So recently the long awaited and repeatedly delayed racing sim from Slightly Mad Studios was released…among a fanfare to those who have been following the game for…well quite a while.
So what has the game brought to the table, aside from over 60 cars, over 100 tracks and a simulation experience? Not much, but is that a bad thing? Definitely Not!
The basis of the game is in 4 different areas, career, solo, online and community, all of which offer distinctly different experiences.
The career mode is based around an 8 tier racing legacy, allowing you to start right at the beginning where many present racing drivers started their long arduous journey to the top…KARTING. If you dont want to start there, then the game gives you the option to start wherever you like, want to jump straight into Formula A racing…no problem, want to take on the GT series…not a problem. YOU have the freedom to choose where you start. Once you have chosen your route you get some offers from race teams, this is a downpoint…there are no objectives depending on which team you choose to race for…a downpoint see!
The solo section, allows you to fuel up your engine and race around a track in free practice, or to take on a single race weekend, taking in free practice, qualifying, warmup and the race. Take on a full track of competitors and see how you cope.
Online mode gives you the freedom to create your own race weekend, give yourself a 10 minute practice session to get used to the specific car before taking yourself into the qualifying round. Or go and join an online race against a number of randoms, this is where the game gets interesting. What good is a racing game, if you cant judge your skill based on other people around the world. The races are fair…sometimes…you do get the odd nudge and paint scrape and unfortunately the odd sideswipe, but this is mainly due to being left unsighted of people diving up the inside.
There are a number of race challenges under the community section, allowing you to take on a race, post your best time and then possibly win prizes. These are quick, simple and non time consuming to take on, giving an extra dimension to the usual racing around a track. Eek out your best time in a Formula A car around Barcelona De Catalunya.
Now onto the actual track…the driving experience…the main selling point of all racing games is how the thing drives, and in the case of Project Cars…this is very very good. Each car feels difference, depending on drive train, size, weight. Taking a GT car around the track is highly different to taking a Le Mans car around. The feeling of grip when you come out of the corner and put the power down is incredible. Its such a great feeling when you brake late, diving into the corner and have enough grip to power out the corner, although the complete opposite can be said when you are trying to take a Ford GT around the track, which its wobbly backside preventing you from getting the power down straight away. Causing you to squeeze the accelerator. Then is the confidence, this game has a great way of building your confidence in your car and then snatching it away when you get too bullish! Keep taking time out of your sector times and the game will be rewarding, but push yourself beyond the limits of the car and you will end up in the dirt.
Whilst all the reading so far is good there are a few gripes with the game, but I’m sure that these can be patched in at a later date. Not being able to have an online league with your friends is a big downside. Although each race becomes great fun when you add your friends. The penalties and flags are annoying, if you dip your tyres on the dirt you will be greeted with a message stating your time has been invalidated…do it again on the same lap and the next lap time will not count. It becomes frustrating when you just want to get a time on the board.
So all in all…the game is great! One of the best racing games I have had the pleasure of playing. It is not without its flaws but still, the feeling of speed is amazing. If you are on the edge of buying this game or not and you are a racing fan, then what are you waiting for. Go out now and buy this game, and maybe i will see you on the track!