Race Driver: GRID
|a game by||Codemasters|
|Platforms:||XBox 360, DS, PC, Playstation 3, Arcade|
|Editor Rating:||5/10, based on 1 review, 2 reviews are shown|
|User Rating:||6.0/10 - 6 votes|
|Rate this game:|
|See also:||ToCA Race Driver Games|
Modern racing games face a tough challenge: keeping gameplay interesting. This isn’t too much of a challenge for games that don’t rely on realism as much – Need For Speed and Mario Kart 64 (wildly different series, I know, and NFS is generally more realistic) don’t depend on this and can push the envelope in terms of innovation. Any number of crazy scenarios, cars, and tracks are possible. For titles like Gran Turismo, Forza, and the focus for this article Race Driver: GRID, it’s a different task entirely. Forza and GT are constantly praised for their ability to insert realism while adding tons of other missions and things to do throughout the game. This is exactly where GRID falls short despite being an overall accurate racing sim game. Its not the worst out there, its just disappointing to some extent.
Heart Racing Action
Before getting into what this game lacks, lets look at what this game excels in. I really enjoy the controls for this game.
They’re smooth, responsive, and honestly never gave me much trouble. In racing games, its obvious why that’s such an important feature. The 2015 rerelease of Need For Speed was, unfortunately, a victim of carelessness regarding its controls. GRID also has decent graphics and has some great moments as an arcade racing game.
Every race feels like its high stakes, the team building generates a bit of diversity, career mode and seasons are a bit bland but use a good formula overall, and the tracks had interesting designs and were just challenging enough to keep me interested. Even if you don’t particularly like the racing sim genre, this game can act as a good starting point on its own. Seasoned veterans will have their qualms and a few bugs (usually AI issues) can be a drag, though I don’t think they have a heavy impact on how much fun GRID can be.
A Bit of Disappointment
I think that the overall execution for GRID was acceptable – the real problems start to become apparent the longer you play it. You’ll start paying attention to initially minute things like the repetitive layout of the tracks, the lack of proper team management as seen in GRID’s predecessors, and user interface is unintuitive. Perhaps the worst part of GRID, however, is the limited choices you have for cars and tracklists.
Nearly every racing game is centered around choosing your own car, upgrading its specs, and trying out a variety of combinations in an effort to become the ultimate racer. GRID’s car choices, though it looks diverse, sporting a meaty 43 cars (a good roster for 2008), is relatively monotone when on the track. Each car, aside from the M3 E30 or the Alfa 155, drives almost identically.
It quickly gets stale and there doesn’t seem to be any advantages or disadvantages to speak of. Plus, customization is minimal – this lack of creativity and actual variety in terms of performance essentially degrades an otherwise enjoyable game.
Not the best and not the worst racing game out there. It has its moments, a fun career mode with good ideas and responsive controls overall. It simply lacks diversity in gameplay, customization, and tracks, a huge disadvantage for a game of this genre. Still, its playable by anyone from beginners to veterans and offers a positive experience in spite of these shortcomings.
- Intuitive controls/UI
- Decent graphics
- Has some good objectives/challenges
- Lacks diverse gameplay
- Not enough customization
- Track layout repetitive, cars have little performative differences
Download Race Driver: GRID
I Play Racing games with the keys, which is viewed as being some kind of mad thing to do. Well it is, but I just can't be doing with pads unless I have to put myself in someone else's shoes for purposes of review. For myself, pads can get stuffed, I'll soldier on with my trusty arrows.
Having said that, sometimes I do consider using analogue sticks for car games, for the obvious reason of being able to make graded turns, rather than binary ones. That doesn't stop me enjoying racing games as good as GRID though.
The fundamentals are just right, pretty much (and that's coming from someone who likes cars as much as he does genital fungus). Yes, it's more arcadey than some nutcases might like, but it is just damn fun!
Personally, I couldn't care less if the courses didn't have accurate advertising or pixel-perfect GPS modelling or whatever. I just want to go vroom vroom and crash into barriers a lot. GRID definitely has the right blend of solid driving and arcade fun, with a surprisingly smooth multiplayer element too.
Oh, I also love the fact the female voiceover calls me by my name when I load the game up. If the world suddenly decided to shun me, I'd still have my GRID girl to welcome me with unrestrained good cheer.
Snapshots and Media
XBox 360 Screenshots
Playstation 3 Screenshots
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- Grid 2
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