Namco Bandai's upcoming 3DS version of Ridge Racer has been built with younger and broader audiences in mind than usual, according to localisation producer Ryo Totoyama.

Speaking at the New York version of Nintendo's recent 3DS launch event, Totoyama explained that new control options should open the game up to kids raised on the simplicity of Mario Kart.

"We've realised that some people have had trouble controlling the car," Totoyama said in a video interview with Nintendo World Report (thanks VG247).

"Drifting itself is hard enough – sometimes it's really hard to enter the drifting state, because you've got to release the gas pedal momentarily to enter the drift, and then you've got to counter-steer to control the car.

"We've realised that, so we've introduced this easy one-button drift feature. It really works similar to Mario Kart, so young audiences, young players are familiar with how Mario Kart works, so it helps lower the barrier, expanding the game to a wider audience who have been intimidated by the controls."

Totoyama also noted that the punishments for swerving into walls or other cars are less severe, so it should be possible to remain competitive despite, er, mishaps.

"One thing that we've improved on is that in previous Ridge Racers when you bump into cars or walls it really slows you down, and makes it impossible to win the race, but now it doesn't slow down as much," he said.

"You see sparks and pieces of the paintjob flying, but it keeps you in the race. It's about the intensity – we want to enhance the intensity and excitement and keep it there."

Ridge Racer 3D will also use the 3DS' Street Pass feature to exchange ghost car data and rankings with people you pass on the, er, street.

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