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Platform Racing 3

PR3 old

Platform Racing 3 - Thanksgiving Background

Platform Racing 3 - Christmas Background

Developers Jiggmin, Sparkworkz
Publishers Sparkworkz
Rating T
Genres Racing, platformer
Release Date 2010-06-14 (Closed Beta)

2010-07-08 (Open Beta)

Platform Racing 3 (commonly abbreviated PR3) is an Adobe Flash online multiplayer platformer racing video game developed by Jacob Grahn and Sparkworkz that was released on 2010-07-08.

Due to internal issues at Sparkworkz, the game was never completed or released on other websites as planned. Despite its limited release and very little advertising, the game was able to amass over 13 million plays by May 2011[1], slightly over half of what its predecessor had on Kongregate at the time.[2]

Initially planned to be the final installment in the series[3][4], Jiggmin has since stated he hopes to create a fourth entry at an unknown point.[5][6]

Pre-Release History

Speculation about a third Platform Racing game began several months after the second's release. Jiggmin eventually confirmed that he was working on a sequel on 2008-10-27 in a now deleted post on his website listing multiple planned features that didn't make it into the final game.[7]

Further information wasn't given until 2009 when Jiggmin began posting that it'd "be out by the end of [2009]."[8], referring to its release date, though he'd also claim the estimate wasn't realistic. Several blogs were posted over the course of the year largely relating to design aspects[9][10][11][12][13], though specific details were generally avoided and kept secret.[14]

On 2010-03-22, inXile Entertainment officially announced via a press release that they had partnered with Jiggmin to develop the game with the company's CEO, Brian Fargo, stating: "Jacob definitely did something right with Platform Racing 1 and 2, and we wanted him to see his entire vision through with Platform Racing 3."[15] The company's webgaming division, Sparkworkz, was revealed to be tasked with working on the game's graphics and interface. Jiggmin himself confirmed the news a day later in a blog post leading to the website's homepage.[16][17] Several teaser screenshots showcasing the game's art style, new items, and the level editor were posted on sparkworkz.com the next day, which were met with positive reception among fans.[18]

While a set release date wasn't revealed yet, Jiggmin began announcing more specific features around the same period, including heavily requested ones such as a block editor and text tool.[19][20][21]

Followed by an announcement/countdown thread[22] on Jiggmin's forum where he posted several celebratory photos[23][24][25], the game's level and block editor was released on 2010-06-02. A contest was also announced on the same day for players to create their best level to get it on the single-player campaign that would end on the 24th.[26][27] In-between that time, several users were invited to test the closed beta of the full game to work possible server issues out before the public release.

Gameplay

Platform Racing 3 Gameplay

Users racing in a sky-based custom level.

Platform Racing 3 is an online racing game where players create their own customizable avatar and compete against each other in levels made by other members. Items are available for players to grab in some levels that can be used to give themselves an advantage over others, such as returning ones like the Speed Burst and Lightning, as well as new items like the Rocket Launcher and Shield. After completing each match, players are awarded experience points that are used to rank up and gain stat points for their character to enhance their speed, traction, and jump height. Prizes such as body parts and hats occasionally pop-up in matches as well and are awarded to the winner.

Gameplay is overall slower paced than the previous installment, although faster than the first. In return, players have slightly more control over their character's movement and can pass obstacles requiring more precise movements easier. While past entries were limited to only racing, three new game modes are available for players to choose from to center their level around: deathmatches, where users fight until only one remains; hat attacks, where players compete to grab every hat on the map first; and coin fiends, where users try to grab the most coins within the time limit.

Platform Racing 3 Level Editor

The level editor, with various, placeable blocks shown.

The level editor from Platform Racing 2 returns with numerous improvements and new features. In addition to all blocks from the last title returning (at the time of the game's release), several new blocks have been created, including the teleport and change blocks. Several different designs are also available for blocks to match new pre-drawn backgrounds, including classic ones from the prior game.

