The actual racing is generally fine, though I have some issues with the way each car feels. Gamers eager to dig into the new Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit should probably avoid these slow and sluggish cars altogether. The handling is a little iffy and even with assists on it was far too easy to spin out. After a few races I started to get a handle on the game's quirks, to the point where I was actually able to win from time to time. There's nothing about the gameplay that sets this game apart from the rest of the realistic racing games on the market.
It's not offensive in any way, but I questioned the timing of this release. If gamers are able to wait a month, they'll have a chance to buy one of the most ambitious racing games of all time. A game packed with more than a thousand cars and dozens of courses. Even factoring in Superstars V8's budget price, it's hard to justify buying this over the upcoming Gran Turismo 5.
For your $20 the game gives players ten unique tracks to drive on, including courses in Italy, Spain, Portugal and South Africa. Superstars V8 Racing features 11 real-world teams such as Audi Sport Italia and Ferito Motors. Even if you're somebody with relatively little knowledge about real world racing (like me), there are a lot of familiar cars to choose from and starting a race couldn't be easier.
The car models are solid and it's easy to be won over by the gorgeous scenery. The music could have used an overhaul and some of the sound effects sound off, but by and large the presentation is fine. At $20 gamers shouldn't expect top of the line graphics, and the visuals here are more than adequate.
On a brief side note, I was struck by how much my expectations have changed in the past fifteen years. Back at the launch of the original PlayStation I was fine with Ridge Racer's paltry three levels. Yet now I'm disappointed with V8's ten courses. There's a level of depth that gamers have come to expect from modern racing games, and this inexpensive PSN download comes up short.
There's nothing technically wrong with Superstars V8 Racing. When you're in a race it feels fine and looks good, which is all you can ask for from a budget title. But there are better racing games on the PSN service (wipEout HD springs to mind) and Gran Turismo 5 just days away. If you're okay with a racing game that doesn't strive to be anything special, then Superstars V8 Racing will not disappoint.
* The product in this article was sent to us by the developer/company for review.
Superstars V8 Racing is as tame as they come. With no campaign mode (or anything resembling a single-player experience), gamers are left with this disappointing budget title. The racing is fine and the graphics look good, but there aren't enough tracks and the multiplayer is a ghost town. There's no reason to buy this over the upcoming Gran Turismo 5!
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