In the summer of 2006, inside the Los Angeles Convention Center, there was a historically long line to get into the Nintendo's E3 booth and lay eyes and hands on the yet-unreleased Wii and its wares. After finally getting into the booth, attendees were faced with the choice of which long line they'd want to wait in next to play a game. When I got inside the booth and surveyed the selection, my first pick was Excite Truck. Once I'd finally gotten my hands on the controller and made a few laps around the track, I knew this would be a day one purchase for me.
Even after scoping out the upcoming stuff for Xbox 360 and PS3, I was convinced that Excite Truck embodied the true essence of the "next generation." New gameplay dynamics met vast dynamically changing terrain that stretched beyond what we had grown accustomed to.
So when Disney Interactive showed their new ATV racer, Pure, with vertiginous jumps, wild tricks, and expansive vistas, I thought I was looking at the spiritual successor to one of my favorite Wii launch titles, but a Wii version was not in the cards. At least we have a PC version to hack together a GlovePIE script for and give it the Excite Truck treatment.
Pure's off-road racing action is so similar to Excite Truck, you may not even realize at first that you're racing on quads instead of trucks. It's an easy mistake to make when the lush scenery draws in your attention as you're boosting off the crest of a sky-high hill and looking down upon the course being rendered for miles before you.
The interaction between the quad and its rider will be of increasing importance as you get a feel for the game. Lean your rider back and the quad will pop a wheelie, which can give you a slight boost. You'll need to get used to leaning your rider every which way to jump, pull off tricks, and also land, whereas in Excite Truck, you only needed to (unrealistically) tilt your truck to land and gain a boost.
I decided to build this script around PPJoy in order to emulate analog controls for the most responsive steering and leaning.
W = Wiimote.Two //Accelerate S = Wiimote.One //Decelerate, reverse One = Wiimote.Up //Basic trick Two = Wiimote.Left //Intermediate trick Three = Wiimote.Down //Expert trick Space and Ctrl = Wiimote.Right //Boost Q = Wiimote.A //Trick special A = Wiimote.B //Trick tweak
Escape = Wiimote.Minus //Menu back Enter = Wiimote.Plus //Menu enter If abs(Wiimote.SmoothPitch) > 5 //10-degree deadzone for pitch PPJoy.Analog0 = maprange(Wiimote.SmoothPitch,-75,75,-1,1) EndIf If abs(Wiimote.SmoothRoll) > 5 //10-degree deadzone for roll PPJoy.Analog1 = maprange(Wiimote.SmoothRoll,-50,50,-1,1) EndIf Shift + P + I + E = Any.Home//Stop script running
I've never been keen on Excite Truck's gesture-based trick system. It requires more precision and coordination than I am usually able to muster in the heat of a race. Adapting Pure to use Excite Truck's controls will have you tilting the controller back and forth to lean your rider on his quad. Tilting back before a jump preloads the quad's shocks, and then tilting forward springs you into a jump, and that essentially constitutes a gesture. But the trick controls are mapped to the D-pad and A button. If you launch with enough height, you can pull off a trick (or series of them), and then must attempt to level out your wheels to land the trick. Before it was a chore to trick, but now tricking is a treat!
Pure may seem like too much of a beast for the Wii to handle, but developer Black Rock Studios has a history of working wonders on lesser-spec'ed hardware. I've run the PC version on a high end rig with all the eye candy on and developed a few cavities just from looking at it, but running it on my laptop with just a fraction of the power still delivers satisfyingly sweet results (as evidenced in the video above).
Nintendo has often been called the "Disney of video games," so is there any good reason why the real Disney of video games shouldn't support Nintendo's finest console? Until Pure is announced for the Wii, I urge you to try out this script. With greater depth and better controls, this turned out to be just what I needed to scratch my Excite Truck 2 itch.
Every other week, Mike Sylvester brings you REVOLUTIONARY, a look at the wide world of Wii possibilities. Did you know Pure is also available for the PS3? Using the SIXAXIS controller might seem like the next best thing to a Wiimote for anyone hungering for a little Excite-ment, but so far very few PS3 games have made motion control feel as integral to gameplay as it is in our favorite Wii titles. Revolutionary: Controller Showdown, Round 2 for a little insight as to why the waggle works better with the Wiimote.