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Reviewed: Test Drive Le Mans
Author: Chris Kim       Date: April 4th 2000
Page: 4


 
Final Breakdown

Gameplay:

Possibly the best racing game to be released under the Test Drive label in a while, Test Drive Le Mans is one of the better racing simulations out there with believable physics, great racing modes, and lots of different styles of play. The different night and day driving times along with various road conditions add even more replay value to the various extremely well designed tracks. Only missing component is the damage model from the lower levels.

Graphics:

Nearly everything in the game looks great from the detailed textures, dynamic lighting, to the great car models. The high polygon count car models really shine when the various sponsorship titles are applied to the cars to produce the effect of advertising. The only slight mishaps are the use of extremely paper-thin textures for trees and people by-standers, aside from that the rest of the graphics look great.

Sound and Music:

Pretty much average sound effects for everything in the game. The announcer tends to get slightly repetitive after a while and the collisions and tire skiddings are pretty trite after a while as well. Since there is no original soundtrack to the game, the option of allowing the player to put in his own music is welcome.

Multiplayer: N/A

N/A

AI and Difficulty:

Excellent AI is programmed into the game that allows extremely competitive racing from level to level. As the player gains in ability, the computer will gradually climb to the level of the player with slightly increasing difficulty levels from the GT1 Amateur to Prototype Professional races. The balance of difficulty doesn't sway significantly, which allows for generally forgiving gameplay until the more difficult races are reached when the AI comes into full play.

Controls and Interface:

Sufficient controls and interface are provided for the user to get accustomed too. Analog input devices such as joysticks and steering wheels aren't too friendly at their default sensitivity, as it is by default extremely high, but using a gamepad, the control is excellent and responsive. Most of the interface is very easy to use, but lacks mouse control and suffers from console origins.

Overall:

The best Test Drive game to be released in a while isn't even a true Test Drive release. This game follows a completely different path in game flow and it shows. The extremely fun Championship and Le Mans 24 Hours races are plenty of fun to play with lots of different replay and options to play with. Combine the solid gameplay engine with great looking graphics and strong AI, no driving fan should miss this game--casual or hardcore.

Pluses (+)
  • Should Appeal to Both Hardcore and Casual Gamers
  • Many Fun Game Modes
  • Solid Graphics Engine
  • Competitive AI
  • Minuses (-)
  • Simple Sound--No Soundtrack
  • Interface and Controls Could Use Work
  • No Multiplayer Options
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    Added:  Tuesday, April 04, 2000
    Reviewer:  Chris Kim
    Score:
    Page: 4/5

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