Star Wars: Bounty Hunter

Star Wars: Bounty Hunter is a third person shooter released for the Playstation 2 and GameCube in late 2002. It’s also available digitally on the Playstation Store for Playstation 3 and 4. If you’re my age, chances are you have strong nostalgia for this game. I have the Playstation 2 version. Personally I rented this game a lot. It was one of the first Playstation 2 games I played. I went into it, almost twenty years later, with high expectations. But does it really hold up to my memories?

The Playstation and GameCube versions use different graphics engines with the GameCube having a higher framerate, higher resolution textures, and a higher polycount. The PS2 version has texture mipmapping and full screen antialiasing, and due to two vector unit chips it can have a lot of characters on screen without framerate drop. There are framerate drops in the game, mostly during complex environment scenes. I don’t know if these drops are present in the GameCube version of the game.

The game takes place before Episode II, and goes into how Jango Fett (Temuera Morrison) was chosen as the template to the clone army, how he got his ship, Slave-1, and how he came to work with Zam (Leeanna Walsman). That’s the bounty hunter he kills in Episode II to stop Anakin and Obi-Wan getting any information about him after the failed assassination. After the first mission, which mostly serves as a tutorial, Jango is contacted by Count Dooku and offered a position in a hunt for the leader of a cult called the Bando Gorra, Komari Vosa. The reward is 5,000,000 republic credits. I won’t go too much more into the story as it’s one of the more interesting elements of the game and I don’t want to spoil it. 

The game’s difficulty is the most apparent aspect. Early levels are fairly easy, but it ramps up. Each level has a series of checkpoints, represented as floating icons you walk over, and you get five continues before you have to start over. Levels range from 10 minutes to 30 minutes long and this system gets grating. Many of my deaths were due to platforming sections and the jetpack physics. Or Jango simply deciding to fling himself off a beam, which happens far too often. It’s full of difficulty spikes, often in the form of large groups of respawning enemies with heavy weapons. Some of these weapons can kill you in as few as three shots, and most weapons at close range will get you to low health. You’ll be strafing around levels a lot to avoid fire while hoping the targeting system is merciful. Some levels are too cramped to do this and those are by far the worst parts of the game. I genuinely had to stop playing and step away to do something else for a bit due to the frustration of these parts. 

The continues system simply isn’t fun, I would have prefered more infrequent checkpoints with an unlimited amount of continues. The only mercy is that enemies don’t always respawn when you continue, so you can chip away at the larger groups. Some enemies always respawn, often the second you look away from their spawn point. 

Aside from that issue, which is a big issue, the core gameplay is fun. It uses a lock on system to shoot, though this often results in Jango refusing to target the enemy you actually want. The system is sticky, so if you drop target it tends to always go back to them, even if they’re behind cover. There is a manual aim but it’s not very useful due to poor controls. It’s sluggish and unresponsive and forces you to stay still while using it, which is guaranteed death. 

Another time this comes up is with the bounty system. Each level is full of optional bounties that reward you with credits. To get a bounty you equip your scanner and manually aim at someone to check for a bounty, you can then choose to capture them dead or alive, the reward for alive is almost always better and there’s no real reason to kill them. Capturing alive just means equipping your cable weapon and tying them up, then you just press triangle while near them to claim the bounty. However due to the fact you have to equip your scanner and check individual NPCs for bounties, and then mark them, makes this a clunky and useless system. If you kill a bounty without marking them first, you get no reward. Generally speaking you can ignore this system.

Aside from the issues with the targeting the combat is generally fun. Jango is equipped with his trademark dual blasters, along with pickups for his dart, flamethrower, grenades, a sniper rifle, and rockets. The rockets are fun to use but very situational, most of my uses of them was cheesing bosses. Using them inside, which is a lot of the levels, is a good way to blow yourself up. The missiles do track but not fast enough to catch a fast moving enemy. They also don’t have enough splash damage to effectively kill groups, though they will knock down everyone close to the explosion. There’s also a few weapons you can pick up, sometimes hidden, but these have limited ammo and when you run out you drop the weapon. Despite this they can make taking out a group of tough enemies easier. Unfortunately the enemies also have these weapons. Enemies can come equipped with standard blasters, larger gattling guns, mounted guns, rockets, grenades, or melee weapons. The melee enemies are simply annoying. In a pack they can surround you and stop you from moving, and then all bap you in a second. They do way too much damage, and this gets annoying. The grenade enemies are annoying at best. There’s a loud audio queue when a grenade is thrown so they’re generally easy to notice and avoid, but if you get hit by one you’re thrown to the ground, while on the ground enemies can still shoot you which means a lot of health loss, and if there’s more than one grenade thrower, prepare to be stunlocked. The missiles are usually easy to avoid, just do a side jump when it gets close, after making sure you don’t have a wall behind you. Simply strafing can also avoid them, but if the missile is on a downward trajectory it’ll often just hit the ground behind you, so jumping is the safest option. 

