R: Racing - Xbox

Also known as: R: Racing Evolution

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R: Racing (Xbox)
Also for: PS2, GameCube
Viewed: 3D First-person / Third-person Genre:
Racing: Car
Media: DVD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Namco Soft. Co.: Namco
Publishers: Electronic Arts (GB)
Released: 2 Apr 2004 (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 12+
Accessories: Wheel, Xbox Memory Unit


In the racing genre, there are several types of game. There are those that serve as thoroughbred simulators, and there are those made for pure arcade racing action. Every now and then, a developer strives to combine the two in order to deliver something bigger and better than anything before it. And in this instance, we're talking about industry giant Namco and R: Racing for Xbox.

In what is effectively a new Ridge Racer, though not an official follow-up, R: Racing is indeed developed by the same team behind the classic arcade racer. Here we have the usual selection of officially licensed cars and an array of arcade-style circuits. As far as racing games are concerned, it's a pretty standard affair, but it's the attention to detail put into both the handling and aesthetics of the cars that makes the difference. Like Gran Turismo - though not as in-depth - R: Racing boasts an incredible level of realism. Changes in steering, downforce, engine activity and air resistance all have an affect during races, and the cars have been accurately modelled according to their real-life counterparts.

Additionally, R: Racing is also home to a career mode of sorts. Bringing with it a lighthearted tale of racing rivalry, players will assume control of one of the conflicting drivers as they witness the competition first-hand. A reasonable narrative, a radio communications feature and a smart AI system help to immerse players even deeper in the proceedings.

But whoever you race as, R: Racing is, at heart, a purist's racing game. Get on track, race 'til you drop, and finish in first place. If you can do that, the rest will fall into place.