Start warming up your thumbs for a lot of left-hand turning because the
sequel to 2011’s Nascar The Game is coming to racing fans later this year. The
pack-racing simulator, Nascar The Game: Inside Line, takes many of the
criticisms and suggestions from fans of the first title and adds an entire
garage full of features, for both online and off.
First off, the developers are adding a significant amount of features to
the multiplayer mode which will be available to players right from the start. Up
to 16 players can go head-to-head in completely customizable races. You’ll be able to modify your car, run practice laps, and even complete the entire process of Sprint Cup races, qualifiers and all, with your friends. Jump into a
five lap race or sit for three hours through the entire Daytona 500. It’s all
up to you.
The Career mode has also changed the pace from the previous
title, this time taking players from being an ill-equipped rookie to a fully
sponsored Nascar superstar. You’ll be able to manage your driver’s career to
earn better parts for your car, set better qualifying times, and eventually
move up your starting position at the start of the big races. Place higher in
races and you’ll be on the path to getting better sponsorships, which means even more
goodies you’ll be able to use in the Race Shop.
The Race Shop allows you to customize and modify the look
and performance of your car. Moving up through the ranks means getting the
chance to get sponsored by true-to-life sponsors like Diet Mountain Dew,
Target, and Go Daddy. Cars can be changed to any color, sponsor decals can be
added, and a variety of paint emblems can be used to make your car look truly unique
on the track.
Another nice touch is as you rise in popularity, you'll go from having a sad turn-out of just a few fans peeking at your car to a bustling crowd hanging around your garage. This makes your career progress more than just getting a faster car.
We had a chance to get behind the wheel and take a few laps
on the Daytona 500 track and managed to cause a massive pile-up when we were
trying to push to the head of the pack. This isn’t like Need for Speed’s street
racing or Forza’s hairpin-turn precision tracks; Nascar has a whole other
element - the competition. You win by taking turns perfectly, sticking to the
draft line, and overtaking your opponents one-by-one. A single slip up can
completely change the race, which we quickly learned when we slightly nudged
another car sending us slamming into the wall and spinning into the path of the
30 cars behind us.
The developers mentioned that the physics engine has been
slightly tweaked to capture a more true-to-life feel to the crashes, how the
cars drive, and also changed how the AI works. The AI has been revamped, improving
their realism to where they actually mimic the racing style of the real-life drivers.
Drivers will react and even make mistakes as a real human would, causing pile-ups,
and crashes on their own.
Nascar The Game: Inside Line seems like the next best thing to actually hopping onto a Nascar track. There are already a ton of features with even more announcements coming in the future. The developers promised even more details on upcoming online
features soon, so be sure to check back for more details.
Nascar The Game: Inside Line hits stores on November 6 this
year on Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii.