Ridge Racer Unbounded, the newest entry in Namco Bandai's ever-present racing series, has historically played its cards fairly close to its chest. Little has been revealed about the racer since it was first announced back in February, and ridge-racing veterans have expressed concern over the decidedly extreme direction the series appears to be taking.

Thanks to the magic that is Gamescom, however, we now know quite a bit about Unbounded's core gameplay mechanics. As explained by producer Joonas Laakso in the video above, the title's "crash race" mode slots neatly between Ridge Racers of yore and Split/Second: players fill a power meter by drifting, which can then be used to open shortcuts or destroy other racers. Environments are also highly destructible, with points awarded for destroying "collateral" that has been deemed "inconsequential." Chewing up the scenery with your front fascia will be instrumental in finding the fastest lines, as well as earning the highest scores.

At the moment, we're intrigued by the racer's dramatic cinematics and minimalistic UI presentation, however it's also possible that we've simply been entranced by Joonas Laakso's accent. Unbounded is due out in 2012, so we'll just have to wait and see if the title can hold up without European charm.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.