Why SpinTires: MudRunner Is the Off-Roading Sim You Need to Try
Aside from wrenching on or driving their actual vehicle, there’s no better way for an auto enthusiast to kill some time than by firing up a racing simulator or driving game to have some fun. From open world arcade titles to ultra realistic sim games, there is no shortage of experiences to choose from these days.
When it comes to off-roading games though, there aren’t nearly as many as choices. Yes, games like Forza Horizon have an ever-expanding roster of all terrain vehicles, but their racing style leans more toward the arcade spectrum, with high speeds and a lot of huge jumps.
If you are looking for a more focused off-road experience, there's a game called Spintires: MudRunner that has picked up a significant following over the last few years, and if you aren’t familiar it’s certainly worth a look. In fact, we’ve been having an absolute blast during our short time playing it.
Spintires began as a Russian indie-developed game that was released on PC back in 2014, and in 2017 it was followed by a spin-off called MudRunner, which was also released on consoles.
Slow-paced and methodic, the original Spintires featured a variety of old school Soviet-era trucks and 4x4s that you’d use to haul various loads across muddy, varied terrain using different techniques.
MudRunner featured more of the same, and last year an expansion called American Wilds was released, which added new terrain and new American-made vehicles to the mix.
Among the vehicle roster are classics like the Chevy K5 Blazer and an early ‘90s Ford F-150 4x4, and there are also vintage big rigs like the Chevy Bison and Ford LTL9000.
If you are used to high speeds and huge jumps, you’ll be in for a surprise when you fire up MudRunner. Here it’s all about navigating and figuring out the best way to traverse, muddy roads, river beds and various inclines. You'll also have to manage your fuel usage along the way.
To go along with its robust physics engine, MudRunner gives players a number of tools to get where they need to go, including a compass, four-wheel drive systems and locking differentials on certain vehicles. There’s also a winch, which comes in quite handy when you inevitably get yourself stuck.
Speaking of getting stuck, the mud physics in particular are incredible. From the way the vehicles sink in, to the ruts they make when trying to get out, it’s both fascinating and somehow beautiful to watch.
While it’s likely that SpinTires: MudRunner will always remain a game with a relatively small cult following, it’s very well done and is a nice change of pace from the more popular driving games out there.
Whether you are a seasoned 4x4 veteran or you’ve never been off-roading in real life, chances are you’ll have a blast navigating a variety of vehicles across the challenging terrain. Spintires: MudRunner is available on PC, as well as the Xbox One, Playstation 4 and even the Nintendo Switch—and it's surprisingly cheap to buy. Just don’t blame us if you get hooked.