1. #1
    Ubi-MrDrPink's Avatar Community Manager
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    Trials Garage #8: Fun Bikes

    Hey, Riders!

    In this installment of Trials Garage we’ll be diving into the topic of Fun Bikes. Adding new and different “bikes” into the game increases the replay-ability of tracks by being able to attempt them in a new context as well as offering a wider variety of gameplay overall. This month we will take a look back at the history of bringing fun bikes to previous Trials games and thoughts on why they were a beneficial addition.

    Before Trials HD, all the bikes were essentially the same. The introduction of Trials HD brought with it a few new ways to play Trials. There were altered bikes that visually looked more or less the same as the “normal” bikes but had altered attributes for skill games such as having an increased reverse speed for on top of the ball skill game. The micro Donkey brought with it a new level of challenge with its small size and very squirrely handling. We also brought in the afterburner that essentially turns the bike into a flying rocket for short bursts leading to all new types of challenges like the Rings of Fire. The debut of these new ways to play would lead to more new bikes and creative ideas as the series moved forward.



    With the launch of Trials Evolution came a new version of the Donkey that would turn into a fan favorite. Still small and extremely agile but now a bit easier to handle, this version of the Donkey was based on a model of mini-bike that is popular in RedLynx’s home of Finland. Evo also gave us the first pedal powered bike in the Trials series, the Gecko. Super agile with fast acceleration but a low top speed this bike was good at overcoming more difficult technical obstacles. Finally in this iteration of Trials we got The Banshee. This bike isn’t really what we would consider a “fun bike” as it was more just an alternative to the standard Trials bike with slightly different attributes that gave players options when taking on hard and extreme tracks.



    Besides these new bikes the vastly upgraded track editor in Evolution brought with it the ability to adjust bike parameters within tracks, putting the power of creating new bikes into the hands of players. We saw a lot of creative new bikes on Evo’s Track Central including segways, choppers & quads. This new ability also removed the need to create extra bikes specifically for skill games since the bike parameters could be adjusted in the track file and applied to whatever bikes were available.
    At the launch of Fusion we brought in the first official Quad, the TKO Panda, which had it’s own set of tracks built specifically for it’s all terrain structure. The BMX style bike also returned, slightly updated from Evolution and renamed as the Rabbit. Fusion also introduced a 3rd iteration of the Donkey as a free update. The Fusion Donkey featured a much smaller body and tougher controls similar to the version seen in Trials HD.



    Then, of course, there is the Cat & Unicorn that made it’s debut in the last DLC released for Fusion, Awesome Level Max. This was a very different kind of “bike” compared to anything that was added before which also came with it’s own set of tracks specifically designed for use with the Unicorn. Some players were turned off by the craziness of a cat riding a unicorn as a “bike” or by the stiff handling but despite this the Unicorn remains a popular choice for players in local and online multiplayers as well as those looking for an extra layer of challenge in their Trials sessions.|



    With our most recent release, the spinoff game Trials of the Blood Dragon, you could say the whole game was basically centered on fun bikes! This let us really stretch our imagination and come up with new types of gameplay within the content of Trials such as shooting on bikes, an 8-wheeler, jet pack, RC flip car and even on foot platforming. This wide variety of new ways to play made Blood Dragon very unique, adding a new spin on the evolution of the Trials vehicles.



    Now that we have reviewed the progression of bikes over the years it’s time to look forward. When we think of what else we can do with fun bikes there are a 2 key ideas that guide or thought process.

    First is that new bikes shouldn’t require their own set of tracks. Creating bike specific tracks puts a strain on the level team to provide more content or do less tracks for the traditional modes to support the new bike. Bikes that can be used on “normal” tracks create new replay opportunities and allows our level team to focus on the core game modes while still supporting these alternative bike options. This means that new bikes should create a different way to play without being “better” than the traditional bikes in terms of overall speed and agility.



    The other is the physics gameplay. At it’s core Trials is all about the physics and so any new bikes need to work within the context of those physics. A great example is a unicycle. This is a somewhat popular request from players that we have investigated in the past. In order to make a unicycle work we have to “fake” the physics to keep the rider from immediately falling on their face. This “faked” physics causes the gameplay to not feel as natural or intuitive as riding one of the bikes and therefore not an ideal addition to the Trials roster of vehicles.

    Now that we’ve shared many of our thoughts on fun bikes we’d like to hear from you. What do you like about fun bikes? What don’t you like? Are there any new kinds of bikes you’d like to see make their way to a Trials game? Sound off in the comments below and as always take a few minutes to complete this month’s Trials garage survey.



    Normally by this point in a Trials Garage article, we would have pointed you towards our monthly podcast to get some further insights on our topic from devs or players but there will be no podcast link this month. The Trials Garage Radio podcast is going to be on hiatus as we reorganize our podcast recording set-up and restructure the content of future podcasts. Subscribe to our Trials Garage Soundcloud to get notified when new podcasts are released.

    That’s it for February, riders. Until next month, we’ll see you on the leaderboards.
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  2. #2
    I don't particularly mind the 'fun' bikes, there are just a few particular conditions to have when incorporating them in my opinion.