Jango also has his jetpack, which is mostly used for mobility and platforming sections. The jetpack physics are weird. It feels like they were going for a realistic style, but often this just leads to frustration. You have momentum, and the jetpack doesn’t cancel it, so you have to take deceleration into account. More often than not this results in flying into a wall at super sanic speeds and bouncing into a death field. I sure hope you like the sound of Jango screaming, because you’ll hear it a lot. The death fields are plentiful and not very well signposted. Something can look like you can jump down to it, but if you try, you’re met with instant death. This wouldn’t be as annoying if there wasn’t limited continues, but there are, so this is infuriating. 

The enemy AI is not what I’d call revolutionary, but it passes. The before mentioned explosive based enemies will sometimes blow themselves up, and enemies chasing you ignore all hazards, so you can just lead them into bottomless pits. The normal enemies will often run for cover if it’s available, but sometimes they just run around in circles in the open. They’re not challenging, and only pose a threat in groups. Levels are packed with non-combat NPCs, which you can kill if you really feel like it. You aren’t punished for killing people, which is good because they love to run directly into your attacks. As annoying as this can be, they do help the levels feel more alive.

The levels have a lot of variety, ranging from Coruscant to a prison on an asteroid. A few have areas where there’s no combat and just people walking about. This really helps with immersion. A few chapters are capped off with boss fights. These fights are forgettable and easy for the most part. They’re only really there to cover story beats. Levels also have one secret each, in the form of a floating gold feather. These unlock special features. Sometimes you’ll come across these in regular gameplay, but sometimes you have to go looking for them. They’re a fun addition to the game and encourage exploration. Levels are fairly sprawling, though some are incredibly linear. The game also has a habit of unclear progression, so you’ll find yourself rubbing your face against doors to find out which one opens in order to continue. Respawning enemies also makes this harder, since you can’t always rely on enemies to guide your progression. The best thing to do is look for the checkpoint markers, or items you haven’t picked up. The prevalence of objective markers in modern gaming can get annoying, but some would have been nice in this game. Or maybe a voice line or two telling you to head for the correct door.

There’s also a series of special features, unlocked through various means. A Dark Horse comic filling out Jango’s backstory is rewarded for game completion. It’s an interesting read, though the text is often too blurry to easily read. There’s also concept art, trading cards, and “outtakes” which are various cutscenes where the characters mess up lines, trip, or generally do wacky things. They’re a nice addition. If you’ve always wanted to hear Jango complain about not being able to scratch an itch in his armour, then this is the game for you.

The cutscenes were done by Industrial Light and Magic, and they’re all very high quality. Along with the soundtrack composed by Jeremy Soule, who also did Knights of the Old Republic’s soundtrack, it feels like an authentic Star Wars product. 

Ultimately, the fwoosh fwoosh shooty bang bang jetpack gameplay lives up to my memories, despite the repetition, but other things don’t. This game hasn’t aged well. Lives systems were on the way out even back then and it’s by far the worst aspect of the game. It pads its length with big groups of enemies blocking progression until you kill them, and it’s full of frustrating platforming. My strongest memories of the game are the early levels, and now I know why. The early levels are the more fun ones. They don’t do many of the things that the later levels do that I have a problem with. The voice acting and visuals are solid. The actors from the films reprise their roles and do a good job. The visual design is nice, and the graphics are good. It sells the era of Star Wars well and is loaded with atmosphere. It really is a shame that this game never got a sequel. Maybe we’ll see one in the future due to this game’s status as a fan favourite, but I highly doubt it. 

It stands tall among the other Star Wars games from that era, easily on the same levels as classics like Battlefront 2 and Starfighter. There aren’t really any modern games like it and it’s easily worth a revisit. It brought me back to 2004, for better or worse.

Playstation 2s are cheap, and so are the games for it. So if you want to give it a go it’s easily worth picking one up. As mentioned before it’s also available digitally on the PS3 and PS4, but I can’t speak for the quality of those versions.


Battlefield 1: Not the First One.

