PS3-exclusive Rocket League prequel tragically taking servers offline

By Lee Brady,

Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars, the PS3-exclusive forerunner to Rocket League, is going offline after nearly 15 years. The news is not only inherently tragic but also the last call for some SARPBC trophies.

Come January 24th 2023, a few Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars trophies will no longer be attainable due to the game's servers shutting down. The game was an early standard-bearer for online PlayStation trophies on the PS3, and while players won't be losing a platinum trophy, they will be losing history — the online origins of one of PlayStation's best free-to-play games. Better get some games in before this Rocket League prequel shuts down its servers in 2023.

Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket Powered Battle CarsYou can feel the Rocket League in every screenshot.

Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars goes offline in 2023

Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars (we'll be shortening this to SARPBC from here on, because while fun to say that is an eye-ache to read) was listed by Epic Games for server closure after over 14 years of unwavering service. Released October 9th 2008, months after trophies went live for the first time in July of that year, it stands as one of the first stand-out indie titles PS3 players would have been able to sink their teeth into online.

When the game was released in Europe in 2009, my younger brother and I picked it up on day one — the premise was simply just too good to ignore. He quickly became the better SARPBC player, and consequently the better Rocket League player, but it quickly became the local competitive multiplayer game to beat. The online side of the game was a little more finicky, as it wasn't an absurdly popular game, but when we got it working it was a joy gunning for the game's gold Striker trophy.

SARPBC UtopiaUtopia in SARPBC — an example of one of the game's weirder arenas.

Today, we're still playing Rocket League — the sequel did, for all intents and purposes, make good on the potential of SARPBC. That is, except in one place: weird pitch layouts. My brother and I ultimately fire up SARPBC at least once a year because we miss its unique arenas. Frankly, you just can't beat the goofy thrills of scooping the ball around the torus-shaped Utopia, or slamming against the awkward ramps of Cosmic. Psyonix, we're still waiting on these nightmare stages to make a return in Rocket League, and we don't care how many people they upset.

Just in case the game gets taken down from the PS3's PS Store off the back of these server closures, consider picking up a copy of this weird slice of history before January 24th — there's still the silver All-Star trophy if you feel like beating the game on single-player. Pour one out with us in the comments if you remember this strange little indie gem, and best of luck if you're looking to grab the game's lofty gold trophy before it all goes offline.
Lee Brady
Written by Lee Brady
Staff Writer Lee keeps one eye on the future (Marvel's Spider-Man 2, Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth), one eye on the past (PS Plus Premium, recent Sony news), and his secret third eye on the junk he really likes (Sonic Superstars, Final Fantasy 16). Then he uses his big mouth to blurt out long-winded opinions about video games.
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