Carmageddon’s Early Art Is Pretty Interesting

Carmageddon’s Early Art Is Pretty Interesting
<a href="">Image: Twitter (@toshiba_3)</a>

It’s almost 22 years since the original Carmageddon was released. And while that’s not cause for any particular celebration, one user has helpfully dug up a ton of old concept art from Stainless Games’ brutal vehicular combat racer.

A ton of concept art, primarily produced by Neil Barnden and Terry Lane, has been floating around on social media this morning. It’s courtesy of Belgian Carmageddon modder Bernard Boonen, who is also the person behind the Road Reaction fansite.

It’s fascinating seeing not only concept art from back in the mid ’90s – this would have been put together closer to 1995, if not 1996 when the game was in early development – but also the kind of vibe the concept art was going for. A lot of the colouring and city streets is closer to Blade Runner in parts.

Early ideas also featured tracks with a start and end point, more like Outrun or Monster Truck Madness than the looping circuits that Carmageddon ended up shipping with. Having looping tracks meant cars were more likely to interact with each other, so the change makes sense, and I imagine having more powerups was mostly to help with balancing.

You can go back and compare all of the styles pretty easily, too: The Carmageddon mobile port is still really good. The game is more fun to control these days on your phone than with keyboard controls, I’ve found.

Thanks to THQ Nordic forgetting to change the prices, you can’t actually buy the original Carmageddon games on Steam. The Max pack is available through GOG for $13.79, but you can also get Carmageddon TDR 2000 for $6.

This story originally appeared in March 2019.


  • Man i had some serious fun with Carmageddon over the years. Seems odd that Stainless went to so much trouble to get the IP back only to onsell it a few years later.

    Fun fact that people often get wrong, even with our “puritanical” classification laws, these games all got through uncensored. The original was even banned and had to censored in the UK for a time.

    • Wasn’t the censorship at least partly to do with Germany? European releases back in the day were often the same release for the five main languages (English, German, French, Spanish, Italian). So unless the publisher wanted to make multiple versions, the game would be essentially be censored for the entire PAL region.

    • It’d be interesting to see how a modern remake would fare, one with fairly realistic graphics. Considering it’s encouraging you to run over kids and grannies for bonus points and doesn’t have “redeeming” values I wouldn’t be surprised if the OFLC had a fit again.

      • I think if it was done as an indie game no one would really care. Indie games tend to fly under the radar unless they contain really objectional content.

Show more comments

Log in to comment on this story!