What is Destruction Derby Ultimate?
Destruction Derby Ultimate is an action-packed vehicle combat game. Smash your way to victory in thrilling car battles, purchase upgrades, customize your vehicle, hire drivers, and compete in epic multiplayer arenas.
Though derbies were never particularly popular in the grand scheme of things, they did provide some good old-fashioned intelligence-free entertainment in their heyday. A few game companies have attempted to turn the art of the demolition derby into a game over the years, with varying degrees of success.
Ultimate Demolition Derby by Global Star Software and 3 Romans is yet another failure in a long line of subpar derby games, though the level at which this game fails is truly amazing. It's difficult to imagine a more lifeless and uninteresting game based on the concept of fast cars crashing into each other at high speeds, yet Ultimate Demolition Derby manages to suck all the fun out of its subject matter and replace it with half-baked driving physics, an ugly graphics engine, and a slew of frame rate and compatibility issues that can make the game nearly unplayable at times.
Ultimate Demolition Derby has nine cars to choose from, including an old pickup truck, a hot rod, a jeep, a slightly different-looking jeep, something that vaguely resembles a Mini Cooper, and a Hertz. You'll have four basic race types to choose from in the game's single-player mode, though some are just variations of other races. You can race against five other cars in a basic demolition race or a stunt race, where you'll need to do flips and spins to earn points, or you can participate in a traditional demolition derby, where your goal is to drive around wrecking into your opponents until the last car is left running or time runs out and you have the highest score, or you can race against five other cars in a stunt race, where you'll need to do flips and spins to earn points. Each mode essentially just keeps going after you win, presumably until you either quit or go insane. There is a multiplayer mode in the game, but it can only be played on a LAN. If the game wasn't so bad, this might seem like a good addition, but that's not the case.
The majority of Ultimate Demolition Derby's gameplay issues stem from its haphazardly assembled driving controls and physics. Although Ultimate Demolition Derby supports game controllers, a controller will not work in the stunt race mode because the shift key is required to spin your car while in the air. The game simply controls better on a keyboard--a digital controller felt far too erratic to be useful, and analog control wasn't much better. The game's physics are essentially non-existent. Aside from slower cars moving appropriately slower and faster cars moving faster, every car feels the same--awful.
If you turn too sharply, your car jerks around in unsettling ways; pulling your hand brake just stops you and doesn't allow you to slide (or do anything remotely realistic); and crashing just doesn't seem to work right. Most of the time, if you run into a wall, you'll manage to drive halfway up it rather than crash into it. Half of the hits you deliver to other cars don't seem to register properly, making it nearly impossible to determine whether other cars, or even your own, are on the verge of destruction or doing just fine. The gauge in the bottom left corner of the screen is supposed to show where your car has the most damage, but it doesn't do its job very well.
How to play