A clip testing out the rider ragdoll from March 2021

With the recent attention to myself and LCQ Studios, I feel like I should address MCTD and also clear a few things up with what is going on. This will be long so TL;DR is at the bottom of this post.

The Past Few Years

I have been avoiding acknowledging Motocross: Chasing the dream for almost two years now. At the time of writing this, MCTD has amassed 9k+ wishlists on Steam and thousands of follows and likes across social media platforms and YouTube. To me, long before it got its name, MCTD started out as a test project to see if I could make a two-wheeled vehicle in a video game and it has grown, evolved, and turned inside out over the years. It was never meant to blow up like it did which is why I have always been so vague and have never once given a timeline to when some kind of release would happen. Social media has always been a vessel in which to share the cool stuff my friends and I are working on but it spread like wildfire due to the motocross gaming genre being so niche. If I’m being completely honest, over time I began to hate MCTD and dreaded the thought of working on it because of the pressure put on us by the gaming community.

(I’m about to cry about my feelings so all of you hard dudes who eat glass shards and nails for breakfast can skip on down to the next section lol.)

If you go to any social media page of any video game company, you will notice a sea of gamers commenting negative things about the developers and the games they are making. Unfortunately, the incredibly small motocross game genre does not escape this. There is a harsh reality being a motocross game developer in that seemingly no one cares about your game unless it is Mx vs. ATV Reflex and your game will never stand up to the titan it has become. Not even Rainbow Studios themselves can overcome the insurmountable challenge of beating out their old game. The issue lies within the surface level impressions from gamers and instead of pointing out the good, they feel the need to post a comment saying “if this game doesn’t have x, then it is garbage” or “physics look like trash” or any variation of anything that is not constructive criticism. Don’t get me wrong, there is a ton of positivity, but it is a known fact that negativity almost always takes precedence over positivity. For example, a person can have fifty great experiences at a particular place that they will never mention, but the one time something goes wrong they immediately tell others. This is similar to how I started to weigh the positivity and negativity personally.

Canyon environment test

Now I think I have some pretty thick skin and it is extremely hard to hurt my feelings or make me mad in any way. However, over the last few years, the constant barrage of negativity coming from social media put me in an overwhelmingly depressive state. Every new bit of progress we made as a team was just getting dunked on by people who didn’t appreciate the work we were putting in with what we had to work with. You could go to any one of our Facebook posts and the negative comments would pop up first as the “most relevant”. We had to scroll pretty far down to find people who were stoked about our work so we could acknowledge them for their support. Like I said earlier, it got to the point where I dreaded even seeing the project folder called “MCTD” and I made a separate development folder to keep my other projects in. I’m not the college kid that will stay up at all hours of the night and work myself to death anymore. My time has become precious to me now, and instead of working tirelessly for very little gain, I started choosing to do things I like in my free time like playing video games with my friends, playing with my dogs, or watching a movie with my girlfriend. Almost immediately at the start of the global pandemic in 2020, everything was heightened and it took a toll on the whole development team. I cannot speak for the others, but personally, I was trying to finish up college, look for a career job, and try to keep focused on MCTD all while working a full-time job to get by. It got so hard that everything around us crumbled and no one had the time, energy, or motivation to work on the game so it just fell into a dormant state. Personally speaking, I was glad it ended up like that at the time. In late 2020, I teamed up with a guy working on an offroad racing game called Wide Open and it was such a breath of fresh air that it became all I focused on when I had some free development time. It was something new and exciting and we didn’t have a bunch of people telling us our game wouldn’t be good if it wasn’t an exact copy of another game. I have been extremely happy working on that title for the past almost two years now. Shameless plug, but it’s a super fun game about racing UTVs on motocross-like tracks with real-time terrain deformation. You should check it out on Steam.

The whole point of me telling you this isn’t to show you how big of a crybaby I am or tell you what to do. It’s to show you that developers have feelings too and we all need to try harder to show some positivity and be grateful for the limited amount of moto games we do get (I’m strictly speaking as a gamer at this point and not as a developer). I’m by no means saying I’m perfect, I get the same way too. I see people complain all the time that the developers don’t listen to player feedback, but I promise you they do 100% of the time. The reality is they can’t put everything they want in their games because they are bound to a deadline and other factors which I won’t get into. And while you may not like a specific game or a particular company, the second those games aren’t profitable is the second we lose games centered around our beloved sport. Let’s appreciate the games we do get a little more and be kinder to the developers that work so hard on them.

