Coinciding with the first batch of screenshots for the game, Shin’en also set the website for their wipEout-inspired WiiWare racer, FAST – Racing League, live earlier today. It makes mention of up to 4-player splitscreen races, different race modes and unlockables.
When they first teased FAST back in August, Shin’en used the line “Shift your phase” as the game’s catchphrase. Judging by the new site, this involves transforming your vehicle to match the “phase” of the track (screen #2). While Shin’en weren’t surprised by the wipEout and F-Zero comparisons, this feature is how they hope to set the game apart from those titles.
Since FAST is the first racing game Shin’en have worked on, setting their game apart from the competition wasn’t the only challenge during development.
“The biggest challenge was to get the AI and Physics right,” Shin’en co-founder, Manfred Linzner, revealed to us. “Because the gameplay allows for many strategies, the AI needed a lot of attention to be challenging without actually cheating the player. The biggest challenge in the physics was to handle the extreme high velocities without spending too much CPU time on it.”
While FAST supports up to four players in splitscreen mode, we know that it runs at 60 frames-per-second during two-player splitscreen, which was something the team was adamant on adding. We aren’t technophiles at Siliconera, but part of the thrill of futuristic high-speed racers is the unrelenting speed.
“After a lot of smaller improvements in our render technology, we developed a highly efficent software occlusion culling system that used only a few percentage of CPU time but freed large amounts of GPU time in critical areas,” Linzner told us, citing it as the team’s framerate solution.
He also teased that the game would have a unique mode that he hasn’t seen in any other racer to date.