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Toca 3 Racing Driver

Feburary 24th 2006 is revving up to be a day all lovers of virtual fast cars and racing should be looking forward to with great anticipation. On this day, Codemasters will be bringing us the next instalment in the TOCA Racing series. This time there are no limits on the cars included, TOCA Race Driver 3 is going to let you drive Everything!

Herbie eat your heart out.

Packing in a roster of 70 real-world racing cars and 80 International Circuits to race on, 21 cars on screen at a time jostling from position, intelligent computer AI cars as well as the ability to race online, this game is truly going to offer everything to the expert and neophyte alike.

The most important aspect of the game are the various racing disciplines available. These include, Open Wheel (Karts to F1 cars), Touring Cars (Autosport Clio Cup, V8 Supercars and Supertruck), Oval ( US Dirt racing, Superspeedway, Sprintcar series), Classics (1930’s, 60’s, 80’s and 90’s GrandPrix, US Musclecar Tour), Off Road and Rally ( 4×4 Rallycross, Off Road Buggy, Nissan Of-road) and GT (Britsh GT Cup, World GT Cup, Japanese Works Cup).

There are many more contained within the six main racing categories, but hopefully that’s given you a tasters of the sheer amount of racing styles and car which will be in the game. The mix of modern and classic racing styles make this game not only the most varied ever released, but one which will let people get some idea of the evolution of motor sport as they advance not just through the ranks but the years as well.

Cars, racing, that kind of thing.

Cars come fully tweakable and tunable to. Even this aspect of the game carries and officially licensed stamp. Parts come from the likes of Brembo, Bridgestone Motorsport and OMP. If that’s the aspect that you enjoy most, you’ll probably want to leap straight into Pro Career Mode, here you chose one of the racing disciplines and work your way through from the very humblest cars to the high performance top of the range ones.

If you fancy a more casual relationship with your cars, World Tour provides a more immediate “arcadey” style of play, where you can have fun seeing just how far the damage physics go. Codemasters certainly know that making racing more fun needs plenty of smashed windscreens, dented doors and bumpers hanging off the back of a car grinding sparks up in other drivers faces! Certainly much more fun for cavalier types like myself who think bouncing down a wall is a valid way to turn a corner.

Yeah, karting too!

At this point I should mention I was playing PC preview code which still had areas and issues to be addressed. Framerate will be much better in the release version and things like loading speeds across all platforms will be shorter and draw distances optimised. Online play was not implemented in the preview version so I was robbed of competing against other humans, but the AI is very good.

All-in-all this is another quality driving game from Codemasters that should please both casual and hardcore alike. Nice one guys!

The author of this fine article

is a Staff Writer at Thunderbolt, having joined in June 2003.

Gentle persuasion

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