Review by Mr. Chupon
"It'll wow you, then you'll realize it's 2 in disguise"
A friend of mine rented GT2 one day a long time ago, and we spent the majority of the time getting licensed and tossing the controls at the TV / each other. As I recall, the only thing I really liked about the game is that I could drive whatever car I pleased (provided I had the money). Overall, I didn't like the game too much. Maybe it was the realism too it. I like my cars to be able to perform S turns at 300 mph (a la F-Zero), and fire missiles at on-coming traffic (a la Rock'n'Roll Racing). Anyway, on to the present.
The first impression of the game was dissapointment. This was because the opening text said that the cars performances did not represent how the real car would drive. If that's the case, why the heck did they license real car names? And why is it a simulator!? The only way you get a good simulation out of it is if you have a compatible steering wheel for the game. Otherwise it's the clumsy analog stick for you. But I did give it a 6 out of 10, so I better tell you what I actually liked.
Graphics: Let me tell it straight. I just saw Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. I didn't think anything would ever impress me again after the graphics in that sucker. But nonetheless, the opening FMV started playing...and I started yawning. ''Yeah, yeah, get on with it'' I shouted. Then the FMV went into some mindless movie with race cars driving around various tracks.
Wait a minute....that's not an FMV....that's the in-game engine....whoa.......
Seriously, if it wasn't for the lack of volumetic atmosphere (ie. Everything in the world is still; no dust, bugs, or air), I would've thought it was real. That and the cars looked too clean. But they seriously looked real. The reflections were perfect, the headlights looked awesome, the sounds, the hubcaps, everything. Even heat distortions from the exhaust and the track. I was really wowed with the effort they put into it, and it's worth a look at least once.
Unfortunitely, with the exception of seeing my dad's BMW in the list of selectable cars, the excitement ends there. The game is a complete rehash of the last one. Same irritatingly difficult licensing program too. If they took that Tokyo Nights racing game, blended it with Midnight Club Racing, and used the graphic engine/sounds from Gran Turismo, you'd have the best racing game on the planet. Oh, and put a damage engine in please. I guess they didn't want to dent the wonderful cars...
Gameplay/Control: I've played a few vehicles in the game, ranging from the Beetle, to a souped up Corvette, and I must say that Sims just aren't as fun as arcade style. Who wants to slow down to 50 mph to take a turn! That's no fun, IMO. I feel racing games should be adrenaline pumping, not meticulus and, for lack of a better word, spoil sport. I'm sure they still had plenty of room on the DVD and could've let us boot around New York in these cars. Perhaps even made an alternate physics engine which allowed for crazy turns and slides. The best way I can put it is it's golf meets racing. The die hard racing sim fans will love it to bits because of all the things you can do to your car (which alas don't have any visual impact on how your car looks), and if you never played GT2, you owe it to yourself to rent this one...even if just to see the pretty graphics.
6/10 final verdict. 2 points off for lack of originality from the previous game, 1 point off for lack of 'fun' (this is clearly subjective because I prefer looser racing games), and 1 point off for the licensing system which is necessary to progress in the game but it sooo boring!
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 07/13/01, Updated 07/13/01
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