New NFS: ProStreet Trailer

Need for Speed: ProStreet

ProStreet is just shy of two months away for most of you, and we’re still learning some of the details of this game, including just how the career mode will progress. That’s helped a bit by this new trailer from GameTrailers showing some of the various organizations around the world hosting in-game events. It’s clear from the video that this racer could have perhaps the highest production values of any yet released. The question, of course, is whether the gameplay will live up.

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NASCAR 08 Reviewed — Badly

NASCAR 08

EA’s trend when new consoles roll around tends to be get a stripped down, barely passable release out the door the first year, then follow it up with a proper installation the next. However, with NASCAR 08, it seems they’ve missed that target, according to GameSpot’s review delivering a fairly mediocre entry to the aged franchise:

NASCAR 08’s box touts the fact that EA’s NASCAR series is the top-selling NASCAR franchise, but nowhere on the packaging does it tell you that it’s the top-selling franchise because it’s the only NASCAR franchise. However, the fact that there’s no competition is made apparent as soon as you play. There have been a few improvements to how the game plays and you can now drive the Car of Tomorrow, but inexplicably, there’s less to do in NASCAR 08 than there was in NASCAR 07. It’s still a competent racing game, but you can’t shake the feeling that NASCAR 08 would have been a whole lot better if there had been a competing NASCAR game out there.

EA Taking Older Racers Offline

Burnout Dominator on PS2

Eurogamer has news of a list of games from EA’s extensive stable that are about to be lead out to pasture. These are games that, thanks to their age (all of three years old in some cases!), are having their online support disabled. Among the list are a number of racers, with NASCAR 06 Total Team Control for the PS2 and Xbox being killed off on September 1, then the following games getting dropped in November:

  • Burnout Revenge for Xbox and PS2
  • Need for Speed Underground for PS2
  • Need for Speed Underground 2 for PC and PS2
  • Need for Speed Most Wanted for PSP and Xbox

Some of these seem to be dying off a bit … prematurely, but I suppose that’s just incentive to upgrade to the newer releases.

A Gran Turismo Retrospective

Gran Turismo 5 Prologue

Games Radar has put together a bit of a retrospective of the Gran Turismo franchise, going back to the original and tracing its progression through to what we’ve thus-far seen of Gran Turismo 5.

Comparing GT5 with the original PSone instalment is ludicrous now. Visually, Gran Turismo 5 is leading us into territory resembling the holy grail of photorealistic graphics. In fact, we’re still not entirely convinced that the top left snapshot above isn’t actually a photograph.

So, in case it’s not clear, Polyphony Digital really put their nose to the grindstone where realism is concerned. They’ve achieved some incredible visual feats. Which is why, no doubt, it’s taking so long to get GT5 out the door. Each car now has more polygons than were in the whole PSone game – multiply that by the entire GT5 garage and you’ve a hell of a lot of work.

However, what’s missing here are the various false-starts and disappointments, namely the vaporware PSP release and the aborted attempt at multiplayer in GT4.

New MotoGP 07 Trailer

MotoGP

It was a somewhat disappointing USGP yesterday for many MotoGP fans, but that won’t stop us from sharing Capcom’s new trailer for their take on the two-wheeled series. MotoGP 07 (not to be confused with MotoGP 07) is the PS2- and PSP-bound replacement for the now expired Namco franchise. Capcom’s version is looking a good bit more polished. Click on to see, and listen, for yourself.

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NASCAR 08 Soundtrack Announced

NASCAR 08

EA’s latest installment is right around the corner and they’re sparing no expense when it comes to the soundtrack. Well … okay, with only 12 tracks they’ve certainly spared a few expenses, but the full list provided by 1UP includes some decent tunes:

  • Airbourne – Stand Up for Rock ‘n Roll
  • Jason Aldean – Johnny Cash
  • Big & Rich – Loud
  • Big & Rich – Radio
  • Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Need Some Air
  • Blackberry Smoke – Up in Smoke
  • Brooks & Dunn – Long Haul
  • Bucky Covington – Empty Handed
  • Crossin Dixon – Stomp
  • Halfway to Hazard – Country ’til the Day We Die
  • Palmerston – Addicted to This
  • Velvet Revolver – She Builds Quick Machines

Decent, of course, assuming you’re into the country music.

NFS: ProStreet Previewed

Need for Speed: ProStreet

PS-Gamer has posted a preview of the upcoming high-impact racer: Need for Speed: ProStreet. The preview touches on a topic close to many readers’ hearts: the general boredom felt when thinking about yet another game in the NFS franchise.

If you were growing a little tired of the solid – if unspectacular – arcade style street racing action of Carbon and Most Wanted (or indeed, the two Underground games before them), then you’re not alone. Market research conducted by EA and developer Black Box revealed that the tried-and-tested Fast and the Furious style arcade romps of recent years simply weren’t pushing gamers’ buttons anymore, and that a fundamental change was required to add depth to the overall package.

While some similarities remain – most notably the fact the cars can be tuned and tinkered with in the most visually outrageous ways possible – the level of changes made to ProStreet run considerably deeper than a mere name change, altering the game’s fundamental concepts in ways Carbon or Most Wanted could only dream of.

We’re thinking it’s going to take more than extended customization options to woo people back to this increasingly more stale series.