American Wilds is the expansion pack for Spintires MudRunner, making an already massive game even more colossal by adding more maps and vehicles to the mix.
We have previously reviewed Spintires: MudRunner base game – read here.
This review is for the expansion pack so if you need to get an idea and feel of the game, click over on to that firstly and then pop back here and read on.
Developed by; Focus Home Interactive
Platforms Available on; Ps4, Xbox One, and PC
Available; Now – base game needed to play American Wilds
American Wilds gives you two more maps added on the big selection of original maps from the game. The two additional maps you have here are Grizzly Creek and Mount Logmore alongside these, you also get added some pretty cool vehicles to get you around the maps such as the Chevrolet Bison and the K5 Blazer, both pretty much badass vehicles along with 7 other iconic American trucks to try out.
Now when I came across MudRunner I was kind of pumped as I am a massive fan of shows such as Ice Road Truckers, Gold Rush and others of that ilk and this seems to follow the Discovery theme. Now I will admit the first time I played American Wilds I hadn’t at that stage played the original MudRunner game so off I went in my Bison giving a few blasts on the horn for no other reason other than I could and it felt right, not giving a care in the world I went thrashing (eventually) off along the road, checking my map I see my target goal “well it’s just through the trees” I thought to myself and I quickly turned the wheel and went off road, well for about five seconds before I became majorly stuck and with no AA man in sight off I went back to the garage with a slightly dented ego. It was then I decided to curb my inner child and put my thinking head on and studied the map along with the selection on vehicles at my disposal. I realized you need different vehicles to get you to different areas and that in turn will give you the goal and also the winch is your friend.
American Wilds is a slow process and not one for someone who wants a quick game, although it does autosave often for you which does enable you to go back to the main menu and restart the game at the same point if needed.
Grizzly Creek is full of hazards and problems for you to solve and work around, you will come across massive puddles of water and sticky mud covering the road needing a different plan for you to get through. There is also no quick routes and sometimes you find yourself driving around the whole map to get to the target goal and bare in mind the bridge which is in a very handy location is not available when you are loaded. Like I said before, Grizzly Creek will test you to the utmost limits with risky banked corners and puddles that are trickier than you might think, taking corners is something you really need to be aware and careful with the moves you make as one false move will have you tipping the wagon and load all over the ground below, trust me it happens, I took a corner too quickly after carefully navigating the map and could see the lumber yard in the distance took the corner too quick and “BAM” the truck along with all the load was in the ditch and me close to tears as I had no choice but to recall back to the garage and start over again.
Although MudRunner can be a very frustrating game and can feel like you are driving for eternity before you reach the goal, I do feel like I am starting to enjoy the game and getting a lot out of the whole planning experience; it’s a kind of retraining for my brain as I normally stick to arcade racers and run and gun shooters which to be fair, don’t take too much thought, it’s quite a refreshing change to play a completely different model.
American Wilds is very immersive but doesn’t bring much difference to the table apart from cosmetics but it kind of feels like an “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” type of games as what worked in the main game has worked in American Wilds.
Unfortunately, when it comes to Mount Logmore, it brings very little else… it all looks the same wooded boggy wildland as Grizzly Creek, again, not necessarily the worst thing but it would’ve been good to see something a little different.
Graphics and Sound
Now the graphics are the best thing about American Wilds, everything looks amazing. Of all the time I played the game I never saw a pixelated glitch in the landscape, the mud track deformation makes it increasingly difficult to get about if you use the same track, if I am to find a fault with American Wilds I would say that the mud could look better and looks a bit plasticky at times but I am being picky.
I especially like and respect the little nuances like if you leave your truck for a bit and look in the cab, you will find your driver asleep, just press the gas and up he jumps, ready to go.
All the vehicles look the part with the rusted trailers and beat up paintwork that really hammers home the work feel to this game. As for the sound section of the game, these are very authentic and all seem to add to the realism of the game.
To summarise my thoughts of American Wilds, I did at the start feel like I was getting nowhere and found it a bit boring but after I persevered and got somewhere, it became quite fun although I would’ve liked to have seen a bit of variety in the loads… I think I will be seeing logs in my sleep for months after this.
If you are into your real life documentaries like Ice Road Truckers then you will find this a good game to play but those who don’t may find it a bit bland. If you have the base game this is definitely worth the purchase as it does add more to the mix.