‘Project CARS’ Review: A Truly Demanding Racer for the Truly Dedicated

Game: Project CARS
Consoles: Xbox One, PS4 (Reviewed), PC
Publisher: Bandai Namco
Developer: Slightly Mad Studios

Project CARS

The world of console racers are split into two distinct sub-genres – simulations and arcade racers. For those tuner heads who get more enjoyment out of titles such as Gran Turismo and Forza Motorsport, Slightly Mad Studios’ entry into the pack should satisfy them – Project CARS. This sim-based release offers up a wealth of content and also provides a worthy challenge for the only the most ardent racing game fans. Project CARS provides the type of experience that the automotive world should feel proud to be represented by.

Project CARS main single-player campaign lies in its extensive Career Mode. You step into the role of a rookie racer who’s looking to become the best in any and all fields of car classes. You can choose to hop into the miniature karts from the start of your run or even take a stab at racing with Modern Open Wheel rides. Whatever you choose to do first pushes you into a slew of championship circuit races, where placing in high positions nets you social media shout outs and more positive feedback from your sponsors. These simple touches truly involves the player into their role as an up and coming racer.

Project CARS

The career mode could be a little bit better in some parts, though. Getting tied to a sponsor doesn’t yield the expected prizes you’ve received from similar modes in other racing sims. You won’t truly feel like a part of your team since you aren’t gifted special rewards for your efforts. The calender moves along with a series of championship races and special events, but they tend to feel tired after a few playthroughs. The main goals tied to career mode presents some opportunities to excel, which is something that will push only the most hardcore fans to keep pushing through each car series.

Project CARS’ visual presentation is one of the game’s strongest features. Each car, track and even the user interface and main menus all look incredible. Watching a pack of cars fight for the top spot on a slick track laced with rain drops is a sight to behold. The car models look all the more amazing thanks to the excellent lighting effects and special day/night cycle. This racer truly represents the leap gamers expected for the current-gen we’re all currently experiencing. Audio wise, the cars sound as close to the real thing as possible. The added feature of getting tips from your coach during active races is another nice touch.

Project CARS

There’s a wealth of customization options that you can use to tune your play style accordingly. You can hop into quick race weekends, hop online to utilize the game’s whole roster of cars and change up everything from your end to make your racing feel more fitting. The use of restarts, changing up your heads up display or even changing up the length of lap for a race should ease novice racing sim fans in. Project CARS’ is a daunting game, though. Each of the car classes feel extremely different, which is a difficult task to get tuned to for lesser skilled players. The controls are easy to understand, but the overall feel of each ride is a challenge that some won’t be able to fulfill. A few graphical and audio hiccups tend to bring the strong presentation down from time to time, though. Hopefully these issues get ironed out with future updates.

Bottom Line

Project CARS

Project CARS makes a strong case for lasting just as long as its racing simulation contemporaries. The career mode may have a few missing features, but it’s huge array of car class championship races and constant progression is a plus. The visuals shine, the audio is strong and the massive roster of cars/tracks will guarantee you stay with this racer for months to come. The apparent graphical/audio issues and high difficulty factor may be a barrier for some, though. Only the most dedicated racing sim fans will be able to handle the challenge present in Project CARS.

Score: 8.5/10

Pros:

  • One of the most amazing looking racers our right now
  • A true racing sim that offers up a wealth of car classes, championship races, quick play options and online competitions
  • Each car class feels distinct, which presents a myriad of ways to proceed through the Career Mode

Cons:

  • The challenge factor here is supremely high, so racing novices may want to steer clear of this one
  • A few graphical and audio issues pop up from time to time

Buy Project CARS here.

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