Battlefield 1 Cover art

This review contains spoilers. TL:DR, it’s good go play it.

The Battlefield franchise is a venerable entry in the FPS genre, the first entry was Battlefield 1942 which released on Windows and OS X in 2002. The main focus has always been large online battles in large maps with vehicles and destructible terrain. Admittedly I’m unfamiliar with the franchise. My first experience with the series was Battlefield 2: Modern Combat on the PS2, followed quite a while later with Battlefield 3 on the PS3. I never got into it as much as I did the Call of Duty games of the time, which were my preferred online FPS as a teenager.

Battlefield 1 was released in late 2016 and is the fifteenth installment in the franchise. It marks a first for the series in that it takes place in World War One, compared to the entries before it which were modern, and the earlier titles which took place during World War Two, as was common. Not many games take place in World War One, largely because it’s hard to gamify. DICE got around this by simply making a World War One themed World War Two game. This isn’t the worst thing, but it’s far from accurate in terms of the guns you’ll use, and yes, there’s a power armour sequence. More on that below.

What I really liked about the older Medal of Honor games is how they feel like war movie games, which makes sense since MoH was Spielberg’s project originally, the way they play feels like an old war movie. One heroic but kinda generic dude mows down Nazi after Nazi complete with music swells, elaborate death animations and improbable sequences. Despite how much I love those games, despite their flaws (and there are a lot of flaws) they do have some issues. The extremely simplified nature of them makes the stories not amazingly interesting. Battlefield 1 feels like it’s a modernization of this concept in a lot of ways.

Gone are the generic American McJawlines that made up the rosters of MoH games past, replaced with a diverse roster of lesser told stories. The opening, Storm of Steel, has you play various members of the Harlem Hellfighters, The 369th Infantry Regiment, notably made up of a majority of African Americans and Puerto Rican Americans. This sequence is effective but let down somewhat by the bullet sponge flamethrower enemies, though to be fair these are likely there for balance reasons. Without them I could see players playing this for ages not realizing they’re meant to die. It’s a supposed to lose fight and acts as the bookends of the game, in that respect it’s very effective and good. A great opening.

The second story, Through Mud and Blood, follows a British tank crew tasked with punching through enemy lines, it goes about as well as one might expect for a game focused on the loss and futility of war as core concepts. It starts off fairly weak, but it improves a lot as it goes on. The gameplay, especially in the tank babysitting sections, can get grating but it’s mostly solid. After you push through the enemy lines you become stuck in the mud, and facing Germans rushing the tank Townsend orders a pigeon carrying orders for an artillery strike be sent out. The artillery hits almost directly on top of the tank, but through extreme luck it’s unscathed and carries on into the Bourlon Woods. This begins the tank babysitting section.

The tank babysitting is up there as one of the worst choices in the game. You come upon a forest where the fog is so thick you’re tasked by the commander, Townsend, with scouting ahead. You quickly find trouble and have to clear enemy camps. This isn’t a bad idea on paper, it provides a contrast to the power fantasy of being a tank in a World War 1 game nicely, but the execution is very eh. You can sneak through the camps but the stealth gameplay is lacking, and as soon as the shooting starts the tank Kool-Aid Mans its way onto the scene into the direct firing line of multiple field guns, so not only do you need to worry about yourself you also have to take care of the tank, which is extremely vulnerable. It would be far easier to just take the entire camp on solo.

After you clear the forest, mechanical problems force the tank to stop, thankfully the Germans ahead have salvaged British tanks that you can steal parts from. By this point you’ve lost two of the tank crew and are left with Townsend, McManus, and your player character Edwards. Townsend is injured, so it’s up to Edwards and McManus to infiltrate the village to salvage the spark plugs needed. McManus objects, viewing it as a suicide mission, and Edwards tells him to leave, he does. The village infiltration isn’t very hard. You find a silenced sniper rifle pretty early on and the enemy AI breaks when you use that. They’ll watch a friend’s head explode and calmly investigate the corpse while you line up the second shot. This is funny, granted, but it’s not amazingly immersive. Once you get the parts you head back to the tank with the help of a well placed horse, as you’re entering the tank you’re attacked from behind only to be saved by McManus, who had a change of heart and returned.

The tank continues on, coming across a railway station being used as a staging point by German forces planning to retake Cambrai. The crew heroically attack it, taking out multiple vehicles, and destroying the German forces that arrive to reinforce it. Black Bess is then immobilized by artillery and overrun by German infantry. Edwards and McManus are injured fighting the infantry and a mortally wounded Townsend sacrifices himself by igniting a gas leak in Black Bess, killing the German forces. Edwards and McManus limp along the road toward friendly lines. The subtitle then informs you that the war ended a month later.

