I’m impressed that Saber Interactive is still supporting Spintires: MudRunner considering that it launched back in late 2017. Even more so, the latest Old Timers DLC was actually released as a free content update, making it even better. It includes two new trucks and a new map. After having tried them all out for nearly two hours, it’s safe to say that this is a pretty neat package for any fan of the game and an interesting introduction in case you happen to be a newcomer.
The two new vehicles in MudRunner are the Chevrolet NAPCO 3100 pickup truck and GMC DW950 semi. Both of these trucks are from the 1950s, hence the name “Old-Timers DLC.” Despite their age, however, they manage to pack a surprising punch in terms of capabilities—especially the NAPCO.
Rocky rolling hills in MudRunner
The new map, called Rocky Hills, is an interesting proving ground. Its name is quite literal; there’s a wide range of rocky hills that span across the center of the map. To add to the challenge, this map lacks a garage and log station, which means regular repairs are a no-go and delivering logs is just a tad more difficult. Your only support is a fuel station and a few utility trailers scattered in different corners of the map, all of which have to be manually retrieved. With the hills running through the center, the trick of this map is finding a safe way to get over them as you cross from the north to the south side.
Considering the terrain and circumstances of the map, it really surprised me that the old NAPCO was able to handle all of it basically like a breeze. Since it’s a scouting vehicle, it can get up to speed really quickly and slink its way through a dense forest with relative ease. But with the rolling hills in the center, it really surprised me that it’s also a really good hill-climbing vehicle. You’d expect that from a buggy or SUV, but the NAPCO was able to scale even steep inclines rather well. Of course, this is Spintires, so trying to outwit the complex physics system only leads to trouble; I did experience a few roll-overs on this map. Nonetheless, thanks to the NAPCO, I was able to complete it in just an hour and a half (on my second attempt).
All of the log trailers in the map are miniature, so the NAPCO was actually able to haul them around. I’ve never used a scouting vehicle for delivering logs, but again, it was very enjoyable to do so thanks to the truck’s capabilities. All in all, this rendered the DW950 ultimately useless on this map.
I did try it out on one of the other American maps, and it handled decently enough. While the game is clear that it’s not suitable for off-roading (like a lot of the other American trucks), it can handle minor unpaved roads decently enough.
Thick mud and swampy areas will definitely prove to be a challenge, however. Its horsepower and carrying ability is good, though it’s a pain to maneuver. As a result, my opinion on it is in direct contrast to my opinion of the NAPCO. While the NAPCO has basically become my favorite truck in the game, the DW950 is one I can see myself ignoring.
All things considered, this is a small content update, so it doesn’t add a huge new level of depth to the game, though it’s still a pretty solid package nonetheless. As the release of MudRunner 2 later this year nears, I look forward to seeing how the new trucks handle and what the developers have in store for the new maps. In the meantime, this is a good little treat to tide us all over.