I love racing games but ever since I got Gran Turismo 5/6 I have lost interest in all other racing games because I believe they can't come close. I used to love the F1 racing games from Codemaster but now I think they are second rate.

I don't think Project CARS is going to be any good. How can Slightly Mad Studios compete with the giants of racing game developers like Polyphony Digital or Turn 10 Studios? I can't see it.

Please 360 owners I couldn't give a toss about Forza, I had 1,2 & 4 and they're alright but I'm firmly in the GT camp so I don't want to know.

TheRealThanos

#67

TheRealThanos said:

@Blue-Thunder You might want to do some more research on the people behind Project CARS before you belittle them. They have a total of 150 game titles (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/resources/directory/company/slightly-mad-studios) behind their name, and quite a few of them are racing sims. (including GTR, GT Legends, BMW M3 Challenge, Need For Speed Shift 1 & 2, and Test Drive) They have spent more than 4 years on this new game and have the backing of a lot of specialists from the racing industry and they have test drivers that are professional racers in several categories (F1, touring car/DTM and so on). Besides that, being fan of one series can rather heavily color ones opinion (I should know, I was in the Forza camp). If you look at GT objectively and compare it to Project CARS, it doesn't even come close.
GT lacks damage models on all cars, lacks correct sound effects on most cars, the handling of some cars seems to be off and in my humble opinion the environments look decidedly clinical, e.g. too clean to be realistic. Another interesting thing to take into account is that Slightly Mad Studios had already implemented weather effects long before Polyphony even considered putting them in the new GT game, so they have naturally had more time to perfect their weather system and they are still able to tweak it even further since launch day isn't here yet. Also, the graphics really can't compare with Project CARS. Just look up some of the comparisons on YouTube of maxed out settings on PC. They absolutely destroy anything that any console will be able to produce, so if graphics are your thing you should probably not look at a console racer.
That being said it is of course abundantly clear that the Wii U version will also not be the best looking version, but it will be the game to showcase your Wii U to anyone who still doubts what it's capable of.
P.S. As far as your opinion (or mine for that matter) about Forza vs GT goes, they factually did win the last few rounds according to people in the industry that have awarded the last two games as being the most realistic and expansive racing sim on any system, so Forza actually IS the better game according to people with the know-how to be able to make such decisions. (and just to be clear, that is besides our respective opinions, as I stated before)
That is, until now. Slightly Mad Studios is well on it's way to do EXACTLY what they promised and that is to make Project CARS the ultimate racing sim.
@Gen0neD Well, you certainly had me wondering. I guess that is always the pitfall of written text: unless there's a smiley to go with it, you can never be too certain how some comments are supposed to be interpreted... ;)

Blue-Thunder

#68

Blue-Thunder said:

@TheRealThanos
Wow what a negative reaction, I don't remember belittling anybody but what the heck.

I did say at the end of my message I didn't want to get into a debate about GT versus Forza but hey. Your opinion is Forza "factually did win the last few rounds according to people in the industry" lol that's a joke yeah. Forza is a game GT5/6 is a sim.
http://themotoristedge.weebly.com/gran-turismo-5-vs-forza-motorsport-4-121312.html

To say Project CARS "will be the game to showcase your Wii U" is a little gullible and to actually think it will be better than GT5/6 is laughable.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

TheRealThanos

#70

TheRealThanos said:

@Blue-Thunder Ehm, sorry to say but it seems you read WAY too much into my reaction. It wasn't my intention at ALL to be negative towards you, so sorry if you felt attacked or something. Maybe I shouldn't have used the word "belittle" but you said "I don't think Project CARS is going to be any good. How can Slightly Mad Studios compete with the giants of racing game developers like Polyphony Digital or Turn 10 Studios? I can't see it." which is what prompted my reaction since they aren't as small or inexperienced as you seem to think. In fact their resume contains way more racing games than both "giants" combined.
Also, it is NOT my opinion concerning Forza winning in the racing sim category: it is an ironclad fact, the awards have indeed been given out in the industry by a jury consisting of people in the game/racing sim industry, game media and people from the ACTUAL racing industry, so that pretty much makes it a fact in any rational person's book.
And like I said: that is all BESIDES our respective opinions. You like GT, I like Forza and I respect that, but the industry has given it's verdict. It is not just my opinion. I can't make anything else of it other than that fact. Oh, and both games are classified as racing games in the industry if you look at the prizes won and in which category they were classified. Forza has won "best racing game" three years in a row now, and it ran against GT, obviously.
Here are some links:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forza_Motorsport_3#Awards
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forza_Motorsport_4#Reception
http://www.xboxachievements.com/news/news-17263-Forza-Motorsport-5-Picks-Up-Racing-Game-of-the-Year-at-2014-DICE-Awards.html

