As we've already established, it does not look like a Ridge Racer game in the slightest, but as a Burnout-hybrid, we reckon developer BugBear's got things nailed.
The gameplay crux is thus: you fill your power meter by drifting. This can then be used to open up new pathways and shortcuts, similarly to in Split / Second. Buildings and environments are highly destructible, and you'll be awarded points for inconsequentially tearing up the city. No, the mechanics have nothing in common with the serene Ridge Racers of old, but perhaps its time the series got something of a spring clean?
The thing is, Ridge Racer Unbounded looks fun. We understand if people aren't keen on the direction, but perhaps its worth giving the game a chance before complaining about it on your favourite forum.
There's a gameplay demonstration after the jump.