    - Never, ever introduce a bike like the unicorn :P I have not ever been motivated to go for platinum medals with such janky handling.

    - I would like all fun bikes to be played on any tracks they can pass. I can get bored with the pheonix equivalent sometimes.

    - The panda tracks were nice, but something i avoided eventually because I dislike the, "Rollercoaster" tracks.

    - I feel a lot of what makes the fun bikes enjoyable is their appearance rather than utility - at least for me anyway. Adding more eloborate bike customisation can help.

    - The pain with introducing bikes that aren't 'bikes' is that the position of the front and back wheel is not illustrated very well. I often find myself leaning too much in a given direction because my bearings are off

    While im making a list I would like to suggest the ability to change bike when in the track. It seems particularly cluncky to leave and re-enter a track to change bike.

    That about covers it for me Thank you for maintaining a solid schedule recently!
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  3. #3
    Even if it requires its own tracks, bringing back the Turbo Flip in a game that includes an editor would be great. The same tracks could be used with an additional fun bike... I imagine a squirrel running through them
    Also, maybe even switching between bike sections and Turbo Flip sections, and allowing to do that in custom tracks?

    Concerning vehicles like the Panda, I thought it was fun at first but quickly got boring, because it lacks too much of the depth of handling the agile bike.
    If you include it in future games, please make it possible to play ranked multiplayer without it... Being competetive at "holding throttle for 40 seconds, and knowing at which 2 points on the track you need to let go of throttle for 2 seconds" just doesn't blend well with being competetive about your bike handling skills.

    Concerning bikes like Rabbit and Donkey, that allow playing normal tracks in a more challenging way... It would be more fun if your best run with those bikes was saved as well, not only your best overall run, which will probably be one with a standard bike. Allowing separate leaderboards for the same track or something like that. Some people just re-upload the same track, each locked to one particular bike, but a better solution that's available in both career and track central would be great.

    Originally Posted by XoHAYDNoX Go to original post
    While im making a list I would like to suggest the ability to change bike when in the track. It seems particularly cluncky to leave and re-enter a track to change bike.
    +1
    Something simple like holding the restart button for a second for being able to restart with a different bike would be perfect. Have I suggested that before? Twice? Maybe
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  4. #4
    Mystiqz_rL's Avatar Member
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    Not even going to bother reading your article as the previous post had no reply from anyone at UbiLynx. Almost as if these threads are made to keep the dwindling community slightly occupied with basically nothing. Surprise myself that I even bother to check the forums every now and then. UbiLynx seems to be progressing in whichever field they desire , unfortunately I think Fusion is the last Trials series on console. Player base is dead. Game is dead.
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  5. #5
    Personally, I think that customization and personalization of bikes is more important than the sheer number of bikes. A livery editor like forza, combined with more nuanced bike options would also be a huge boon to the title, and provide many more unlocks and options for the team to use to drive player investment. Handlebars, wheels, rims, paintjobs, suspension, lights, fuel tank, and similar components put into a modular bike system would allow players to really personalize their appearance in game.

    In terms of 'fun' bikes, the RC car was cool, and I agree with the criticisms of the panda, in that it took away from the core physics play that makes trials fun. I feel that the baggie, roach, and pitviper represent good pillars of bike performance, and any additional ones should fit in between those styles, with the 'trials' bike being the best bike for tackling the hardest content. Bikes in between those styles should emphasize certain playstyles, to allow players to have fun and handicap themselves when playing with friends. A bike all about suspension compression would be really cool for instance.

    I also agree that all bikes should work on all tracks. I personally found FMX frustrating, and annoying to have to play. It's not fun to try and get a platinum in a gamemode that is unsatisfying to play, and it feels like a chore to have to play those tracks. I found the panda levels to have that same feeling of 'great, now I have to use this unfun quad bike'. I think unique and interesting bikes mean that you could design certain levels to take advantage of a style of bike, without forcing players to have to use it if they don't want to. Hardwheeling was a kinda cool example of this. A lot of players like to use the Roach because it was consistent to wheelie with (and for the top ones because it had more momentum for the final jump distance), but I preferred the precision of the pitviper and liked that I could finish the track, because it was more satisfying for me to play with the pitviper on that track.
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  6. #6
    Gulzt's Avatar Member
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    I don't like all the extra bikes for myself, BUT, my family does! My young niece was crazy about the unicorn, so it encouraged her to play trials. So with that said, crazy bikes have appeal to some of us, but I hope we could play this game in "hardcore mode" and get a pure trials experience. No FMX, a no-nonsense career mode, perhaps even with an added difficulty Ninja.
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  7. #7
    A pogo stick!



    A minecart!



    A boatercycle!

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  8. #8
    Originally Posted by Crimson__Arrow Go to original post
    I also agree that all bikes should work on all tracks.
    How should this be possible? This would mean that Meteorain – for example – should be possible with the Donkey or the Panda, which would mean the Tracks are going to be to easy. Not a good idea.
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  9. #9
    Just put more normal bikes in the game. For example 3 rookie bikes 3 normal bikes 3 hard bikes and 3 extreme bikes to choose from. Beside this keep the funbikes and maybe its fun to put a step in it. Or a harley or something.
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