This is my favourite story in a lot of ways. Thematically it’s extremely strong. Themes of sacrifice and courage are contrasted with the utter pointlessness of it. The performances of the actors and animators are amazing, Mark Bonnar as Townsend is especially amazing in his final scene. As obvious as it was that there wasn’t going to be a happy ending from the beginning I still hoped for one.

The second war story, Friends in High Places, is the weakest. You play American pilot Clyde Blackburn, for some reason. Blackburn cheats George Rackham, a British pilot, out of an experimental plane and poses as him on its test flight. Rackham’s gunner, Wilson, accompanies you as you go through a short tutorial. German fighters attack and you have to fight them off, once only one remains it flees, and you follow, finding a German fort full of munitions. Wilson photographs it and Blackburn convinces him to tell command about it and they launch an offensive to destroy it. This part is fairly simple, you have to take out the AA guns, fight fighters, and defend bombers. The hardest part about this is the fight controls, which I’ve never been a fan of but it’s not too bad. It’s fairly easy as long as you don’t crash into the ground like I did more than a few times while attacking the AA guns. After the fort is bombed enough it cuts to a cutscene where Blackburn does something stupid and crashes.

You then have to sneak, or shoot, through German lines and into No Man’s Land, where you find Wilson. Blackburn then nearly murders him with a plank of wood instead of helping him back to friendly lines and this is the point where I checked out. Blackburn is unsympathetic and unlikable. Wilson reveals that he knew Blackburn was a fraud all along and for some reason this makes Clyde, Paragon of Good Choices, decide to not murder someone that’s been nothing but nice to him. You then have to avoid British machine gun fire to make it to the friendly trenches while carrying Wilson. You make it and are (correctly) arrested for stealing a plane and impersonating Rackham. On the way to be court martialed the ship carrying you is attacked by German fighters and Rackham is unceremoniously killed, Blackburn convinces Wilson to make more poor choices and free him so they can steal another plane and go to fight the German aircraft. Upon doing so they discover bombers and zeppelins moving to attack London and engage them. When you get the zeppelin to low health Blackburn decides to fly close enough to a German AA gun that he can verbally taunt the guy shooting it while moving slowly next to it and gets shot down. Again, not a smart man. You crash into the zeppelin and fight your way across to the AA gun, which you take control of to shoot the other zeppelin and enemy fighters. The second zeppelin explodes and it turns out that fire hurts so Blackburn, Wilson, and the German that was on the AA gun, whom Wilson has been fighting this entire time, are forced to jump off. Blackburn survives this and climbs out of the River Thames, lays on the dock and narrates the ending, where he refers to himself as an unreliable narrator and suggests that none of this ever happened, which I wish was true.

Yeah I don’t like this, if you couldn’t tell. Wilson is the only other character in the war story and he’s treated terribly by the narrative, it isn’t even shown if he died or not. The missions are straight forward enough though, and aren’t unpleasant though.

Next up is Avanti Savoia, the infamous power armour part. You play Italian shock trooper Luca Vincenzo Cocchiola, who wears metal armour that acts as power armour. Once you get past the initial ‘oh come on’ factor of this it isn’t bad. It’s not great though, in part due to some technical issues that I’ll get to.

This is framed as a story being told by Luca to his daughter about how his twin brother, Matteo, died. Interestingly this did take something out of it. In Through Mud and Blood I knew how it’d end, it was inevitable, there would be no happy endings, but I hoped for one anyway. In this I didn’t have the same experience. It wasn’t a matter of ‘will it be okay?’, it’s ‘how will this go wrong?’

Luca fights through the enemy lines while Matteo fights on the fronts in the valley below, initially it’s successful, Luca pushes through the lines, destroys artillery, and achieves his objective. In an attempt to stop the Italian forces in the valley the defenders bomb the mountain, causing a landslide. Luca’s armour becomes damaged and he removes it to rush into the valley to find his brother, there he finds death and devastation, men so damaged by what they’ve seen that they just stare into space– or, wait, I think the AI just broke. Yeah this is where the technical issues come in. The AI just stopped. Enemies just stood around, except for one flamer enemy who torched me when I got close, killing me. When I respawned they worked again but not well. Some still seemed to have their AI disabled. I don’t know if this bug is common but it was pretty massively disruptive.

