1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Average, but the only NASCAR PC game,
This review is from: NASCAR The Game 2013 [Online Game Code] (Software Download)
It's an arcade game rather than a racing simulator. Unfortunately, it's also the only recent NASCAR PC game available, so you don't really have any options if you want to play a stock car racing game. The AI crashes you constantly, which can get REALLY annoying, but also helpful once you realise that you can pick up 10+ places after a big smash by just jamming on the accelerator and smashing into the pack (which is what the stupid AI cars do anyway). The cars also deliberately drive in front of you as you approach a smash, so sometimes you can weave your way through. I have all damage turned off, as it would make the game just about unplayable with it on, I think.
Of course, if you don't turn off all flags and cautions, the race just restarts and it's only a pain in the ass (it still throws some flags even with it off).
You car is also REALLY slow for some reason, and you have to race about 10 laps to catch the others before you can get a decent field position. Every other car will zip past you at the start, regardless of your starting position, and unless you deliberately get out of the way, the AI will cause you (and only you) to spin out/get turned around and immediately put you into 43rd place (in most races). Be prepared to get frustrated and restart the game multiple times. I haven't updated it (2 updates out so far), but it crashes pretty regularly after the race (including some 1st places - had to deliberately get 2nd or 3rd a couple of times) and when you try and restart races. On the up side, the game loads quite quickly (lol).
The car models are pretty crap, but they look okay. The "paint booth" is buggy, and didn't work for me. The customisation of the cars is alright, but pretty basic, and I haven't seen it really make much of a difference to the performance. You can adjust a bunch of settings (weight distribution, steering etc), but I don't bother much. The track graphics are pretty basic. They look okay, but it's not all that impressive graphically (at least by 2013's standards). Of course, the whole NASCAR vibe is impressive, and that's what the game relies on. Racing the different tracks is good (Talladega, Bristol, Daytona etc), but only because it reminds you of NASCAR, not because the game presents it well.
Given the massive overblown budgets of recent "AAA" games, NASCAR The Game 2013 actually does okay with average graphics. It does the job and you get to smash Danica Patrick off the track for intruding into a man's world (I joke, but you can wipe her car out - go Danica!).
The physics are okay, and the cars seem to handle realistically, but I've only been able to play it well using a keyboard. Using my Logitech controller would be great IF the thumbsticks worked... but they don't. And the d-pad only worked some of the times (ie: the car would just drive straight into the wall on turns, regardless of what I was doing).
Once you get over these amateur and stupid game designs (if you can), the game is kind of fun. Once you realise that it's just an arcade car game and not a serious racing simulator, the game is kind of fun. As I said, it's the only NASCAR game available on PC, so what else are you going to do? Given the popularity of NASCAR, it would be great to see a really well developed stock car racing game as an actual simulator with 2013-level graphics, rather than this cheaply made game. Alas.
It's really only worth about $14.95 at most to be honest. $19.95 is a bit steep for such a weak game, but if you dig NASCAR, it might be worth it.