Need For Speed V-Rally
V-Ralty is the latest "Sega Rally Killer" for the PlayStation, and while the game looks great, the gameplay is not quite as advanced as the visuals proved to be. In all fairness, the graphics in V-Rally are very impressive. In fact, I would go as far to say V-Rally is the best-looking Rally game on the PlayStation so far. Each locale has been rendered meticulously, with complex polygonal scenes, rich textures, realistic weather effects and some of the best lighting effects of any PS racer to date. As far as gameplay goes, performing powerslides is not as convincing or precise as it should be and the car physics are downright wacky at times. You'll be driving along, minding your own business and if you either hit a trackside object or get hit by a car (which, after the bump, speeds merrily away), your vehicle slow bounds around the track as if somebody flipped a slow-motion switch. The game doesn't slow down but you bounce around like a rubber ball on the moon...weird. Also, the car settings aren't very in-depth. You can adjust the tire compound, gear ratio and the degree your car under steers/over steers, that's it. On the upside, V-Rally has a large number of cars to select and a whole slew of tracks to race on, more than any PS rally game so far. In the end, V-Rally is a solid, good-looking racer with a i good amount of variety.
Beyond the graphics and the large number of tracks, there really isn't much good about V-Rally. The physics in the game are really weird--hit the side of the road and you're treated to a car flipping demonstration. The gameplay is boring, mostly because the action is way too slow, even when you're at your car's top speed. The game also lacks a polished feel to it with shabby Menus and Options Screens. Rally is a racer to stay away from.
I'm always looking for a game that can unseat Sega Rally as my favorite rally racer. This ain't it. Sure, V-Rally looks great (the weather effects are especially cool) and packs a good selection of tracks. But, simply put, the control bites. Your car rides totally out of whack during sharp curves; it turns, then straightens, then turns, often sending you careening into a ridiculously exaggerated flipping crash. The generic music is annoying, too.
So far, I haven't been terribly impressed by many of the racing games on the PlayStation. V-Rally is no exception, as it lacks many of the features and standards I've come to expect. The options are somewhat weak, with little adjustments possible, and horrible collision detection when in the game. The whole experience feels unnatural when I play--sluggish and jumpy. The good number of cars and tracks don't hide the shortcomings.
Download Need For Speed V-Rally
Hold onto your hats cuz EA has yet another racing game ready for launch. But don't be fooled by the name, this speedster doesn't resemble EA's disappointing NFS II in any way. In fact if you wanted to compare V-Rally to anything look to Sega's Rally along with Sony's Rally Cross as a couple of the primary influencers on V-Rally. What's unique about this sim? For starters it offers a ton of tracks. 42 in all, spread over eight international locales. Additionally. 11 official cars Including the Toyota Corolla WRC, Ford Escort Cosworth, Subaru Impreza SS and Nissan Almera are ready for action in this simple but extensive racing sim.
Gameplay is similar to Sega Rally only much more unforgiving as far as driving accuracy is cdrfcerned. Spectacular high speed roll-overs result from sloppy driving and over contact with other cars. Vehicles can be adjusted to suit the needs of each track through tighter suspensions, quicker gear ratios and a choice of automatic or manuel transmission.
Several of the worlds will feature varying weather conditions along with night and day racing options.
At this point it looks as though V-Rally could be the saving grace for the Need For Speed name.
