Welcome to the world of (New Star) Grand Prix! You are a famous racing driver who is set to be this seasons’ winner! Um, that is if you actually win the races, keep your boss, friends and pit crew happy and don’t loose all your money gambling.
New Star GP provides an extra dimension to the usual “here are the tracks, now Race for me!” attitude of most racing games. For each track you have a week to practice, on Saturday it’s qualifying time and then on Sunday it’s the actual race! So what’s the actual driving part of the game like? Well…
You’re gonna need some skill!
The game play is kind of like a more serious version of Micro-machines, having a top down view while you control the car with the arrow keys. The thing that really took me by surprise is how you really have to learn the tracks. Getting your approach to certain corners is important and if you get it wrong you have to slow down, or break, or worse, crash! There are certain things you can do to help. You can choose between having a boost that will allow you to speed up faster, but it makes your car heavier. Strict control of your fuel level helps; less fuel means you’re lighter so you’ll go faster, but not for as long. And if the weather gets bad, change to the appropriate tyres as soon as possible!
So practice is important to get all these things right.
Apart from the driving you have the option to take your friends or the pit crew to the casino to keep them extra happy. You don’t have to play any of the games at the casino but if you’re feeling extra lucky you might be able to earn a little spending money from it.
One of my favourite points about the game is that you can buy cars with the money you earn and drive these around on the current track! You don’t have to do this and it takes up one of your practice days, but it’s good fun.
My major complaint about the game would be the lack of multiplayer, aside from the fact you can compete via track times on-line there is no actual racing against others. The only other niggle for me is the track editor, which I found fairly troublesome to use. Since there were no crossover tracks (or bridges) available I couldn’t recreate the top-gear test track either! I cried.
Otherwise this is good fun and a worthy purchase for any grand prix, or racing in general, fan!
Score: 73 out of 100
Final words: Top notch game-play, a must for any GP fan!