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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
Cars 2: Blur meets Mario Kart, swirled with kiddie goodness
on June 25, 2011
The plight of video game adaptations of movies is well chronicled, from ET back on the 2600 all the way to atrocities like Thor, Rise of the Silver Surfer and so on.
I'm very happy to say, Cars 2 isn't one of those games.
The game begins with something of a "mini short"...if you haven't seen the movie, obviously you should before playing the game or it won't make any sense! Anyway, it's really cool. Then you go into your "Chrome" training, and advance through several levels of being a secret agent. Some of the modes...
- Attack: If you've played Blur, you're familiar with the "Demolition" events, where the goal was to earn as many points until time ran out. Same thing here: You get time for the cars that you blow up, and there are bronze/silver/gold trophies (not PSN ones, just the event) that give you points accordingly.
- Race: Just like it sounds...most are 3 laps, some you use powerups on, some you don't. Safe to say there's a fair amount of rubber banding going on...in only 1 race did I win by more than a few seconds, and I'm a fairly seasoned racer (198th in the world out of 35,000 in Blur)
- Hunter: You're battling drones in an arena like setting
- Survival: How's this for fun: You have to continuously gather batteries to keep your shield up, if it drops, BOOM!
All in all, it's a surprising amount of variety for a kids themed game that will give adults a run for their money.
While Cars 2 has many of the "normal" driving options (i.e., drifting, boosts, etc.) it also adds in a layer of strategy with the Energy meter on your car. When it's full, you basically turn into a nitroing/shielding messenger of doom. But while you're trying to fill it all the way, you're likely going to get passed. So do you try to go for the home run or use your boost to stay out in front before that point? And the courses have shortcuts which usually have gas...which fills your energy faster. You can also drive backwards, on two wheels...in short pretty much whatever you've seen the Cars do in Cars 1 and 2 you can do on the race track.
Speaking of the tracks...they are nice and varied, as are the locals, and have multiple paths to get to the finish line on each.
So grips...yes there's a few...
- As in Mario Kart, you're going to get nailed when you're out in front, and in one race in particular I got nailed 3 times in a row by the CPU and went from 1st to 6th.
- Some of the graphics are what I call "rough around the edges". Play a game like Dirt 3 and/or GT5 and there's a huge difference.
- And, one of the major reasons I gave this game 4 stars vs. 5: All the best racing games give you a sense of SPEED. It seems all too often in this game, even when you're boosting, that you're just not going that fast. Maybe it's because it's more geared towards kids...but I feel like I'm crawling during the races.
The bottom line:
- If you've got kids that love Cars and can use the PS3 controls, this is a must purchase.
- If you're a racing fan in general...if you can overlook the joking you might get, there IS an amazing amount of depth and strategy for what amounts to a "kids" racing game.
- And obviously...if you're a "sim" guy yeah this isn't the game for you. Nothing realistic about gatling guns and jumping off the track through billboards. You won't see that in Gran Turismo. :)
In closing, a great job by the Avalanche developers and Pixar in creating a fun, 2011 racing game based on the Cars 2 movie.