- MANUFACTURER - Infogrames
- THEME - Racing
- NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1 or 2
Last month I spent all my time zipping around the motorways of England with Team Honda in ToCA 2. This month, I find myself drifting across the paved roads of Spain, or sliding around the muddy bends of Indonesia in my Subaru Impreza. V-Rally 2 picks up where last year's V-Rally left off with nice solid results. Complaints with the previous installment included sensitive controls, clunky car physics and frequent car flipping. In V-Rally 2, they've tweaked the car flipping quotient so that it's a lot more tolerant of bad driving. You can now scrape along the side of the road, or even run up a slope, without constantly falling into last place. The physics of the cars have also taken on more bounce; they feel lighter, more buoyant and absolutely responsive. The real highlight of the game is how smooth it can maintain 30 fps even while you're neck-to-neck with three other cars. This helps V-Rally 2 achieve a sense of speed not commonly seen in a rally racer. The car models are also among some of the best I've seen on the PlayStation, with both exterior and interior vehicle detail. A couple gripes; There's no way to configure the game to use the other analog stick as a throttle, and your navigator's voice quickly begins to grate. Otherwise, V-Rally 2 is the perfect balance between arcade fun and sim intensity.
This is considerably better than the original V-Rally, and it seems that a lot of lessons have been learned about what people want from this kind of game. The cars no longer flip over at the slightest hint of trouble, and they now have much more of a Sega Rally-type feel to them. The controls are spot-on, the graphics are excellent, and the selection of cars will have ardent Euro car fans enthralled. This is a superb racing game...don't overlook it.
VR 2 is every bit as fun as Sony's Rally Cross 2, plus it gives you real cars and authentic Rally features. It's the perfect combination and easily my favorite Rally game to date. The changes made to vehicle physics and handling have done wonders. It's more forgiving than V-Rally yet not too soft and arcade-like; it's just right. Replay value is high due to voluminous amounts of tracks and cars. Two-player works great as well. Rally fans must have this game.
V-Rally 2 is put together extremely well, from the opening cinemas to the gameplay itself. The frame-rate stays high, and courses (though a tad short in some cases) are designed well. Although, I have a preference for the tracks I created with the in-game editor--especially the one with the super-high jump. The game is pretty amazing graphically, too (especially night courses when the headlights come on). Overall, it's a bit technical but it's also fun.
Bring your passport when you play Need for Speed V-Rally. EA takes its popular racing series global on 42 stages in eight locales ranging from Africa to Sweden, Unlike previous editions of Need for Speed, V-Rally is hardcore rally racing that emphasizes vehicle control so you can deal with the inevitable slides, flips, and rolls on the games courses.
Choose from 11 official cars, then play solo or take on a friend for smooth split-screen action. Three game modes and a detailed customization menu ensure an ideal racing experience for all. The new "co-pilot voice-over" feature provides useful warnings of impending twists in the road.
The graphics are exquisite, featuring richly detailed, smooth scrolling environments that effectively convey a sense of depth and distance with only minor occurrences of pop-up. Came control is responsive, but requires patience and practice, so arcade drivers will easily be frustrated. The sound effects are adequate, but the hard-rock music all sounds the same.
Although it may not be the game for speed freaks, rally enthusiasts will immediately appreciate the depth and details of this well-crafted game. It's a worthy addition to the Need for Speed lineage.
- If your car starts to spin out of control, hit reverse and steer hard in the opposite direction of the way you're spinning.
- Slow down while racing at night and stay on the inside of the road as much as possible for guidance.
- For your first time around the track, keep your eyes on the center line while using the lead car as a guide.
The racing field is getting more and more crowded so it takes something special to stand out from the rest of the pack. Electronic Arts has slapped the Need for Speed name on a rally game for name recognition and have hoped for a winner. The obvious question is how does it stack up against the other racers on the market?
V-Rally throws an enormous 42 tracks, 11 cars and weather ranging from snow to rain, directly in your face. Your cars are completely customizable and you have a number of different racing modes to play. Don't forget to throw in the two-player split screen for some head to head racing and what you end up with is a decent game that is not without flaws.
Racing games seem to have taken over fighting games as the current rage. There have been tons of racers released lately, each looking for a niche that will let their game slide ahead of the pack. V-Rally looks to attack the rally racing niche, which is probably one of the least represented of the racing styles around.
