NASCAR: From Dirt to Daytona
With the huge popularity or NASCAR, it's not surprising to see developers putting their best foot forward and creating quality games. What is surprising is the transformation from Infogrames' last NASCAR game. After the successful launch of NASCAR Heat 2002, one would expect improvements and minor modifications, but instead they pretty much scrapped the Heat series and created a more complete NASCAR experience. NASCAR: From Dirt to Daytona will require you to start with humble beginnings on NASCAR's dirt racing. As you gain sponsors and cash you'll progress until finally reaching the big league. Getting there however, is no easy task as most of the fun comes from being taken through almost every aspect of NASCAR racing.
NASCAR: From Dirt to Daytona represents racing from the driver's perspective as you start out in the rookie leagues with a car that leaves much to be desired. As you progress, you'll not only be racing to win the cash and standing points, but the sponsors you pick along the way will also require certain goals to be met.
Continuing with the complete experience, the actual racing is focused more on simulation then the arcade style. With greater emphasis placed on strategy, you'll be paying attention to the car as much as the road with concerns about pit stops, tire wear, draft, and general car status. Other issues like bumping side walls and other cars may not cause much concern at first but the car will start taking visible damage, effecting how the car runs. Major accidents may cause more serious damage but with sponsors requiring certain goals, you may find yourself limping around the track trying not to get smeared again.
Besides the gameplay, another area that was executed well was the physics engine. Watching 20 car pileups has never been more fun, especially when you start them. Cars whip around, become airborne, and bounce off walls almost exactly like real NASCAR style cars. Not only does this make the game more real, but it also makes the game more fun to watch.
NASCAR: From Dirt to Daytona creates an experience NASCAR fans won't want to miss. With respectable graphics and audio, the simulation approach to the entire NASCAR experience is well executed and when added to multiple other gameplay modes, will appeal to a broad audience.