Juiced one of the best racing games of all times?
Don't bet on it.
is a decent racing game but it takes on more than
it can adequately handle. So many of the features
and options seem like tired old clichés that
the developer's obviously believed just have to be
included in such a racing game. This whole street
culture thing is also on the lame side. In real life
not everyone that races is into the same "culture."
That means they don't all speak the same vernacular
or dress in gang garb. The subtleties are missing
here making it difficult to immerse yourself in this
outlaw lifestyle. At no time did I ever feel as though
I was playing anything more than an average arcade
is what can make and break this game. You need money
to upgrade your vehicles but more importantly you
need money to enter into races. If you're not a very
skilled driver your cash supply will dwindle considerably
making it very difficult for you to progress - needlessly
difficult. To generate more cash you are allowed to
make bets with other drivers. That means that you
don't have to come in first place so long as you beat
the driver that you bet against. Of course you could
lose the bet which would send you closer to the poor
house, and it's really tough to climb your way out
of such abject poverty. There are plenty of free races
on the calendar but they become few and far between
later in the game. I just don't agree with the importance
placed on the availability of cash which detracts
from the racing.
are close to 50 licensed cars and they do take on
damage which is a move that I applaud. The vehicles'
performance is affected by damage which can be inflicted
by numerous obstacles in the city such as sidewalks,
curbs, lampposts and buildings. Collisions with other
vehicles will also cause you some damage but with
deliberate planning you just might be able to slow
down or completely eliminate some of your competition
since it will also cost money to repair the damage.
Just make sure you don't end up with too much yourself.
Juiced doesn't have one specific gimmick. There are
some gameplay elements that are relatively unique
such as racing for pink slips and the ability to assemble
a crew which includes other drivers that you can get
to sub for you if you're not up to the challenge.
If you let another driver take the wheel you have
to watch the entire race in real time. Even though
the speeds are in the stratosphere it's still really
boring unless you're doing the driving.
can learn how to handle your vehicle with flair and
finesse in the Showoff mode which rewards you for
pulling off a variety of tricky moves with the handbreak.
Powersliding, donuts and J-turns can be performed
by careful use of the handbreak. Some of these moves
come in handy for navigating turns at high speed which
is essential to winning in the Career mode. The cars
handle well with good physics which extends well into
arcade territory. There are hundreds of aftermarket
parts that you can use to customize the vehicle to
your specific requirements. The more upgrades you
acquire in the power department the faster you can
cruise as new tracks will be unlocked to facilitate
soundtrack rocks but the voiceovers get repetitious
fast. I guess the "street racing culture"
was too lazy to continue adding new words and phrases
to their lexicon. The framerate is really smooth and
the cars not only look good but they move like lightning,
complete with motion blur to heighten the sense of
speed. The tracks could have been more realistic as
they appear to be littered with too many obstacles
which is very unnatural looking not to mention frustrating.
is an average racing game that places too much emphasis
on obtaining money which artificially inflates the
perception of challenge. There is a good racing engine
underneath all the crust but with so many great racers
out there why even bother?