For those not familiar with rally racing, let me explain. Rally racing is races through different terrain in 4-wheel drive vehicles. The vehicles are usually modified economy cars like the Honda Civic or a Subaru. These cars will race one race on muddy roads, another on gravel and a third race across the dirt of a jungle. There are also races at night, in the snow and ice and across dry pavement. Basically, a rally race is a race that the pretty boys shy away from. This is down and dirty racing.
The main thing this game has going for it, aside from the minimal competition in this field, is the unheard of number of tracks. This game has 42 tracks. Some of the tracks are set in a lapping configuration so you can set the number of laps per race. Other tracks are just a race to the finish line. There is a great mixture of sights and weather conditions you will encounter. It took a whole day before I saw each track.
Because there are so many tracks, the developers have given you a copilot to help you with the upcoming turns. Well, this is also partially because for some reason, they do not give you the option of having an on screen map. Your copilots job is to warn you of the upcoming turns and the severity of the turn. For example, he will say Hard Right. That means the upcoming turn will be a hard turn to the right. You will also see an arrow flash on the screen that shows an arrow turning in the direction. This was vital because, like I said, it will take some time before you learn all of these tracks.
Another cool thing about this game was the different race modes available. The main two modes are Arcade and Championship. The Arcade mode is a bit different than your standards single race game. It is a composition of stages (determined by difficulty setting). You have three credits to win all of the stages. Each time you lose a stage, you are docked a credit and when you win a stage, you receive a credit. This mode also has checkpoints located throughout the track and if you run out of time before reaching the next checkpoint, you will also lose a credit. The object is to make it through all of the stages without running out of credits.
The other mode of note is the championship mode. This is a race to win 8 rallies consisting of three stages. That means you have a total of 24 races you will run. The championship has no checkpoints or timer. This is just a race against the three other cars. Since each rally is made up of three stages, you can come in last on one of the three races and still come in first in the rally. You will have to place first on the remaining two stages but you can still pull it out. Even if you don't finish first in all of the rallies, you will still have a chance to win the championship. You are awarded points after each rally and the points are totaled at the end of all 8 rallies to crown a champ. This was the best mode to play just because you were never really out of the running unless you were really bad at the game.
In all honesty, I really did not like this game when I first played it. The thing that really bothered me was the controls. The cars were really difficult to turn. When you first pushed the D-pad, the car would make a sudden jerk in the direction pushed and then start heading straight again. This really annoyed me but I assumed that it was just a by product of the digital control so I plugged in a steering wheel to see if the analog control was any smoother. The disappointing thing was that even with the wheel, it seemed to react the same way. When I first turned the wheel, the car would instantly turn but it would not continue in the direction it was previously headed. After some experimentation, I found that if I would either use the hand brake when cornering or if I would continually tap the D-pad in the direction of the turn, it would work a lot better. I don't know if this was intentional or not but it does take some getting used.
The control problem did not seem to be as touchy on some of the higher performance vehicles. They had their own set of problems. After racing the lowest class of vehicles and then stepping into a top end vehicle will cause you all sorts of problems. The car will spin out time and time again. I was never really able to harness the power of the fastest cars. There were times that even on a straightaway, the car would start to fish tail uncontrollably.
The best way to describe the graphics in this game is by not really describing them at all. They really are nothing special, but they get the job done. You will never find yourself asking your buddy "did you see that?" but you will also never say "man, was that cheesy looking." The one thing I will give credit on is the night racing. Instead of just making the sky a little darker and calling it night time, you will actually race by only the light of your headlights. This was one of the coolest parts of the game and it is about time somebody actually raced at night and made it look like you were driving at night.
The more I played this game and the better feeling I got for the control, the more it grew on me. I love the idea of the enormous number of tracks and the different environmental conditions, but the control just took a bit too long to get the hang of. Also, this game did not have many high flying jumps or anything. Even if this is not very realistic, it keeps us arcade racing fans happy. All in all, this is not the best racing game ever, but it is also not the worst.