(Btw, this isn’t a bait to get you to say nice things to us. We want the criticism so we can make a better product. We just don’t need the senseless negativity. This is a culmination of feelings from the last few years that I needed to get off my chest. There’s a reason companies hire social media managers so the developers can focus on developing)

Some fun whips from early 2020

What’s Next for MCTD

Motocross Madness was the first motocross game I ever played. I distinctly remember being a small child blasting through a free ride map on a green dirt bike with purple riding gear and thinking it was the coolest thing ever. As I got older, I moved on to MX 2002 Ft. Ricky Carmichael and MTX Mototrax on the original Xbox and I instantly knew I wanted to create experiences like that when I grew up. It’s been a lifelong dream that I was very close to giving up on. I tried so hard to step away, but I keep getting drawn back to it.

There was a recent video by Windham151 on YouTube that absolutely blew the doors open on our social media (btw, the camera is fully adjustable 😉. I just like it close). It showcased clips from a personal project that I started from scratch in early April 2022. I honestly had no intention of doing much with it as I was just trying to satisfy my itch to make a dirtbike game and post a few clips here and there in my Discord server and on my personal Twitter. I have seen nothing but good vibes in the comments and people messaging the LCQ accounts on social media. The video basically told everyone MCTD was being revived before I even knew it was getting revived lol, but it’s true now – Motocross: Chasing the Dream development is back underway.

The video that changed the course of MCTD by Windham151

You may notice that the bike and wheels are from the MX Simulator forums by LC Creations and P2sta respectively and the character is from Mixamo. These are just placeholders while I am getting the project off the ground and will not be in any build. They were the only models i had access to during my first initial test a couple months ago. I want to make it very clear that absolutely nothing will be used from the old MCTD project so the new project is being built from the absolute beginning which means it will take time. However, I am a more experienced game developer than I was a couple of years ago and even a more experienced developer than I was last week. It’s all about learning as you grow and I’ve grown a lot which means the new project will be better than it could have ever been.

I’ve learned that playtesting is the best way to get player feedback as well as find bugs in the software. Player feedback has become so important to me because I’m not only adding or fixing what I want but also adding and fixing what the players want me to. Since that is such an integral part of the development process, I have decided to release MCTD for free on itch.io and Steam while we work on the core feature set and mechanics with a more in-depth, paid release in the future. This way, you all do not have to pay for a super pre-alpha game while I work on getting the basics of the game ready to go. I have a demo almost ready to go, I just have to address and fix a couple of things. The first of those things is sound which is the only super-basic thing I don’t have implemented at the moment (It’s not going to be good. Think of the worst moto flash game you’ve played on the internet and dial that back by like 9). 

My goal for this first initial free release is to unchain myself from the obsession of chasing perfection in a black box. I know what players want and I have accepted that I can’t deliver on a lot of those things just by myself – no one has yet, not even the companies with hundreds of employees. I want the development to be community feedback-driven so I can make the best game in my ability without striving for perfection in every facet.

The demo scene I’ve been working on from May 2022

You might have noticed that I’ve been using the word “I” a lot. This revival was brought on by my own personal project that I’ve just been using to tinker with. However, it’s more fun and meaningful to work on projects with other people. I have already had someone on the old LCQ team reach out to me as shocked as I was about the “MCTD revival” wanting to jump back in with me, but I’m going to reach out to everyone who was once working with me on the old team to see if they want part of it as well. I want to try bringing the band back together if you will.

I won’t promise anything, but I’m hoping to bring this project back stronger than it ever was and create something that people will want to play. My original goal back in the day was not to make money but to shake up the motocross game industry and create the basis for a better representation of our sport and I will continue to strive for that. Over the coming weeks, there will be some more information on how you can get involved by playing the demo – I can’t do this without you.

TL;DR

  • Pitty party for myself
    • Social media is bad for you
    • The Global pandemic was bad for everything
    • Be kinder to all game developers – they deserve it
      • Something I need to work on too
  • Windham151 knew I was reviving MCTD before I did
  • Starting from scratch using my new tinker project from early April 2022
    • I would burn the old project files if it was physically possible
  • Releasing for free on Steam and itch.io during the base feature set and mechanics development
    • Paid release in the future – no it won’t be a lot of money
    • I love player feedback and this is the best way to get it
  • Going to try to get the LCQ Studios band back together
  • I can’t do this without your support

Wide Open

In the meantime, check out the recent game I’ve been working on! Here is a link to the Steam page

Wide Open trailer August 2021