Pushing past that though, Luca fights his way through the front and into the German fort, eventually coming across his brother’s corpse. The closing subtitles explain The Lost Generation.

This is very short and not very good.

The fourth war story is The Runner. You play Frederic Bishop, an ANZAC at Gallipoli. He’s introduced to Jack Foster, his new charge who lied about his age to get into the army. Bishop spends much of the game doing things and risking his life to protect Foster. You first storm the beach to capture an enemy position, you’re successful but discover that Foster has followed you. Bishop berates him for his belief that war is glorious and Foster becomes sickened by the carnage.

The next day Bishop again volunteers for a mission to protect Foster, he delivers a message to HQ, and on his return is saved by Foster who shoots an Ottoman soldier. He’s then sent by British officer Whitehall to deliver another message to rear command, when he arrives he finds it deserted with a note explaining that a full retreat has been ordered and that the area will be shelled to cover retreat. He rushes back only to find that Foster volunteered to attack the fort and is missing. Whitehall tells him to ignore the retreat to go after Foster, however he’s clearly distressed that he just sent all those soldiers into friendly fire. He makes his way up to the fort and finds Foster along with the other soldiers hiding with wounded. He tells them that the shelling is imminent but Foster says that they won’t be able to make it with their wounded, so Bishop attacks the fort on his own to draw their attention, telling Foster to fire a flare once he’s clear so that Bishop can escape. In the process of this, Frederick is mortally wounded. He climbs to the battlements and watches for the flare, hoping that Foster has made it.

The flare is fired and the artillery follows shortly after. Frederick Bishop is killed.

The Ottomans won, many of the people who fought in the campaign went on to become leaders of the Republic of Turkey. For Turkey, Australia, and New Zealand, Gallipoli was formative in their national consciousness. It was the first time that Australian and New Zealand forces fought under their own flags.

There’s not a lot to say about this one honestly. It’s rather short, but it’s well done. It does a lot with very few characters, and they’re all good characters. Bishop’s death is effective, I wish they’d done more with Foster. He doesn’t have much character beyond being naive.

The fifth and final story is Nothing is Written, you play Zara Ghufran, a Bedouin rebel fighting the Ottomans in Arabia with T. E. Lawrence. An Ottoman train carrying important cargo derails in the desert, and Zara is tasked with getting that cargo. She succeeds and obtains the code book, but soldiers arrive, lead by Ottoman officer Tilkici. She’s saved by Lawrence and other rebels. They decide to interrogate Tilkici for information regarding the armoured train Canavar, and how to lure it into a trap.

They discover that to lure it they need to get three message capsules from three officers to send to it via pigeon. As Zara is sending the third she’s attacked by Tilkici, who escaped from Lawrence and knowing the location of the camp, has it attacked. He prepares to execute her but she kills him before he can. Zara meets with Lawrence, who escape the camp before it could be attacked. It turns out that this was all a waste, because the Canavar has to stop for supplies, leaving it vulnerable, and a plan is made to attack it when it does, trapping it by damaging it with explosives. You then fight the train using various field guns to shoot at it while it rains artillery and machine gun fire on you.

Zara and Lawrence move on to the Suez Canal to strike at targets there. The subtitle informs you that the British reneged on their promise of a free Arabia.

And that’s pretty much it. Overall the stories are very solid, the gameplay can get grating at times. The final sequence of Nothing is Written is especially frustrating, with the train firing instant death at you if it holds line of sight for long enough. Other than a few frustrating parts it’s somewhat easy. I played on medium difficulty. The AI is lacking, especially when you use long range silenced weapons. I noticed a few bugs but nothing overly bad.

The graphics are very impressive, my PS4 was pumping superheated air out the back the entire time I was playing. The environment design is very visually nice, but lacking in terms of layout. It’s mostly just generic lanes of progression with similar sets of enemies. That said the core gameplay loop and gamefeel are solid enough that this isn’t too bad.

I’d comment on the multiplayer but I got a PS4 copy, and I have to pay extra to play online, and frankly fuck that.

This review has mostly been me trying to get around my writers block for finishing my MoH review series with Vanguard. It has proven to be hard to write about, so look forward to that one up next!

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V8 Supercars Australia Race Driver 2 aka TOCA Race Driver 2 aka DTS Race Driver 2 Review

Bhaalgorn (Kitten) inspects a copy of the game.

