Review by Shadow Edge

"You'll have more time watching the game load than playing"

I've always been a racing game fan, having played and owned every Gran Turismo game in the series, as well as the NFSU series. When I bought the PS2, IHRA came in free. So I played it. Or rather, watch the loading screen. This game is so horrible it makes me want to chuck it to the wall.

Graphics: 5/10

Graphics quality looks like a cross between PS1 and PS2 quality, but more to the PS1. The game doesn't utilize the power of the PS2 very well. You'd think this was just a PS1 game at first glance.

Let's be fair. The menu looks all right, and the videos are good, but everything else is bad.

Gameplay: 2/10

I rated gameplay 2. It's kinda unfair, because this game deserves no score. Really, the gameplay is just so horrible there's no right word to describe it.

So I popped in my IHRA cd into my PS2. So wait, wait wait for the main menu to load. I liked to tinker with the game options, so I try to find it. However, I didn't find, not because it didn't have one, but because it's so slow. Navigating through the menu is a pain in the neck. You wait for about three seconds to move the highlight. And about 10 to 15 seconds for when you select something on the menu. The game moves so slow that I had more time watching the game load rather than playing it.

So, drag racing. Burnout, accelerate, etc. etc. You just time your gear shift, that's all in the actual racing. Nothing more.

Of course, there's this "simulation mode". You win races, awards and trophies. You can buy stuff and upgrades. The bad thing is that you wouldn't want to buy those. Why? Loading takes a frickin' lot of time. When you win, you only get about 800 cash whereareas the parts cost more than 10,000. So with the loading lasting about 5-10 minutes, you'll be playing for more than two hours to be able to afford a decent upgrade.

Story: 1/10

There's no story in a game. For a racing game, I would at least expect a small amount of story like in the NFSU series. Since I can't give a zero, I'll give it a 1.

Sounds: 4/10

Horrible sound effects... check. Unrealistic tire burning sounds... check. The game is also noisy when you navigate through the main menu. With each select and highlight brings out a loud annoying sound. The soundtrack for the game doesn't sound good either. You won't feel the soul of the game in any way.

Controls: 7/10

Controls was the best bit of the game. Standard controls for racing games. Nuff said.

Lifespan: 1/10

The first few minutes of game entitles you the freedom to smash the cd to bits. Replaying is so bad you wouldn't even be tempted to play it.

Ratings
Graphics : 5
Gameplay : 2
Sounds : 4
Story : 1
Controls : 7
Lifespan : 1

Total : 3 (3.33) (Horrible)

PROs:
- Simple controls
- Eye candy menus

CONs:
- VERY LONG loading times
- Bad gameplay
- Bad sound effects, indecent background music
- Doesn't utilize the PS2's power.

RENT OR BUY?
Neither. Stay away from this game. Your money would be better off in an infinite amount of ways.


Reviewer's Score: 3/10 | Originally Posted: 05/25/05


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