Racing Evoluzione X Box Review

RACING EVOLUZIONE Reviewed on Xbox  @
So, from infogrames comes Racing Evoluzione to inject pristine innovation into the Xbox racing genre.

It has been quite a while since the likes of Project Gotham & Colin Mcrae were the focus of our gaming desires and a new pretender to the "driving game throne" is an exciting and highly anticipated prospect.

Let's hope it's been worth the wait……

The concept behind RE is generally recognized as being one of the more intriguing concepts seen in a racing simulation.

Rather than racing in order to purchase and upgrade licensed vehicles like every other game on the market, the objective in RE is to create your own successful brand of new cars and pit them against the world's automotive leaders.

You begin the game with a modest garage and a mechanic to build your cars. As you prove the calibre of your cars in competition your company will grow and include a research and development team, automotive technicians, a production manager and a sexy secretary. This staff will provide new concepts for sports cars relative to your direction and specifications. These new models can then be taken into more competitions, winning and gaining acclaim for your brand within the industry.

Once people become aware of your brand, the orders will start rolling in, first by individual consumers looking for their next hot car, then by larger parties. At one point you may even be contacted to give a demonstration to the police, who are considering using your car for their new highway patrol vehicles.

If you play well, you will have a full roster of clients, sponsors, and more business than you can handle. Your brand will blossom into a full line of cars, you'll add new lines to your range, and you can expand your factory. You will ultimately become the leader of the automotive industry, joining the sports car legends.

RACING EVOLUZIONE Reviewed on Xbox  @
RACING EVOLUZIONE Reviewed on Xbox  @
RACING EVOLUZIONE Reviewed on Xbox  @
RACING EVOLUZIONE Reviewed on Xbox  @

However, your success will depend on more than just your competitive driving skills. You must also keep in close contact with your team of experts. Your R&D manager will propose new concepts with different designs and driving characteristics. Some concepts will be more suitable for certain tracks than others, so the choice of car to develop will influence your ability to perform well in the championships.

The production manager will give you feedback on how your driving is influencing sales and the expansion of your factory. This is part of the original and innovative reward system that has been designed for RE. Finally your secretary will inform you of in-coming opportunities that, if successful, will get your brand into the headlines of the press.

Infogrames has licensed the real brands of 40 of today's cars for you to race against. In some cases you will even get an exclusive look at future cars, such as the Dodge Viper RT10, which will not be on the market until 2003.

The car prototype designs were created by students at leading automotive design schools, giving the player the possibility to build a total of unique and beautiful 45 cars. Each car is rendered with around 10,000 polygons and will take visible damage.

The automobile and racing physics have been inspired by the best racing products on the market and the experience of Infogrames and Milestone in this field is a guarantee of a solid racing experience. The AI will also push the limits and create opponents who make snap judgments based on the race at hand as well as mistakes. The sounds for the cars have also been handled with the same attention to detail and, as with real world sports cars, just the engine sound will be an experience on its own.

The different championships will take you all over the world. There are several variations in track style, with some taking place in cities, some in the mountains, some on racetracks and others in stadiums. There are over fifty courses in all, each with its own feel, while the type of track you are on will greatly affect the handling of your car. These tracks have been created with special attention to the architectural feel of each location and an astounding feel of realism. Up to half a million polygon sceneries have breathtaking depth, with moving billboards, trees with individually rendered branches and trunks, moving traffic on secondary roads, huge mountains to drive up, etc. The game engine, specially designed for the Xbox, will be the first to fully exploit the console's technology in a racing game.

The main mode will deliver over 30 hours of gameplay with arcade and multiplayer modes added for replay value.

Overall RE is pretty strong in all departments. Granted, the commercial elements of RE (like developing your brand) are not going to be everybody's cup of tea. Although; the racing will instantly hook any closet speed freak.

Graphically RE is no less than stunning. Every aspect of the look and feel has been painstakingly perfected (even the traditionally woody looking spectator's are great).
Sound-wise things are a little disappointing but you can easily rectify the situation with your own personal soundtracks.

RE is not as much of a stunning new concept as the developers would like you to think, but never-the-less RE is an extremely competent racing package with a bit more to offer than most.

8 out of 10