Crash Team Racing: Nitro-Fueled got released last month as a remake of the original kart racing game featuring Crash Bandicoot and his pals, but now Beenox and Activision Blizzard have revealed that the Back N. Time Grand Prix is starting August 2 - this Friday - at 07:00 PDT (15:00 BST, 16:00 CEST).
This will be free for all players with an internet connection and throws them back to prehistoric times, bringing new characters, skins, karts, customisation options, and a new track, called the Prehistoric Playground. This features dinosaurs, a Diplodocus tail to launch yourself off, and more.
This new Grand Prix means new rewards as well, as you can earn the Nostalginator and Mammoth Karts, the "Dashing" Fake Crash skin, as well as Cave Painting stickers. Completing the bronze tier of the Nitro Gauge will also get you the Baby T. character, along with a "Fake" Baby T. skin being the final item in gold tier.
Even the Pit Stop is getting new characters, karts, skins, and more, like tiny versions of Crash and Coco. You can also unlock the Probulot 2000 in the Pit Stop, coming from Crash Tag Team Racing, as well as the Mad Scientist Crash, Sabertooth Pura, and Stone Age N. Tropy skins, not to mention Lava Rock Wheels too.
The Challenges players can experience ranged from Quick to Daily, Weekly, Themed, and Pro, and many will be the same as you saw in the Nitro Tour Grand Prix, although there are new ones, including Power Slide Master, requiring you to power slide for a certain duration.
Both the Championship and Nitro leaderboards return as well, refreshed for this Grand Prix and tracking performance via a points-based system. Those that finish in the top 5% of either will get the Champion Kart and a new Signature Decal for the Back N. Time Grand Prix.
We also get a look at the future beyond this prehistoric content though, with more details promised on Spyro's entry in Season 3 soon. In the seasons after, however, even more characters are coming in, like N. Brio, Nina Cortex, and Komodo Moe.
This is all well and good, but the Back N. Time Grand Prix isn't what a lot of fans are talking about, as the section down below has caught people's eye, since it reveals microtransactions being added to the game after release:
"As always, the Pit Stop will be stocked with new and returning characters and cosmetic items, which players can unlock using Wumpa Coins With all this content available, there will also now be a way for players to fast-track their Wumpa Coin collection if they like. Starting in early August, players will have the option to purchase Wumpa Coin bundles from their game console stores to supplement the Coins they earn by playing. This option won't change the game's core mechanics - players will still earn Wumpa Coins by playing the game in any mode, just as before. They will just able to purchase additional coins if they choose."
Of course the post is at pains to emphasise that this won't change the "mechanics" of the experience - so it won't be pay-to-win - but one glimpse at ResetEra or Twitter shows that the fans aren't exactly happy about this, especially since it's come after launch and all of the reviews have landed.
Are you bothered by this addition?