The '60S was a time of longhaired hippies, a liberal attitude to sex and prolific drug-taking: a bit like an average night out with PC ZONE then. GT Legends may not offer any of the above, but it does give you the chance to take the wheel of some of the greatest race cars from the era. If you love driving games, you should be very excited indeed.
You see, what GT Legends does is take all the great bits of GTR, polish them to a shiny sparkle, improve on the not-so-hot bits and finish by making the entire title more enjoyable to play. While GTR may have been a superbly engineered piece of machinery, there were some minor flaws marring its otherwise perfect finish (namely a slightly outdated graphics engine and a steep learning curve).
However, with Simbin proving itself to be of that special breed of developer who actually listens to feedback, the software mechanics have got their hands greasy and fixed the problems. The updated graphics engine makes pretty use of DirectX9.0 features and all races can be played in any difficulty level, giving learner drivers just as much of a chance to hoist that trophy as the petrolheads.
REV IT UP
From the very first screen, it's obvious that Simbin has worked hard on making the game more accessible. With money to win, cars to purchase and a series of specialized championships and classes to conquer, it feels like there's much more to do this time around than just a series of individual races. This makes it much more fun to play, and we can't help but salivate at the thought of winning another hunk of historical motoring machinery.
GTR's fantastic driving model is back too, but this time round the driving experience
itself feels noticeably different, with more than a few cars featuring massive oversteer
that will have you frantically wrenching your steering wheel (a necessity) to prevent you
from fishtailing down the entire track. Quick customisation options are available from the
pre-drive menu though, so if the oversteer's too much, you can simply turn it down without getting your mitts dirty in the setup screen. And there's no missing the fantastic sound effects either, from the quiet burble of your first car to the outright raucousness of the top-end vehicles.
But can it really be improvement all round? Will GT Legends pass its MOT with flying colours, or is it likely to blow a gasket at the most inopportune moment? If we had to nit-pick, we noticed a marked difference between qualifying times and actual racing laps; plus, on occasion the AI opponents seemed to ram into your car if you'd taken the optimum driving line. However, these are minor quibbles.
So with everything ticking over happily, we reckon Simbin has come up trumps. Fans of Grand Prix Legends will love it, fans of GTR will love it and we reckon it's just possible that a host of newcomers could also be taken in by the thrill of driving the car you spent your youth pining for. Assuming you're as old as we are anyway.
Firing on all cylinders
- Fantastic driving model
- Gorgeous lighting effects
- Amazing sound effects
- Meticulous modelling
- Accessible to all
- Racing seems easier than qualifying