V8 Supercars Race Driver 2 aka TOCA Race Driver 2 aka DTS Race Driver 2 is a 2004 racing game by Codemasters and the 5th entry in the TOCA series of racing games, it’s the second of the Car-PG style with a character and a story. It’s not a very good story. It was released for Windows, Xbox, Playstation 2, Playstation Portable (Twice, two years after original release) and mobile devices, because 2004 was a strange time. I’m reviewing the Playstation 2 version here. I never played this one as a kid like I did with the first, and I think that might be why I like the first one so much more. Yeah that kinda gives things away early on doesn’t it?

Let’s start with the changes. Gone is the car tuning system. Admittedly I never really used this, it felt somewhat pointless most of the time, but it was a nice thing to have for the enthusiasts. You can’t do test drives either, but you can restart during races, so you don’t really need to get familiar with a map before racing it. The car damage system is different. Instead of a diagram of your car showing the damage to each part, it’s now just a set of lights that change colour. This is a pretty big downgrade to usability. In the first game you knew which wheels were damaged, in this one you just know that a wheel is damaged and won’t know which until it explodes and you have to restart. The replay system remains, but now you can save replays, which is nice. 

The graphics have improved slightly, but this game was released in 2004. The Playstation 2 version suffers from the same issues that most Playstation 2 games have, loads of jaggies from the lack of anti-aliasing and a relatively low resolution. If you play it on an emulator this won’t be an issue of course, and it’ll look much nicer, but if you’re a strange collector like me you’ll want to run it on original hardware. I’m just using an up-scaler and it looks pretty good despite the jagged edges on everything. The map backgrounds are much more detailed than they were in the first game, but I can’t speak for the accuracy of them. It has Hidden Valley, which I live near and have been to a few times, and it isn’t surrounded by rolling green hills. It’s surrounded by dirt. They do pretty it up for the V8s though, from what I remember anyway. There’s also none of the stands or anything like that. I guess they just used a generic background, which is unfortunate. Having accurate backgrounds could add a lot to the character of the tracks. 

The car physics are similar in a way but definitely different. I don’t know if they’re better. Sometimes it feels like my car is floating above the road and sliding all around. Sliding is a theme in this game. There’s a lot of sliding. The devs decided that to stop players from cutting corners and having fun, they’d make the gravel and grass cause your car to abruptly turn right. I can only really describe this as intensely lame. There’s nothing worse than taking a corner a bit too wide and touching the grass only to instantly spin out of control. There’s no way to get back up to speed fast enough to not end up in last place too. It’s just straight up un fun. Some cars are better than others in terms of handling though, so it won’t be as much an issue. Unfortunately some choice choices were made that amplify this problem.

In the first Race Driver you had to advance through a set of championships to progress, but you could do them in whatever order you want, and if you performed badly it was fine, you’d get another offer with a different car that maybe suited you better. Race Driver 2 on the other hand is much more linear. You pick from two championships, and then once you beat that or give up and do the other, you get one option and you have to finish that championship in that car to progress. So if that car handles like shit you just have to bear with it till you win. No alternate car options for you. You’ll be restarting a lot. Like.. A lot.

The AI is slightly better, in that it’s worse. It seems more human, and is much more prone to imperfect play. This is a great upgrade, but it seems to work in tiers, so the cars at the back are usually the lowest tier of AI and are pretty shitty. They take corners slowly, almost coming to a complete stop on some bends, and are slow to recover if they crash. The higher tier on the other hand plays much better, which is actually a problem. They play too well, and overtaking them gets pretty hard. The irish guy (I’m sure he has a name but I don’t remember it) has a bunch of radio call outs based on how you’re doing or who’s behind you. He’ll call them out by name, which is neat.

There’s a larger variety of cars available, from Formula 1 to big rig trucks, but it’s clear that the physics isn’t meant for this. The trucks are just boring, they feel weighty but they’re just not as fun as they sound. The Formula 1 cars handle poorly, and they’re dummy thicc, which can make it hard to overtake the cars since the clap of your wheels keeps making the physics break. If the wheels come into contact with another car things go strange and you fly across the track. Some of the cars also make annoying noises, one in particular making a high pitched hissing noise whenever I accelerated. 

It’s a lot harder to recommend Race Driver 2 than it was for the first game. There’s a lot wrong here and not many improvements. The only noticeable improvement is the graphics, and that the main character has no face or voice now. Massive improvement in that regard. There is a story, but it’s really not interesting enough to mention beyond the fact that your character doesn’t talk. Car-PG is a fun term, but this isn’t an RPG. It’s a racing game, and as far as racing games go it’s a thoroughly decent one. 

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