The guys at Slightly Mad Studios have Today Launched Project CARS and have made one impressive package in my short time with the game. The main focus is on detail and realism and here in lies its biggest strength but also a few things that need to be worked on and you can perhaps see why they game was delayed so much in the months prior to release.
As I suggest in the title the game is serious, a racing game for people into cars and making them just right which means maybe I’m not the most experienced person in the world to be playing it but I have enjoyed it so far.
One thing that will strike you right away is the beauty of the game but before you get to that point you are greeted with a nice feature utilising the speaker on the PS4 controller. The tutorials are given to you via the speaker and while it’s been used in bits for other games, it really works here nicely and helps you focus it would be good however if it allowed you to use the menu while it spoke to you.
Once on the main screen you are given the option to setup a new career or have a race weekend, I went for the latter to get a feel for the title and was in LA, Road-Racing in a Audi R8… mainly so I could feel what it is to be Iron Man from the Avengers!
Now I can talk about graphics, wow. Just, wow. The cars look so wonderfully designed and striking, the environments around you are stunning with scenery you will want to stare at but simply shouldn’t as this is no arcade racer.
The game is very much about the real racing experience with incredibly sensitive controls that reflect real driving mechanics. You move your car around the track properly or you will spin, smash walls and other racers in one miscalculation of taking a turn or even breaking too heavy and losing control of the vehicle.
Now so far I have found the controls fine and had zero issues with them BUT MGL has been made aware that there are some bugs with this and I will be testing this over the weekend to see what happens.
For me though the game is true simulation and representative of Gran Turismo type gameplay with sharp controls that will test your reflexes and your ability to be deft in your control of the vehicles.
Moving into the career mode you get to create a driver and become the type of racer you want to be and create the career you want, starting from the bottom and working your way up or being a champion and holding your position. It’s totally up to you.
Being a below average racing game player I started at the bottom and it got me on some really cool carts racing around small tight tacks and it was HARD but after many, many restarts it helped get me used to the controls more, the way to take those turns and how to get past the AI opponents.
And here we start to see some of the fall down in the game, two things here strike me as a poor and a bit strange. The AI at times is overly robotic; it doesn’t seem to have any form of spark to it somehow. Cars go around their set paths and while they do respond to you it doesn’t feel quite right. Then there are the drivers, given you can see them in the flesh on carts it’s just a bit odd they are so stationary. One racer crashed into the barriers of the Karting circuit and just sat there not moving like they were still driving. It was all a little odd.
They didn’t need to go too mad here but a few gestures and movements would have done something to bring the game to life a little.
As for human opponents I will be on that over the weekend as we build up to the review, for now I can say the game is very solid and certainly one for the serious racer out there and seems already like there is plenty to do to keep you driving game fans entertained for some time.