Posted on: December 12th, 2009 by

Introduction

Project Gotham Racing is the successor to Metropolis Street Racer on the Dreamcast, which was one of the first games to introduce showing off to get more points, long before Ned for Speed went “underground”. This new version is shiny and stylish and features bikes racing alongside cars in various weather conditions on street and racetrack locations.

Gameplay

The showing-off element is more pronounced than the previous release, but there is still something for everyone. Lots of game modes including crashing into cones (but much easier than Crazy Taxi) and overtaking 2CVs mean there’s always something to do.

Riding bikes is a lot more fun that I thought it would be, while it’s quite easy to fall off – particularly with aggressive car drivers around – the penalty isn’t that great and your acceleration makes up for it. I had to use the third-person view for bikes though, as I was getting severe neck-ache.

Since you can test drive or split-screen race any vehicle without unlocking them, it’s a fun one to take to friend’s houses. Multiplayer over the internet I’ve avoided as it’s rarely a fun experience with driving games.

Sights and Sounds

Nice title music from the Prodigy, plus some surprising variation in the other tunes, from some distinctive classical titles to hideous genero-rock. Good car sounds, particularly on the quirky vehicles that make odd noises.

Graphically all rather nice, with very detailed in-car views, windscreen wipers and everything if that’s your thing (I favour the clean view of the camera stuck on the front bumper).

There is an okay selection of cars, but nowhere near as many as the other major titles – the same is true of the tracks, but the different weather conditions add quite a bit of variation. A lot of the tracks and cars will be very familiar, but fortunately seem very consistent with their appearances in other games.

Stuff that sucks

It’s not as “pure” as Forza, and the races which revolve around showboating can get a little tedious, but it’s easy enough to find something else to do. Superbikes, in the snow on a grand-prix track – it can get pretty silly – even sillier is the fact that the above-mentioned combination is not actually that challenging.

Conclusion

A fun driving title, not so realistic, but a good blast. A decent halfway point between the more serious and more frivolous racing games.

Score : 8/10

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