Before DiRT and GRID, Codemasters was best known for developing TOCA Touring Cars, the official British Touring Car Championship game series. Arriving at the peak of the BTCC’s popularity in the late 1990s, TOCA was a huge success on the original PlayStation, spawning several sequels.
While you can race classic BTCC cars in GRID Legends, we haven’t had a new officially licensed BTCC game in over 20 years. And so we were excited when Motorsport Games’ announced the development of a new BTCC game slated for a 2022 release.
But since the initial announcement in 2020, Motorsport Games has been suspiciously silent about the project. We still haven’t seen any screenshots, trailers, or gameplay footage of the new British Touring Car Championship game. Now, BTCC no longer has a release window, giving us more cause for concern.
BTCC removed from 2022 release schedule
As reported by GTPlanet, Motorsport Games has removed the BTCC game from its release schedule in a Company Profile report. Titles such as NASCAR 22, NASCAR 23, and a 2023 Le Mans game are listed in the company’s three-year roadmap, but BTCC is notably absent.
Instead, the BTCC release date is now listed as “to be determined.” At the time of writing, the official BTCC game website still says the game is coming in 2022.
Motorsport Games’ hasn’t said what caused the delay, but Russia’s invasion of Ukraine may have affected development. While Motorsport Games’ headquarters is in Miami, many of its development staff are based in Russia.
Motorsport Games states that global sanctions against Russia are having “a material adverse effect on our ability to use our Russian development staff.”
BTCC and Motorsport Games “remain committed”
Despite the delay and unconfirmed release date, BTCC and Motorsport Games “remain committed to the title” according to GTPlanet.
We’re hoping extra development time will result in a better product as NASCAR 21 Ignition’s poor reception has tapered players’ expectations for the BTCC game.
There’s still hope that BTCC won’t be a disaster, however. BTCC’s Creative Director is Paul Coleman, the former lead designer of Codemasters’ DiRT Rally, so the project is in capable hands. But we can't help but wish Codemasters would acquire the license and make a new BTCC game to complement the 2023 WRC game.