European Street Racing Review

Illegal street racing heads for Europe.

Review by Darren Cartledge
Published 19th February 2008

European Street Racing

  • Developer: Team6
  • Publisher: Xider Games
  • Release Date: 27th September 2007

The racing genre has never been and probably never will be one of the most popular amongst PC gamers with only a few titles making an impact. If there’s one thing I can say for certain European Street Racing isn’t one of them.

I’ve played many budget titles during my time reviewing games and this one, unfortunately seems more of a budget game then most. It’s opening title and menu’s are a clear sign of its low production cost and sadly its poor quality doesn’t end there.

European Street Racing features two single player modes career and ghost race. Career is the games main mode while ghost races allow you to try and beat your best time around tracks that are featured in the games career mode. The game also features a multiplayer option with races being raced over a network or the Internet.

The games career mode sees you race throughout various locations across Europe, each time you complete a race a new one is unlocked, you will also be challenged by drivers that you have previously beaten, winning these one on one races will allow you to unlock new cars that can be purchased from the in game dealer.

Races themselves are a rather infuriating affair as they are set in tight city street filled with traffic; in fact some are so full there’s very little space to actually race. Tracks in the game are also poorly designed. They are marked out with bright yellow arrows, which you would expect to make the route obvious. For the most part it does, however most tracks have sections where the arrows seem to point you in the wrong direction and on one occasion when following the arrows I found myself driving around in a circle, literally!

Vehicle handling in the game isn’t the best as the cars over steer drastically, also the cars are simply to light, the slightest touch from a rival and your cars goes spinning off, hit a wall and you’ll bounce along the road and into traffic!

Obstacles also hinder your progress throughout races, some are obvious and easily avoided, but on certain tracks walls and barriers seems to blend in perfectly with their surroundings. Although that said tracks do offer a certain level of destructibility, just don’t expect things to smash apart as they just seem to slide across the game environment!

Before each race you are granted the opportunity to tweak the performance or upgrade your car if you have funds available, this is a very simplified feature to that seen in other racing titles. Upgrades come in the form of engine and gearbox enhancements, there’s no individual parts to choose from you simply upgrade in levels.

Tweaking your cars performance is a little too basic and in all honesty I can’t say I noticed any real difference between the settings. There are only two options available for you to change, these are your cars gear ratio which can be set to offer better acceleration or higher top speed and tyres which can either provide more grip or speed.

European Street Racing is a pretty easy to get to grips with, minus the annoyances mentioned above. However, AI controlled drivers do drive fast and pass you when you crash or make mistake. They are only let down by their seeming endless desire to drive into traffic.

Visually European Street Racing looks a little dated, the cars seem out of proportion, and environments are bare and bland looking, textures also seem a little rough looking, even with all settings on full. Another minus is the annoying motion blur feature that makes you feel like you’ve stayed for one to many at the pub. The game should run pretty fast even on older systems, yet despite this, the game doesn’t really give a feeling of speed.

The game does feature a damage system, that sees your boot and bonnet flap around and body work crumple, however, it’s not the most realistic looking damage you will have seen. There are some nice touches in the car models themselves, such as the metallic looking paint and light reflections on the cars body work.

Sound follows in the same suit as the graphics and wouldn’t have been out of place in the 1990’s it’s your usual mix of loud engine sound and high pitched tyre screeches. The games soundtrack features a few euro techno tracks which are ok but hearing the same few on a continuous loop gets a little annoying.

Racing games may not be the most popular amongst PC gamers, but to recommend this game to even the most avid racing fan would be unforgivable. There are far better racing titles available.

Review Score: 4/10

Please note, this review was scored using our old system. For more information please see our review policy.

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