Dakar 2 - Xbox

Also known as: Paris-Dakar Rally 2

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Dakar 2 (Xbox)
Also for: PS2, GameCube
Viewed: 3D Combination Genre:
Racing: Off-Road
Media: DVD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Acclaim Soft. Co.: Acclaim
Publishers: Acclaim (GB)
Released: 6 Jun 2003 (GB)
Ratings: 11+
Accessories: Memory Unit


Following a good three months after the PS2 and GameCube versions of Acclaim’s erm, acclaimed Dakar series, Dakar 2 for Xbox has finally been given a release. Two years after the first in the series, Dakar 2 pits budding off-road drivers against each other on that infamous 6,500 mile Paris-Dakar stretch in a plethora of mixed-terrain vehicles, ranging from motorcycles to rally cars to 4x4 trucks.

Although the Xbox version has suffered several setbacks in its development, the improvements, both visually and in gameplay, are quite noticeable. The game simply runs smoother, there is little - if any - evidence of graphical glitches and the control method is more than adequate, particularly with the smaller Controller-S pad.

Ultimately a single race broken down into smaller stages, the 6,500 mile Dakar 2 race plays host to an unprecedented 350 race vehicles - slightly more accommodating than GT3's grand total of six. Gameplay, although technically accurate and with realistic handling, is essentially an arcade experience. Vehicles race quicker, the tracks are tight, and there's that familiar checkpoint system in place for that extra sense of urgency.

The environments look really good, it's just a shame you won't have time to stop and gawk at them. Because the game world spans a great distance, environments are varied and many are highly detailed, littered with animals, villages, bushes, trees and mines. Like we've already stressed, there's a lot of ground to cover in Dakar 2, and the race will take you through visually impressive town and forest stages in France, Spain and Morocco before progressing to the familiar sandy Dakar landscapes.

You'll be subject to some intense competition and some devious computer-controlled opponents. Some racers will drive so well that you can't quite catch them, whilst others merely serve to get in the way, slowing your progress - so-o-o annoying!

A significant improvement over its predecessor, Dakar 2 has a wealth of new features, bonuses and hidden extras that should lure the rabid racing gamer into a lengthy tournament of survival of the fittest.


Dakar 2 - Xbox Artwork