Drawing layers have been overhauled entirely, with users now being able to create an infinite amount with custom depth and transparency amounts. Additionally, stamps return and a new (at the time) text tool allows users to type text out rather than write it. Users can also set the game mode from any of the aforementioned options and percentage chance of certain events triggering, such as Super Flying Cowboy Hat Mode and snow.

Platform Racing 3 - Block Editor

The block editor.

The game also introduces a block editor that allows players to create their own custom blocks to fit any block type. The editor features the same drawing tools as the level editor, minus backgrounds, allowing artists to create a variety of unique designs. In addition to being able to set the block's type, some types let the user set different characteristics for each side, such as giving an item from the left while exploding from the top.

The editor is also home to the exclusive types: "impervious" and "hurt", which can not be destroyed and can, unlike the mine, repeatedly stun the player, respectively. Users have more control over a few existing block types in the editor as well, including being able to set a specific pattern for change blocks and which items can come out of one item block.

Customization

See also: Platform Racing 3/Hats

See also: Platform Racing 3/Body Parts

As with the last game, players are able to style their avatar using a variety of different body parts and hats. While all hats created in Platform Racing 2 at the time of the game's release return with new appearances, no past sets were brought back, instead featuring entirely new ones for users to collect.

Update History

See also: Platform Racing 3/Update History

Shut Down

On 2015-02-03, inXile Entertainment closed their Sparkworkz division and most of its games unannounced, including Platform Racing 3.[28] Visiting the website now redirects the user to a page explaining their decision to shut down and that some of their games would be moving elsewhere soon. Jiggmin himself never made an official statement about his thoughts on the shut down and hasn't expressed interest in setting up servers of his own.

A fan project emerged a few months later on 2015-08-18, however, titled Platform Racing 3: Reborn that lead to the game being revived through a private server and receiving multiple, unofficial updates.[29]

Unused Content

Main article: Unused_Content#Platform_Racing_3

Given its sudden halt in development, Platform Racing 3 has a large number of unused graphics/unfinished features in the 5-20-11-1 build and iPhone app that ended up going unused, especially compared to other games developed by Jiggmin.

Awards

Platform Racing 3 was a nominee for "Best Multiplayer Game" at the 2011 Flash Gaming Summit awards,[30] though it didn't receive enough votes to reach the top 3 choices.[31]

Trivia

  • While commonly believed now that Sparkworkz was always going to be the sole hoster of the game, the company originally stated that they at least had plans to release the game on Kongregate once it was out of beta.[32] Given they additionally posted games on Newgrounds and Armor Games at the time, it can be inferred it would've been uploaded there as well.
Platform Racing 3 - iPhone App Icon

PR3's app icon.

  • Despite the official game shutting down, it was revealed that Jiggmin still has access to all data related to it.[33]
  • This is the only one of Jiggmin's games to receive an official iPhone app. However, it was negatively received and removed from the app store in December 2011.[34]
  • Not counting the unmade fourth installment, this is the only Platform Racing game to:
    • Be a collaboration.
    • Have a single-player campaign.
    • Not use Gwibble for the title's font.
    • Have the "EXP Bonus" stat.
    • Not feature the player's currently held item in a corner of the screen.
    • Be officially exclusive to one website.
    • Not feature a moving background on the title screen.
      • Have multiple main menu backgrounds.
    • Have a block editor.
    • Not have the original Platform Racing 1 body parts in any form.
    • Have the in-game music start after a level's countdown instead of while it's drawing.
    • Lack idle animations for avatars.
    • Have matches be hosted by players.
    • Not have set rank requirements to play certain levels.

