The glimmer of a red button entices players to start INFINITI’s latest video game exhibit at this year’s Canadian International Autoshow.
An HD screen looms over a leather steering wheel, putting players behind the wheel of a vintage 1989 Infiniti Q45. A familiar 80s neon palette materializes the Q45 into a 16-bit highway, ready to go at full speed at the step of a chrome pedal.
As a game, Fast Forward brings players back to the crawl-based rush of Pole Position and Out Run. As a five-minute experience, it was developed to look back at over 30 years since Nissan unveiled its INFINITI line of cars.
It also became the idea behind creating three arcade cabinets for their anniversary.
“We wanted to have something true to the time period that we were celebrating,” said Jennifer Dobbs, INFINITI Canada’s Senior Marketing Communications Manager.
INFINITI’s history is also reflected across four timed levels. Each course’s backdrop paints a different horizon from 1989-2020. Construction barriers, potholes and speed bumps challenge a driver's chances of finishing each course (and becomes something to look out for with every turn).
As players finish a track, the Q45 would later evolve into a G35 and QX50. Its final level unlocked a drivable QX Inspiration Concept which also served as a preview for INFINITI’s next steps.
The game also has eight tokens drivers could find to boost their scores. The 25,000 point collectibles are also an easter egg describing INFINITI's “World’s First Technologies” patented over the years.
For Dobbs and the Fast Forward developers, it gave subtle real-life nods for players drifting through time.
“It’s hard to do in static cars,” Dobbs said. “But we also wanted to show the progression of not only the cars, but the technologies that we've brought to market.”
Other design features for Fast Forward’s cabinets included a black chassis to contrast INFINITI's white showroom floor.
Visitors can spot the cabinets at INFINITI’s area and see full-scale models of some vehicles unlocked in the game.
Leaderboards are also included, encouraging players to share their high scores and enter a draw for prizes.