As for my claims on Project CARS: I'm 44 years old and I sell graphical workstations for a living, so yeah, I KNOW about graphics and hardware and I don't have the time or the lack of intelligence to be that gullible. Besides that, a colleague of mine is a Project CARS beta tester and he let me play his version. I'm an avid sim racer and I have played quite a lot of sims, INCLUDING all but the last GT since I don't own a PS4, and I can honestly say, even as a Forza fan that Project CARS is considerably better than both series in a number of areas.
You on the other hand seem to simply wipe Slightly Mad Studios off the table as if they are some first timer that has never even made a racing sim before. They have the reputation, the licenses, the support and the community of dedicated racing sim fans/beta testers that have all given them continuous feedback for the last three years so that they could keep improving the game and they are still doing that. So it is actually realistic and fair to be expecting quite a lot from it.
The beta I played is from last year, and I know that a lot of things have been added and tweaked since then, so with my personal experience coming from the beta I only expect more from the final product. They set a pretty high goal for themselves wanting to make the ultimate racing sim, but the evidence so far points towards them having a pretty big chance of actually achieving it.
As for GT: I named quite a few points concerning GT's shortcomings, so simply saying it is better doesn't suffice. Also, Forza IS a sim. There is the spin-off series Forza Horizon which is more "arcadey" so that would fall outside of the sim category, but Forza itself is a complete sim, as can be witnessed in the latest outing.
I have to wonder why it seems to be so hard for you to have an open mind about Project CARS considering I am able to do the same even though I am a Forza player. (also taking into account that they have made WAY more racing sims than Poliphony and Turn 10 combined) Liking a game (series) is never a bad thing, but you should also never turn a blind eye to the possibility that a better option will come along one day.
Final point: the comment about using this game to showcase your Wii U also stands: it is NOT a port, is being made by a dedicated Wii U team within Slightly Mad Studios and is made to take full advantage of what the Wii U hardware can offer, so even though it will not look as good as the other two console versions, it will still stand a very good chance of being the best looking or the most technically impressive game on the Wii U so far. All we have for comparison in the racing genre is Need for Speed Most Wanted which already looked pretty good, especially for a port, but it did have quite a few bugs. So the evidence on hand is in favor of Project CARS since they will make way more use of the hardware specific features. Here are some links to an interesting interview with the creators if you are interested enough to take the time to check that out:
http://www.nowgamer.com/features/1856287/project_cars_wii_u_director_talks_graphics_gamepad_in_full_interview.html
http://nintendoenthusiast.com/interview/slightly-mad-interview-andy-tudor-project-cars-wii-u/
Anyway, from one racing sim fan to another: enjoy whichever sim you want, but if there is ever a demo released for Project CARS all I can do is heartily recommend it to you and if you keep an open mind and try it out for yourself, you might just find that you will like it as much as I do. Peace.

P.S. Sorry for the humongous wall of text so thanks in advance if you have read all of it.

Windy

#71

Windy said:

@Spoony_Tech I'm still waiting for a decent online racing game on 3ds. Formula 1 is good just one problem nobody bought it :p you can get it for 3.99 used now at GameStop.

Blue-Thunder

#72

Blue-Thunder said:

@TheRealThanos
It was the use of the word belittle that set me off. I wasn't trying to put down Slightly mad Studios. I just said how can they compete with Polyphony Digital or Turn 10 Studios. Polyphony Digital and Turn 10 Studios would have massive budgets. Turn 10 Studios make the Forza games so I was giving them credit.

The reason I'm not that optimistic about Project CARS is I heard it all before but when it is released I will be paying close attention to it's reception. If it's good I'll definitely consider putting it on my list of games to buy. A game like that would require a steering wheel so the PS4 would be the best option and I don't have one yet and I don't intend on getting one for another couple of years. (GT6 is on PS3 not PS4)

Another thing that bugged me was 'I said I liked GT5/6'. I felt like I got a barrage of 'It's no good, Forza is better'. It is good in fact it's brilliant. I have the Driving Force GT wheel (It's not the best wheel on the market) but man it is good, you can almost feel the grip and the feedback is incredible.

When you are a GT5/6 fan, you just have to mention it and you are barraged by Forza fans. If someone told me they were Forza fans I would not feel the desire to try and convert them to GT. It's gets a bit boring. I'm listening to the same argument all the time 'the cars sound c%@p and no damage model'. That might be true to an extent but it doesn't bother me; I play using a 1000 watt home cinema system. The damage model argument wears pretty thin with me as well. GT5/6 is all about the handling and that is the most important aspect of a game.

Project CARS has a lot to live up to and the proof will be when it is released and judged by critics and gamers. I hope it's good, I'm not wishing the developers bad.

I know your not gullible, I was on the attack at that stage so Peace bro.

TheRealThanos

#73

TheRealThanos said:

@Blue-Thunder Ha, no worries man. I sometimes get the same nonsense for being a Forza fan, so that is probably comparable to what you have to endure. (no fancy cinema system by the way: just a 42" Panasonic Viera plasma HD TV which has 4 speakers built in) I can now understand why you got that idea from my comment while I was only putting some facts together. I also know that damage models aren't the most important thing in the world, but if they call themselves the real driving simulator then they should (in my humble opinion) offer the total package and that includes everything that you would encounter in real life when racing. But I agree with you that all in all it is still a great game. (the list of what GT lacks compared to Project CARS is not my own opinion, it has been done by other people)
I truly do hope you get to try Project CARS out and even if you still like GT better after that, it might still be a nice addition to your racing sim collection, if only for the diversity of races it offers. (I only mentioned a few in my previous comment, but pretty much everything from go karts to every type of race imaginable is in there. The only thing I haven't seen yet is off-road, but they might surprise me yet)
The thing that convinced me the most was of course being able to try out the beta, but for a true sim racer like yourself it shouldn't be impossible to get quite a good impression from just watching the numerous gameplay clips on YouTube. All that is left to wonder about is how that will translate to consoles, since obviously all gameplay is only from the PC version.
As for the steering wheel: I'm kind of betting on some third party releasing a good wheel and pedals for the Wii U as well. The option to adjust the controls are in the game, so you should be able to remap that to whatever you plug into your Wii U. And no offense taken on anything. At my age I seem to be worried a lot less about things like that than I used to when I was 18 and a hotblooded, tunnel-vision impaired fanboy... ;)

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