Nascar Racing 2003
Genre Sport -> Racing
Today's Rank 2804
Date 2003-02-04
Publisher V.U.G.
Date N/A
Publisher V.U.G.
North America Retail Box ArtUnited Kingdom Retail Box ArtNASCAR Racing Season 2003 brings the intensity, grit, and roaring sound of NASCAR to the PC. It features 23 venues including all the real-world tracks in the Winston Cup series, every major driver, and all the licensing NASCAR is famous for. There's advertising everywhere, but that only makes the game look more realistic. True to the NASCAR Racing legacy, this isn't an arcade racing game. You can crank up the realism settings and expect to race in all the qualifying rounds to determine your place in the opening pack for the race itself. You can set the physics to perfectly model the real world, where you have to fight your car every step of the way. Set the AI to maximum and you'll have to battle for every inch of track space. You can even tweak the tire pressure and brakes, and set how your pit crew behaves. It's a race fan and grease monkey's dream come true. Less hardcore fans have the option of dialling down the realism settings. You can add a green line to the track showing the ideal route, let the computer help you with traction, steering, and braking, and even set unlimited fuel and unbreakable cars. The graphics are decent, cars look good up close, and the sense of speed is extremely realistic. But farther way, even at the highest detail settings, there are problems with shimmering and jagged lines around cars and objects. The audio is perfect, from the pit crew giving advice to the roar of the engines; it's all very convincing. NASCAR may look like a crowd of cars all turning left but in reality it's split second timing, daring, and skill. It's not easy riding an oval for 20-200 laps at high speed with little margin for error, or passing a crowd of 10 two-ton vehicles all hurtling along in excess of 170 MPH. This game perfectly shows just how hard NASCAR racing can be. One word of caution before you get the green light: the keyboard or a game pad will let you play reasonably well, but you'll never take the chequered flag without a good steering wheel. --Bob Andrews
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