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Nascar 2001 PS2 PlayStation2 Playstation 2 PStwo

Nascar 2001

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Review of Nascar 2001

Like in the same title for the PSone, this game allows you to choose many different racing modes to suit your fancy. If you want to have the true effect of racing in a NASCAR season, you can turn on all of the features, including a full 200-lap race with normal pit stops. This has the expected options like fuel run-out, damage that can knock you out of the race, etc. If you so desire, you can just do some quickie races of 10 laps or percentages of the real race.

To make the game accessible to rookies, it defaults to the arcade mode that lets you live on and on... no matter how many times you crash.

One shortcoming I found with this title is the feedback to the dual shock controller. There is virtually no feedback on the grips to simulate the G-Forces on the turns and the push as you accelerate out of a turn. In NASCAR, the feedback is either weak or non-existent. I found myself to be crashing into walls since I didnt get the proper feedback that my tail end was skidding out. When I hit surfaces such as grass, I get the crappy handling youd expect from slicks on grass, but not the mushy feel on the controller. The only true feedback you get in the controller is when you actually crash into the wall or another car, then the controller rocks in your hand.

There are three levels of driving competition you can choose from: Rookie, Veteran or Legend. I was quickly able to overpower my competition in Rookie mode. So switching to Veteran mode, I found a whole new game. One swipe against the wall and you watch the field take off ahead of you, a couple more, and the pack is out of view.

With all of the licensed tracks and drivers included in NASCAR 2001, this is certainly a complete game for motor-heads out there. The gameplay is nice and tight and the challenge is certainly there in the harder modes.

The graphics were outstanding in the PSone game, but you get the feeling that the PS2 is hardly breaking a sweat here. Cars and tracks look fine, but nowhere near the quality we hoped for. Sure there are a few additions to this version like: smoke in the air around the cars, tire marks where you skidded on the track and more damage on the car but nothing to make you gasp in amazement.

The on-screen display shows your speed, gas gauge, best laps and place in the race. You have the option to switch between analog displays or digital. The analog displays are very nice with black on white gauges.

Heres where it gets ugly… It seems to be there were some short cuts made in the graphics rendering in this game, and the programming flaws show up pretty obviously. As the activity on the screen increases, the graphics performance not only gets knocked down a resolution or two, but the action slows down - especially if you have the rear-view on, youre in a pack of cars, and passing the grandstands.

The sound effects are good, but nothing special. I am not impressed with some of the sounds used... Engine noises are nothing like the high-pitched whiny tones that you hear on the TV when watching NASCAR. Also, the crunch when the car hits the wall is more like a crushing beer can than a few tons of metal meeting concrete at speed. At least the soundtrack doesnt grate on you unless you race a full 200-lap race and the voice-overs for your pit crew are in a great tinny radio voice.

OUR PLEDGE: We promise that we have fully played 'Nascar 2001' before writing this review. The scores given above are our honest opinion and were not influenced in any way by the manufacturer or distributor of the game.

This review was written by Tom Downey © Absolute PlayStation

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Nascar 2001


Nascar 2001 was created by Black Box Games and is a Racing Simulation game.


· REAL TRACKS: Twelve official NASCAR tracks are in the game, including Daytona, Atlanta, California, Lowes, Bristol, Darlington, Indianapolis, Martinsville, Richmond, Sears Point, Talledega, and Watkins Glen. Just as in the real NASCAR season, night racing is available at Bristol, Lowes, Richmond, and Daytona.

· NEW TECHNOLOGY: NASCAR 2001 uses a brand new game engine with enhanced graphics, car physics, and challenging computer Al model. Environmental effects include sparks, smoke, engine fires, body deformation, wheel marks on car bodies, skid and wall marks, and car parts that can fly off.

· DOMINATE AT DAYTONA: For the first time, the world center of racing appears in a NASCAR video game. Race against the pack in the Daytona 500!

· TOUGH COMPETITION: Each driver is rated in multiple categories so that computer drivers model the real-life tendencies of NASCAR drivers--Earnhardt dives low into the corner, Jarrett drives consistently on long runs, and Gordon is smooth in and out of the tams.

· AUTHENTIC NASCAR RACING: The real drivers, cars, teams, tracks, sponsors, announcers, and rules.

· CUSTOMIZABLE REALISM AND DIFFICULTY SETTINGS: Choose Rookie, Veteran, or Legend difficulty for easier/tougher handling and AI competition. Also choose multiple levels of car damage; breakdowns, tire wear, and NASCAR flag rules.

· FULL, TRACK PACK OR CUSTOM SEASON: Race a Full or Half NASCAR Season, or race a Custom Season where you choose the tracks. Alternatively, choose track packs that pre-select just one-track type: race on short tracks, road courses, speedways, fantasy tracks, or super speedways.


• CD Media
• 414 KBytes required on Memory card per save (min)
• Up to 2 Players (without Multi-tap2)
• 2 way split screen multi-player option
• Uses Dual Shock2 Pad Buttons
• Uses Dual Shock2 Pad Analog Sticks
• Uses Dual Shock2 Pad Vibration facility

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