References

  1. http://web.archive.org/web/20110610150619/http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/platform-racing-3/id437364752?mt=8#
  2. http://web.archive.org/web/20110706131935/http://www.kongregate.com:80/games?sort=gameplays
  3. http://web.archive.org/web/20130601114354/http://www.sparkworkz.com/2010/03/inxile%E2%80%99s-sparkworkz%E2%84%A2-announces-the-next-installment-in-the-hit-flash-series-platform-racing%E2%84%A2/
  4. http://web.archive.org/web/20100919195149/http://www.sparkworkz.com:80/games/web/platform-racing-3/
  5. http://forums.freegoo.se/t/reply-jiggoman-insert-random-crap-here/148/7
  6. http://freegoo.se/platform-racing-4-and-the-future/
  7. http://www.kongregate.com/forums/3/topics/25151
  8. http://web.archive.org/web/20111029061854/http://casualgameinformer.com/wp/2009/04/15/an-interview-with-jiggmin/
  9. http://web.archive.org/web/20110711172613/http://jiggmin.com/entries/181-pr2-and-pr3
  10. http://web.archive.org/web/20090918031340/http://jiggmin.com/forum/blog.php?b=4871
  11. http://web.archive.org/web/20110208235725/http://jiggmin.com/blogs/1-Jiggmin?tag=jiggmin
  12. http://web.archive.org/web/20101206115832/http://jiggmin.com/forum/blog.php?b=5297
  13. http://web.archive.org/web/20120603075919/http://jiggmin.com/entries/8500-Building-a-better-color-picker
  14. http://web.archive.org/web/20100102121409/http://jiggmin.com/forum/blog.php?tag=die+jestes+die+d%3A%3C&u=1
  15. http://web.archive.org/web/20130601114354/http://www.sparkworkz.com/2010/03/inxile%E2%80%99s-sparkworkz%E2%84%A2-announces-the-next-installment-in-the-hit-flash-series-platform-racing%E2%84%A2/
  16. http://web.archive.org/web/20100808193125/http://jiggmin.com/forum/blog.php?b=10916
  17. http://web.archive.org/web/20100412015840/http://www.sparkworkz.com/?
  18. http://web.archive.org/web/20100406032713/http://jiggmin.com/forum/blog.php?b=10930
  19. http://web.archive.org/web/20110208235905/http://jiggmin.com/blogs/1-Jiggmin?tag=spaceyavin+was+here%21
  20. http://web.archive.org/web/20110209000046/http://jiggmin.com/blogs/1-Jiggmin?tag=~imakoolfool-was-here~
  21. http://web.archive.org/web/20110713034527/http://jiggmin.com/blogs/1-Jiggmin?s=794515b2132101e0443fe4ecd6d93341&tag=first+tag
  22. http://web.archive.org/web/20101206105752/http://jiggmin.com/forum/search.php?searchid=1732655 (The (probably inaccurate) countdown!)
  23. http://s2.photobucket.com/user/MrJiggmin/media/rainbow-cake.jpg.html?sort=3&o=56
  24. http://s2.photobucket.com/user/MrJiggmin/media/PR3.jpg.html?sort=3&o=55
  25. http://s2.photobucket.com/user/MrJiggmin/media/PR3-2.jpg.html?sort=3&o=54
  26. http://web.archive.org/web/20110227212945/http://jiggmin.com/blogs/1-Jiggmin?s=07fec2292e0e841088f7149e77fc43a9&tag=wish+you+were+here
  27. http://web.archive.org/web/20110227212933/http://jiggmin.com/blogs/1-Jiggmin?s=07fec2292e0e841088f7149e77fc43a9&tag=agentms11+was+heeere%21%21%21%21
  28. http://web.archive.org/web/20150313213027/http://jiggmin.com/threads/129518-Sparkworkz-is-gone
  29. http://forums.acidch.at/showthread.php?tid=115
  30. http://web.archive.org/web/20101125072919/http://www.sparkworkz.com/platformracing3/
  31. http://web.archive.org/web/20110127122610/http://www.flashgamingsummit.com/awards.html
  32. http://www.kongregate.com/accounts/sparkworkz/messages Huse comment: dated 2010-07-22.
  33. http://forums.acidch.at/showthread.php?tid=3760&pid=135554#pid135554
  34. http://web.archive.org/web/20120427094940/http://jiggmin.com/threads/76673-PR3-s-Not-In-The-Itunes-Store...

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