A Look at Mario Kart 64 on Wii

The game is now officially available in just about all domains, and if you weren’t thinking of picking it up, the above video, courtesy of GameVideos.com, might just change your mind. That little ditty that plays before the race begins, not to mention the buzzy sounds of the motors, should bring back some very fond memories for just about anyone who owned a Nintendo 64. And if you didn’t, well, all the more reason to check this game out.

Vista vs. XP – Performance Numbers are In

FiringSquad has the first in what looks to be a two-part comparo of Windows XP vs. Vista in terms of gaming performance. This first one compares AMD (formerly ATI) cards on the two operating systems, and impressively increases were found in most cases, as much as 15% in Battlefield 2142! Granted, there were also some stability issues and other glitches that may make some wary to upgrade at least until the next rev of Vista drivers are released, but otherwise things are looking surprisingly good…at least on the AMD front. We’ll see about nVidia products soon.

A Gran Turismo Manifesto

GT Vision

For many, Gran Turismo 4 was a fun and good looking game, but still a huge disappointment. Delivered late yet still short on features it ultimately failed to provide the kind of addictive allure of its predecessors. With no online play, extremely limited visual car customization, no crash damage, and a minimally changed physics engine it was just more of the same. And, honestly, you can only spend so many hours playing more of the same, even if it is awfully good looking.

With so much bad press being piled on the PS3 today, Gran Turismo 5 may wind up being the make or break title for the console. After its predecessors shortcomings, the fifth will need to impress to win gamers over, especially with the Forza series making huge progress in a number of areas that Gran Turismo hasn’t even begun to address. So, to ensure the series’ continued popularity, here are 12 things that GT5 absolutely must do, and do well.

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Sim Touring Car Cup: Round 5

It may be cold and snowy over much of the northern hemisphere, leaving many racers at home sipping cocoa and waiting for the spring thaw, but seasons can’t stop sim racers. Becky over at the STCC was kind enough to pass along word that Round 5 has been completed and is now online for your viewing pleasure. Watch the video above and dig another big dose of the same close racing action we’ve seen in earlier rounds, then check out the official STCC page.

New Wheelman Screen

Wheelman

It’s been quite some time since we saw or heard anything about Wheelman, the latest Vin Diesel videogame we earlier compared to The Transporter. As seen at Evil Avatar, CVG has a new screen of the game to show, as well as a trailer they’re calling new, but looks an awful lot like one we saw back in August. Regardless, if you missed it then, now might be a good time to take a gander at the pre-rendered action and start to ponder whether this one might actually be worth playing.

Forza 2 Gets Mugello and Suzuka in May

Forza 2

Two of the smoothest, most beautifully flowing tracks in the world will be coming to Forza 2 when it hits the Xbox 360 later this year. And, we finally know when that is. If you’ve been following along, the last nod of a release date came when Peter Moore said late June. Seems he was a bit pessimistic, with the developers now pegging a May 2007 release.

Here’s the full list of tracks announced today:

  • Mugello Autodromo Internazionale
  • Suzuka Circuit
  • Sebring International Raceway
  • Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca
  • Tsukuba Circuit
  • Road Atlanta
  • Silverstone Circuit
  • Nürburgring Nordschleife
  • Maple Valley Raceway
  • Sunset Peninsula Infield
  • New York Circuit
  • Test Track

Additionally, it seems each track has been completely custom built for the game:

Since we’ve built every track from the ground up (no assets or models were recycled from Forza 1), we’ve naturally gone in and added a ton of new detail to all the environments. More importantly, the track artists have followed up on a lot of suggestions, as well as corrections from track experts (e.g., track stewards) to make each track more accurate and true-to-life. Hundreds of Gigs of new GPS data (for elevation, dimensions, etc.) and reference materials were collected this time around in the pursuit of realism. Drift fans will be happy to know, for instance, that the drift loop has been added to Road Atlanta — if nothing else, we do it for the sake of being completist.

Mind you, Sebring, Road Atlanta, Laguna Seca, and Silverstone are nothing to scoff at, but I’ve always had a soft spot for Mugello and Suzuka, and while F1 may not be making official stops at either of these locales in 2007, you at least will be able to later this summer.