Nascar The Game 2011 Review
Xbox 360 | PS3
Nascar The Game 2011 Box Art
System: PS3, Xbox 360, Wii
Dev: Eutechnyx
Pub: Activision
Release: March 29, 2011
Players: 1-16
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Mild Language

That's about where all the praise for the game ends. As much as I enjoy weaving through giant packs of traffic in every track, that's not how things work in the sport, and the lack of any caution flags, unless I'm facing the opposite direction for several seconds, really punishes me for getting into an accident, regardless of whether or not it was my fault. The game's tendency to destroy any and all progress you've made through the course race is one of the biggest turn-offs I've ever come across. In a game that clearly touts itself as the most realistic NASCAR experience ever, it's flat out inexcusable to overlook this detail.

Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot

So, let's say that you want to take out some frustration and race human drivers online. You have the option to race against up to fifteen other drivers at any NASCAR track…supposedly. Out of the 50+ lobbies I entered, maybe a fifth of them actually ever got to the track, thanks to loading screen freezes and random lobby drops. Half of those races didn't even work probably, due to bugs that caused my car to face head first into a wall, or not even move at all. Finally, the races I did actually compete in weren't the same as they were in the NASCAR season. The frenzy of racing against forty-two other drivers was gone, and it was replaced with a ho-hum experience of only about six other drivers, most of which didn't even last the entire race.

NASCAR The Game 2011 isn't all too much to look at. The graphics aren't bad, per se, but they're not good either; they're average. Crowd models appear to be flat and two-dimensional, and the loading screens/garage menus look incredibly dated. Things don't get much better for the game's audio: commentary is an afterthought, as you'll hear some small talk before the race and that's about it. No in-game commentary, or even a soundtrack to listen to; all you get is the hum of your car, adding to a really poor polishing job.

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Deep between all of its issues, there's a successful core to NASCAR 2011. The idea of combining an arcade feel to a sport sim is one that could work really well in this case, but the game's bugs, errors, and lack of realism bring it down far too much to be enjoyed. It's almost as if the game was rushed out to meet the start of the NASCAR season, which is already a month old as of this writing. Should Activision bring NASCAR back for another lap next year, we could have a really good game on our hands. As for now, it's extremely avoidable, to say the least.

By Jake Valentine
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.5
Graphics
Nothing to write home about, but nothing awful either. Each track looks as it should.
4.0
Control
Cars handle well and reflect both the track's condition and the car's.
2.0
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Hope you enjoy how a car sounds; no in-race music or commentary.
1.0
Play Value
Broken online play, lack of caution flags, and the inability for the pack of cars to spread out. You'll have fun for five minutes, then become incredibly frustrated.
2.4
Overall Rating - Poor
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Race with up to sixteen players via multiplayer bumper-to-bumper battles, or engage in high-speed split screen action.
  • Get ready to be blown away with never-before-seen crashes and realistic vehicle damage.
  • Jump into the race action with easy auto-tuning or tweak everything from engine and tires to suspension and pit strategy.

  • Screenshots / Images
    Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge Nascar The Game 2011 Screenshot - click to enlarge

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