" Carmageddon is the first of a series of graphically violent driving-oriented video games produced by Stainless Games, published by Interplay and SCi. It was inspired by the 1975 cult classic movie Death Race 2000.
The game that became Carmageddon started out as "3D Destruction Derby", a banger-racing (stock-car) sim prototyped by Stainless. This was signed by SCi in 1995, but the banger-racing angle was soon dropped and for a while the game was to use the Mad Max license. This fell through, and was replaced by the Death Race 2020 license, as a sequel to the original film was at that time planned (it eventually emerged as a comic book). This introduced the running-over of pedestrians into the game.
When this license also fell through, SCi and Stainless took the decision to proceed with the game anyway, without a license. The name "Carmageddon" was coined, and development proceeded with the designers allowed unusually free rein with regard to the content of the game.