Solar Crown Comes With a Big Catch


  • Test Drive Unlimited: Solar Crown offers an expansive campaign with lush Hong Kong Island setting, focusing on multiplayer sandbox experience.
  • However, the game’s always-online requirement may deter players without consistent online access, as it is following a divisive industry trend seen in newer games.
  • Developer KT Racing is prioritizing performance and stability for Solar Crown, but it will be interesting to see if it addresses concerns about the game’s online nature in the near future.

Test Drive Unlimited: Solar Crown looks promising, but it comes with a downside that may turn away interested players, and that’s an always-online requirement. Solar Crown is an upcoming racing game with a focus on its multiplayer sandbox. Slated for a 2024 release, the game leans into its branding not only as a racer but as a lifestyle experience, allowing players to explore the lush nature of Hong Kong Island, complete with offroad driving, at 1:1 scale to the real-world location.

The game focuses on a shadowy organization named Radiant, known for enjoying “prestige, cars, and competition,” sponsoring a racing competition called the Solar Crown. It seems like the vision for the game is to offer an expansive campaign that spans the island, utilizing the open-world format to its benefit to highlight the speed and variety of cars at the player’s disposal. The game also features a multiplayer component, and Test Drive Unlimited: Solar Crown’s Explorer trailer delivers the notion that a race could start at any minute because there could be anyone driving around the next road, patch of dirt, or line of trees. Though the idea is ambitious, games like Death Stranding have accomplished similar feats in different genres, suggesting it could work.


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Test Drive Unlimited: Solar Crown‘s online connection is required not just to access the online features, but to work in general. This aspect of the game is a red flag to some, as there are some people who have current-gen systems but do not necessarily have consistent or quality online access. Because of this one requirement, some would-be players may choose to spend money on a different racer.

Test Drive Unlimited’s Always Online Requirement Continues an Industry Trend

An online requirement has become a trend with newer games, with a noteworthy example being Arkane’s Redfall, a game where the developer ultimately began to work on enabling an offline single-player mode after enough outcry from fans. Solar Crowns developer KT Racing has quality on the mind at the moment, as the studio stated in a press release that it is focusing on ironing out the game’s performance and stability before giving out a release date, but it will be interesting to see if the developer acknowledges concerns from fans about Solar Crown‘s always-online nature.

Despite these concerns, gaming has been entering a new status quo for some time now. With so many devices that rely on the internet, and better internet being more easily accessible in most areas, it is a certainty that some games will use that reliance to their advantage.